Hilliard (Hill) Greene – bassist
Hilliard Greene has been acclaimed for composing and performing
solo contrabass music since 1984 throughout
North and South America, Europe, and Asia.
Formally bassist and musical director for jazz vocalist Jimmy Scott.
Formally bassist and Concert Master for Cecil Taylor.
What the critics say……
“…Greene can keep the listener interested – very interested – for upwards of an hour, all by himself. His new album, “Alone,” is a riveting hour plus of material, mostly originals, that stand up well as melodic compositions played with passionate dedication. There is a wide range of styles and forms, and there is no risk of boredom among the eight tunes.”
-Steve Greenlee, Boston Globe
“Besides the exciting moving music, there is the amazement of the man’s technique. He is a real virtuoso. Hearing this album, we can all say we could just never have imagined the bass as a solo instrument that is wholly absorbing…”
– James Forte, Wildflower Publishers
“For many decades the bass has ceased to be looked at as an accompaniment instrument entirely. At the same time, very few musicians dare to release solo bass recordings. Bassists like Dave Holland, Eberhard Weber, Barre Phillips and Miroslav Vitous have done that very successfully. Among those, we can add the name Hill Greene with his solo bass recording entitled “Alone”. … Even though the unique virtuosity of Hill Greene can capture the mind of the listener, what really sets him apart is his musicality, passion, and dedication to the art.”
– Vangelis Aragiannis, Ipirotikos Agon – Athens, Greece
“Hill Greene created a resonating musicality, with full focus and emotional pathos… “The audience was still and enraptured, as Hill Greene is a musician to watch, as well as one to listen to.”… Hill Greene has a bright future as Solo Bassist, Composer, Accompanist, and Music Director.”
— Roberta Zlokower,
translation by Fernando Hernandez-Moros
Greene, a bass concert player. Very good (4 stars)
Hilliard Greene is an expressive double-bass player with a solid technique…Greene made of his show at Notorious a concert of refreshing features, with fiery solos developed in an explosive way at times, … His double-bass has the sonority like a guitar and continuity in his lines that seem to be pianistically inspired…A Strong presence…
… His language has in a way, a classical vocabulary that is at the same time deeply tied to the blues. There is in his music a strong conscience of the black tradition…
Cesar Pardines – La Nacion; Buenos Aries, Argentina
“…Hilliard Greene…can sound like a flamenco guitar one moment and a wailing horn the next”
-Misha Berson, Seattle Times
…found a copy of your solo CD. I’ve been listening to it a great deal. It’s exceptional, easily one of the best crafted solo bass CDs I’ve heard.
Lou Kannenstine – Boxholder Records
“…(Greene’s) work on the upright bass was diverse and committed. On the funk grooves, generally associated with the electric bass guitar, he was convincingly adept, wielding the larger instrument with ease. His solos, whether arco or pizzicato, used the full potential of the instrument, including choral effects and contrivances.”
-Richard Mayer, Green Mountain Jazz Messenger
“Intense. Powerful. Versatile. Not for the faint-hearted. …Hill Greene showed us how it’s done”
-Bass World, Journal for the International Society of Bassists
“With a technical mastery of his instrument that is nothing short of astonishing he churned through a varied and creative set full of fire, brilliance and subtlety that above all never stopped swinging.
-Bobby Shropshire, Beach Nights Entertainment Magazine – Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
“Technically and sonically, Greene’s bass sounds great; his pitch is accurate even during highly technical passages played at breakneck speed, and his sound is deep and clean.”
-John Kennedy – Double Bassist Magazine
Green showcases a tone as big and solid as an ancient tree,
— John Chacona, goerie.com Showcase
“His fabulous arco bass mixes lyricism with a burning, literally ferocious desire of opening the listener’s mind.”
– Massimo Ricci, Touching Extremes, Italy,
“Alone sounds like the culmination of one man’s dedication to his instrument, the work of someone who has come a long way, and is determined to show what he can do. Classical melodies, Jazz and Folk music from around the world have been internalized by Greene who proves his talent for pizzicato and arco playing in an equal measure on unaccompanied double bass…Alone is music rooted in the human condition.”
Jeff Stockton – New York City Jazz Record – NY
Hill Greene has been studying music for more than 50 years and playing professionally for 40. His emphases are in classical, jazz, rock, blues, R&B, as well as the music of other continents and U.S. regions. Currently he is concentrating on solo performance.
Greene studied at the University of Northern Iowa, Berklee College of Music and SUNY Empire, and has been teaching private students, classes and masterclasses for over 25 years. He is currently a faculty member at the Collective in New York City. He has performed widely in major cities throughout the USA, Canada, Eastern and Western Europe, Asia, the West Indies, and South America; and in numerous New York City area nightclubs, concert halls (including Carnegie Hall), and recording, radio and television studios.
Greene has performed and/or recorded with jazz vocalist Jimmy Scott for 25 years, serving as his musical director for twenty years, and was also concert master for Cecil Taylor and his group, Phtongos. He has also worked with many other jazz greats including Rashied Ali, Barry Altschul, Lucian Ban, Billy Bang, Kenny Barron, David Berger, Karl Berger, Cindy Blackman, T.K. Blue, Joanne Brackeen, Oscar Brown Jr., Uri Caine, Roy Campbell, Carnival Cruise Lines Carnival Skin, Daniel Carter, James Carter, Vincent Chancey, Nels Cline, Carla Cook, Akua Dixon, Dave Douglas, John Esposito, Queen Esther, Bobby Few, Erik Friedlander, Camille Gainer, Eddie Gale, Charles Gayle, Eddie Gladden, Electric Symphony, Alex Harding, George Haslam, Jon Hendricks, John Hicks, The Inkspots, Yoron Israel, Vijay Iyer, Klaus Kugel, Leroy Jenkins, Howard Johnson, Frank Lacy, Oliver Lake, Gloria Lynne, Tony Malaby, Michael Marcus, Sabir Mateen, Billy Mintz, Jemeel Moondoc, Jason Moran, Butch Morris, Bern Nix, Greg Osby, Jimmy Ponder, Don Pullen, Lenore Raphael, Matana Roberts, Perry Robinson, Josh Roseman, Vanessa Rubin, Nipsy Russell, Warren Smith, Tyshawn Sorey, James Spalding, Michael Stuart, Steve Swell, Grady Tate, and Jacky Terrasson Gebhard Ullman, Marlene VerPlanck, Village Vanguard Orchestra, Petras Vysniauskas, Jack Walrath, Bobby Watson.
Along with being on more than 75 recordings five of which he is the leader and co-leader, he has two commercial recordings as a solo artist where he employs his compositions and arrangements adaptive for unaccompanied bass. His most recent recording features Negro Spirituals that enslaved Africans used to escape through the Underground Railroad.