Risk equals reward.
A familiar but often challenging equation in Jazz where musicians risk so much only to struggle with careers that provide such limited rewards. In the world of avant-garde and experimental Jazz, this equation shifts to honor only the most bold and persistent. Steph Richards easy fits that description. A remarkably talented trumpeter, Steph's playing and growing body of work is providing a fresh new influence on all kinds of music within the varied genre of Jazz.
Listening to Steph's music can feel like scrolling through an extravagant special effects library, one uniquely attuned to the human condition and the remarkable expanse of music that makes up avant grade and experimental Jazz. Sounding like everything from a synthesized Louis Armstrong to whales barking at the moon, Steph has created a sonic palette contoured perfectly to the bands she leads, as well as the world renowned artists she collaborates with.
Working with everyone from Henry Threadgill, Anthony Braxton, to John Zorn and electro-pop star St. Vincent, Steph consistently finds ways to fit into music that often defies acceptable norms within a variety of traditional musical frameworks. Benefiting from a versatile technical toolset, a fluid musical imaginative, and an agile creative ingenuity, Steph is delightfully indiscriminate when it comes to exploring the vast tonality of music she entertains.
It's this pervasive passion coupled to an innate ability to find form and function amid the backdrop of borderless improvisation that makes Steph's music so addictive. Often dense, harsh, confusing or just odd, Steph’s musical curiosity remains addictive. Coaxingly, Steph's imagination eventually guides her music to the insightful musical resolution that comes from any difficult but meaningful exercise.
There’s a world of music that's increasingly full of mechanized predictability, then there are musicians like Steph Richards - someone who consistently navigates risk to reward us with a greater understanding of the wider spectrum of music that exists in the world.
Click on the featured albums below to hear or purchase any of Steph's music.
Musician / Band
Conduction 143/2 Part 5
And More Dirt - Part IV
Calendar Suite: March
Full Moon Part II
Skull of Theatres