Saturday, January 03, 2015

StLJN Saturday Video Showcase:
Winter/spring 2015 jazz preview, part 3

Today, it's part three of StLJN's preview of touring jazz and creative music performers who will be coming to St. Louis in the first part of 2015. (You can see parts one and two, covering January and the first part of February, here and here.)

Our first two clips feature cellist Okkyung Lee and saxophonist Lotte Anker, who will be performing separate sets in a concert presented by New Music Circle on Saturday, February 21 at Joe’s Cafe, 6014 Kingsbury Ave.

The video up above is from Lee's performance at the High Zero 2014 festival, held in September at a venue called Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood in Baltimore. After the jump, you can see Anker perform a rather unusual piece for saxophone and bow, recorded October 21, 2014 at Jazzhouse in Copenhagen, Denmark. (For lots more of Anker, see this previous video showcase posted before her appearance here in St. Louis in March, 2013.)

After the edgy improvisations of Lee and Anker, you can enjoy some more traditional sounds courtesy of trumpeter Byron Stripling, who will perform for one night only on Saturday, February 28 at Jazz at the Bistro. Stripling played here in St. Louis most recently in May 2014, doing his "Gospel According to Swing" show with the St. Louis Symphony. 

In this clip from 2013, he's fronting the Naples Jazz Orchestra in a version of the standard "Bourbon Street Parade." For more of Stripling, see this post, which ran before last appearance at the Bistro in 2012.

The next video features singer Rene Marie, who was a familiar face in St. Louis in the early 2000s. She made a number of live appearances here while signed to the locally based label MAXJAZZ, for whom she recorded five albums between 1999 and 2004. She'll return for the first time in a decade to perform Wednesday, March 4 through Saturday, March 7 at Jazz at the Bistro.

Those gigs likely will feature some material from I Wanna Be Evil (With Love to Eartha Kitt), her most recent recording released in 2013 on the Motema Music label. This live-in-the-studio clip of "I'd Rather Be Burned As a Witch" from that album features a band including trombonist Wycliffe Gordon and trumpeter Etienne Charles.

The following week, New Music Circle will present On Fillmore, aka percussionist Glenn Kotche and bassist and Belleville, IL native Darin Gray, in a concert on Saturday, March 14 at The Stage at KDHX.

The duo have made four albums and a couple of soundtracks together since first joining forces in 2000, and gained additional notice in 2013 when they toured with "Apocalyptical," a live show produced by the makers of public radio program "Radiolab." In this clip, recorded in 2013 at Audio Rebel in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, they're playing a piece called "Complications."

Today's sixth clip features Kneebody, who will be making their St. Louis debut with performances from Wednesday, March 18 through Saturday, March 21 at Jazz at the Bistro. Band members Adam Benjamin (keyboards), Shane Endsley (trumpet), Ben Wendel (tenor sax) and Kaveh Rastegar (bass) first met in the late 1990s while they all were students at the Eastman Conservatory.

With drummer Nate Wood, they formed Kneebody in 2000 and since then have recorded nine albums of eclectic instrumental music that touches on styles from jazz to punk rock to the compositions of Charles Ives. In this clip, they're playing "Cha Cha" from their 2013 album The Line in a gig at the Blue Whale in Los Angeles.

Today's seventh and final video features the Dizzy Gillespie Afro-Cuban Experience, who will be in St. Louis to perform on Saturday, March 21 at the Sheldon Concert Hall. The tribute group is led by bassist John Lee, who played with Gillespie for many years, and also includes percussionist Mario Grillo, aka "Machito Jr," son of the famed Latin bandleader Frank "Machito" Grillo.

The band's front line features trumpeter Freddie Hendrix, who's played frequently with former St. Louisan Oliver Lake, and saxophonist Sharel Cassity, with guitarist Yotam Silberstein and drummer Robby Ameen completing the lineup. They're seen here in an excerpt from a show in 2013 in Sofia, Bulgaria, playing "Manteca," the seminal Latin-jazz number composed in 1947 by Gillespie, percussionist Chano Pozo, and Gil Fuller.

Look for part four of StLJN's winter/spring 2015 jazz preview in this space next week. You can see the rest of today's videos after the jump.

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