When You Wish Upon A Star, the latest project from legendary guitarist/composer Bill Frisell is now available via OKeh Records. Comprised of music from iconic film and television scores, the LP is conceived not only as an homage but also as a celebration of music-making with longtime collaborators and their collective commitment to refined interpretation of material. Frisell is touring widely in support of the new release—see below for tour dates.

Produced by Lee Townsend (Loudon Wainwright III, John Scofield, Carrie Rodriguez), the LP brings together an all-star “dream team” of Frisell’s frequent partners in crime: violist Eyvind Kang, drummer Rudy Royston, bass player Thomas Morgan and vocalist Petra Haden. Frisell describes the group of friends’ unique process as beginning with listening to as many versions of the pieces as possible and committing any lyrics to heart, followed by total immersion in the original score (harmony, phrasing, arrangement), learning the notes and hours of practice. “Finally, when it’s in the blood,” he says, the musicians are ready to deliver their interpretations.

The cornerstones of the album are four “suites” of music that reside deep within the collective psyche: To Kill A Mockingbird, Psycho, Once Upon A Time In The West and The Godfather. These are joined by new versions of well-known songs that describe the mysterious power of dreams: “You Only Live Twice,” “The Shadow Of Your Smile,” “Moon River” and “When You Wish Upon A Star.” Finally, the set is rounded out with music from TV series “Bonanza” and “Happy Trails,” the film noir classic The Bad and The Beautiful and Frisell’s own work from the TV show “Tales From The Far Side.” Taken together, the selections touch upon a wide swath of mid-twentieth century values, major events and cultural touchstones. “I’ve been watching TV and movies my whole life,” Frisell notes. “What I’ve seen and heard there is a huge part of, and is embedded so deeply into the fabric of what fires up my musical imagination.”

Born in Baltimore, Frisell played clarinet throughout his childhood in Denver. His interest in guitar began with his exposure to pop music on the radio. Soon, Chicago Blues became a passion through the work of Otis Rush, B.B. King, Paul Butterfield and Buddy Guy. In high school, he played in bands covering James Brown, pop and soul classics and other dance material. Later, Frisell studied music at the University of Northern Colorado before attending Berklee College of Music in Boston where he studied with John Damian, Herb Pomeroy and Michael Gibbs. In 1978, Frisell spent a year in Belgium where he concentrated on writing music. In this period, he toured with Michael Gibbs and first recorded with German bassist Eberhard Weber. He then moved to the New York City area in 1979 and stayed until 1989. He now lives in Seattle.

Over the years, Frisell has contributed to the work of such collaborators as Paul Motian, John Zorn, Elvis Costello, Ginger Baker, The Los Angeles Philharmonic, Lucinda Williams, Bonnie Raitt, Suzanne Vega, Loudon Wainwright III, Van Dyke Parks, Vic Chesnutt, Rickie Lee Jones, Ron Sexsmith, Vinicius Cantuaria, Marc Johnson (in “Bass Desires”), Ronald Shannon Jackson and Melvin Gibbs (in “Power Tools”), Marianne Faithful, John Scofield, Jan Garbarek, Lyle Mays, Vernon Reid, Julius Hemphill, Paul Bley, Wayne Horvitz, Hal Willner, Robin Holcomb, Rinde Eckert, The Frankfurt Ballet, Gus Van Sant, David Sanborn, David Sylvian, Petra Haden and numerous others, including Bono, Brian Eno, Jon Hassell and Daniel Lanois on the soundtrack for Wim Wenders’ film Million Dollar Hotel.

He has released over 40 albums and won as many awards, including a 2005 “Best Contemporary Jazz Album” Grammy for his LP Unspeakable.

Sony Music Masterworks comprises Masterworks, Sony Classical, OKeh, Portrait, Masterworks Broadway and Flying Buddha imprints. For email updates and information please visit

For more information, please contact Chris Schimpf, Krista Williams or Carla Sacks at Sacks & Co., 212.741.1000.

Sony Music Masterworks contacts: Angela Barkan / Larissa Slezak, 212-833-8575 / 6075.

1. To Kill a Mockingbird, Pt. 1
2. To Kill a Mockingbird, Pt. 2
3. You Only Live Twice
4. Psycho, Pt. 1
5. Psycho, Pt. 2
6. The Shadow of Your Smile
7. Bonanza
8. Once Upon a Time in the West (Theme)
9. (As a Judgment)
10. (Farewell to Cheyenne)
11. When You Wish Upon a Star
12. Tales from the Far Side
13. Moon River
14. The Godfather
15. The Bad and the Beautiful
16. Happy Trails



* Bill Frisell Trio feat. Gerald Cleaver & Tony Scherr
† Bill Frisell Trio feat. Tony Scherr & Kenny Wollesen
‡ with Michael Gibbs and the UW Symphony and Jazz Studies Faculty
§ with Michael Gibbs and the UW Big Band and Jazz Studies Faculty
** When You Wish Upon A Star feat. Petra Haden, Eyvind Kang, Thomas Morgan, Kenny Wollesen
†† with Thomas Morgan
‡‡ When You Wish Upon A Star feat. Petra Haden, Eyvind Kang, Thomas Morgan, Rudy Royston

November 20 /// The Arts Center /// Carrboro, NC*
November 21 /// Isis /// Asheville, NC*
November 22 /// Gunter Theatre at the Peace Center /// Greenville, SC†
November 24 /// Opperman Music Hall, Florida State University /// Tallahassee, FL†
January 14 /// Meany Theater /// Seattle, WA‡
January 15 /// Meany Theater /// Seattle, WA§
February 5 /// Kings Theatre /// Brooklyn, NY†
February 13 /// The Barns at Wolf Trap /// Vienna, VA**
February 14 /// Avalon Theatre /// Easton, MD**
February 16 /// Ardmore Music Hall /// Ardmore, PA**
February 18 /// Taft Ballroom /// Cincinnati, OH**
February 19 /// Old Town School /// Chicago, IL**
February 20 /// Dakota Jazz Club /// Minneapolis, MN**
February 21 /// Atkins Auditorium /// Kansas City, MO**
February 24 /// Oriental Theater /// Denver, CO**
February 25 /// Skirball Cultural Center /// Los Angeles, CA**
February 26 /// Freight & Salvage /// Berkeley, CA**
February 27 /// MIM Music Theater /// Scottsdale, AZ**
March 8–13 /// Village Vanguard /// New York, NY††
March 15–20 /// Village Vanguard /// New York, NY‡‡