The John Harbison Project’s album, Songs After Hours, is the debut recording of jazz songs by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer, John Harbison. The John Harbison Project is led by Mary Mackenzie (soprano), and John Chin (piano), and includes renowned jazz musicians Dan Rieser (drums), Joe Martin (bass), and Dayna Stephens (saxophone).
In 2007, at the composer’s invitation, New York-based soprano Mary Mackenzie performed many of these songs at the Harbison’s Token Creek Chamber Music Festival, held each summer since 1997 at their farm in rural Wisconsin. This was the first public performance of an almost secret body of work that this extremely well-known composer has been writing throughout his very long and distinguished career. John regularly used lyrics by his sister Meg, Murray Horowitz (lyricist for the very clever 1920's pop songs that serve as background wallpaper in Harbison's opera, The Great Gatsby), and other friends. The songs had been written between 1952 and 2007 and existed only in manuscript, unpublished. In 2008, on the occasion of Harbisons' 70th birthday, Associated Music Publishers published After Hours, an anthology of 30 songs (of the more than 100 currently in existence: he continues to write in this genre right up to the present day).
Ms. Mackenzie and Mr. Chin have since created, with the composer’s endorsement, new arrangements for many of the Songs After Hours - arrangements that include a full combo of piano, drums, bass, and saxophone. Songs After Hours was presented at Smalls Jazz Club in New York City in September and December of 2013.
released May 9, 2014
Mary Mackenzie - Soprano
John Chin - Piano
Dayna Stephens - Saxophone
Joe Martin - Bass
Dan Rieser - Drums
Recorded and Mixed at Sear Sound by James Farber
Mastered at Sterling Sound by Greg Calbi
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