Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians

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Soskin, Mark

Soskin, Mark, pianist; b. Brooklyn, NY, 12 July 1953. His parents were Daniel (deceased) and Selma. His brother is Gary.

Soskin has recorded and performed with such diverse musicians as Sonny Rollins, Joe Henderson, Randy Brecker, Billy Cobham, Buster Williams, Eddie Henderson, Stanley Turrentine, Herbie Mann, John Abercrombie, Claudio Roditi, Sheila Jordan, Gato Barbieri, Joe Locke, David "Fathead" Newman, Mark Murphy, Slide Hampton, Pete and Sheila Escovedo, Bobby Watson, The NY Voices, Miroslav Vitous,Gregory Hines,and many others. Soskin attended Colorado State University where he pursued classical studies, but at this time his interests in jazz music were growing. In 1973 he enrolled in Berklee College of Music, studying composition as well as arranging. In Boston he began to work professionally until moving to San Francisco, eventually going on to work with some of the west coast's finest players.
Shortly after arriving in San Francisco, Soskin was introduced to the latin music legend, Pete Escovedo. Along with Pete's daughter, percussionist Sheila. E, they toured and recorded as Azteca, a group in which Soskin's keyboard, writing, and arranging were showcased. Eventually, the group, which now included Tom Harrell on trumpet, went on to record two discs for Fantasy Records, produced by drum ace Billy Cobham. Soskin was enlisted in Cobham's band, a stint that lasted for two years and which produced two recordings for Columbia. In between tours for Cobham, Soskin did a tour and live recording for the CBS All Stars with Tom Scott, Alphonso Johnson, Steve Khan, and Billy Cobham. At this time Soskin was very active as a session player at Fantasy studios in Berkeley, California and veteran jazz music producer Orrin Keepnews took notice, signing Soskin to a recording contract with Prestige. Keepnews introduced Soskin to Sonny Rollins which sta rted a long, fruitful collaboration (14 years).

Since 1981 Soskin has resided in New York City, remaining active as sideman and as a leader. He continues to  maintain a busy tour schedule in the US and internationally, as well as giving masterclasses and workshops.. Arranging projects include Soskin's writing for Slide Hampton's "World Of Trombone and drummer Steve Smith's DVD titled 'History of The US Beat". Soskin has performed in a solo context such as the 1998 Ottawa Jazz Festival. He has performed the premier of contemporary classical music composer John Adams' opera, "Ceiling/Sky" at Lincoln Center. Soskin is currently on the faculty of The Manhattan School Of Music.

Recordings:
Rhythm Vision (1979); Overjoyed (1988); Views From Here (1992); Around The Corner (1993); Mark Soskin Solo (1996); Five Lands (Cinqueterra) Different Duos (1997); 17 (2001); Homage to Sonny Rollins (2003)
As co-leader:
Contempo Trio: (with Danny Gottlieb, Chip Jackson) (1991); Spirits (with Harvie Swartz, Joe Labarbera, Sheila Jordan) (1994)
As sideperson:
Roger Glenn: Reachin'; Pete Escovedo And Sheila E: Solo Two, Happy Together; Bill Summers: Feel The Heat, On Sunshine; Bobbi Humphrey: Tailor Made; Billy Cobham: Magic, Simplicity Of Expression, Depth Of Thought; CBS Allstars: Alivemuthaforya; George Russell: Live In An American Time Spiral; Herbie Mann: Jasil Brazz-Rbi, Opalescense-Kokopelli, Caminho De Casa-Chesky, America/Brasil-Lightyear, 65th Birthday Celebration, Live At The Blue Note; Jeanie Stahl: I'm Just Foolin' Myself; Billy Novick: Pennywhistles From Heaven; Kayoko Miyama Featuring Tanareid With Mark Soskin: Best Regards; Claudio Roditi: Jazz Turns Samba-Groovin', Freewheelin'; Bobby Watson: Urban Renewal; Steve Bargonetti: Steve Bargonetti; Various Artists: A Jazz City Christmas; Jimmy Ponder: Something To Ponder, Steel City Soul; Hendrik Muerkens: A View From Manhattan, Slidin', Poema Brasilero; Steve Slagle Feat. Joe Lovano: Smoke Signals; Joe Locke: Innerspace ; Sonny Rollins: Don't Stop The Carnival, Don't Ask, Sunny Days Starry Nights, Dancing In The Dark, Falling In Love With Jazz, G-Man, Here's To The People, Silver City; Teddy Edwards: James Van Buren Meets Teddy Edwards; Carla White: Live At Vartan's; Compilation: The Best Of Vartan Jazz, Vols.1&2; Sherry Winston: Love Madness; Sherri Roberts: Dreamsville, Twilight World; Eric Wyatt: Godson; Dawn Upshaw: The World So Wide; Ze Louis: Guarani Banana; Kenia: Initial Thrill, Rio/New York; Deuce: Deuce; Nanette Natal: Stairway To The Stars; Hans Kennel: Stella Feat.Mark Soskin; Supernova: Supernova Feat.Claudia Villela; Roseanna Vitro: Conviction; String Of Pearls: S.O.P New York/Brasil; Bruce Williamson: Big City Magic; Roland Vazquez: No Separate Love, Furthur Dance; Greg Abate: Happy Samba; Manhattan Reggae Unit: Come Spring, Together; Fritz Renold And The Bostonian Friends: Starlight; The Empire State Group: Benjamin Sujesh; Kazuko Mich ishita: You Can Dream; Minehaha: May Happiness Be Yours; Various Musicians: Keys To The City, Cowboy Bebop; Shinobu Itoh: Sailing Rolling; Calle 54 Soundtrack; Robert Debellis: Parallax-Vintone Records

Videos:
Sonny Rollins: Saxophone Colossus; Calle 54; Gato Barbieri: Live From The Latin Quarter

Television broadcasts:
Television performance credits include The Equalizer and HBO's Sex And The City

Contact information:
msoskin@aol.com  
www.marksoskin.com

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