Friday, April 13, 2012

So What: Local News, Notes & Links

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

* Trombonist Brett Stamps (pictured) will make his final appearance as director of the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE) Concert Jazz Band in a concert at 8:00 p.m. this coming Tuesday, April 17 at the Wildey Theatre. Stamps is retiring as director of jazz studies at SIUE after 33 years on the job.

The concert will include music from Doc Severinsen and Woody Herman as well as charts by Stamps and SIUE graduate Mike Dee, plus a grand finale featuring graduates of the SIUE jazz program from the last 30 years. Tickets are $10, $7 for seniors and under age 18, free to SIUE students with ID, and will be available at the door.

* Meanwhile, pianist Reggie Thomas, who formerly taught at SIUE, is featured on The Teacher, the debut CD release by the MSU Professors of Jazz. The group is made up of faculty members from Thomas' new professional home at Michigan State University. They'll debut the CD, which includes three of Thomas' compositions and a guest appearance from spouse/singer Mardra Thomas, in a concert this Saturday at the Creole Gallery in Lansing, MI.

* The Regional Arts Commission is conducting a survey of St. Louis area artists, musicians and other creative types. To complete the "Artists Count" questionnaire and enter a drawing to win a free iPad, go here.

* Singer Erin Bode reported this week on Twitter that her song "The Little Garden" will be used in the episode of the CW Network program Hart of Dixie airing on Monday, May 7. The comedy/drama series stars Rachel Bilson as a big-city doctor transplanted to a small town in the South, and airs locally on KPLR (Channel 11).

* John King, bassist for Good 4 The Soul, saxophonist Jim Stevens, and several other local bands, has released a single, "Introducing The Pharaoh," on iTunes.

* Guitarist Russell Malone, in town this week to play at Jazz at the Bistro, appeared on the 4:00 p.m. newscast at local NBC affiliate KSDK for a brief interview and performance. Malone and pianist Cyrus Chestnut's trio continue at the Bistro through Saturday.

* The Webster Journal has a profile of Dr. Aurelia Hartenberger, whose collection of unusual musical instruments currently is featured in an exhibit at the Sheldon Art Galleries.

* The Jazz Journalists Association has announced the nominations for their 2012 JJA Jazz Awards, and the "Best Historical or Boxed Set" category includes two albums with a St. Louis connection: Miles Davis' Bootleg Sessions, Vol 1, Quintet Live in Europe 1967 (Columbia Legacy) and the long-awaited reissue of Julius Hemphill's Dogon A.D. by the International Phonograph label. You can see the complete list of 2012 JJA Awards nominees here.

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