Top Picks Join New School Jazz

Samir Chatterjee

The virtuoso tabla player Samir Chatterjee will launch the New School Indian Music Ensemble this fall, adapting traditional Indian music to contemporary jazz instrumentation. Chatterjee performs and records as a soloist and in collaboration with outstanding artists ranging from Ravi Shankar and Vilayat Khan to Branford Marsalis, Dave Douglas, the Boston Philharmonic, and avant-garde ensembles. His compositions and writings, including the book A Study of Tabla, have also won acclaim.

Chatterjee began his studies in Calcutta, where he received instruction in the Farrukhabad Gharana (school) of tabla playing, which he now represents. He went on to earn master’s degrees in English and history. Chatterjee has taught for more than 30 years and now serves on the faculty at Yale University, Manhattan School of Music, and other institutions He is also the founder and director of Chhandayan, an organization dedicated to promoting and preserving Indian music and culture. Since 2008, Chatterjee has led several missions to Afghanistan to offer instruction and revive a silenced musical culture.

George Cables

New York City-born pianist George Cables will lead the New School Herbie Hancock Ensemble starting this fall. Cables was classically trained as a youth, he attended the Manhattan High School of Performing Arts and Mannes College The New School for Music, but was captivated by the possibilities jazz offered for creative expression. He has since emerged as a major voice in modern jazz.

Cables has performed and recorded for more than 30 years as a soloist and with trios and larger ensembles, and has worked as a clinician in college jazz programs. Known for his fresh interpretations of classic compositions and innovative writing, Cables has headlined around the world and collaborated with many of the greatest jazz musicians of our time, including Art Blakey, Dizzy Gillespie, Dexter Gordon, Roy Haynes, Joe Henderson, Freddie Hubbard, Bobby Hutcherson, Art Pepper, Max Roach, Sonny Rollins, Woody Shaw, Sarah Vaughn, Tony Williams.