Friday, October 17, 2014

So What: Local News, Notes & Links

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

* New music ensemble Alarm Will Sound's two performances this weekend are previewed by Stef Russell of St. Louis magazine.

* Meanwhile, the Post-Dispatch's Kevin Johnson takes a look at tonight's "250 Years of St. Louis Music" show at the Sheldon Concert Hall, which features Alarm Will Sound* playing a new work by Peter Martin, plus performances from a diverse list of St. Louis jazz, blues and roots musicians.

* Drummer/bandleader and U City native Ronnie Burrage is the subject of a feature article in Jazz Times.

* To promote an upcoming gig at LA's Jazz Bakery, saxophonist Greg Osby has put together a brief online playlist of some of his favorite music.

* St. Louis singer Katie McGrath will perform her cabaret show "Love in the Desert, Romance in an Age of Scarcity" at NYC's Metropolitan Room next Thursday, October 23.

* Keep On Keepin' On, the new documentary about trumpeter Clark Terry and his student Justin Kauflin, was reviewed by's Mark F. Turner. 

* Miles Davis' "Blue Xmas" b/w "Devil May Care" will be released as a limited edition 7" blue vinyl single (pictured) for Record Store Day's annual Black Friday event on November 28.

* In more Davis-related news, Jazz Times critic Nate Chinen weighs in on Mostly Other People Do The Killing's controversial note-for-note remake of Davis' Kind of Blue, and Popmatters has an interview about the record with MOPDTK bassist and bandleader Moppa Elliott.

* In response to the controversy, the Davis estate felt the need yesterday to issue an official statement: "I Vincent Wilburn Jr., drummer and nephew of Miles Davis, and Cheryl A. Davis, daughter of Miles Davis, want to clarify that “Blue” the ultimate tribute by the band Mostly Other People Do The Killing, is not supported by us, nor done with our cooperation or participation."

* Saxophonist David Sanborn's performance this week in San Diego was previewed by the local daily the Union-Tribune.

* The performances last week by Sanborn at Jazz at the Bistro and Chick Corea at the Sheldon Concert Hall were reviewed by Calvin Wilson for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

* Bassist Stanley Clarke's show Tuesday at The Pageant was documented via a photo set posted on Facebook by Hip 96.3 FM.

* The Riverfront Times this week published a set of photos by Mabel Suen showing off the newly renovated Jazz at the Bistro.

* The Funky Butt Brass Band's version of the Jackson 5's "I Want You Back" was listed at #4 in an article on the website Mashable about "13 Brass Band Cover Songs That Are Better Than The Originals."

Not only that, but while on a recent trip to Arkansas to play the King Biscuit Blues Festival, the FBBB stopped off in Memphis for a visit to the Stax Records museum, where saxophonist Ben Reece, trumpeter Adam Hucke and trombonist Aaron Chandler met famed trumpeter Wayne Jackson of the Memphis Horns.

* KDHX has posted online a photo set of Wack-A-Doo's performance last week at one of the station's "Harvest Sessions."

* Speaking of photo sets, the Midwest Jazz-tette has posted two of them to Facebook, documenting performances earlier this year at First Unity Church and Cigar Inn

* Trombonist Dave Dickey is moving his monthly big band gig to Jazz at the Bistro, effective Sunday, November 2. The band now will play on the first Sunday of each month, continuing in their new location the practice of having local student bands perform at intermission. Their run of monthly shows at Kirkwood Station Brewing Company lasted three years. Tickets for the November 2 debut performance at the Bistro go on sale at 10:00 a.m. today via Metrotix.

* The Regional Arts Commission is accepting applications for the 2015 Katherine Dunham Internship, which provides hands-on experience in arts administration for an African-American student. The deadline to apply is Monday, November 3.

* Jazz radio update: This Saturday on Radio Arts Foundation - St. Louis' “Somethin’ Else,” host Calvin Wilson explores the landscape of extended improvisation via tracks from Henry Threadgill, Wynton Marsalis, Branford Marsalis and more. The program can be heard at 8:00 p.m. on 107.3 FM, 96.3 HD-2, and online at

* Disclaimer: I've been working with Alarm Will Sound since 2010 on publicity for their gigs in Columbia and St. Louis, including this one. However, given their demonstrated accomplishments and StLJN's usual editorial focus, I'd be writing about them here even if I had no relationship with them.

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