Monday, March 29, 2010

Charlie Hunter @ Jazz Standard 3/28/10

This last set of the run was a great way to resurface! I love what Charlie's been doing in recent years! I love what he did before, but I love this direction even more.

This quintet included Eric Kalb on drums, 2 great trombones, and Mike Williams on bass trumpet. Clever, right? I doubt I saw a bass trumpet before. I really like it - especially with 2 trombones! Lots of nice, funky, low tones.

If I needed 2 trombones in NYC, I'd get Curtis Fowlkes and Alan Ferber, no contest. They were both their usual greatness.

I found myself getting caught by Eric a lot during the set. He was great! He was turned towards the other musicians, and I was sitting sort of behind, sort of next to him. I could see his every move and it was captivating. Actually, I could see everyone's every move, but got stuck on Eric just a little more that set. Every move I experienced from the rest of them was phenomenal, though.

It was absolutely awesome!

Here's the listing. I must comment, that Mike Williams on the BASS trumpet was incredible and completely on par with the rest of them, even though his name isn't in the "featuring" part.


Charlie Hunter - 7-string guitar

Alan Ferber - trombone

Curtis Fowlkes - trombone

Eric Kalb - drums
Mike Williams - trumpet

It's not only the Album Title of the Year but one of the most inventive and high-spirited instrumental sets of 2010. Jazz Standard and the singular seven-string guitarist Charlie Hunter celebrate the release of his new CD Gentlemen, I Neglected To Inform You You Will Not Be Getting Paid with two nights of galvanizing music by the Charlie Hunter Trio. The CD features Eric Kalb (Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, John Scofield) on drums, Curtis Fowlkes (Jazz Passengers, Lounge Lizards, Bill Frisell), Alan Ferber (Don Byron, Kenny Wheeler) on trombone, and Eric Biondo (Antibalas, TV On The Radio) on trumpet. "A huge part of what I do is rooted in old blues and soul," Charlie told Jim Fusilli of the Wall Street Journal in a recent interview. "My playing is not a 'licky' thing. It's not a 15-minute uninterrupted string of eighth notes over something that's unnecessarily very complex. It's feeling the time. It's saying something. Everything has to work together rhythmically."

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Upcoming: Darius Jones and More Wed 3/31

Yes, I really haven't been to any live music in an couple of weeks! That is all about to change, but sometimes that's the way it happens.

This looks good and the proximity to where Tonic used to be is particularly appealing

Wednesday, March 31, 8PM, $10

"This Is Our Music" Series

@ Gallery Bar
120 Orchard Street between Delancey & Rivington

Darius Jones (alto sax), Adam Lane (bass) and Jason Nazary (drums)

9PM - BRAD FARBERMAN SEXTET: Chris DiMeglio (trumpet), Jason Kao Hwang (violin), Brad Farberman (guitar), Jared Pauley (keys), Dan Tamberelli (bass) and Dave Miller (drums)

10PM - GAUCI, LANE & CARLSTEDT: Stephen Gauci (tenor sax), Adam Lane (bass) and Jeremy Carlstedt (drums)

"Darius Jones has the capacity for a proud, rafters-raising tone on alto saxophone, and as an improviser, he’s fearless but disciplined." - Nate Chinen, The New York Times

"[Farberman's band is an] uncommonly fun, tuneful, horn-driven funk-jazz project." - Lucid Culture

"Gauci’s development of a personal tongue is no hype." - Dan Rose,

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Bobby Carcasses & Afrojazz @ Jazz Gallery 3/11/10

Wow! This was awesome! I love afro cuban! I believe the entire band was Cubans. I loove drums and percussion and Cuban rhythms. It was great! A little too much singing for me, but I stilled loved it. I would have stayed for the 2nd set, but I've been in a little hibernation mode.

Bobby celebrates the release of CD De La Habana a Nueva York

Bobby Carcasses - vocal/flugerhorn, Yosvany Terry - saxophones/chekere, Manuel Valera - piano, Yunior Terry - bass, Dafnis Prieto - drums, Marvin Diz - percussion

Widely known as the ultimate guru of Afro-Cuban Jazz, vocalist/flugelhorn maestro Bobby Carcassés was born in 1938 in Kingston, Jamaica, where his Cuban grandfather worked as a diplomat. His immersion in music ultimately took him to Europe in the 1960s, where he played with the legendary Kenny Clarke and Bud Powell. According to Patrick Jarenwattananon of NPR's A Blog Supreme: "Thanks to Carcassés's efforts, he - with Paquito D'Rivera, Chucho Valdés and others - was able to launch Cuba's first jazz festival, now the Havana International Jazz Festival. But unlike [others], he stayed in Cuba and taught amazing musicians like Dafnis Prieto and Yosvany Terry, who are now killing nightly in New York." Indeed, those musicians, Bobby's protégés and familiar faces at the Gallery, will join him on Thursday, part of a U.S. tour to celebrate the release of the compelling new disc De La Habana a Nueva York.

According to Dafnis Prieto, quoted in The Miami Herald, Bobby courageously stood up for jazz in Cuba, arguing that "jazz is not an American style - it's a universal style." These are words The Jazz Gallery lives by.

Myron Walden @ Jazz Standard 3/9/10

Jazz Standard is so awesome. I called at around 6pm and got a res. It was sold out and it looked like only a few walk-ins made it to the 7:30 set. I had obstructed view, but I was close to Brian and could see him, Yasushi, and Mike very well. I could Myron at times and had trouble keeping track of his instruments. I think he had a few saxes and possibly a bass clarinet.

I enjoyed the music. It was more straight ahead, new, played well. It was definitely worthy of my time. Myron's great and it looks like I should keep an eye out for him. It looks like he plays Fat Cat, Small's, Bar Next Door. I love those places!

Myron Walden In This World
Myron Walden – tenor & soprano saxophone, bass clarinet
Mike Moreno – guitar
Jon Cowherd – piano
Yasushi Nakamura – bass
Brian Blade – drums

Hailed by All Music Guide as “one of jazz's most powerful young alto players,” multi-reed instrumentalist Myron Walden and his group In This World arrive on our stage propelled by two new CDs on Demi Sound Records. The new discs, To Feel and What We Share, follow on Myron’s Fall 2009 release Momentum – meaning that he’s issued three distinctly different albums of original material in less than six months’ time. In a recent Jazz Times feature, Aidan Levy wrote: “Listening to saxophonist Myron Walden is like watching Daedalus fly too close to the sun - it's exhilarating to see him glide past chord changes and conventional jazz structures, but there's the constant fear that if he goes any higher, his wings will melt. Somehow, that never happens.” Tonight’s lineup of Myron Walden In This World features the brilliant guitarist Mike Moreno (credits include Lizz Wright, Nicholas Payton, Terence Blanchard, and Joshua Redman’s Elastic Band) and the dynamic drummer Brian Blade (Myron is a key member of his acclaimed Brian Blade Fellowship).

[nec]shivaree @ The Stone 3/4/10

This was awesome. Sometimes, there is a fine line between ultra new jazz and ultra new classical. It was classical the way they behaved, providing a printed program, and that they were reading the music note for note. Probably in more subtle ways that I'm not familiar with as well.

I love ultra new music, and this was excellent. The first couple of pieces were performed by a saxaphone quartet. That was great, because I could notice differences in the different sounds each can make. They all had a time where each played just the mouthpiece, so I got insight into the differences there as well. It was awesome.

The next piece was performed by a string quartet + trombone. They each had a page turner for that piece. Then the string quartet played one of John's Zorn's pieces, "Cat O'Nine Tails".

It was awesome and nice to do something different.

Steve Drury (director) Benjamin Sorrell, Adam Pelandini, Sean Mix, Brandon Valerino (saxophones) Diamanda La Berge Dramm, Alexander Chaleff (violins) Stephen Upshaw (viola) Michael Unterman (cello) Wei Wang (trombone)
The attack wing of New England Conservatory’s new music program. New works by Lei Liang, Joan Arnau Pàmies, and John Zorn

William Parker, Conrad Bauer & Hamid Drake @ Roulette 2/26/10

William Parker, Hamid Drake, and whoever is always a great bet and well worth hitting. I was excited their 3rd for this evening was a trombone player.

Of course it was all amazing and stellar, from start to finish. They are actually on a little tour around the Northeast. They played Amherst, MA the night before and were going to Baltimore and then Philly next.

After about an hour, they stopped briefly to introduce and tell us about the tour. Then, to our surprise and immense joy, they played for about another hour! Hey started the 2nd hour off with some amazing, long solos.

The whole thing was brilliant and all I needed. It was great!

Here's what Roulette had to say about the artists in the listing:

William Parker is a master musician, improviser, and composer. He plays the bass, shakuhachi, double reeds, tuba, donso ngoni and gembri. He was born in 1952 in the Bronx, New York. He studied bass with Richard Davis, Art Davis, Milt Hinton, Wilber Ware, and Jimmy Garrison. He entered the music scene in 1971 playing at Studio We, Studio Rivbea, Hilly’s on The Bowery and The Baby Grand, playing with many musicians on the avant-garde school Bill Dixon, Sunny Murray, Charles Tyler, Billy Higgins, Charles Brackeem, Alan Silva, Frank Wright, Frank Lowe, Rashid Ali, Donald Ayler, Don Cherry, Cecil Taylor, Jimmy Lyons, Milford Graves and with traditionalists like Walter Bishop, Sr. and Maxine Sullivan. Early projects with dancer and choreographer Patricia Nicholson created a huge repertoire of composed music for multiple ensembles ranging from solo works to big band projects. Parker played in the Cecil Taylor unit from 1980 through 1991. He also developed a strong relationship with the European Improvised Music scene playing with musicians such as Peter Kowald, Peter Brotzmann, Han Bennink, Tony Oxley, Derek Bailey, Louis Sclavis, and Louis Moholo. He began recording in 1994 and leading his own bands on a regular basis founding two ensembles, In Order To Survive, and The Little Huey Creative Music Orchestra. In 2001, Parker released O’Neal’s Porch, which marked a turn toward a more universal sound working with drummer Hamid Drake. The Raining on the Moon Quintet followed, adding vocalist Leena Conquest and the Quartet from O’Neal’s Porch. Most notable among many recent projects is the Inside Songs of Curtis Mayfield. He has taught at Bennington College, NYU, The New England Conservatory of Music, Cal Arts, New School University and Rotterdam Conservatory of Music. He has also taught music workshops throughout the world including Paris, Berlin and Tokyo and the Lower East Side. Parker is also a theorist and author of several books including the Sound Journal, Document Humanum, Music and the Shadow People and The Mayor of Punkville.

By the close of the 1990s, Hamid Drake was widely regarded as one of the best percussionists in improvised music. Incorporating Afro-Cuban, Indian, and African percussion instruments and influence, in addition to using the standard trap set, Drake has collaborated extensively with top free jazz improvisers Peter Brotzmann, Fred Anderson, and Ken Vandermark, among others. Drake was born in Monroe, LA, in 1955, and later moved to Chicago with his family. He ended up taking drum lessons with Fred Anderson's son, eventually taking over the son's role as percussionist in Anderson's group. As a result, Fred Anderson also introduced Drake to George Lewis and other AACM members. Drake also has performed world music; by the late '70s, he was a member of Foday Muso Suso's Mandingo Griot Society, and has played reggae. Drake has been a member of the Latin jazz band Night on Earth, the Georg Graewe Quartet, the DKV Trio, Peter Brotzmann's Chicago Octet/Tentet, and Liof Munimula, the oldest free improvising ensemble in Chicago. Drake has also worked with trumpeter Don Cherry, Pharoah Sanders, Fred Anderson, Mahmoud Gania, bassist William Parker (in a large number of lineups), and has performed a solstice celebration with fellow Chicago percussionist Michael Zerang semiannually since 1991. Hamid Drake recorded material is best represented on Chicago's Okkadisk label.

One of Europe's finest free jazz trombonists, Conrad Bauer is one of those many unfortunate artists who have largely fallen through the cracks of public and critical consciousness. He's no secret among musicians, however; his many collaborators include such leading avant-gardists as Louis Sclavis, Derek Bailey, Han Bennink, Anthony Braxton, Peter Brotzmann, Gerry Hemingway, Fred van Hove, Peter Kowald, George Lewis, Butch Morris, Tony Oxley, and Barre Phillips. Bauer spent his early career in East Germany, studying trombone in Dresden and Berlin. He spent the '70s and '80s leading his own bands in the GDR; he led the state jazz orchestra in 1987-1988. His profile rose in the '90s as he began recording for Western labels. His solo appearance at the 1991 Victoriaville (Canada) Festival was recorded and issued on the Victo label. He's since recorded several times under his own name and as a sideman for the Intakt and FMP labels, among others. His brother Johannes Bauer is also a prominent free jazz trombonist.

Christian McBride Big Band @ Dizzy's 2/25/10

Note: I wrote this that night in the cab on the way home. I'm just getting around to posting it.

This was that stormy night where travelling was pretty treacherous. It didn't stop everyone from coming out to Dizzy's and filling the place for the 2nd set. It was so worth it!

This wasn't a typical big band, but they never really are any more. They started off with a Blues piece that made me want to get down. That was a quite funky Blues piece! I knew I was in the right place after that!

There was quite a range of genres, and all of it was spectacular. One piece was composed with a movie theme. It turns out Christian is a big movie buff. It was a great piece, full of suspense and great music. Most of the reeds picked up flutes for this. Ron Blake played his soprano sax for this one.

The other well-known band member was Nicholas Payton. He sat with the other trumpets and had a few more solos than the other 3. I liked that. I had envisioned he would come out and join in for a few, not play the whole set. I recognized a couple of the other trumpet players, I've probably seen them in other ensembles. They had some solo time on the last piece.

The trombones were great. There was one piece where 2 of them were featured and it was amazing.

A singer came out for a few. She's a great jazz singer. I didn't need her, but that's me. Most people love some vocals. It was nice when she did a duo piece with Christian. It was great how much he played in general. We even got some movie trivia from him.

This was a stellar set and well worth the trek, the cost, and the time. All of the musicians are phenomenal. I loved the drummer and piano.

I was trying to find the band members names, now, 3/17, but it's a hassle. I found this on facebook:
McBride, Nicholas Payton, Freddie Hendrix, Ron Blake, Todd Williams,
Melissa Walker and friends view the photos