JOE MORRIS Interview circa 2003 All About Jazz
Interview circa 1998 All About Jazz

Joe Morris
Photo © Mephisto

Joe Morris is one of the rare ones. A player who sets up great challenges for himself, and proceeds to meet them head on with resounding success. He plays the guitar like no one else; for comparative description, it's actually easier to refer to a horn player like Jimmy Lyons or Eric Dolphy than any other guitarist in the history of the instrument's existence. To be honest, the fretboard leaps unleashed to actualize the phrasing in his music often times seem superhuman.

For the last 30 years and over the course of well over 50 albums recorded since the early 80's, Morris has been creating a body of work that stands and walks with giants. It is his first-hand awareness of music's ability to transform a listener's mental state outside of the here and now, that has driven him to reach levels of virtuosity and a breadth of expression on guitar which are presently unsurpassed. The silk in the web he weaves is of the absolute finest grade. The web of music itself however, it's intricacies and continually revealing patterns, prompts true awe.

In early 2001, Morris picked up the acoustic bass and began playing this instrument as well (see second line of first paragraph above). In 2002, he revived his Riti label (distributed by AUM Fidelity), and proceeded to issue a stunning series of limited edition albums featuring his most recent group work on both guitar and bass.

It is late March 2009 as this paragraph is written. Since this page was last updated in 2004, a dozen striking new albums featuring Joe Morris as a leader/co-leader have been released, and his guitar and bass voices have appeared on 20 additional albums besides. On guitar, these releases include deep telling (profound) duos with Anthony Braxton and Barre Phillips, and an album from David S. Ware's rapturous Shakti quartet. On bass he has most notably been a member of the Matthew Shipp Trio, featured on pianist Steve Lantner's albums and within his own Bass Quartet music.

2009 marked AUM Fidelity working closely with Joe Morris anew. The first of the 2009 'Morris/AUM triptych' was the MVP-LSD album on Riti. Following in July was Joe Morris' Wildlife (Joe on bass, Petr Cancura on tenor sax, Luther Gray on drums = collective levitational improv beauty) and in the Fall of 2009 the very long awaited new Joe Morris Quartet album (with Jim Hobbs: alto, Timo Shanko: bass, Luther Gray: drums), Today on Earth, deep and joyous rewards to the fore! And the great work continues.. -SJ

READ MORE about Joe Morris:
Gary Giddins' Weatherbird on Joe Morris
PoK Magazine Article
MOD Magazine Article
Boston Phoenix Cover Story 1999
Boston Phoenix Article 1997
Boston Phoenix Article 1996
All About Jazz Article on The Records (1995-1999)


bold titles = as leader or co-leader
titles with links available for direct purchase from AUM Fidelity

2012 Altitude : Trio w/ William Parker, Gerald Cleaver ..AUM Fidelity
2011 Broken Partials : Duo w/ Matthew Shipp ..Not Two
2011 XYX : The Spanish Donkey w/ Jamie Saft, Mike Pride ..Northern Spy
2011 Traits : Joe Morris / Petr Cancura / Luther Gray .. Riti
2011 Ambrosia : Duo w/ Agusti Fernandez .. Riti
2011 The Hour of the Star : Ivo Perelman Quartet
2011 Next : Taylor Ho Bynum / Joe Morris / Sara Schoenbeck ..Porter
2011 Set Theory-Live at the Stone : Flow Trio w/ Louie Belogenis. Charles Downs ..Ayler
2010 Sensor : solo acoustic bass ..No Business LP
2010 Camera : w/ Luther Gray, Junko Fujiwara Simons, Katt Hernandez ..ESP'disk
2010 Valencia : Ramon Lopez Freedom NOW Septet w/ Barry Guy,
.........................Agusti Fernandez, Herb Robertson, Ivo Perelman .. Xabiajazz
2010 Parrhesia : Stephen Haynes Trio w/ Warren Smith .. Engine
2010 Creatures : w/ Luther Gray .. Not Two
2010 Tooth & Nail : w/ Nate Wooley .. Clean Feed
2010 Night Logic : w/ Marshall Allen, Matthew Shipp .. RogueArt
2010 Glass Key : w/ Ben Hall, Chris Riggs .. You are your own machine
2009 Othertet : w/ Bill Lowe, Taylor Ho Bynum, Kwaaku Kwake Obeng .. Engine
2009 Today on Earth : Quartet (w/ Jim Hobbs, Timo Shanko, Luther Gray) ..AUM Fidelity
2009 Colorfield : Joe Morris / Steve Lantner / Luther Gray ..ESP'disk
2009 Wildlife : Joe Morris / Petr Cancura / Luther Gray .. AUM Fidelity
2009 The Necessary and the Possible : Joe Morris / Simon H. Fell / Alex Ward ..Victo
2009 Fine Objects : Petr Cancura / Joe Morris / Jason Nazary ..Not Two
2009 Songs of Early Autumn : Dennis Gonzalez Connecticut Quartet ..No Business
MVP-LSD: The Graphic Scores of Lowell Skinner Davidson : w/ John Voigt, Tom Plsek ..Riti
2009 Harmonic Disorder : Matthew Shipp Trio ..Thirsty Ear
2009 Shakti : David S. Ware Quartet w/ William Parker, Warren Smith..AUM Fidelity
2009 Rejuvenation : The Flow Trio: Louie Belogenis, Joe Morris, Charles Downs ..ESP'disk
2009 Maison Hantée : Various Artists track 9 W/Jeff Parker, Matana Roberts ..RogueArt
2008 Atmosphere : Solo banjo, banjouke ..KMB
2008 Given :  Steve Lantner Quartet ..Hat Hut
2008 Elm City Duets : w/ Barre Phillips ..Clean Feed
2008 High Definition : Bass Quartet w/Allan Chase, Luther Gray, Taylor Ho Bynum ..Hat Hut
2008 Cloud Atlas : Melee’+Joe Morris ..Broken Research
2008 Double Sunrise Over Neptune : William Parker Orchestra .. AUM Fidelity
2008 Cosmic Suite : Matthew Shipp Quartet ..Not Two
2008 The Story of Mankind : Jim Hobbs/Joe Morris/Luther Gray .. Not Two
2008 Improvisations (Duo) 2007 : w/ Anthony Braxton ..Clean Feed
2008 Bliss : Hamid Drake Bindu ..RogueArt
2008 Right Hemisphere : w/ Matthew Shipp, Rob Brown, Whit Dickey .. RogueArt
2007 Healing Force: The Songs of Albert Ayler : Henry Kaiser ..Cunieform
2007 Flow : w/ Louie Belogenis, Charles Downs ..Ayler (download only)
2007 What You Can Throw : Steve Lantner Trio ..Hat Hut
2007 Rebus : w/ Ken Vandermark, Luther Gray ..Clean Feed
2007 Blurry : Daniel Levin Quartet ..Hat Hut
2007 Piano Vortex : Matthew Shipp Trio ..Thirsty Ear
2006 Some Trees : Daniel Levin Quartet ..Hat Hut
2006 Radiant Pools : Rob Brown Quartet ..RogueArt
2006 Paradise Road : Steve Lantner Quartet .. Skycap
2006 No Photograph Available : Dennis Gonsales Boston Project ..Clean Feed
2006 Sacred Ground : Whit Dickey Ensemble ..Clean Feed
2005 Fur : Natural History w/ Croix Galipault, Joe Sexton .. Skycap
2005 Blue Yonder : Steve Lantner Trio .. Skycap
2005 In a Heartbeat : Whit Dickey Ensemble .. Clean Feed
2005 Beautiful Existence : Quartet (w/Timo Shanko, Jim Hobbs, Luther Gray) ..Clean Feed
2004 Coalescence : Whit Dickey Ensemble .. Clean Feed
2004 Skull Session : Jeff Platz Group .. Skycap
2004 Don’t Go It Alone : Daniel Levin Ensemble ..Riti
2003 Guitar Festival Summer 1999 : Eugene Chadbourne and others ..Leo
2003 Likewise : Stone House Rob Brown / Joe Morris / Luther Gray ..Riti
2003 Eloping With The Sun : William Parker / Joe Morris / Hamid Drake ..Riti
2003 Prophet Moon : Whit Dickey Ahxoloxha Trio w/Rob Brown ..Riti
2002 Saying So : Steve Lantner Ensemble ..Riti
2002 Age Of Everything : Trio (w/ Timo Shanko, Luther Gray) ..Riti
2001 Singularity : Solo steel string acoustic guitar..AUM Fidelity
2001 Right Now : Joe Maneri/Joe Morris/Mat Maneri ..hatOLOGY
2001 Voices Lowered : Steve Lantner/Joe Morris ..Leo
2000 Pain Pen : Eugene Chadbourne/Susie Ibarra/Joe Morris ..Avant
2000 Soul Search : Joe Morris+Mat Maneri ..AUM Fidelity
2000 Big Top : Whit Dickey Quartet...Wobbly Rail
2000 At the Old Office : Quartet (w/ Mat Maneri, Chris Lightcap, Gerald Cleaver). Knitting Factory
1999 Deep Telling : DKV Trio with Joe Morris ..Okkadisk
1999 Underthru : Quartet (w/ Mat Maneri, Chris Lightcap, Gerald Cleaver) ..Omnitone
1999 Many Rings : (w/ Karen Borca, Rob Brown, Andrea Parkins)...Knitting Factory
1998 A Cloud Of Black Birds : Quartet (w/Mat Maneri,Chris Lightcap,Jerome Deupree) .. AUM Fidelity
1998 Racket Club : (w/Jim Hobbs,Steve Norton,Nate McBride,Jerome Deupree,Curt Newton)...About Time
1998 Like Rays : Joe Morris/Ken Vandermark/Hans Poppel ..Knitting Factory
1998 Registered Firm : Hession/Wilkinson/Fell/Morris . ..Incus
1997 Antennae : Trio (w/ Nate McBride, Jerome Deupree) .. AUM Fidelity
1997 Strings : Ivo Perelman/Joe Morris .. Leo
1997 Invisible Weave : Joe Morris/William Parker ..No More Records
1997 Thesis : Matthew Shipp/Joe Morris ..hatOLOGY
1997 You Be Me : Quartet (w/ Mat Maneri, Nate McBride, Curt Newton) ....Soul Note
1996 Elsewhere : Ensemble (w/ Matthew Shipp, William Parker, Whit Dickey) ..Homestead
1996 Three Men Walking : Joe Maneri/Joe Morris/Mat Maneri. ...ECM
1996 No Vertigo : Solo . ..Leo
1995 Illuminate : Joe Morris/Rob Brown Quartet (w/ William Parker, Jackson Krall).. Leo
1994 Symbolic Gesture : Trio (w/ Nate McBride, Curt Newton) ..Soul Note
1992 Youniverse : Rob Brown/Whit Dickey/Joe Morris ..Riti
1991 Flip and Spike : Trio (w/ Sebastian Steinberg, Jerry Deupree) ..Riti
1990 Live at the Knitting Factory, Volume 5 : 1 track with Sebastian Steinberg, Curt Newton .. Knitting Factory
1990 Sweatshop : Trio (w/ S. Steinberg, J. Deupree) ..Riti
1986 Human Rites : Trio (w/S. Steinberg, J. Deupree & Thurman Barker).. Riti LP
1983 Wraparound : Trio (w/ Sebastian Steinberg, Laurence Cook).. Riti LP

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