Friday, March 23, 2018

So What: Local News, Notes & Links

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

* Singer Denise Thimes, who just moved to Chicago but is back in St. Louis this weekend to perform at Jazz at the Bistro, got a warm welcome to the Windy City, courtesy of what can only be described as a rave review from the Chicago Tribune's Howard Reich for her shows last weekend at Winter's Jazz Club downtown.

* Drummer and St. Louis native Marcus Baylor and singer Jean Baylor of The Baylor Project were interviewed in advance of their appearance next week at Jazz at the Bistro by the St. Louis American's Kenya Vaughn.

* Message to Our Folks, the book about the Art Ensemble of Chicago written by bassist and Washington University professor Paul Steinbeck and released last year by the University of Chicago Press, has been translated into Italian as Grande Musica Nera. Published by Quodlibet, the Italian edition (pictured) is being celebrated this week with a book release event at the Bergamo Jazz Festival.

* Jazz Times is offering readers a chance to win a free copy of the soon-to-be-released CD box set Miles Davis & John Coltrane: The Final Tour. You can enter the drawing for the giveaway here.

On a related note, NYC radio station WBGO last week previewed a live version of Davis' "So What" from the set as part of their weekly online feature "Take Five."

* Also on the Miles Davis beat, rapper Q-Tip will star as the trumpeter in a staged reading of My Funny Valentine, a new play by Nelson George about "a day in the life of the jazz giant."  The reading happens this coming Monday, March 26 at Joe's Pub in NYC.

* Trumpeter Freddie Hendrix will play the part originally conceived for the late Hugh Masekela when pianist Abdullah Ibrahim & Ekaya present “Jazz Epistles - The Story in Concert” on Saturday, April 14 at The Sheldon. Hendrix's resume ranges from work with jazz artists including saxophonist and former St. Louisan Oliver Lake, the Count Basie Orchestra and the Christian McBride Big Band, to backing up singers such as Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder and Alicia Keys.

* St. Louis has what might be called a cameo role in the promotional campaign for Standing Room Only, a forthcoming collection of previously unreleased performances by singer Frank Sinatra that will come out in May as a 3-CD set and in digital formats from Capitol/Universal Music Enterprises.

To promote the release, the label has posted online a clip of Sinatra singing “Fly Me To The Moon” with the Count Basie Orchestra recorded in 1965 at Kiel Opera House in St. Louis. Although the performance is not included in Standing Room Only, which collects shows from 1966 at the Sands in Las Vegas, 1974 at The Spectrum in Philadephia, and 1987 at Reunion Area in Dallas, you can watch the video here.

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