Red Light Management

Julian Lage

Artist Bio

Guitarist Julian Lage expands his horizons on View With A Room, a collection of 10 compelling original compositions that marks his second release for Blue Note Records. Having established a home base with his brilliant and deeply attuned trio of bassist Jorge Roeder and drummer Dave King—most recently heard on the guitarist’s acclaimed 2021 Blue Note debut Squint—Lage casts his gaze outward to discover new orchestrational possibilities with the addition of six-string icon Bill Frisell, who adds his inimitable voice to this absolutely stunning album.

“In so many ways, I’ve wanted to make this record for years,” says Lage. View With A Room harkens back more than a decade to the Julian Lage Group, a quintet with saxophone and cello last heard on 2011’s Gladwell. “It comes from a line of musical inquiry: can you have lush orchestration combined with an organic sense of improvisation and the agility of a small ensemble?”

Without bolstering the line-up with additional instrumentation and more intricate writing, thus losing the maneuverability and venturesome spontaneity that he’s honed with Roeder and King over the last several years, Lage found his solution where he so often does: in the guitar.

“The answer came from some of the historical references that matter to me about the electric guitar,” Lage explains. “There’s a certain lineage that grows out of early pioneers like Jimmy Bryant and George Barnes and Charlie Christian, where there’s this almost electric volatility to the sound. It’s both beautiful and kind of sharp; it’s subdued and warm, but also kind of gritty. In thinking about the orchestration for this album, I wanted to foster the point of that arrow.”

There’s no one better suited to understanding what Lage was seeking, who is better versed in the history of guitar and jazz and beyond, its personalities and possibilities, than Bill Frisell. The legendary guitarist has worked with Lage in several different contexts, including duo concerts and projects devised by John Zorn, and enhances Lage’s vision in atmospheric and incisive ways throughout View With A Room. The pair honed in on a shorthand vocabulary rich with references as diverse as the Beach Boys, Keith Jarrett’s American and European Quartets, and George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass.

“Bill on his own, is such an iconic orchestrational force,” Lage says. “But what I loved in our conversations about this record is that Bill instantly responded, ‘Oh, I totally get it. I know what frequencies you want to pop and I know what that represents to the lineage of jazz guitar.’ Bill is so in tune with those nuances of the guitar’s journey, and it was fun to speak that language natively together.”

Frisell is at his most evocative on the tender opening track, “Tributary.” The tune showcases Lage’s gift for songcraft, unfurling a wistful narrative that flows with the staccato grace of a Willie Nelson phrase, enshrouded by Frisell’s airy tones and dazzling effects. The two guitarists’ subtle weave is at the heart of “Auditorium,” where Frisell’s agile rhythm work buoys Lage’s eloquent leads atop the gracefully subtle propulsion of Roeder and King.

Roeder garners co-writing credit for “Echo,” where his rock-solid bassline serves as the song’s spine. Frisell’s tremolo-drenched rhythm charge lends a surf rock tinge to “Chavez,” while his baritone Telecaster adds a deep-rooted twang to King’s grungy shuffle feel on “Temple Steps.” The limitless questing of Frisell’s vital trio work with Paul Motian and Joe Lovano is channeled in the entrancing free improvisation of “Let Every Room Sing,” before “Fairbanks” closes the album with a plangent optimism.

Frisell steps aside on three tracks to allow the trio’s finely honed dynamic to shine. “Word For Word,” like “Chavez,” is a song that Lage has attempted in multiple iterations over the years, finally finding its intended form as a lively swing waltz. With its cascading melody and King’s chattering swing feel, “Heart Is A Drum” finds its influence in Chick Corea’s early trio with Miroslav Vitous and Roy Haynes. The mid-tempo gallop of “Castle Park” is a dedication to Lage’s father, whose California high school gives the song its title, while deriving its cyclical, offbeat approach from Warne Marsh and Steve Swallow.

As with Squint, View With A Room is enhanced by the production team that the guitarist has assembled and which has become an extension of the trio itself. “It’s definitely more than a trio,” he insists. “It’s more than a quartet. It’s really a kind of seven-person art project.”

The album was produced by Margaret Glaspy, his wife and musical partner who brings her own insights as a singer-songwriter to the lyrical and storytelling aspects that make Lage’s compositions so singular. She worked closely at Brooklyn’s Bridge Studios with engineer Mark Goodell, who Lage credits with “wrangling this album into a sonic place that references what we love best about classic Blue Note records while still feeling utterly contemporary and unique to the sound of this band.” Lage’s longtime friend and collaborator Armand Hirsch added integral post-production elements that bring the emotional intent of each song into focus.

In the end, View With A Room is gorgeous and intimate, exploratory and embracing, imbued with the vibrant colors and exquisite interplay that one would hope for from the meeting of two of modern jazz’s most distinctive voices with one of the music’s most skilled and inventive rhythm sections.

“There’s no one I would trust more than Bill Frisell to come into our trio ecosystem and be able to expand it while totally embracing it,” Lage concludes. “It became a beautiful collaboration that achieved the Technicolor experience that I’ve been searching for.”

Julian Lage • View With A RoomRelease Date: September 16, 2022

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Tour Dates

Aug 22 2022
The Alternative Guitar Summit Camp 2022
Big Indian, NY
Sep 03 2022
Detroit Jazz Festival 2022
Detroit, MI
Sep 13 2022
The Oaks Theater
Oakmont, PA
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Sep 14 2022
Holland Theatre
Bellefontaine, OH
Sep 16 2022
High Noon Saloon
Madison, WI
Sep 17 2022
Minneapolis, MN
Sep 20 2022
Seattle, WA
Sep 21 2022
Aladdin Theater
Portland, OR
Sep 23 2022
Monterey Jazz Festival 2022
Monterey, CA
Sep 24 2022
San Francisco, CA
Sep 25 2022
Trione Vineyards and Winery
Geyserville, CA
Sep 25 2022
Trione Vineyards and Winery
Geyserville, CA
Sep 27 2022
The Cellar Door
Visalia, CA
Sep 28 2022
Belly Up
Solana Beach, CA
Sep 29 2022
Musical Instrument Museum
Phoenix, AZ
Oct 01 2022
Boulder Theater
Boulder, CO
Oct 14 2022
Walt Disney Concert Hall
Los Angeles, CA
Oct 19 2022
Stadsschouwburg Leuven
Leuven, Belgium
Oct 21 2022
Nasjonal Jazzscene
Oslo, Norway
Oct 21 2022
Nasjonal Jazzscene
Oslo, Norway
Oct 22 2022
Ariosto Theater
Reggio Emilia, Italy
Oct 25 2022
Blue Note
Milano, Italy
Oct 26 2022
Bruxelles, Belgium
Oct 27 2022
Nuejazz Festival 2022
Nürnberg, Germany
Oct 28 2022
Aachen, Germany
Oct 29 2022
De Spil
Roeselare, Belgium
Nov 01 2022
Sala La Nau
Barcelona, Spain
Nov 02 2022
El Pavón Teatro Kamikaze
Madrid, Spain
Nov 30 2022
Sixth & I Historic Synagogue
Washington, DC
Dec 01 2022
World Cafe Live
Philadelphia, PA
Dec 02 2022
Webster Hall
New York, NY
Dec 03 2022
Paradise Rock Club
Boston, MA
Dec 04 2022
The Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center
Old Saybrook, CT
Dec 06 2022
Thirty One West
Newark, OH
Dec 07 2022
Thalia Hall
Chicago, IL
Dec 08 2022
Lexington Children's Theatre
Lexington, KY
Dec 09 2022
The Grey Eagle
Asheville, NC
Dec 10 2022
Center Stage Theater
Atlanta, GA
Dec 11 2022
Brooklyn Bowl Nashville
Nashville, TN
Dec 14 2022
Jefferson Theater
Charlottesville, VA
Jan 13 2023
Blue Note at Sea 2023
Fort Lauderdale, FL



Julian Lage Announces New Album ‘View With A Room’ Ft. Bill Frisell, Jorge Roeder and Dave King


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Guitar virtuoso Julian Lage has released his Blue Note Records debut Squint, a striking new album that weds incisive, expressive songwriting with the profound interplay Lage has honed over the past few years…

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"Modern Lore is the strongest album of Lage's career so far, and the first that fully captures his trademark melding of fleet precision, open-road possibility and radiant self-assurance.” - NPR    "A virtuosic swirl of twangy textures and gritty…

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