2012 Composer Spotlight: Jeff Fairbanks

David Johnston

2012 Composer-in-Residence Jeff Fairbanks


Jeff Fairbanks’ latest album Mulberry Street, featuring his 17-piece jazz ensemble Project Hansori, is an amazing amalgam of jazz, big band, Chinese and Korean folk music.  It’s garnered great reviews – “Best of 2011” by Just Jazz and “Recommended New Release” by NYC Jazz Record – and received awards from the American Music Center and the Aaron Copland Fund. You’ve got to give the album a listen, it’s terrific.

An award-winning composer, trombonist, arranger and bandleader, Jeff’s work with  diverse musical styles, traditions and performers truly embodies the concept of hansori, which means “one voice” in Korean. Jeff’s unique musical voice has developed over time through cultural immersion and active participation. For years, he sang in a gospel choir, played in salsa bands and more recently, has been active in the local Chinese and Korean communities – playing in Chinatown funerals and joining an orchestra in a Korean church.

We’re particularly excited that Jeff will be a Composer-in-Residence at Flushing Town Hall. For his residency, Jeff plans to compose an ensemble piece based entirely on the Korean double-reed instrument taepyeongso. Boasting a huge East Asian community, we trust that Flushing Town Hall and its surroundings will prove to be a fertile creative environment!

P.S. Check out Jeff’s exciting new five-piece brass ensemble Street Beat at the FlyNY Kite Festival this Saturday! (Riverside Park South on Pier I from 11am-2pm.)


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