Silva, Alan (Treadwell)

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Silva, Alan (Treadwell)

Silva, Alan (Treadwell), avant-garde jazz bassist, cellist, leader; b. Bermuda, Jan. 22, 1939. His family moved to Brooklyn, N.Y, when he was five years old. Silva studied piano, violin, and drums in his youth. He studied trumpet for three years with Donald Byrd, then bass in the early 1960s at the N.Y. Coll. of Music, with the N.Y. Symphony players, and with Ollie Richardson. He teamed with Burton Greene in the Free Form Improvisation Ensemble, and participated in the “October Revolution in Jazz” concert series in 1964. He studied with Dixon, playing duets with him before he could read. Silva joined Cecil Taylor (1965–69), touring Europe with him (1966). He also played with Sun Ra, Albert Ayler, Sonny Murray, and Archie Shepp. In Paris in 1969, he formed the Celestial Communication Orch., a group with rotating personnel, and also played with Frank Wright, Bobby Few, and Muhammad Ali (drums). While in Paris in 1970, he formed the Celestial Strings. Since 1972, he has worked with the Frank Wright Quartet and formed his own production company, Center of the World. He lived and worked in both Paris and N.Y. during the 1970s and 1980s, playing and recording with Taylor, Bill Dixon, Andrew Hill, and the Globe Unity Orch.


A. S. (1968); Lunar Surface (1969); Seasons (1970); Solos, Duets (1975); Shout (1978).

—Lewis Porter

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Silva, Alan (Treadwell)

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