Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians
Leder, Jan (Janice Gwen)
Leder, Jan (Janice Gwen), flutist, songwriter, lyricist; b. Queens, NY, 19 May 1958. Her parents are Joseph Leder, 1927, born in New York City and Claire Leder Billings, 1927, born in Vienna, Austria. Her siblings are Robert Leder, born 1956, Queens, New York, and Ellen Faden, born 1954, Queens, New York. After studying piano for six years and classical flute for another six years, she discovered her love for improvisation. Jan studied with Lennie Tristano from 1975 until his death in 1978. She then studied for 10 years with Connie Crothers from 1979 until 1989. From "75-"79 she attended S.U.N.Y. at Purchase in Purchase, New York and received college credit each semester for the three years she studied with Lennie. He would give her grades and write her evaluations.
A self-styled course of study in jazz history at the State University of New York at Purchase led to her compilation of the first comprehensive history of women in jazz entitled Women in Jazz: A Discography of Instrumentalists 1913-1968 (Greenwood Press 1985). Ms. Leder also enjoys teaching jazz improvisation.
Leder leads her own jazz ensembles in the New York City area, appearing at nightclubs, restaurants, festivals, cultural events, and other public and private engagements. Since 1994 she has been a featured performer at the Yonkers Hudson Riverfest. In 2001 she was a featured artist at the Coleman Hawkins Neighborhood Festival in Topeka, KS, as they celebrated New Women in Jazz. Her repertoire includes bebop, swing, ballads, blues, bossa novas and her own unique jazz compositions. In April 1998 vocalist Diane Hubka released her debut CD "Haven't We Met" which included Ms. Leder's composition Thinking of You, and was subsequently nominated in the "Best Debut CD" category of the 1st Annual Jazz Awards. Also, a high school class taught by Tom Christensen at the Fieldston School in Riverdale arranged and performed their version of her tune "Survival of the Flutist". In addition to writing jazz, Ms. Leder enjoys composing pop, r&b, theater and film music.
Since 1987 Leder has been a member of Art Lillard's Heavenly Band, a 16-piece swing orchestra playing all original jazz. A featured soloist on Lillard's recording "First Flight" (1995), she also enjoys recording and performing locally with this unique group, whose members rank among the finest contemporary jazz players in New York. Jan has also become a writer-contributor to this group, collaborating with Lillard as a regular writing partner.
In 1994-95 she worked with Chip Shelton's World Flute Orchestra, a coming-together of the best jazz flutists in New York. In 1986 she recorded with the Dan Krimm Quartet on Overtone Records. Since 1985 Leder has worked with the 9th Street Stompers, a popular jazz band, playing their unique variety of jazz styles, in parades, street fairs, private parties and other venues. Additionally, Jan is currently a member of the New York Flutet, a quartet of jazz flutists.
Leder is a writer and publisher member of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, and is also a member of the National Music Publishers Association and the International Association for Jazz Education. She is currently divorced with two children: Jayda Leder-Luis, born in 1989, and Jetson Leder-Luis, born in 1992. Jayda sings and plays guitar, and is in her second year of private guitar lessons; Jet sings and plays trumpet.
Passage to Freedom (1997); Nonchalant (2000)
She was a guest on John J. Cooper's radio show at WRSU in Rutgers, New Jersey, twice - once when each CD came out.
She was a guest on Aaron Prado's radio show at WKCR when Nonchalant was released.
She appeared playing with her quartet in Charles Lane's independent film (circa 1978) titled Sidewalk Stories, which was shown at the Cannes Film Festival. It is occasionally shown on PBS.
A recent film entitled "Slutty Summer" and shown at the New Film Festival (formerly the Gay and Lesbian Film Festival) included four tunes from Nonchalant, and premiered this summer at Loew's 34th Street. A soundtrack album is in the works.
Her title tune "Nonchalant" was performed (as a "one-time use" and given another title for the occasion) by co-writer Art Lillard's ensemble which appeared on the daytime soap opera "Guiding Light" on CBS television.
Also currently in the works is a video of her work with seniors, shot and edited by Steve and Sheila Halpern, to be aired on their local weekly cable television show in Westchester County, NY.
A nicely edited video of her performance at the 1995 Yonkers Hudson Riverfest was aired on a BET on Jazz television showcase
The May/June 2002 issue of the Jazz Education Journal (of the International Association for Jazz Education) contained an article she wrote entitled "I Can't Give You Anything But Love: Jazz and the Eldercare Community" which was published in the "Take Note" column. It's about making hers living as a jazz musician by playing her flute in nursing homes and assisted living facilities.
She was interviewed by Glen Ito for his online column at the Jazz Journalists Association's site "Jazzhouse.org"; Glen at the time was working with Jan's label, A-Records, in promoting her CD "Nonchalant".
Four of her compositions were awarded Certificates of Achievement in the jazz category of the Billboard Song Contest: "Thinking of You" and "In between the Streets" (1989), "Bebop Papi" (1991), and "Survival of the Flutist" (1994).
JazzReview.com (CD of the Week) - http://www.jazzreview.com/pmrevs107.html
All About Jazz - http://www.allaboutjazz.com/reviews/r0299_26.htm
The Jazz Loft (Glenn Ito interview) - http://www.cnw.com/~jazzloft/leder.html
"Gallery" - http://www.smooth-jazz.de/Artists1/Leder.html
Jazzgrrls - http://www.sitedish.com/imho/jazz/leder.html
"Commitment" - http://www.committment.com/jleder.html
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