Toronto-based Jeremy Ledbetter Trio Back With New Album “Gravity”

Pianist Jeremy Ledbetter is set to take his agile, powerful trio to new heights with their latest release, “Gravity.” Initially trained as a classical pianist, Ledbetter transitioned to jazz performance in Toronto before embarking on an international journey. Over a decade abroad, he collaborated with prominent recording artists from Trinidad, Cuba, Brazil, and Venezuela.

Today, Toronto-based Ledbetter is a cornerstone of the Canadian jazz and world music scenes. He performs regularly with the Larnell Lewis Band, OKAN, Eliana Cuevas, Alexis Baró, the Joy Lapps Project, and Rich Brown’s Abeng. With over 20 years as the musical director for Trinidadian calypso icon David Rudder, Ledbetter has also performed and recorded with notable artists such as Aquiles Baez, Jorge Glem, and Machel Montano, among others. He leads the Caribbean jazz ensemble CaneFire, further showcasing his versatile musicianship.

As a producer, Ledbetter has an impressive track record. He was named World Music Producer of the Year at the Independent Music Awards and has been nominated for Producer of the Year at the Canadian Folk Music Awards. His work with the Afro-Cuban roots/jazz group OKAN earned a Juno Award in 2021. In 2023, he produced OKAN’s acclaimed album “Okantomi,” Valeria Matzner’s “Tamborilero,” and Eliana Cuevas’ “Seré Libre,” where he also served as orchestrator, conductor, and producer. Beyond piano, Ledbetter is a skilled multi-instrumentalist, adept with the steelpan, harmonica, mandolin, and didjeridu.

Following their 2018 debut “Got a Light?”, the Jeremy Ledbetter Trio returns with “Gravity.” This album showcases Ledbetter’s virtuosic piano skills alongside Rich Brown on electric bass and Larnell Lewis on drums. The trio excels in navigating complex lines and rhythms, blending jazz, rock, funk, and various Latin genres with high intensity.

“Gravity” symbolizes the trio’s cohesive synergy, an “unseen force” that Ledbetter describes as pulling them together. He aims to take listeners on a vivid, emotional journey, making the music so compelling that it captivates the audience’s full attention.

The album opens with “Flight,” featuring an infectious rhythmic drive and technical prowess. “Song of the River,” inspired by Afro-Venezuelan rhythms, transports listeners to the Río Autana in the Venezuelan Amazon with guest percussionists Yonathan “Morocho” Gavidia, Javier Suárez, and Juan Carlos Segovia. “Port of Spain” pays homage to Trinidad’s Carnival, celebrating the vibrant steel bands of the capital city.

The title track, “Gravity,” begins with an asymmetric heavy funk, leading to a mesmerizing Ebow solo by Brown. “The Stars in Her Sky” highlights Brown’s emotive playing, while “Two Cousins” incorporates polyrhythmic reggae elements. The album concludes with “Wonder,” a bright, soaring piece that leaves listeners uplifted.

With “Gravity,” the Jeremy Ledbetter Trio delivers an album rich with passion, intensity, and unmatched musicality, solidifying their place at the forefront of the jazz and world music scenes. Jeremy Ledbetter Trio Elevates Their Sound with New Album “Gravity,” releasing on September 13th, 2024 via CaneFire Records.

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