Monday, May 7, 2012

Catching up with Hailey Niswanger Interview Part Two

Continuing my interview with Hailey Niswanger Part Two (Part 1)

You are a recent graduate  from Berklee - With some  younger players on the scene is there too much focus on "being a star" and less on the passion of the music? I recently spoke to Rufus Reid who said advanced degrees are nice but that time could be better spent on the band stand. 

H.N. - "In response to what Rufus Reid said, I do agree that it is essential to have lots of time spent on the band stand, but I don't see why that can't also be done while being in school. As for me, I graduated from Berklee in December 2011, and loved my experience there. In fact, through Berklee is where I got most of my "band stand" experiences. I was a little uncertain about going back to school for my masters, but I realized I am an eager sponge right now and I am aware that there is endless amount of knowledge I should be getting my hands on. I will be attending Manhattan School of Music in the fall, thankfully on a full tuition scholarship, and I am very much looking forward to this experience. Each persons journey and experiences are different. With what I have seen at Berklee, yes there are some who may be more focused on "becoming a star", but i have seen many people who genuinely want to play music.  There is a difference, however, in having passion for music and playing with passion. "Playing with passion" is not something that can really be practiced. I don't really know how to explain it, but it's like finding a new sense of space within yourself, where you are a vessel and the music is flowing through you."

Your sound is like morning coffee to me. Warm, inviting...who inspires you and what was the last jazz disc you purchased?

 H.N. - "Many musicians inspire me. A few saxophonists; John Coltrane, Cannonball Adderley, Joe Henderson, Charlie Parker, Wayne Shorter, Jackie McLean, Eddie Harris, Sonny Stitt, Joe Lovano and Kenny Garrett. Other instruments; Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Freddie Hubbard, Dizzy Gillespie, Oscar Peterson, Thelonious Monk, Sarah Vaughn, Thad and Elvin Jones. I  recently purchased Kenny Garrett's new CD Seeds from the Underground, and not far before that Sonny Meets Hawk!"

I want to know about the cover art! Who did it and is there a story behind it?...Awesome artwork!

H.N. - "My sister, Kaitlin Dale, did the photography and had the vision for the design and painting on the album. Andrea Millen, a best friend of mine is the artist, she really brought it to life! Basically it is supposed to show me at my deepest stage of thought, although thoroughly at peace, illustrating ideas, sounds, and images flowing from my mind, essentially creating the music."

My sincere thanks to Hailey Niswanger! Check out