It was nice that the 3 venues were all in the same spot on Degraw. The Crossfit Gym (CFG) and Homage Skateboard Park (HSP) are on one side of the street and Littlefield is on the other.
CFG is an old school style gym and had a lot of light and was somewhat warm. The stage was right in front of the boxing ring and most people sat on the mats in front of the stage. I was always dancing, of course.
HSP was indoors. I'm not clear how the skateboarding works - do they move the ramps outdoors or do they do some skateboarding indoors?
Jeff Lederer's Sunwatcher at Littlefield was phenomenal. I only caught the end, but loved it. I got the CD and I love that as well. Jeff plays sax, Matt Wilson on drums, Jamie Saft on piano and keys, and Chris Lightcap on drums. The CD reminds me of Coltrane. That AAJ article mentions "The reed man chose to reanimate the spirit of Albert Ayler for this session, and along with Ayler's ghost came that of late-John Coltrane spirituality and experimentation."
Then it was time to head over to CFG for Zeena Parkins & the Adorables, which I adored. The description from this blog about their Canadian debut at Victoriaville: "
Min Xiao-Fen's "Dim Sum" is a duo with Satoshi on drums and percussion. They were the only band to opt to sit on the top of a skateboard ramp at HSP. It made it even more surreal.
I then did some bouncing back and forth between Sylie Courvoisser (piano)/Mark Feldman (violin) duo at Littlefield and Briggan Krauss' H-Alpha at CFG. They ended up in roughly the same time slot as the Littlefield stage got backed up and the married duo did not start on time. H-Alpha consists of Briggan Krauss on alto sax, Jim Black on drums, and Ikue Morie on laptop. Do I have to tell you how amazing these 2 bands were? It was so much fun bouncing back and forth.
Then I spent about 1/2 hour going crazy over Matt Wilson's solo drumkit show at HSP. He is so awesome. He was actually playing songs, but I wouldn't have known if he didn't tell me. He did sing familiar Michael Jackson lines for one. It was fun because the audience started singing along. He would sometimes whistle those same lines and the audience would whistle. There was even the part where he would sing it and the audience would whistle it. We all loved that - it's fun when there's a spontaneous shared creation between the audience and the musician and it's welcomed by all. Then he did a Monk piece. So cool.
I had to leave before Matt finished so I could see a few minutes of The Darius Jones Trio. I have seen them a lot, and it's always good. I need to find out who else was there. I think it was Darius on alto sax, Adam Lane on bass, and Jason Nazary on drums.
Elliot Sharp's continuous Monk piece at CFG was awesome. I heard he did it at The Stone recently. I would love to see it there.
I enjoyed about 10-15 min of Dean Bowman's avant gospel solo a cappella performance at HSP. It was odd that he started on time and went longer than his time slot, delaying David S. Ware's set. I can't get over that his voice lasted so long. It's a nice, deep, soulful voice at that.
It wasn't a big deal that David S. Ware was delayed as Anthony Coleman's trio with Brad Jones on bass and Satoshi Takeshi was phenomenal. The delay meant I had more time seeong that at Littlefield.
David S. Ware was worth waiting for. He didn't bring his tenor. He played the saxella for about 1/2 hour and then the stricht. I was wearing out, so I left after about 45 min to get some of Jamie Saft.
At some point I tried Mountains at CFG, it's 2 electronic guys and very loud. It wasn't for me, but I'm glad it was part of this festival. I think I might have liked it more if it wasn't so loud. It reminded me of STS9.
Jamie Saft's New Zion Trio is phenomenal. I was so tired, but I had to stay for about 4 or 5 pieces. In addition to Jamie on piano and organ, the rhythm section included Larry Grenadier on bass and Craig Santiago on drums.
I had to miss Jeremy Udden's Plainville. Given how Adam raved about the set after the fact, I need to be sure to see them at some point. Looking at the personnel in his own words on his website, I really need to get to this: "Featuring myself (saxophones/clarinet), Brandon Seabrook (guitar/banjo), Pete Rende (rhodes/pump organ/moog), Eivind Opsvik (bass), and RJ Miller (drums) with special guests Nathan Blehar (guitar/voice), Justin Keller (voice), Will Graefe (guitar); this album picks up where the last one left off."
Only one night left.