As legendary jazz vibraphonists Teddy Charles describes him, It's not easy to be Chris Byars. With an incredible array of talents brought to bear on his composition, arrangements, and cooking jazz performances, it's no wonder he's worked his way to the forefront of the myriad of jazz players overwhelming the scene."
Byars has been working hard over the past few years, releasing a string of critically well-received albums including Blue Lights: The Music of Gigi Gryce (SteepleChase, 2009) and, with Charles, Dances With Bulls (Smalls Records, 2009)
AAJ Contributor Ludwig van Trikt spoke with Byars about his upbringing as a child opera star, his eventual conversion to jazz altoist and, ultimately, his efforts to bring greater attention to the music of deserving, but lesser-known artists including Gigi Gryce
, Jimmy Lovelace
and Frank Hewitt
Check out Chris Byars: Studying Unsung Heroes at AAJ today!