Michael Jefry Stevens

Conference Call Quartet

The band:

  • Gebhard Ullmann - reeds,
  • Joe Fonda - bass,
  • Michael Jefry Stevens - piano,
  • Dieter Ulrich - drums

(past drummers include Matt Wilson, Han Bennink, Gerry Hemingway and George Schuller).

Conference Call Quartet

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About Conference Call Quartet

This international quartet has been together since 1998 and features German composer and woodwind virtuoso Gebhard Ullmann, bassist Joe Fonda, pianist Michael Jefry Stevens, and Dieter Ulrich on drums performing original music by all of the group members. The group has performed numerous tours in Europe as well as the USA including performances at the Guelph International Jazz Festival, Seattle's Earshot Jazz Festiva, the Braga Jazz Festival in Portugal, the Nattjazz Festival in Bergen, Norway, the Bolzano Jazz Festival in Italy, the Discover US Festival in Berlin, Germany and most recently the Just Music Festival in Weisbaden, Germany (2015). The quartet has released 7 CD's on the following labels: Soul Note Records, Leo Records, 482 Music, Clean Feed Records and their most recent CD "Seven" on Nottwo Records (2015).  The quartet will be back on tour in Europe in November, 2018.

Pianist/Composer Michael Jefry Stevens was the 'Margaret Lee Crofts Fellow for 2000-2001 " at the MacDowell Artist Colony, received 2nd prize in the prestigious Monaco International Jazz Composition Contest and was a composer fellow at Centrum Arts in Port Townsend, WA in the summer of 2006. Michael currently co-leads several working musical ensembles including The Fonda/Stevens Group, the Conference Call Quartet, Eastern Boundary Quartet, the Generations Quartet, the Core-tet and the Mountain Chamber Jazz Ensemble.  He has released over 90 cds and has performed and recorded with such notable musicians including Oliver Lake, Dame Evelyn Glennie, Christian Howes, Dave Douglas, Mark Feldman, Han Bennink, Charles Moffett, Cecil Bridgewater, Gerry Hemingway, Miles Griffith, Leo Smith, Matt Wilson, Dominic Duval, Billy Martin, and Dave Liebman. His most recent recordings include “Flow” by the Generations Quartet featuring Oliver Lake, and the Core-tet featuring Dame Evelyn Glennie.

Bassist/composer Joe Fonda has developed an extensive international reputation over the last several years recording and touring with the world-renowned Anthony Braxton including performances at some of the world's most prestigious jazz festivals including the North Sea Jazz Festival and the Istanbul International Jazz Festival. He is also featured bassist on numerous recordings with Mr. Braxton including the famed Charlie Parker Project Recordings as well as the piano quartet recordings with Braxton on piano. Mr. Fonda has performed with such notable musicians as Ken McIntyre, Charlie Persip, Lou Donaldson, Perry Robinson, Kenny Barron, Leo Smith, Curtis Fuller, Chico Hamilton and others.

Saxophonist, bass clarinetist and composer Gebhard Ullmann is considered one of the leading personalities in today's international jazz scene and has received several awards for his work including the Julius Hemphill Composition Award ('99), and the nomination "best jazz CD of the year" by the German Schallplattenkritik for his CD "Tá Lam" in 1996 and most recently won the first Berlin Jazz Prize (2017). Musicians he has performed or recorded with include Paul Bley, Ellery Eskelin, Willem Breuker, Marvin "Smitty" Smith, Barry Altschul, Keith Tippett ,Glen Moore, TrilokGurtu, EnricoRava, Michael Moore, Art Lande, Hamid Drake, Steve Swell and Tyshawn Sorey.

Dieter Ulrich (Percussion/Composer) joined the quartet in 2015. Dieter Ulrich is a Swiss jazz and improvisation musician and art historian. Dieter is one of the most sought after Swiss improvising musicians and composers.  Dieter currently records and performs with Oliver Lake, Nils Wogram, Ray Anderson, Gabriela Friedli, Omri Ziegele, Juerg Solothurnmann and many other major European musicians.  He has collaborated with Harald Haerter, Kurt Grämiger, Nathanael Su, Urs Blöchlinger, Werner Lüdi, Hans Koch, Bob Mover, Trevor Watts, Urs Voerkel, Co Streiff, Vinny Golia, Alfred Zimmerlin, Claudia Ulla Binder, Tom Varner, Jacques Siron, Christoph Baumann, Dave Taylor, Glenn Ferris, Luten Petrofsky, Sri.N.S. Krishna Murthy, Dr. L. Subramanian and others. Ulrich has also collaborated on the following multi-media projects with Daniel Mouthon; "Wasteland" 1986, "Finnabout" 1991, and "air à l'en verre" an opera project for the Theaterhaus Gessnerallee in Zürich 1997.


Recordings by Conference Call Quartet

Projects Active

Play demo tracks

Selected videos

Conference Call "Shining Star"

Conference Call quartet live in Belgium - Excerpts 2

Conference Call - What About The Future? (Live at Martinschlössl, Wien)

Conference Call quartet live in Switzerland 2009. "Dreierlei" by Gebhard Ullmann

Conference Call Quartet "Could this be a Polka"