Thursday, November 29, 2012

Jazz & Colors @ Central Park 11/10/12

This is a great thing.  30 bands playing the same setlist at various points all over Central Park.  The bands get a break in the middle and various soloists are scheduled at many of the points.  No sponsors, so I presume the city or Central park Conservatory or something funded it.

In addition to phenomenal music, I loved the opportunity to get to know the park a little.  I don't get there much due to proximity and crowdedness.  It also wasn't too crowded in most parts, which may not be a good thing for the festival, but there was a nice little crowd around each band I saw.

I got there a little after 1 and it had started at 12.  The format was one set 12-1:30 then a soloist portion to give the band a break and then another set 2:30-4:00.

I started at The Bob Stewart Quintet.  I could have stayed there the whole time.  It sounded so good with the horns.  I only stayed for 1-2 because I wanted to take full advantage.
Bob Stewart - tuba
Ray Anderson - trombone
Barry Altschul - drums
Alex Harding - baritone sax
Randall Haywood - trumpet

I saw a little of the Kimberly Thompson Quartet.  It was good but not a good follower to Bob Stewart.
Kimberly Thompson - drums
Essiat Essiat - bass
Craig Magnano - guitar
Dayna Stephens - sax
Carolyn Leonhart - vocal

I then got to the Naumberg Bandshell and Charnette Moffett was tuning up to do a phenomenal bass solo set.  I love him and always love his solos.  I saw his whole set and it was excellent.  He started with Caravan, playing off of pieces of it.  He was so cool how he hit the bass strings with the back of the bow.  He did some of his original compositions and some Mingus and some Blues.  He also did a cool kind of out there piece where he got the audience to play call and response with no effort on his part.  He was playing some complex stuff for us to respond to.

I took a little break after that to go to a paint store nearby to get some samples.  Next it was on to Doug Wamble Quartet.  But first I briefly caught some great music from the YES! Trio w/ Aaron Goldberg, Omer Avital, Ali Jackson, which was awesome.
Aaron Goldberg - piano
Omar Avital - bass
Ali Jackson - drums

Doug Wamble was awesome.  He sang the verse to Autumn in NY.  That was the 2wnd to last song and there was still about 1/2 hour left.  I decided to move on after that to get one more band in before the end.
Doug Wamble - Guitar, vocals
Jeff Hanley - bass
Roy Dunlap - keys
Bill Campbell - drums

I am so glad I did that.  I didn't realize Steven Bernstein was there, playing in the Joel Harrison Quartet.  I got an amazing 30 min.  Steven played regular trumpet.  They were all great.  I danced and had a great time.
Joel Harrison - guitar
Steven Bernstein - trumpet
Kenny Brooks - sax
Michael Bates - bass
George Schuller - drums

I hope this becomes a regular thing!

1st Setlist:
  • "Straight No Chaser" - Thelonious Monk, 1951
  • "Take The A Train" - Billy Strayhorn, 1939
  • "Central Park West" - John Coltrane,
  • "Nature Boy" - Eden Ahbez, 1947
  • "Fall" - The Miles Davis Quartet, 1967
  • "Autumn Serenade" - Johnny Harman / John Coltrane, 1963
  • "Goodbye Pork Pie Hat" - Charles Mingus, 1959
  • "Manhattan" - Rodgers and Hart, 1925
  • "Blue Train" - John Coltrane, 1957
Featuring Jazz & Colors Rising Stars Soloist Contest Winners,

2nd Setlist:
  • "Scrapple From The Apple" - Charlie Parker, 1947
  • "The Blues Walk" - Clifford Brown and Max Roach, 1955
  • "Body and Soul" - Louis Armstrong, 1930
  • "Skating in Central Park" - John Lewis, 1959
  • "Rhythm-A-Ning" - Thelonious Monk, 1957
  • "Peace" - Ornette Coleman, 1959
  • "Nostalgia in Times Square" - Charles Mingus, 1960
  • "Autumn in New York" - Vernon Duke, 1934
  • "Empire State of Mind" - Jay-Z & Alicia Keys, 2009

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