Pianist and composer James Hill is hard to put into a musical box.

He’s an artist who’s always moving and reinventing. In the work of his group Autobahn Trio and with BADBADNOTGOOD, you can hear influences from everywhere, including the unexpected places.

His latest project is Local Talent, featuring bassist Rich Brown and drummer Ian Wright. The band released its album Higienópolis at the tail end of 2019, and it continues Hill’s pursuit of discovery and surprise.

He joined us for a conversation about how he rejected and then rediscovered his love of music, and about the deep artistic conceptualization that now goes into it.