Pianist Sebastien Ammann to release "Change of Course" (Ropedope)

Through this work, I wish to acknowledge the impactful work of Donella and Denis Meadows, Jean-Marc Jancovici, Aurélien Barrau and countless Native and Indigenous wisdoms who have heightened my awareness of the urgent poly-crisis of pollution, climate change, biodiversity loss, social inequity, and public health. Through this record, I aim to empower my fellow humans to drive systemic change towards a regenerative future for all living beings. - Sebastien Ammann

About the Compositions:

Contemplation: Pausing and contemplating life invites us to focus on our senses and shows us the miracle of life and the natural world. We must learn to respect the ecosystem in which we are embedded.

Hubris: This word means having excessive pride or self-confidence. I believe that this aptly describes mankind's attitude towards the natural world. The assumption that humans are superior to nature and that all problems can be solved by human ingenuity and technology might be one of the root causes of today's crises.

The Meadows: Dedicated to Denis and Donella Meadows (American scientists and co-authors of "The Limits To Growth" (1972)). The Meadows' work has changed how I understand the world.

Gaia: Mother Earth is the ancestral mother of all life. We aren't part of nature; we are nature, we are life, so let us care about it and cherish it. Through this piece, I wish to acknowledge Indigenous Peoples whose wisdom guides us today.

Jevons' Paradox: The economist William Stanley Jevons described this effect in 1865. Jevons' Paradox states that an increase in efficiency of resource use will generate an increase in resource consumption rather than a decrease.

Bright Light: I wrote this piece for my son, Elias, who brings endless and intense joy to my life.

L'An 01: This 1973 cult French film offers a utopian view of the future. Its messages: "Let's stop everything" and "After a period of total stoppage, let's bring back just the services and products we can't do without" open an important topic of discussion.

The Web of Life: "Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself." (Chief Seattle)

Swallowtail's Hollow Tail: In the summer of 2020, I was lucky to witness part of a Swallowtail's life cycle from an egg to a caterpillar as it grew on a carrot plant on my balcony.

Nature Dance: This 2-measure piece celebrates life and nature. The fact that life starts with a single cell and develops into complex and interconnected organisms is the most amazing thing.

About Sebastien Ammann:

Sebastien Ammann emerged onto the New York jazz scene in 2008, carving a niche as a versatile pianist and composer with a distinctive musical identity. Jazz Trail magazine hailed him, saying, "[He] is already riding a comet toward the highest galaxies of modern jazz" while JAZZIZ magazine praised his ability to blur the lines between improvisation and composition.

Ammann leads several ensembles, including Sebastien Ammann's Gaia Quartet, featuring luminaries like trumpeter Ralph Alessi, bassist John Hébert, and drummer Eric McPherson. Their forthcoming album, "Change of Course" (Ropeadope Records), is set for release in June 2024. Additionally, Sebastien Ammann fronts his band Color Wheel, joined by saxophonist Michaël Attias, bassist Noah Garabedian, and drummer Nathan Ellman-Bell, and the Sebastien Ammann Quartet, featuring Swiss saxophonist Ohad Talmor, bassist David Ambrosio, and drummer Eric McPherson.

His third album as a leader, "Resilience" by Color Wheel (Skirl Records, 2020), garnered rave reviews from over a dozen specialized magazines and online publications, with critics dubbing it "a remarkably current album" and praising Ammann's ability to "stir up real sparks with his work."

Sebastien Ammann is also a founding member of the improvisational collective, Henry/Ammann/Pichler/Mok, renowned for creating music in the moment without predetermined ideas. Their debut record, "Penumbra" along with a video, graced the music scene in May 2020. This ensemble features accomplished musicians like trumpeter Jake Henry, bassist Matthias Pichler, and drummer Lesley Mok.

Not only is Sebastien Ammann a bandleader, but he's also a sought-after sideman in numerous projects, including guitarist Gene Ess' "Fractal Attraction" and Jake Leckie's Quartet. He's shared the stage with a diverse array of musicians, such as Kris Davis, Tony Malaby, Sean Conly, and Michael Formanek, performing at venues and festivals across the USA and Europe.

Ammann's work has received recognition in acclaimed publications like Downbeat Magazine, Jazz Life (Japan), and Jazziz, and he has been the recipient of grants from the Swiss Foundation of Artists and Performers (SIS) and the City of Geneva. Furthermore, he runs a successful private studio and is a faculty member at the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, where he imparts his musical wisdom.


Sebastien Ammann - Piano

Ralph Alessi - Trumpet

Caroline Davis - Alto Saxophone (Tracks 5, 6)

John Hébert - Bass

Eric McPherson - Drums

Release Date: June 21st, 2024


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