Contrabass Conversations double bass life

535: Lisle Atkinson and Jazz legends

Nov. 1, 2018

When Jay Starkes of the Neo Bass Ensemble called me up to let me know about an upcoming performance, I knew that I had to check out this group.  Lisle Atkinson, the group’s founder, has been on the jazz scene in New York for decades and has played with some of the biggest names in the business like Dizzy Gillespie, Benny Carter, Clark Terry, and Thad Jones & Mel Lewis Big Band.

Lisle was in the New York Bass Violin Choir along with Richard Davis, Ron Carter, Milt Hinton, Michael Fleming, Bill Lee (Spike Jones’ father), and Sam Jones.  He started the Neo Bass Ensemble 25 years ago, and this group performs regularly throughout the tri-state region.

I hope you enjoy this brief but engaging conversation that I had with Lisle backstage during the intermission of the Neo Bass Ensemble performance.  Along with Lisle, that performance featured Karen Atkinson, Darnell “Jay” Starkes, Phillip Wadkins, Sam McPherson, John Robinson, Mimi Jones, and rhythm section members Paul West, Richard Wyands, and Charles McPherson, Jr.



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