Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Jazz this week: Byron Stripling; Bonearama; Lee, McPhee, Corsano & Orcutt; Dave King & Chris Weller; and more

This week's calendar of live jazz and creative music in St. Louis includes New Music Circle's first concerts of their 60th season; the return of a popular trumpeter and singer to Jazz St. Louis; the drummer of The Bad Plus in one of his several side projects; and more.

Let's go to the highlights ...

Wednesday, September 19
Trumpeter Byron Stripling (pictured, top left) returns to Jazz St. Louis for the first of five nights of performances.

Stripling, who directs the Columbus (OH) Jazz Orchestra and also is known for his tribute to the music of Louis Armstrong, will be the first musician to do a five-night run at the Bistro since Sunday matinees and evening performances were added for select artists.

Elsewhere in Grand Center, Cabaret Project St. Louis presents their monthly "Singers Open Mic" at Sophie's Artist Lounge & Cocktail Club; and the weekly "Grand Center Jazz Crawl" features the Jazz Troubadours at The Stage at KDHX, plus the jam session led by bassist Bob DeBoo at the Kranzberg Arts Center and trumpeter Kasimu Taylor's band at The Dark Room.

Also on Wednesday, Wright's Project plays jazz-fusion and funk at Al's Lounge, and bassist Glen Smith and guitarist Eric Slaughter perform at Evangeline's.

Thursday, September 20
Guitarist Daryl Darden, back home from California for visit, will lead a quartet in a free concert for the Jazz at Holmes series at Washington University.

Also on Thursday, The People's Key play at the Chase Club, and the Joe Park Trio performs at The Dark Room.

Friday, 
September 21
New Music Circle presents cellist Okkyung Lee, multi-instrumentalist Joe McPhee, percussionist Chris Corsano and guitarist Bill Orcutt (pictured, bottom left) at Joe's Cafe in the first of two nights of improvised duo performances.

While they're in town, Lee also will present a workshop and artist talk at 3:00 p.m. Thursday at SLU’s Xavier Hall Studio Theatre, and McPhee will do a solo performance at 1:00 p.m. Saturday at the Contemporary Art Museum, responding to CAM’s exhibit of works by Jean-Michel Basquiat. Both events are free and open to the public.

Also on Friday, New Orleans' Bonerama returns for a show at the Atomic Cowboy Pavilion, with an opening set from the Funky Butt Brass Band

Elsewhere around town, jazz-fusion band Koplant No plays a free concert at 560 Music Center, and Carolbeth True and Two Times True with saxophonist Larry Johnson returns to the Parkside Grille.

Saturday, September 22
New Music Circle presents a second evening of improvisational duets from Okkyung Lee, Joe McPhee, Chris Corsano and Bill Orcutt, this time at Off Broadway; and trumpeter Jim Manley leads a trio at Evangeline's.

Sunday, September 23
Drummer Montez Coleman and friends will play for brunch at The Dark Room, while Miss Jubilee performs at Evangeline's.

Then on Sunday evening, drummer Dave King of The Bad Plus and Happy Apple teams with Chicago-based saxophonist Chris Weller for a duo performance at The Dark Room.

Monday, September 24
Dizzy Atmosphere plays vintage swing and Gypsy jazz for diners at The Shaved Duck, and guitarist Daryl Darden gets in another gig on his visit home, this time at BB's Jazz, Blues & Soups.

Tuesday, September 25
Singer and multi-instrumentalist Tonina Saputo and band perform at The Dark Room.

For more jazz-related events in and around St. Louis, please visit the St. Louis Jazz Notes Calendar, which can be found on the left sidebar of the site or by clicking here. You also can keep up with all the latest news by following St. Louis Jazz Notes on Twitter at http://twitter.com/StLJazzNotes or clicking the "Like" icon on the StLJN Facebook page.

(If you have calendar items, band schedule information, news tips, links, or anything else you think may be of interest to StLJN's readers, please email the information to stljazznotes (at) yahoo (dot) com. If you have photos, MP3s or other digital files, please send links, not attachments.)

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Sunday Session: September 16, 2018

Billy Cobham
Here's a roundup of various music-related items of interest that have shown up in one of StLJN's various inboxes or feeds over the past week:

* For Chelsea native Chick Corea, one passion, many paths (Boston Globe)
* Pianist Matthew Shipp can make magic with the perfect partner (Chicago Reader)
* Bassist Eric Revis works at the conflux of the mainstream and its far-out tributaries (Chicago Reader)
* Conversation with Billy Cobham, Part 1: The Art of Creation (SomethingElseReviews.com)
* Conversation with Billy Cobham, Part 2: Brian Gruber and Ronnie Scott’s (SomethingElseReviews.com)
* Monterey Jazz Festival celebrates 40 years in Japan – and China could be the next stop (South China Morning Post)
* Hank Mobley, the greatest sax player you never heard (The Spectator)
* Channeling the cosmic imperfections of Sun Ra’s record sleeves (TheVinylFactory.com)
* Israeli music scene jolted by international boycott movement (Associated Press)
* Documentary Offers Intimate Portrait of a Demur Abercrombie (DownBeat)
* Barre Phillips announces his farewell record End To End (The Wire)
* Guantánamo Mixtape: This Would Be the Soundtrack to Hell (LitHub.com)
* Quincy review – portrait of a musical legend fails to sing (The Guardian)
* Musicians, Labels and Festival Programmers Anxious Over Brexit (DownBeat)
* Live Review: 2018 Detroit Jazz Festival (Jazz Times)
* The Untold Stories of Paul McCartney (GQ)
* No Boundaries: The Many Sides of Steven Bernstein (SFJAZZ.org)
* Fifteen Questions Interview with Olivia Block (15questions.net)
* The 200 Best Albums of the 1980s (Pitchfork.com)
* 'I didn’t just fade off the planet.’ Reconnecting with ’70s funk queen Betty Davis (Washington Post)
* No more heroes: how music stopped meaning everything (Irish Times)
* Count Basie Orchestra Knows Pop Music (DownBeat)
* Jazz in the Display Case (Jazz Times)
* With 'Emanon,' legendary saxophonist Wayne Shorter finds a way to marry comic books and jazz (Los Angeles Times)
* In Memoriam: Randy Weston (DownBeat)
* Cuong Vu Keeps it Close to Home for ‘Change In The Air’ (DownBeat)
* Former Bad Plus pianist still 'loves playing in the Midwest' despite rocketing career (Minneapolis Star-Tribune)
* Wilco Guitarist Nels Cline Reclaims Mood Music In The City Of Brotherly Love (NPR)
* Berkeley's Legendary Fantasy Studios to Close Its Doors (KQED)
* Trumpet Colossus Kenny Dorham Towers Alongside the Jazz Gods (Austin Chronicle)
* The World On Six Strings (ArtForum.com)

Saturday, September 15, 2018

StLJN Saturday Video Showcase:
Fall 2018 jazz preview, part five



This week, StLJN's Fall 2018 jazz preview, featuring videos of the various jazz and creative music performers who will be visiting St. Louis in the next few months, wraps up with the fifth of five installments. (You can see part one here, part two here, part three here, and part four here.)

Picking up in mid-November when last week's post left off, today's first video up above features keyboardist Jeff Lorber's Fusion, who are coming to town to play starting Wednesday, November 14 through Sunday, November 18 at Jazz St. Louis. The clip features them playing Lorber's "Night Sky" at the 2018 Java Jazz Festival in Jakarta, Indonesia.

After the jump, you can see singer and impressionist Christina Bianco, whose show "Diva Moments" will wrap up the Gaslight Cabaret Festival's fall series with performances on Friday, November 16 and Saturday, November 17 at Gaslight Theater. The video shows Bianco incorporating 25 different impressions into a version of the song "Born This Way," recorded in December 2017 in London.

Next, it's trumpeter, singer, and U City native Jeremy Davenport, who will be making his annual trip back here from New Orleans to perform on Friday, November 23 and Saturday, November 24 at Jazz St. Louis. In the video, he can be seen performing his original song "I Didn't Know What Time It Was" at the 2017 French Quarter Fest in NOLA.

That's followed by a video of bassist Christian McBride's New Jawn, who are scheduled to play Wednesday, November 28 through Sunday, December 2 at Jazz St. Louis. They're seen here performing an entire set, recorded in April 2018 at Dizzy’s Club in Jazz at Lincoln Center in NYC.

The fifth clip features artist, multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Lonnie Holley, who will perform in a concert presented by New Music Circle on Saturday, December 1 at Off Broadway. Holley is seen in the video singing "Somewhere in a Dream I Got Lost," recorded in 2018 at A Ship in the Woods, an art gallery in Escondido, CA.

The next video features singer Christine Ebersole &and singer/pianist Billy Stritch, who will perform their cabaret show "Snowfall" on Wednesday, December 5 and Thursday, December 6 at Jazz St. Louis. In this clip, which is from 2014, they're dueting on the Rodgers and Hammerstein standard "Surrey With The Fringe On Top."

Saxophonist Adam Larson is featured in the penultimate clip, an excerpt from a set recorded in June 2017 at Saxquest right here in St. Louis. Larson will be back in town to play "The Music of Sonny Rollins" on Friday, December 7 and Saturday, December 8 at Jazz St. Louis.

Last but certainly not least, it's pianist Robert Glasper, who be will returning with his trio for a week of shows starting Wednesday, December 12 and continuing through Sunday, December 16 at Jazz St. Louis. Today's final video is an excerpt from a performance by Glasper and the trio in 2017 at Jamboree Jazz Club in Barcelona.

You can see the rest of today's videos after the jump...

Friday, September 14, 2018

So What: Local News, Notes & Links

Here's StLJN's latest wrap-up of assorted links and short news items of local interest:

* Just when you thought there couldn't possibly be any more un-issued Miles Davis recordings sitting on a shelf somewhere, Sleepy Night Records has announced the release on CD of Miles Davis Best of Live 1986 - 1991.

As the name implies, the album (pictured) features newly mastered versions of nine tracks recorded in the last five years of Davis' life during live performances in Paris, Melbourne, New York City, and Milan, Italy, and includes a 12-page booklet with "rare photos and insightful commentary."

Sleepy Night Records previously has released DVDs and live audio recordings featuring trumpeters Maynard Ferguson and Don Ellis.

* The Riverfront Times this week published a photo gallery documenting Sunday's "Sound of St. Louis" showcase at the Grandel Theatre and The Dark Room.

* Jazz St. Louis' 2018-19 season is previewed in an article in Alive magazine.

* Bassist and Wash U professor Paul Steinbeck's book Message to Our Folks: The Art Ensemble of Chicago will be the subject of a program and discussion at the Padova Jazz Festival, held in November in Padova, Italy.

* Max & Louie Productions has announced that singer Debby Lennon will star and Ken Page will direct the company's upcoming staging of Love, Linda, a play with music about Cole Porter's wife Linda Lee Thomas that features a number of Porter's classic songs. Tickets go on sale on Monday, October 1 for the production, which will run from Thursday, January 17 through Sunday, January 27 of next year at the Marcelle Theater in Grand Center.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Jazz this week: Chick Corea, Harold López-Nussa, Big Sam's Funky Nation, Old Webster Jazz & Blues Festival, and more

The fall presenting season for jazz and creative music in St. Louis gets underway in earnest this week, with two top-shelf pianists visiting our town; a couple of notable acts here from New Orleans; this year's edition of a popular (and free) local festival, and more.

Let's go to the highlights...

Wednesday, September 12
As of late Tuesday night, pianist Chick Corea's first show with his Vigilette Trio on Wednesday at Jazz St. Louis is sold out, but some tickets remain for the second show. Check the Jazz St. Louis website for the latest availability, and remember that even when shows sell out at the Bistro, you can watch a video simulcast for free in the first floor lounge across the hall, with seating available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Those free simulcasts also are considered part of the free "Grand Center Jazz Crawl," which this week includes guitarist Joe Park's trio at The Stage at KDHX, a jam session hosted by bassist Bob Deboo at the Kranzberg Arts Center, and trumpeter Kasimu Taylor's band at The Dark Room.

Also on Wednesday, Jazz St. Louis kicks off their expanded "Whitaker Jazz Speaks" series for the 2018-19 season with "The Crisis in Music," a talk by author Ted Gioia that's free and open to the public at the St. Louis Public Library's main branch downtown.

Thursday, September 13
The impressive young Cuban pianist Harold López-Nussa (pictured, top left), who made his St. Louis debut last year at Jazz St. Louis, returns to play for one night only at JSL's Bistro.

Elsewhere around town, singer Erin Bode will perform in a free outdoor concert at Kirkwood Station Plaza, and pianist Ptah Williams leads his trio in a free concert for the Jazz at Holmes series at Washington University.

Also on Thursday, New Orleans swing and blues revivalists Frog and Henry play for dancers at the  Intersect Arts Center; and trumpeter Philip Watt, also an actor who's played the role of the late trumpeter Chet Baker in three stage productions, will lead a quartet at The Dark Room.

Friday, 
September 14
Also in from New Orleans this week, Big Sam's Funky Nation (pictured, bottom left) bring their brassy, danceable sound back to the Old Rock House. They're touring in support of their most recent album Songs In The Key of Funk, Vol 1, which was released in May.

That same evening, eclectic rock band the Brothers Lazaroff will augment their usual lineup with pianist Peter Martin for the first of two nights at Jazz St. Louis; the Midwest Jazztette plays West Coast "cool jazz" at Evangeline's; and singer Anita Jackson will perform for the late night crowd at The Dark Room.

Saturday, September 15
The annual Old Webster Jazz & Blues Festival will take place in the Old Webster Business District, centered around the intersection of Lockwood Ave & Gore Ave. This year, the free, all-day event will feature jazz performances from the Webster University faculty ensemble, the Webster Groves High School Jazz Band, the US Air Force's "Shades of Blue" ensemble, SpaceShip, Miss Jubilee, and Bach to the Future, as well as blues from David Dee, Marquise Knox and more.

Also on Saturday, the Funky Butt Brass Band plays a free show for the Greentree Festival in Kirkwood Park, and Dizzy Atmosphere will perform vintage swing and Gypsy jazz in the beer garden at the Missouri Botanical Garden's "Flora Borealis" exhibit.

Sunday, September 16
The St. Louis Jazz Club presents The Gaslight Squares playing traditional jazz in a matinee concert at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel St. Louis - Westport.

Monday, September 17
Members of the Webster University jazz faculty led by saxophonist Paul DeMarinis will perform music representing "The Jazz Legacy of Columbia Records 1955-1965" at Winifred Moore Auditorium on the Webster campus.

For more jazz-related events in and around St. Louis, please visit the St. Louis Jazz Notes Calendar, which can be found on the left sidebar of the site or by clicking here. You also can keep up with all the latest news by following St. Louis Jazz Notes on Twitter at http://twitter.com/StLJazzNotes or clicking the "Like" icon on the StLJN Facebook page.

(If you have calendar items, band schedule information, news tips, links, or anything else you think may be of interest to StLJN's readers, please email the information to stljazznotes (at) yahoo (dot) com. If you have photos, MP3s or other digital files, please send links, not attachments.)

Sunday, September 09, 2018

Sunday Session: September 9, 2018

Randy Weston
Here's a roundup of various music-related items of interest that have shown up in one of StLJN's various inboxes or feeds over the past week:

* Curious questions: Do dogs like listening to music? (CountryLife.co.uk)
* Billy Childs’ Storied Past (NUVO)
* Little Feat – Sky, Heaven and California Up Ahead! (FYIMusicNews.ca)
* East Meets East - Nathan + Noah (Yumpu.com)
* 'My Spike Lee Joints': 'BlacKkKlansman' Composer Terence Blanchard on Working With the Director for Nearly 30 Years (Billboard)
* Washboards: The laundry tool that is music to the ears (CBS News)
* The Lost Mingus Tapes (Qwest.tv)
* “Lost” 1973 Live Charles Mingus Recording Set for Release (Jazz Times)
* Anthony Braxton’s Big Ideas: Why ‘Forces in Motion’ Is an Essential American Music Book (Rolling Stone)
* 'Art shouldn’t be weaponised': the atonal concert championing Berlin's homeless (The Guardian)
* Introducing Humbolt, The World’s First ‘Ethical’ Streaming Music Service (DigitalMusicNews.com)
* The Top Uses of John Coltrane Songs in Movies or TV (TVOvermind.com)
* Randy Weston Dies at 92 (Jazz Times)
* Pianist Randy Weston, An Eloquent Spokesman For Jazz's Bond with African Culture, Dies at 92 (WBGO)
* Amid Stormy Skies, Detroit Jazz Fest Honors Geri Allen (DownBeat)
* Let Them Play: Ethan Iverson Speaks (JazzSpeaks.org)
* A hard Brexit will smash the British music industry, experts warn (Gigwise.com)
* Alan Braufman: A Valley Worth Searching (Jazz Times)
* City’s Cultural Capital on Full Display at Chicago Jazz Festival (DownBeat)
* William Parker: Other Dimensions (Bass Player)
* Wayne Kramer On World Cafe (NPR)
* Paul Simon Says 'I'm Finished' Writing Music (NPR)
* Rod Argent -The Zombies' Co-Founder on The Beatles, Chick Corea, and His Love for the Piano (Keyboard)
* 'Quincy' Trailer Highlights Life and Career of Quincy Jones: Watch (Billboard)
* This artificial intelligence app wants to make beautiful music with you (Fast Company)
* Apple Music to Publish Its Own Top Music Charts (Rolling Stone)
* His Sh*t’s F***ed Up: The Complicated Legacy of Warren Zevon (TheRinger.com)
* Nolatet: Raising a Bigger Dust Cloud (Jazz Times)

Saturday, September 08, 2018

StLJN Saturday Video Showcase:
Fall 2018 jazz preview, part four



Here's part four of StLJN's Fall 2018 jazz preview, featuring videos of the jazz and creative music performers who will be visiting here in the next several months. You can see part 1 of the preview here, part 2 here, and part 3 here.

Continuing this week in chronological order from where last week's post left off, first up is singer and actress Faith Prince, who will be performing as part of the Gaslight Cabaret Festival on Friday, October 26 and Saturday, October 27 at the Gaslight Theater. In the video up above, Prince is seen singing "Suddenly Seymour" from the musical Little Shop of Horrors.

After the jump, you can see a video of singer, songwriter and pianist Jimmy Webb, who will follow Price at the Gaslight Cabaret Festival with performances on Sunday, October 28 (already sold out) and Monday, October 29 at the Gaslight Theater. The clip features Webb doing his song "If These Walls Could Speak" in 2016 at a soundcheck for a gig in the UK.

Next is pianist David Thomas Roberts, who will perform in a concert presented by the Friends of Scott Joplin on Sunday, October 28 at the Scott Joplin House State Historic Site's Rosebud Cafe. Roberts can be seen in the video premiering a new composition called "Victorian Gardens" at the 2017 West Coast Ragtime Festival in Rancho Cordova, CA.

That same week, vibraphonist Stefon Harris and his band Blackout will be in town to play starting Wednesday, October 31 through Sunday, November 4 at Jazz St. Louis. The next video is an episode of the online program "The Pace Report," recorded in January 2018 and featuring an interview with Harris plus some short musical excerpts.

Also that same week, singer Carrie St. Louis will perform on Friday, November 2 and Saturday, November 3 at the Gaslight Theater. She's seen in today's fifth clip singing three songs from roles on her "Broadway bucket list": Clara in The Light in the Pizza, Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, and Fantine in Les Miserables.

After that, it's singer and trumpeter Lonnie McFadden, who will perform for one night only on Thursday, November 8 at the Gaslight Theater. Today's sixth video shows an excerpt from a performance by the Kansas City native last October at The Phoenix piano bar in his home town.


The next-to-last clip shows composer and instrument builder Ellen Fullman performing on her custom-built Long String Instrument (LSI)  in 2016 at a concert in Paris, France. Fullman and the LSI will be here in St. Louis for a performance presented by New Music Circle on Friday, November 9 at 560 Music Center.

The final video features funk and fusion band Tauk, who will be back in town to perform on Tuesday, November 13 at the Old Rock House. The video shows a full set of the band, recorded in April 2018 at the Woodlands Tavern in Columbus, OH.

Look for part five of StLJN's Fall 2018 jazz preview next week in this space. You can see the rest of today's videos after the jump...

Friday, September 07, 2018

So What: Local News, Notes & Links

Here's StLJN's latest wrap-up of assorted links and short news items of local interest:

* Following the last-minute cancellation of this weekend's LouFest music festival, a number of acts scheduled to play the event have managed to book replacement shows at various venues around town.

Most of the bands and musicians that were scheduled to perform on LouFest's jazz stage, plus some other local performers, now will be playing "The Sound of St. Louis" Showcase, a free event taking place from 2:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. on Sunday, September 9 at the Grandel Theatre and The Dark Room.

The event will feature music from Ben Reece's Unity Quartet, Bob DeBoo, Jesse Gannon, Kasimu Taylor (pictured), Kevin Bowers' Nova, Mo Egeston, Owen Ragland, Ptah Williams Trio, and Tonina Saputo, as well as sets from The Burney Sisters, Dracla, Grace Basement, The Knuckles, The River Kittens, and Scrub & Ace Ha.

* Though local media outlets had to scrap many of their LouFest previews, the re-scheduling of many of the fest's jazz acts for the above-mentioned Sunday showcase did allow for the publication as originally planned of Kevin Johnson's Post-Dispatch feature on keyboardist Owen Ragland (link to Google cache).

* Also rescued from the LouFest-preview kill file, a feature story about drummer Kevin Bowers from the Riverfront Times' Christian Schaeffer.

* The late pianist and singer Jean Kittrell was the subject of a remembrance in the Edwardsville Intelligencer.

* Also in the Intelligencer, a brief preview of Saturday's Alton Jazz and Wine Festival, which has been moved indoors to Argosy Casino's music hall due to a forecast of heavy rain for Saturday.

* Trumpeter Keyon Harrold's recent performance for the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival at Marcus Garvey Park in Harlem, NYC, was recorded for broadcast (and archived online) by radio station WBGO.

* Pianist Dred Scott, born here in St. Louis as Joseph Patrick Scott and now based in NYC, has a new album coming out on September 21. Titled Rides Alone, it features Scott playing solo on eight tracks of original music, and will be available as a CD or download from BandCamp.

* Thurman's in Shaw's new Sunday brunch was the subject of a brief feature by the Riverfront Times' Sarah Penske.

* The Davenport Lounge at the New Orleans Ritz Carlton hotel, which features music four nights a week from trumpeter, singer and U City native Jeremy Davenport, was mentioned in a CNN feature about celebrity chef Emeril Lagasse's list of New Orleans "must-dos."

* Bach to the Future's concert tonight at the Miller Performing Arts Center in Jefferson City was previewed in the Jefferson City News-Tribune.