Sunday, March 01, 2009

Notes from the Net: Ian Carr mourned, Linda Presgrave reviewed, Eric Person on the road, plus news, reviews and more

Here's this week's compilation of news and links related to jazz, improvisation, and creative music in St. Louis, including musicians from the Gateway City, recent visitors, and coming attractions - now with even more boldfacing!

* Alas, the only significant Miles Davis-related link this week is to the sad news that the British jazz trumpeter and writer Ian Carr died this past Wednesday at age 75. Long considered one of the top trumpet players on the British scene, Carr wrote a well-regarded biography of Miles and was influenced significantly by Davis' music. His band Nucleus made some fine electric jazz/fusion recordings that still hold up well today. R.I.P., Mr. Carr.

* On a much happier note, here's a review of pianist and St. Louis expat Linda Presgrave's new CD Inspiration, via, which says, in part: "Whether performing original compositions or a cover, Presgrave and her accompanists are in top form...Inspiration doesn't just honor musicians "who happen to be women"; it is music for its own sake."

* Saxophonist and St. Louis native Eric Person (pictured) and his band Meta-Four will be in the Quad Cities on March 15 to play the Third Sunday Jazz Matinee & Workshop Series at the Redstone Room in Davenport, IA, and they got a nice writeup in the local paper, which you can see online here.

* The Ars Nova Workshop in Philadelphia just presented the second part of their tribute to alto saxophonist, composer and former St. Louisan Julius Hemphill at Philly's World Cafe. The concert featured Hemphill's music for big band and sax sextet, as performed by a big band including multi-reedman and St. Louis native Marty Ehrlich.

* DJ and blogger LeRoy "The JazzCat" Downs was one of the hosts of the recent Playboy Jazz Cruise, produced by St. Louis-based Jazz Cruises LLC. You can read his account of the voyage, which included St. Louis' own Peter Martin and Montez Coleman among the many musicians on board, and see lots of photos - all rated "SFW - Safe For Work," in case you were concerned about the potential presence of scantily clad Bunnies - here.

* Turning to the "coming attractions" file: Percussionist Gino Robair will be in St. Louis on Saturday to perform at Forest Park Community College - see this post for details - but before he gets here, he'll be visiting Detroit on Tuesday to play a gig with Marko Novachcoff, Joel Peterson, Piotr Michalowski, Mike Khoury and James Cornish at the Kerrytown Concert House.

* Guitarist Mike Stern, who will be in St. Louis from April 29 to May 2 with the Yellowjackets to play at Jazz at the Bistro, recently co-led a gig at NYC's Iridium with saxophonist Kenny Garrett, who, like Stern, worked with Miles Davis in the latter part of the trumpeter's career. You can read a review of the Stern/Garrett show here.

* Catching up with news of recent visitors, it seems that Martino Unstrung, the documentary about guitarist Pat Martino that was shown here in St. Louis last November during the St. Louis International Film Festival, is finally getting a New York premiere on March 15 at the Rubin Museum of Art, Martino himself was in St. Louis last month to play at Jazz at the Bistro.

* And while still on the subject of musicians that have recently played at the Bistro, veteran pianist Cedar Walton, who played the club last fall, just did a sextet concert at the Kumble Theater on Long Island University's Brooklyn campus, which was reviewed for the New York Times by Nate Chinen here.

* Chinen and the NYT this past week also did an article on pianist Jason Moran (who did a concert at the Missouri Museum here in St. Louis last October) and his participation in this weekend's 50th anniversary tribute to Thelonious Monk's landmark Town Hall concert. For more on the Monk tribute concert, see this post from Doug Ramsey's Rifftides.

* Last but not least, many of those who caught Return to Forever's reunion tour when they played the Fox Theatre last June may be glad to know many of the shows on the tour were recorded, resulting in a new RFT live album called Returns that will released on March 17.

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