Drummer Gregg Bendian knows all about adventurous music making; for over twenty years, this classically trained musician has led a number of stylistically diverse, forward-looking groups, whose leitmotif is controlled improvisation.
And if it is true what they say about the company you keep, then collaborations with saxophonist Ornette Coleman, pianist Cecil Taylor, saxophonist John Zorn, and guitarist Nels Cline and Derek Bailey speak volumes about Bendian's musical vision. This musical vision has driven Bendian over the last five years to revisit the music of the legendary Mahavishnu Orchestra.
AAJ Contributor Ian Patterson spoke with Bendian recently about The Mahavishnu Project's latest (and most ambitious) project to date: Return to the Emerald Beyond, which documents the first ever performances of the entire Mahavishnu Orchestra 1975 album, Visions of the Emerald Beyond.
Bendian describes how The Mahavishnu Project, while reverential to Mahavishnu Orchestra material, views it as repertory work rife for interpretation, and the challenges of putting together an eleven-piece extended version of The Mahavishnu Project.
Check out Gregg Bendian: Inner Flame, Musical Visions at AAJ today!