Thursday, June 18, 2009

Congratulations Maria Schneider!

That is, to the awesome composer/arranger/orchestra-leader, and not the actress.

Who is Maria Scheinder, you ask?

Schneider formed The Maria Schneider Jazz Orchestra in 1993, appearing weekly at Visiones in Greenwich Village for five years. Her orchestra performed at many jazz festivals and toured Europe.

Schneider was one of the first artists to use ArtistShare to produce an album. Her 2004 album, Concert in the Garden, became the first Grammy Award-winning recording sold exclusively via the Internet. It was named Jazz Album of the Year by the Jazz Journalists Association, which also named Schneider Composer of the Year and Arranger of the Year and named her group Large Jazz Ensemble of the Year.

Schneider's ensemble is now titled "The Maria Schneider Orchestra". Their new album, Sky Blue, was released in July 2007, also via ArtistShare. Schneider's composition "Cerulean Skies," from Sky Blue, won a Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Composition in 2008. Schneider is an avid birdwatcher and enlisted band members to contribute bird calls on "Cerulean Skies."
At the 13th annual Jazz Journalists Association Jazz Awards this week, Maria Schneider was acknowledged with three major awards, to add to large collection of awards earned during her career;
  • Composer of the Year
  • Arranger of the Year
  • Large Ensemble of the Year - Maria Schneider Orchestra
Not a bad "hat trick", when getting only one of those above would be a considerable accomplishment.

You can get more info at the Jazz Journalist Association website, or, visit

Visit Maria Schneider's website

And, of course, some of her music ...

Maria Schneider Orchestra - My Ideal [2008]

Hand Gliding - Maria Schneider Orchestra

Boleria, Solea y Rumba- Maria Schneider Orchestra

You could do less rewarding things if you don't get hip to Maria Schneider, and start digging into her music.

Congrats, again, Maria!

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