Saxophonist and clarinetist Rabbi Greg Wall grew up in the Boston area, and attended the New England Conservatory of Music in the late seventies, before settling in the New york area. Greg has performed and recorded with Hasidic New Wave, Klezmerfest, Later Prophets, The New American Quartet, The Ayn Sof Arkestra and Bigger Band, Kenny Barron, Shlomo Carlebach, Zion80, Eli Kranzler, Neshama Carlebach, Bill Frisell, Billy Hart, Dave’s True Story, The Wall/London Band, the Hi-Tops, the Piamenta Band, Greg Wall’s Unity Orchestra, and has made many session appearances for record dates and film scores. He was the musical voice of James Earl Jones in the recent feature film “On the QT”. Greg is the producer for the innovative Pioneers For a Cure project (pioneerproducer.blogspot.com)
Writing in Jazz Forum magazine Robert Buczek said, “Wall plays incredibly; his improvisations are well constructed and convincing.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer adds, “He plays with a consistent power and imagination.” His compositions for dance, jazz orchestra, and electronica have been widely performed and recorded.
His critically acclaimed release, “From the Belly of Abraham”, with Hasidic New Wave (with whom he has released 5 recordings) and Senegalese master drummers Yakar Rhythms was named one of the ten best CD’s of 2002 by Jazz Times magazine. Greg performs frequently at top venues throughout North America and Europe and has been featured at many major festivals. Greg is equally fluent in the jazz and world music idioms and recently premiered his Unity Orchestra, a pan cultural ensemble featuring 8 musicians from 5 continents.
Greg has collaborated with the Carolyn Dorfman Dance Company since 1999 resulting in the commissioned scores for “Mayne Mentshen” (2001), “Echad” (2002), “Love Lines” (2003), “Oddisea” (2004), and ‘Tikkun” (2009).
Greg’s latest release, “Ha’Orot-The Lights of Rav Kook”, was released on John Zorn’s Tzadik label. Other recent releases include “Later Prophets”, “Mystic Autumn” with the New American Jazz Quartet, Aaron Alexander’s “Midrash Mishmosh”, “Ani Shelach”, with Neshama Carlebach, “Unauthorized’, with Dave’s True Story, KlezmerFest’s “Party Music”, Aaron Alexander’s “Blues for Sparky”, and the score to “Mayne Mentshen”. Upcoming releases include “Jazz Talmud”, with poet Jake Marmer, and a Hasidic New Wave 5cd box set on Tzadik.
Greg was the rabbi of the Sixth Street Community Synagogue in NYC’s Easy Village from 2009-2012, and founded the Center for Jewish Arts and Literacy, a nationally acclaimed nexus of Judaism and the arts. See Rabbi Greg on the BBC: