"... swings with excitement... Kemp is richly expansive ... Northington bends the strings with authority... whole team is romantic over Hulett's snazzy drum work... anything but the expected piano trio."

-George W. Harris, LA Jazz Weekly

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"[Dark Continent] never a dark moment throughout"

-Nathan Gosnell, Jazz World Jazz

"anything but the expected piano trio."

-Midwest Records


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Dark Room | Vinyl EP

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Dark Continent | BluJazz



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When do we hear silence, and what should a sound, sound like? Who mandates freedoms within the form, and when does recapitulation create something new? These, and other questions are the impetus for the Black Whole.Following its debut, sold-out festival appearance, this intensely dynamic ensemble was awarded a grant from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts. The Black Whole features pianist & bandleader Walter Kemp 3, violinist Scott Tixier, bassist Rishon OdelBrent Birckhead on woodwinds, and Allan Mednard on drums

Through an eclectic assemblage of touring collaborators and kinfolk, “The Black Whole” seamlessly reconnects jazz to its freer ancestral roots, while consciously and simultaneously working to uproot it through diverse sonic exchanges, instrumental interplay, and contemporary juxtapositions. Viscount-endorsed pianist and composer Walter Kemp 3 set out to explore this concept, pushing the boundaries of sound, and bringing with it a sense of cosmic freewheeling. Kemp, on piano, Rhodes, and Viscount organ, GRAMMY award-winning improvisational violinist Scott Tixier, maverick woodwind master Brent Birckhead on alto sax, clarinet and flute, bass prodigy Rishon Odel and Allan Mednard, an NYC fixture on the percussion scene, add tonal richness to the group’s deconstructivist musical approach. What began as a Point9Mile Collaborative Artist Residency has emerged as an attention-grabbing ensemble that's way ahead of its time.

Viscount-endorsed artist, Walter Kemp 3 owes much to his father, a classical and gospel composer, who sparked Kemp's early interest in piano. Seeing and hearing his father's compositions performed at Carnegie Hall, opened Kemp's eyes to a world of music. He soon began studying classical piano. After a brief interest in drums, he gravitated toward jazz, continuing to play gospel organ. Kemp, lead composer/pianist for (most recently) the Black Whole, Kemp + the Reyvolation, and the Walter Kemp 3oh! has won widespread critical acclaim for his classic and compelling compositions which experiment with traditional chord progressions with inventive finesse. As the winner of numerous awards with his international touring and recording projects, he has collaborated with various musical greats like Juini Booth and Rey Scott, of Sun-Ra’s Arkestra, Bobby Militello, (Dave Brubeck), and Sabu Adeyola (Ahmad Jamal). As a highly-sought professional in the progressive music scene, Walter is the youngest musician, in more than three decades, to serve as Artistic Director for the CMC Jazz Festival. He teaches jazz studies at Villa Maria College.



Walter Kemp 3oh!
UB Dental School

February 21, 2020  5:30pm                         *UB Dental site for info

Walter Kemp Quartet
Explore and More Children's Museum

January 20, 2020  11:00am                         *visit Museum site for info

Kemp and the Reyvolation
Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center

November 22, 2019  8:00pm                         SOLD OUT

Reyvolation: An Homage to Rey Scott
CMC Jazz Fest

October 12, 2019  6:00pm                         SOLD OUT


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