Saturday, May 25, 2013

The M & Ms: Medeski, Mali, Mercurio, Moore @ LPR 5/23/13

I had high expectations for this show.  A new amalgamation of people I love, and I loved who was in it.  I did end up having a great time and it was a good show.  However, it was also quite lacking in what it could have been.   It's all about the expectation.  It was free for me because I'm a member.  I didn't even have to wait in the long line to get in. 

It was listed as doors at 10, show at 10:30, but ended up having delays getting people in. I was in early, and at some point there as a 13 yo kid on stage impromptu opening for us.  I was a little bored and conserved my energy by sitting over in one of those big cushy chairs by the photo-booth bathroom area with some friends.

I enjoyed the band when they came on.  Anything Medeski touches is worthwhile.  He was doing it for me as always.  The music in general was nice and worth coming out.  Then, toward the end of the 2nd set, the 13 yo kid came out and it got great.  It brought intense Stanton out,  and it really went somewhere.  I wanted that kid to stay the rest of the show and give us something to reminisce about.  The kid was much better then.  I think part of it was Papa Mali was lacking.  I've seen that guy in so many guises and he's unbelievably talented and oozes with soul. But, that night and when I recently saw him in NOLA, things were lacking.  I presume he's just having a little dip and I send him good vibes for the return of that mojo that I know still exists in him.  I will say people were calling that kid the next Derek Trucks.  I would say he was quite good at that sit in, but Derek Trucks is a whole other thing.  We were just really happy to get that show.

After that, they were finishing up the 1st set.  The music was still good, I just realized it was time for me to go home, happy to have attended.

Equifunk & Nolafunk Present
The M & Ms:
Medeski, Mali, Mercurio, Moore

M&Ms melt in your mind, not in your hands.

John Medeski  (Medeski Martin & Wood)
Papa Mali  (7 Walkers)
Rob Mercurio   (Galactic)
Stanton Moore

Monday, May 20, 2013

Stephane Wrembel @ Barbes 5/19/13

Sephane Wrembel is awesome.  He plays in the style of Django Reinhardt.  He's very talented.  His band evolves over time.  It's always good.  I liked his intense drummer last night. 

He plays at Barbes almost every Sun night, 2 sets.  It's only $10 and a wonderful tiny space.  It's very easy to get to on the F Train.  I highly recommend you see him anywhere he plays.

It looks like these Barbes gigs aren't on his website.  You can find them on Barbes' website.  Actually, you can go to any set at Barbes and see anything and get a great World music show.

Leni Stern @ Barbes 5/19/13

It was an awesome African trio.  I always like seeing Leni Stern's band.  She is originally from Munich, Germany and she's based in NYC.  She plays with a wonderful bass player, , and drummer.  I think they are both from Mali, but I'm not 100% sure.  Leni sings in English and their African language.  She also plays this cool dome-shaped Moroccan instrument.  She has a little bit of percussion as well.  It was a very nice 1 hour set.


03|13|2013 - The Blues Comes Home to Africa!
Mamadou Kone, bass
Haruna Samake, drums

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Secret Chiefs3 @ Union Hall 5/18/13

I went out for the brief white robe set.  It was phenomenal.  I love the space, too.  It reminds me a lot of when I saw them in Paris.  The performance space is in a back room.  There's a nice outside area to hang before the space.  There's also a large inside space before before the outside space.  It's an awesome venue.  This Brooklyn space wasn't hot but, it was going to get much more crowded for the next set.  The next set would also be more intense and my kind of thing.  It just wasn't going to happen for me last night.

There are still more gigs for them coming up soon.  I probably won't be able to make The Stone, but I've seen them there before and they should be amazing.  I would line up early if you want to get in.  It only fits about 50 people.

ate venue location details
 May 17, 2013 Mercury Lounge New York NY
 May 18, 2013 Union Pool Brooklyn NY
 May 19, 2013 Union Pool Brooklyn NY
 May 21, 2013 Schubas Tavern Chicago IL
 May 22, 2013 Beat Kitchen Chicago IL
 May 24, 2013 The Drake Toronto ON
 May 25, 2013 The Drake Toronto ON
 May 28, 2013 The Stone NYC New York NY 8 and 10pm shows
 May 29, 2013 The Stone NYC New York NY 8 and 10pm shows
 May 30, 2013 The Stone NYC New York NY 8 and 10pm shows
 May 31, 2013 The Stone NYC New York NY 8 and 10pm shows
 Jun 01, 2013 The Stone NYC New York NY 8 and 10pm shows
 Jun 02, 2013 The Stone NYC New York NY 8 and 10pm shows

Allison Miller's Boom Tic Boom @ 92YTribeca 5/9/13

The band is completely different and still stellar.  I got a CD for that I'm looking forward to listening to as well.

Here's the show on NPR:
Boom Tic Boom: Live From 92Y Tribeca
May 9, 2013A go-to choice for jazz heavies and arena-level singer-songwriters alike, drummer Allison Miller made time to cultivate her own working band in the past few years. Fresh off the band's second studio album, and a tour to support it, she leads her singular quartet in a New York homecoming.

Look at the amazing lineup:
  • Allison Miller, drums
  • Kirk Knuffke, cornet
  • Myra Melford, piano
  • Todd Sickafoose, bass
  • Rachel Friedman, voice (one song)

SexMob @ 92YTribeca 5/9/13

I love this band!  They were phenomenal!  I'm looking to hearing the new album.  I purchased it, but I don't have a way to listen to it right now.  Well, I have an older computer and Google Drive, so I could listen to it on my new MacBook Air, I just haven't gone there yet.  It looks like I see an external disk drive in my near future.
Sexmob celebrates the release of “Cinema, Circus and Spaghetti: Sexmob plays the music of Nino Rota” on May 8 at 92Y Tribeca.

This is the link to the actual show, check it out:

Sexmob: Live From 92Y Tribeca
May 9, 2013The quartet specializes in a distinct strain of deconstructionist improvised music: jazz that aims at fun by bouncing off the walls. Led by slide trumpeter Steven Bernstein, the band parties to the themes of spaghetti western film composer Nino Rota.

Woazoa Ochestra @ Allways Lounge 5/4/13

It was a good show.  I stayed as long as I could, but the cold was too much for me. I did enjoy what I got.

Here's a description of the project from here site.  I don't know who the actual musicians that night were.  I enjoyed each of them.
Helen Gillet’s Wazozo Zorchestra
This is a sequal album to Wazozo’s first 2009 album “Newton Circus.” Jon Gross (sousaphone), Doug Garrison (drums), Chris Kohl (clarinet), and other suprise guests  join Gregory Good (acoustic and electric guitar), Daron Douglas (violin), Luke Brechtlesbauer (harp), and Helen Gillet (cello, loop pedal, effects and voice) for an album of all french chansons.

Helen Gillet @ Always Lounge 5/4/13

Helen played about 25 minutes of exceelent solo cello set.  Then Mazz Swift play about 30 minutes or so of violin.  It was good, even though it was cold in the venue.

Wimbish @ Blue Nile Balcony Room NOLA 5/4/13

That was a fun show.  It's also a lot of fun to bounce back and forth between 2 shows.  Everyone was excited for when Vernon Reid would come on a play a few.  It got me thrilled that I'm spoiled that I have so many more opportunities to see him in my own hood.  I've seen the Wimbish the show at least 3 times over the years.  It still feels fresh.  I did get to the see the entire part with Vernon and enjoyed it a lot.

Khris Royal - Wimbash Ft. Dark Matter And Doug Wimbish, W Ill Calhoun, Vernon Reid And More

Khris Royal & Dark Matter with Doug Wimbish & Corey Glover

Royal Potato Family Allstars @ Blue Nile NOLA 5/4/12

It had it's moments.  Marco played that happy song too way too many times.  Skerik mentioned since Marco is a founding member of Royal Potato Family he could play whatever he wanted that night.  I wish they wish they retire that song once and for all.  I haven't been a fan of it in a long time.

Now don't get me wrong, the show did have some great moments, too.

In addition, it sparked me to also buy a ticket to the show upstairs. I enjoyed that show and I could escape this one when they were taking it places I wasn't interested in.  It was perfect.

Marco Benevento
Robert Walter
Mike Dillon
Reed Mathis
John Speice

Papa Mali @ Old US Mint NOLA 5/3/13

That was a fun show show.  I enjoyed it.

Cheick Hamala Diabate Band @ Old US Mint NOLA 5/3/13

It's a mint museum in which they sometimes have events.  I enjoyed it.  I was able to dance close in the middle of the room and I love Nola-African stuff.

Astral Project @ Fairgrounds 5/3/13

I was there for a few hours before I founded music I liked.  I still enjoyed walking aroud and eating and hanging.  I did enjoy Astral Project. Then I decided I was happy and wanted to hang out elsewhere after that, so I traveled back.

Jazzfest 5/2/13

I had sketchy notes and not much memory.  Are you sitting down?  It looks like I'm ready for a Jazzfest hiatus.  Last year, I just started feeling like it was getting old.  This was my 12th year.  I went for the entire thing for the 1st 5 years.  My tastes have changed and some things about jazzfest got old and stale for me.  I noticed this is certainly not the case for all.  I see the usual thrilled faces on the regulars.  Jazzfest really is amazing and you should go check it out for yourself.  I remember my first fest, I had a brass pass.  That means I had access to the radio station WWOZ's tent.  I meant a man from Tuscaloosa, AL.  He kept commenting on my glow.  He said there's nothing like your first fest.  It had been 2002 and he'd been coming since 1987. 

Of course, I still had a good time.  I just decided to sell my tickets for Sat and Sun, even though the weather was going to be better.  I just wanted to have fun in NOLA on those days and just wasn't feeling the fest.  

The 2 days I did go, there was some rain.  It wasn't a big deal.  It was really weird how cool it was for this time of year.  I had the right attire, and I don't really remember that much about it.  Oh, now I remember at first it was somewhat cold and rainy, but there was good music in the jazz tent and room to sit. I was happy.

I had a great poncho.  I went to the organ woodshed in the jazz tent.  It was great, especially the beg and end.
Woodshed: Hammond B3 (Jazz)
Two experienced organ players, Kyle Roussel and Joe Ashlar, will give the audience a course on the Hammond B3 organs.
They will perform in a variety of genres, including funk, gospel, and jazz.
Then, Kidd Jordan was up in the jazz tent. That was as great as always.  He informed us that they are true improvisers.  He talked about John Coltrane a little.  He had some very interesting things to say about his approach, but I can't remember them.  Lucky for me, captured it for us.
I was very happy to be there and very happy with the set.
Kidd Jordan, sax
William Parker, bass
Alvin Fielder, drums
Joel Futterman, piano
Maynard Chatters Jr, piano

I went to a little of Henry Butler.  Fabulous.  I love Henry.

I saw Gravy before leaving at Lagniappe.  I liked them.  It was nice to find something new.
Infusing musical aspects from all walks of life, Gravy’s brand of progressive funk rock has garnered a solid fan base, firmly cementing the band as a fixture in the New Orleans music scene. Touring consistently since their inception, Gravy has established itself as one of the Southeast’s rising acts.

The Midnight Disturbers @ Howlin Wolf NOLA 5/1/13

This was great, but I was still elated from GAT and actually didn't need it.  I wasn't there when this was created.  My memory is that Stanton Moore and 1 or 2 other horn leaders were hanging out one day and came up with the idea to create a brass band full of stellar leaders.  Making that work is impressive given how in demand they all are.  They made up shirts with the name of a great that plays their instrument.  Very awesome concept.  And, of course the music is amazing.  Very intense very alive and beyond great.  It's of course very rare to even be able to see it.  In the past, the Megalomaniacs Ball culminated with GAT.  It's nice how they keep doing things to keep the Ball different.

It was a great show, but I was tired and so satisfied after GAT.  I don't think I stayed that long, but I enjoyed it.

Original Garage a Trois @ Howlin Wolf NOLA 5/1/13

This was worth the entire trip to New Orleans.  Charlie Hunter is an original member of the band.  He's a phenomenal guitar player who was playing the 8-string guitar back at the time.  That means he had 2 bass strings on his guitar.  One of Charlie's approaches to keep his music fresh is to continue to change his musical partners.  A few years or so after Garage a Trois (GAT), Charlie changed to the 7-string guitar, so now he has 1 bass string instead of 2.  I really like this version.  I suspect it's more because I appreciate him even more than ever before as I've grown in my musical tastes.

Anyway, we all love GAT w/ Charlie.  Soon after Charlie decided to move on, GAT was using different guests to fill out the band.  I remember the jazzfest time with John Medeski on keyboards.  I don't remember who else they might have played with, but I think they quickly ended up with Marco Benevento on keyboards.  That meant we still had a phenomenal band even though most of us preferred how it went with Charlie. 

They do this Megalomaics Ball every year at Howlin Wolf on the Wed before 2nd weekend of jazzfest.  Last year, they shared the show doing the first half with Charlie and the 2nd half with Marco.  This year, they did the show with Charlie and had Marco in for most of the 2nd set.  Phenomenal!  They had Mike Dillon the percussionist come in and out. The original was Charlie, Skerik and Stanton.  Mike was added after 1-3 years I think.  This show was very awesome for me.

The Mike Dillon Band @ Howlin Wolf NOLA 5/1/13

It was good and fun, which is expected.  It did seem some like most of the shows I've seen of them were a little higher level.  It was still really good.  It was awesome when Charlie Hunter sat in.  Marco Benevento  then sat in until the end and it got super wonderful.  I loved seeing Marco in a different capacity.  He was intense, dark, really fit in perfectly with this band.  I knew he already had this in him, I just hadn't seen it in forever.  The very last piece had Stanton Moore and Marco Benevento sitting in.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Magolia Beacon @ Hi /Ho Lounge NOLA 5/1/13

I was feeling a desire to change it up this year at Jazzfest.  I knew I'd end up at Megalomaniacs Ball, but wanted to try something else first.  I saw Helen Gillet was listed on the jazzfest grids, but when I got up to Allways Lounge, I found out something had changed since then.  I ended up across the street at Hi Ho Lounge for people I didn't know anything about. 

I only stayed for the first band, Magnolia Beacon.  I enjoyed it.  It was a string quartet with singing and everything.  They sounded good.

I could quickly tell that the next band's style wasn't going to be for me, so I made my way over to Howlin Wolf.