Fireside Chat with Lawrence Fields: 7pm – Holmes Lounge
The Lawrence Fields Trio: 8pm – Holmes Lounge
“I love playing music with Lawrence Fields! He’s full of ideas, plays with a beautiful sound and feeling and can swing! He’s always inspired – and that’s where the magic is…” — Joe Lovano
Lawrence Fields, born and bred in St. Louis, has earned a spot at the forefront of young jazz pianists, thanks to his blending of vintage ideals with a contemporary mindset. In 2021, 2020, and 2019, Downbeat Magazine has placed him near the top of the keyboardist category in their “Rising Stars” critics poll. Veteran saxophone icon Joe Lovano – with his unerring ear for youthful talent – has become one of the pianist’s biggest fans. Fields is a member of several bands led or co-led by Lovano: his Classic Quartet (originally featuring Lewis Nash and George Mraz in the rhythm section); the Sax Supreme Quartet (with Chris Potter); and his Sound Prints quintet with trumpeter Dave Douglas. The Wall Street Journal praised Fields’ “elegant, probing” solos with Sound Prints, while The New York Times noted that he is “integral to the band’s plunging, changeable style.” A modern-minded bandleader from the younger generation also relies on Fields, as he mans the piano and keyboards for the Christian Scott Group. Referencing his role on acoustic and electric pianos in the trumpeter’s band, NextBop said: “Fields remains a constant lyrical presence on the keys – innovative, expressive, supportive, able to soar like a bird in his solos. He never fails to impress.”
On record, Fields has excelled for Scott on several albums, including co-writing and co-producing 3 songs on the Grammy-nominated The Emancipation Procrastination (Ropeadope, 2017), part of Christian’s Centennial Trilogy. He features prominently in the piano and keyboard chairs on Christian’s Grammy-nominated live recording Axiom (2020), as well as the Grammy-nominated Ancestral Recall (2019), and the Stretch Music (Ropeadope, 2015) and Christian Scott Atunde Adjuah (Concord, 2012) albums.
With Lovano and Douglas, the pianist features on the newest release Other Worlds (2021), and the critically-acclaimed Scandal (2018, Greanleaf), selected by The Guardian as their #1 jazz album of 2018, as well as one of Rolling Stone’s top 20 jazz albums of the year. Fields also plays on the live album Sound Prints: Live at Monterey Jazz Festival (Blue Note, 2015). He appears on the album Marsalis Music Honors Alvin Batiste (2007) alongside Branford Marsalis, Herlin Riley and Russell Malone, as well as on drummer Terri Lyne Carrington’s More to Say (a 2009 disc for which he served as a pianist, keyboardist, and composer-producer). Fields also appears on releases by drummer Jeff “Tain” Watts, bassist Yasushi Nakamura, vibraphonist Warren Wolf, and saxophonists Jaleel Shaw and Steve Slagle. The pianist has been a member of the Watts band, as well as that of trumpeter Nicholas Payton. In addition to performing onstage with the likes of Payton, Watts, Marsalis and Carrington, Fields has appeared with star bassist Christian McBride, trombonist Delfeayo Marsalis and bassist Robert Hurst, among others.
Fields leads his own trio and quartet, and his music has been featured on WBGO’s The Checkout series. Lawrence also spoke with Fast Company Magazine in October 2019 about the process of improvisation.
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