New York based guitarist/composer Matthew Stevens is a highly sought-after sideman, having played with NEXT Collective, Esperanza Spalding, and  Walter Smith III‘s newest album. Now he is releasing his highly anticipated debut as a leader, Woodwork, on Whirlwind Recordings on February 24 on iTunes and as a physical CD May 26th.

Matt Stevens woodwork 1

Stevens’ impressive technique is only used in service of his abundant musicality. His focus on his sound makes it clear that making good music is his first priority. Of the title, Stevens says:“It’s a metaphor for how I see myself interacting with sound. Woodwork is an act of creation in collaboration with the natural world; it evokes a sense of being handmade or one of a kind. These raw materials exist regardless of whether or not you do something with them, so I try to respect that and let the music unfold naturally.”

Joining Stevens are pianist and NEXT Collective bandmate Gerald Clayton, bassist Vicente Archer. drummer Eric Doob and percussionist Paulo Stagnaro. He fully explores the different combinations of textures available in this instrumentation and includes a Piano/guitar duo on the record as well as a guitar trio track.

Head over to our good friends at Next Bop to listen to the premiere of Matthew Stevens’ “Star L.A.” Fans of Stevens’ playing from the many recordings he’s on as a sideman will appreciate the chance to check him out on his own, selecting his own repertoire and playing his own tunes. Pre-order Woodwork via iTunes.


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