Jordan VanHemert


Origin 82844


iTunes - $9.99

The craft is tight, the feeling is refreshing, the sound is quick and precise...covering a full range of expressive energy.
All About Jazz

With Nomad, tenor saxophonist Jordan VanHemert celebrates Korean culture through the melodies of both ancient and contemporary folk and children's songs, distilled through a modern jazz aesthetic and the open sonic canvas of the saxophone trio. His warm sound, unhurried phrasing and swinging melodicism are perfectly suited for high-level exploration of the jazz canon, but here, mainly with the eminent bassist Rodney Whitaker and David Alvarez III on drums, VanHemert offers a new repertoire, reminiscent of the creative choices rolled out by Sonny Rollins's trios over the decades. Following his 2021 release, I Am Not A Virus, which dealt head-on with the reality of anti-Asian hate crimes and prejudice, Nomad "...wanders and weaves through the story of our complex relationships with being Korean American. There is joy, there is sorrow (han), and through it all, there is the authenticity of the Asian American experience."

Track Listing:

1 Bird, Bird, Bluebird 5:41
2 Imjin River Song 6:26
3 Half Moon 4:38
4 Doraji Taryeong (White Mountain Flower) 6:21
5 Arirang Alone (Instrumental) 3:53
6 Spring in My Hometown 3:47
7 Arirang Alone (Vocal) 5:45
8 Half Moon 4:36

(1,4) Korean Trad
(2) by SeYong Park
(3,8) by GeukYoung Yoon
(5,7) by Han Dol
(6) by NanPa Hong
All arrangements by Jordan VanHemert


Jordan VanHemert - saxophone
Rodney Whitaker - bass
David Alvarez III - drums
Sharon Cho - vocals (3,7)
Lisa Sung - piano (3,7)
Nathan Borton - guitar (3)
John Webber - bass (3)
Max Colley III - drums (3)
Jeff Shoup - drums (7)

Production Info:

Produced by Jordan VanHemert
Recorded July 18, 2021 by Josef Deas
at Big Sky Recording, Ann Arbor, MI, except:
(3,7) Recorded by Drew Elliot
at Local Legend Recording, Grand Rapids, MI, 6/7/2021 (3)
& Hope College Studios, Holland, MI, 2/37/2021 (7)
Mixed by Drew Elliot, Wheaton, IL
Mastered by Jim Alfredson, Lansing, MI
Photography by Jamie Pratt Photos
Cover design & layout by John Bishop

Reviews of Nomad

Midwest Record (Chris Spector)
Korean jazz that springs from the Midwest but has a Sonny Rollins sense of skronk, toned down. This is what they mean by multi culti cross pollination. It's the sound of something new and it takes you places out of the ordinary while not going too far off the beaten path. ...

Take Effect (Tom Haugen)
The saxophone powerhouse Jordan VanHemert returns with Rodney Whitaker on bass and David Alvarez III behind the drum kit for a listen that celebrates Korean culture via their exciting jazz formula, and there's plenty of guests in attendance, too. "Bird, Bird, Bluebird" starts the listen with VanHemet's warm sax before frisky drumming and playfu ...

All About Jazz (Jane Kozhevnikova)
4-STARS After his previous album, I Am Not A Virus (Big Round Records, 2021), inspired by the ongoing fight against racial prejudice, Jordan VanHemert releases Nomad, continuing to explore and embrace his Asian American identity. As the liner note says, this album is a celebration of Korean culture "through the melodies of both ancient & contempor ...

All About Jazz (Jack Bowers)
Although his name offers no clue, saxophonist Jordan VanHemert's heritage is Korean. He salutes that legacy on Nomad, his second album as leader, with a pair of Korean folk songs and half a dozen comparatively modern themes written by Koreans or Korean Americans. Most are performed by VanHemert's trio: (Rodney Whitaker, bass; David Alvarez III, dru ...





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