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Passageways by McNeill/Filiano/Haynes

Pianist Michael McNeill releases his debut CD as a leader, with renowned improvisers Ken Filiano (bass) and Phil Haynes (drums). The disc features five of McNeill's original compositions, performed live in Buffalo, NY in December 2010. Buffalo engineer Bill Sack recorded the concert, and Jon Rosenberg provided the mixing and mastering. CDs and digital downloads may be ordered through BandCamp (, where you can also listen to three of the five tracks in their entirety.

"The McNeill Trio plays high-level improvisational music, built around strong compositions and sturdy motifs... His extended solo during album- opener 'Hold On' offers a master- class in musical storytelling, and his improvised prelude to 'Metropolis' is both playful and haunting." - Jeff Miers, Buffalo News

Some comments from the pianist/composer:

Most of the music on the CD is "open" in one way or another—"Hold On" eventually gets to a set of chord changes (though the lengths of most are not specified); "Nobody's Waltz," "Metropolis," and "Exit Now" had no pre-determined structure for the improvisations. (On "I'm OK Now" we play on the form of the melody.) Nevertheless, what excited me so much about our performances on this disc is that we always kept the elements of the underlying compositions in sight. In the midst of so many spontaneous discoveries, we stayed true to the language of each tune.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: McNeill/Filiano/Haynes
  • CD Title: Passageways
  • Genre: Free Jazz / Avante Garde
Last modified on Wednesday, 25 January 2012 19:48
Michael McNeill

Over the past several years, pianist Michael McNeill has become an integral part of the creative music scene in Buffalo, performing with bands led by Kelly Bucheger and Ravi Padmanabha, co-leading a quartet with John Bacon, and leading various projects, including a trio with bassist Dave Arenius and drummer Russ Algera. He’s also collaborated with trumpet legend Paul Smoker on projects of standards and of original compositions. Passageways, McNeill’s debut CD as a leader, features renowned improvisers Ken Filiano (bass) and Phil Haynes (drums).

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