Storm Nilson

Storm NilsonStorm Storm Nilson has been performing, recording, and educating throughout the United States and Canada for the past 13 years. His musical inspiration has been nurtured by opportunities to play with some of the world’s top Jazz musicians such as Wynton Marsalis, Charlie Haden, Steve Cardenas, and his long time friend and mentor, Bruce Forman. As an educator, Storm has taught as a guest artist and traveling clinician for the Monterey Jazz Festival and JazzMaster’s Workshops. He was also recently featured at the 2007 50th Anniversary of the Monterey Jazz Festival and has performed extensively in Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, and Montreal.

In 2001, Storm began pursuing his Bachelor’s Degree at California Institute of the Arts in Los Angeles, where he had the great privilege of studying with Larry Koonse, Joe LaBarbera, David Roitstein, Miroslav Tadic, Darek Oles, and Jazz luminary Charlie Haden. In 2007, Storm received the prestigious Schulich Merit Scholarship to attend McGill University in Montreal. While in Montreal, he studied and collaborated with famed Polish pianist/composer Jan Jarczyk, as well as participated in numerous collaborations with acclaimed Canadian tenor players Chet Doxas and Joel Miller, assuming the guitar responsibilities from Kurt Rosenwinkel in Miller’s band Mandala.

In late 2010, Storm signed with f.Boo Music and has recently released his debut album HOME, a collection of solo acoustic pieces. Additionally being released this spring is the debut album of Red Oak Duo, a jazz/Americana flavored collaboration with pianist Adam Benjamin. Storm currently divides his time between Portland, OR and Los Angeles.

Artist Statement

"Every musician needs a car. When I went to a dealership and mentioned I was a musician, the look I received from the shylock in the plaid suit was one of unassailable disappointment. To remedy the discomfort my announcement caused, I added that I was a Jazz musician. At that point his disappointment graduated to all-out despair. Jazz musician? What the hell is that? An anachronism, perhaps, but certainly not a serious customer."

Where does this musician belong? What utility does he serve? What compels me to do this thing?.

YouTube - f.Boo Music's Channel  Storm Nilson



© 2011 f.Boo Music (ASCAP) Compact Disc

Storm Nilson HOME is an intimate encapsulation of guitarist Storm Nilson's journey through American music. Nine inspiring pieces, drawing from jazz and Americana traditions, conjure up a nostalgic story of an America remembered. Popular songs of the past are skillfully reshaped in this creative selection presenting both original and reinterpreted modern works.

From New Orleans to Alaska, HOME takes listeners along on a journey through America's vast and diverse musical identity, past and present. Willow Weep for Me and Tennessee Waltz invoke a taste of the old south. A masterful reinterpretation of Bill Frisell’s Ghost Town carries the audience along through the vast, expansive west, and lands expertly with Nilson's own Yasha's Tune, set in Alaska, the magical place of his youth.

HOME tells a story about American music, and about the powerful personal/professional journey Nilson chooses to share. “The fusion between jazz and rural-based music is not only beautiful but naturally blends my feelings about my own geographical past coupled with a musical journey across the continent. I hope to provide others with a little taste of my experiences and influences—and connect an intangible artistic expression sensed in other musicians with my own experience and natural influences.

Track Listing

1. Das Rosas
2. Willow Weep for Me
3. Yasha's Tune
4. My One and Only Love
5. Ghost Town
6. My Ideal
7. My Romance
8. Tennessee Waltz
9. 'Round Midnight


  • Yasha’s Tune

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About the Songs

Das Rosas

A beautiful composition by the Brazilian composer Dorival Cyimmi, Nilson first came across this peaceful tune on a Baden Powell record and was instantly taken by how it perfectly captured the essence of Brazil. Its sweet melody and relaxed and gentle nature conjure up a feeling of informality as well as an image of a place where music is natural and ubiquitous.

My Ideal

The impetus for this piece came from Nilson’s discovery of the great guitarist John Stowell, a discovery that fueled time studying Stowell’s use of two independent lines to convey one harmonic idea. Nilson developed this particular arrangement first as a study of this concept which then morphed into the version presented on HOME.

My Romance

A favorite ballad, My Romance represents one of Nilson’s initial attempts to arrange a tune for solo guitar. His first experience with this tune arranged for guitar was the Joe Pass solo album, Unforgettable. Impressed by Pass’s ability to improvise standards so effortlessly in a solo context, Nilson’s intention was to create and emulate by way of arrangement what Pass does so gracefully on the spot.

Ghost Town

Nilson considers Bill Frisell to be one of the finest musicians on the planet with this particular tune capturing his essence perfectly. The rural vibe of the tune, and of Frisell’s music generally, has always been an inspiration. Having grown up in Southeast Alaska surrounded by unbelievable natural beauty, Nilson has always hoped to represent his strong connection to that place through his music. His version of this song is a nod to Frisell as well as an attempt to convey my own relationship with nature, Americana, and the beauty of the form.

Willow Weep for Me

A reminder of the American South, this song offers a representation of a rich musical heritage, a reminder of musical roots, and a nod to its pinnacle role in producing great musicians. Willow Weep for Me speaks of this special place by presenting key qualities that span light, playfulness, and the blues.

Tennessee Waltz

Another nod to the South, this particularly haunting and beautiful melody against the backdrop of a descending harmony is simple yet powerful. The story, which we unfortunately don’t hear on this version, represents the most powerful part of the tune. It’s a heartbreaker about a girl who takes her man to a dance only to find him stolen away by her best friend. The relationship between the lyrical content and the contour of the melody perfectly represents bittersweet element of loss in a heart warming and touching way.

‘Round Midnight

This classic jazz standard is an old favorite, which Nilson learned long ago and has always come back to as a reminder of his own musical roots.

Yasha’s Tune

Yasha Island is a small island in Southest Alaska that Nilson explored as a young boy. With tremendous personal significance, this song represents not only his relationship to that special place but also more broadly to his connection to Southeast Alaska which played a huge role in shaping the person and artist Nilson has become. Think: unbelievable natural beauty, the true essence of Alaska, and the nostalgia of a charmed childhood.

My One and Only Love

A favorite song first heard on a Coltrane album, Nilson has always loved the contour of the melody, the wide intervals that set it apart from other ballads, and the freedom it grants to reinterpret the harmony in almost limitless ways while still preserving the integrity of its melodic line. This true gem of the Great American Songbook inspired the core theme of HOME.