A FORCE OF NATURE. Her playing is visceral, with a expressionistic approach to creating timbre and velocities. Constantly discovering new sonorities on her guitar, she has created a uniquely personal language which speaks to audiences. "Michelle Webb is the most engaging improvisor I have ever seen.
No one is breaking boundaries and taking command of the guitaristic language like Michelle Webb is, NOBODY. She is a percussionist on guitar, indeed she is the GUITAR'S RENAISSANCE" to quote Lydia Cummings Smith (independent improvised music critic) in 2002. Influenced at first by guitarist like Allan Holdsworth, Don Mock & B.B. King, Michelle found great inspiration in the highly charged expression of their music but has created a style all her own, an extended language.
Michelle Webb was born in Jersey City, New Jersey. Here she spent the early years of her life immersed in a community of musicians, break dancers, artists and poets. She started playing the guitar at the age of 5. It was rock music that got Webb hooked on guitar "Rock & Pop guitarist were the biggest examples of guitar playing in my life at the time, they were the most visible and so I guess I just gravitated towards that.
It wasn't until later that I started to wake up to all the other great guitar players out there playing other music that I actually liked more, like jazz and reggae. When I realized, really realized these players and their music it was like the whole world opened up for me. " In 1988 Webb attended the Duke Ellington School for the Arts in Washington DC and studied jazz with DC guitar legend Tom Newman and Saxophone great Davey Yarbrough and in 1992 Michelle received what was at the time the second largest scholarship given to a conservatory student to attend Oberlin Conservatory in Oberlin OH. Here she studied with guitarist Bob Ferreza and jazz educators Jimmy Owens and the late Wendell Logan.
Michelle moved to Brooklyn New York in 1995 where she expanded her musical career to include becoming a professional composer & sound designer as well as a DJ. After many concerts over the years, Michelle decided to assemble various groups of her own. These groups were instrumental in making Webb more well-known. Her vast, poliedric repertoire is particularly oriented towards contemporary nu-jazz forms and music from different parts of Africa, particularly Zanzibar and Cape Verde.
Her activities span across performing in her own group Michelle Webb's KING KONG, solo performances, contemporary and avant-garde music and free improvisations. She has been invited to play across Europe, Mexico and Lebanon. In 2010 Michelle released two new CD's DC / Istanbul and conned the phrase Afro/Arabic Nu-Jazz Funk to describe her new sound. She has also released the CD - The Michelle Webb Group Live in Brooklyn.Current projects include a recording and upcoming tour with drummer Joe Gallivan and guitarist Tom McNalley as part of the new LOVE CRY WANT on the Indigo and Stars label.
In July 2011, Webb will be conducting a number of guitar clinics and workshops in addition to performing with her group KING KONG and launching her new label AFRO TURK. Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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