Saturday, May 16, 2009

StLJN Saturday Video Showcase:
Spotlight on Terence Blanchard

This week, our video spotlight shines on trumpeter Terence Blanchard, who will be in St. Louis from Wednesday, June 3 through Saturday June 6 to perform at Jazz at the Bistro. Many jazz fans in St. Louis are already familiar with Blanchard, as he's played before at both the Bistro and the Sheldon Concert Hall in recent years. Even those who haven't seen him perform live may have heard some of Blanchard's music, thanks to his work scoring many feature films for director Spike Lee.

While Blanchard is well known as a composer, today's video clips provide glimpses of him as a player, teacher and spokesman. First up is an excerpt from a gig in September 2007 at the Dakota in Minneapolis, featuring Blanchard with bassist Derrick Hodge, tenor saxophonist Brice Winston, drummer Kendrick Scott and pianist Fabian Almazan, playing Scott's composition "Mantra."

Down below, there's an excerpt from a lesson in improvisation that Blanchard gave to students at the Thelonious Monk Institute, which is now affiliated with Loyola University in New Orleans. The third video is an interview with Blanchard that was done on the night of the 2009 Grammy Award ceremony, at which he performed.

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