As a self-producing artist in New York City whose body of work spans theater, dance and music, the epiphany came when I realized that every project since the beginning was rooted in jazz. Grateful for my achievements as an "expert director-choreographer" (The New Yorker), and "joyous, jazz-inflected dancing both crisp and sensual" (The Chicago Reader), it is my lifelong passion for music that is manifest in my awakening as a vocalist, composer and bandleader. On forming a new collective of aspiring musicians in 2011, Cabaret Scenes raved, “RYAN GREER JAZZ illuminates how a talented crew morphs classics into absorbing jazz numbers."
My experience with the creative force is that when it takes hold, it's all consuming; and discovering your craft requires the kind of determination that must allow for years of practice before perfect—and it's never perfect. The beauty of any genesis is that it's flawed, making every creative endeavor a natural obsession with "playing the mistakes” and revealing your truer self. The goal is to find your own voice.
Variations of the combo have amassed an accomplished billing of live gigs, including an acclaimed stint at The Metropolitan Room, but the main event was an assembly of premier members of the group for a debut studio release in 2016. The resulting RISING SIGN was recorded and mixed by Quinn McCarthy at The Creamery Studio and mastered by Rich Morales at Super Fine Audio in Brooklyn. RISING SIGN houses my all-original, retro-fresh jazz-groove compositions featuring Khairul Aiman on bass, Neil Flink on guitar, Josh Schusterman on drums and Stephanie Wells (one of my best friends from Columbia College Chicago days) on keys.
Miles ahead - future gigs and recordings - I continue to be impassioned by the preservation and continuation of jazz music and art, inspired by the manifesto decreed by "Bird-Lives" poet Ted Joans: