Today, November 7, would have been saxophonist David S. Ware‘s 64th birthday. He died on October 18, 2012, of complications from a kidney transplant he’d received in 2009.
During his five decades of playing the saxophone, Ware recorded as a sideman with Cecil Taylor (on Dark to Themselves), Andrew Cyrille (Celebration, Junction, Metamusicians’ Stomp, Special People), and Beaver Harris (African Drums), among others. But by far his most important contribution was leading the David S. Ware Quartet from 1989/90 to 2007. That group made 19 albums (16 studio, 3 live, including the triple disc Live in the World and the LP-only Live in Vilnius) and expanded the vocabulary of the jazz quartet through a blend of traditional methodology (and the occasional forcefully disassembled standard) and far-reaching exploration. Drummers (Marc Edwards, Whit Dickey, Susie Ibarra, and Guillermo E. Brown) came and went, but pianist Matthew Shipp and bassist William Parker were the foundation of the group, anchoring Ware and providing the carpet of sound he required to go as far out as he went.
In this exclusive video, Shipp and Parker talk about how they came into Ware’s orbit, and what he was like to work with and to know.