Back to All Events

junebug music festival : Okazaki – Weiss Duo

Miles Okazaki (guitar), Dan Weiss (drums)

Guitarist Miles Okazaki and Drummer Dan Weiss have been developing a rhythmic language for over a dozen years. They create textures and rhythmic structures by weaving together material from a wide variety of sources – a recent performance was described by Ben Ratliff in The New York Times as demonstrating “the new jazz musician’s inexhaustible options as they fit ideas together without stopping.” Their work together is documented on four recordings.

One of the world's top five jazz drummers (The New York Times), Dan Weiss' innovative style and forward thinking compositions have been pushing musical limits for more than a decade. Whether performing with his trio, critically acclaimed for its unique song structures and endless creative improvisation; his 16-piece ensemble, whose recording Fourteen made The Times's Top 10 recordings of 2014; playing classical tabla, both as a soloist, as well as with legendary Indian classical artists like Ashish Khan and Ramesh Misra; or as sideman on countless tours and albums with artists including Lee Konitz, Rudresh Mahanthappa and Miguel Zeonnonlist, Weiss is "a drummer with ambition and range" (PopMatters).

Miles Okazaki started gigging by 13, he continued working as a musician even as he studied English at Harvard. In 1997 he began graduate work at the Manhattan School of Music (he holds degrees from Harvard, MSM and Juilliard), where his studies introduced him to drummer Dan Weiss. Based in NYC, Miles has released three albums of original compositions; a fourth, called Trickster, will be released this year. He also published the book, Fundamentals of Guitar. As a sideman, he has worked with Steve Coleman, Kenny Barron, Jonathan Finlayson, Amir El Saffar, Dan Weiss, Stanley Turrentine, Darcy James Argue, Jane Monheit, Mary Halvorson, Jen Shyu, Rajna Swaminatham, Matt Mitchell, and many others. He teaches at the University of Michigan.