When the unmistakable musical influences of Thelonious Monk and Charlie Parker intersect with J.S. Bach, Scott Joplin, and the folkloric rhythms of Cuba, could one possibly conceptualize the celebration that occurs at that intersection? New York-based jazz pianist Kevin Harris plays a distinctive combination of traditional and contemporary music that seeks to explore such a crossroad.
One of the captivating elements of the Kevin Harris Project is the level of comfort and understanding the musicians have with one another as they dive into soulfully expressive conversations and playful exchanges of ideas. Both live and recorded performances reflect Harris’s determination to capture his audience through explorative interactions.
Among Harris's most notable collaborations are Greg Osby, Bill Pierce, Francisco Mela, Avishai Cohen, Eddie Gomez, and many others. Harris performs at renowned national and international venues—Blue Note (NYC, Boston, and Milan), Smalls Jazz club, Mezzrow Jazz Club, JazzHus Montmartre, and Wally's, to name a few. As a leader, Harris has released five albums.
Harris is currently on the faculty at Berklee College of Music where he has taught piano, jazz ensembles, and summer theory classes; he is also an MIT-affiliated artist. Committed to the community and to getting youth involved in music, Harris has also conducted local and international clinics in both public and private schools throughout Europe, South America, the Middle East, and the United States.
Harris thrives on communication. A typical performance involves interacting with the audience that in turn inspires a sense of joyful connectedness and community.
"Participation,” Harris says, "is what keeps our souls alive."