The Jazz Mandolin Project is led by mandolinist Jamie Masefield with a rotating cast of other musicians. Although not really a “jazz” band they are influenced by a variety of styles. Formed in 1993, the Burlington Vermont based, improvisational ensemble’s self-titled first album was released which included Gabe Jarrett on drums and Stacey Starkweather on bass in 1996 . For their next album Masefield then assembled a new lineup featuring drummer Jon Fishman (best known for his work in jam band icon Phish ) and upright bassist Chris Dahlgren, recording the LP Tour de Flux; In 1999 Blue Note Records released their 3rd album, Xenoblast. In 2003 they released a heavily groove, drum and bass influenced album called Jungle Tango which included such players as Ari Hoenig and Danton Boller and in 2005 Masefield returned to a more acoustic sound with The Deep Forbidden Lake which features 10 of his favorite cover tunes by artists such as Radiohead, Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, Django Reinhardt and others. On that album he was accompanied by pianist Gil Goldstein and bassist Greg Cohen. Since 2006 JMP has been largely focused on a multimedia performance “How Much Land does a Man Need?” telling one of Leo Tolstoy’s most famous short stories through film, narration and live musical accompaniment. The group has been performing it at performing arts centers, schools and arts fests throughout the country. The project has recorded 6 albums to date. They are taper friendly, allowing audience recordings at their shows.
In January, 2006, Jazz Mandolin Project was added to the Internet Archive, part of archive.org.