picture of Jason Lindner
Jason Lindner
Jason was brought up in Brooklyn, New York City. His father played the piano and sang, and Jason began playing the piano at the age of 2. As a child, he liked heavy metal, then bebop and blues as a teenager. He attended the Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts.
Jason "made his mark during the 1990s", in part as leader of a big band that played at Smalls Jazz Club in New York City. He was also the club's house pianist around the time it opened in 1994. This band recorded the album Premonition in 1998 and it was released in 2000, by which time Lindner had changed to leading a quintet. He performed and arranged for vocalist Claudia Acuña's first album, Wind from the South.
By 2004, Lindner was leading an electric group that consisted of Jacques Schwarz-Bart (sax), Avishai Cohen (trumpet), Reggie Washington (bass), and Gene Jackson (drums). His Now Vs. Now band began in 2006 as a quintet, with Cohen, Baba (beatbox, rap), Panagiotis Andreou (bass), and Mark Guiliana (drums). Lindner commented that "I wasn't playing jazz quartet gigs anymore. I was playing in a place where we could really experiment sonically, using electric bass, the drummer playing more groove-oriented beats and less straight ahead swing. [...] I wanted to appeal to ordinary people and not just a jazz audience." In the first three months of 2015 he participated in recording sessions for David Bowie's Blackstar. For this recording, he used nine keyboards and a grand piano. Lindner reported that his subsequent production work was influenced by the presence of Tony Visconti for the Bowie sessions.
In 2009, Lindner's band was the winner of the Big Band Rising Star category in Down Beat magazine's critics' poll. Lindner was Down Beat's critics' poll winner of the Keyboard Rising Star category in 2013. In 2015, his band again won the Big Band Rising Star category in the Down Beat critics' poll.
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