born on 21/5/1954 in Newark, NJ, United States
Marc Ribot (//; born May 21, 1954) is an American guitarist and composer.
His work has touched on many styles, including no wave, free jazz, rock, and Cuban music. Ribot is also known for collaborating with other musicians, most notably Tom Waits, Elvis Costello, Vinicio Capossela and John Zorn.
Ribot was born in Newark, New Jersey. He grew up in the Montrose section of South Orange, the son of a noted physician. He has worked extensively as a session guitarist. He has performed and recorded with Tom Waits, Caetano Veloso, John Zorn, David Sylvian, Jack McDuff, Wilson Pickett, The Lounge Lizards, Arto Lindsay, T-Bone Burnett, Medeski, Martin and Wood, Cibo Matto, Sam Phillips, Elvis Costello, Tift Merritt, Allen Ginsberg, Foetus, Robert Plant & Alison Krauss, Susana Baca, The Black Keys, Vinicio Capossela, Alain Bashung, McCoy Tyner, Elton John, Madeleine Peyroux, Marianne Faithfull, Diana Krall, Mike Patton, Neko Case, Joe Henry, Allen Toussaint, Ikue Mori and others.
Ribot's earliest session work was featured on Tom Waits's Rain Dogs (1985) and helped define Waits's new musical direction. Ribot worked with Waits on many of his following albums including Franks Wild Years (1987), Big Time (1988), Mule Variations (1999), Real Gone (2004), Orphans: Brawlers, Bawlers & Bastards (2006) and Bad as Me (2011). He has appeared on Elvis Costello's Spike (1989), Mighty Like a Rose (1991), and Kojak Variety (1995). Ribot has appeared on numerous recordings by John Zorn, including many of Zorn's Filmworks recordings, solo performances on Zorn's Masada Guitars (also featuring Bill Frisell and Tim Sparks), and is a member of Zorn's Bar Kokhba Sextet and Electric Masada.
Ribot's first two albums featured the Rootless Cosmopolitans, followed by an album of works by Frantz Casseus for solo guitar. Further releases found him working in a variety of band and solo contexts including two albums with his self-described "dance band", Marc Ribot y Los Cubanos Postizos (Prosthetic Cubans), featuring compositions by Arsenio Rodríguez.
Ribot admitted to Guitar Player a relatively limited technical facility due to learning to play right-handed despite being left-handed: "That's a real limit, one that caused me a lot of grief when I was working with Jack McDuff and realizing I wasn't following in George Benson's footsteps. I couldn't be a straight-ahead jazz contender if you held a gun to my head, but that begs the question of whether I would want to be one."
He currently performs and records with his groups Marc Ribot's Ceramic Dog with bassist Shahzad Ismaily and drummer Ches Smith of the avant-garde band Secret Chiefs 3, Marc Ribot Trio with bassist Henry Grimes and drummer Chad Taylor of Chicago Underground, and The Young Philadelphians, covering 1970s Philadelphia soul music with Philadelphia-based musicians bassist Jamaaladeen Tacuma and drummer G. Calvin Weston with guitarist Mary Halvorson plus a three-piece string section.
A biographical documentary film about Ribot was made, called The Lost String.
Ribot was also a judge for the sixth annual Independent Music Awards.
- Rootless Cosmopolitans (Antilles, 1990)
- Requiem for What's His Name (Les Disques du Crépuscule, 1992)
- Marc Ribot Plays Solo Guitar Works of Frantz Casseus (Les Disques du Crépuscule, 1993)
- Shrek (Avant, 1994)
- Subsonic 1: Sounds of a Distant Episode with Shrek (Sub Rosa/Subsonic 1994, split album with Fred Frith)
- The Book of Heads (Tzadik, 1995) composed by John Zorn
- Don't Blame Me (DIW, 1995)
- Shoe String Symphonettes (Tzadik, 1997)
- The Prosthetic Cubans (Atlantic, 1998) with Los Cubanos Postizos
- Yo! I Killed Your God (Tzadik, 1999)
- ¡Muy Divertido! (Atlantic, 2000) with Los Cubanos Postizos
- Saints (Atlantic, 2001)
- Inasmuch as Life is Borrowed (Ultima Vez, 2001) limited edition
- Scelsi Morning (Tzadik, 2003)
- Soundtracks Volume 2 (Tzadik, 2003)
- Spiritual Unity (Pi, 2005)
- Exercises in Futility (Tzadik, 2008)
- Party Intellectuals (Pi, 2008) with Ceramic Dog
- Silent Movies (Pi, 2010)
- Your Turn (Northern Spy, 2013) with Ceramic Dog
- Live at the Village Vanguard (Pi, 2014) with Henry Grimes and Chad Taylor
- The Young Philadelphians: Live in Tokyo (Yellowbird, 2016) with the Young Philadelphians
- YRU Still Here? (Northern Spy, 2018) with Ceramic Dog
- Songs of Resistance: 1942–2018 (2018)
- Sabbath in Paradise (1998)
- The Soul of a Man (directed by Wim Wenders) (2003)
- A Bookshelf on Top of the Sky: 12 Stories About John Zorn (2004)
- The Lost String (directed by Anais Prosaic) (2007)
- Gare du Nord (2013)