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“They’re not particular about whether you’re playing a flatted fifth or a ruptured 129th as ong as they can dance to it.” - Dizzy Gillespie
 Sunday, 19 April 2015
Barry Harris Trio at teh Village Vanguard 4/21-26 E-mail
Written by Ronaldo Oregano   


Barry Harris © Andrea Canter

Piano legend and NEA Jazz Master Dr. Barry Harris will appear for a week at the Village Vanguard in New York on Tuesday, April 21st through Sunday, April 26th. Harris is part of an exceptional crew of Detroit-bred jazz musicians, including Tommy Flanagan and Donald Byrd, who rose through the extraordinary arts education program in the public school system during the 1930s and 1940s. Harris' earliest musical mentor was a church piano-playing mother who exposed him to piano lessons at age four. He became seriously immersed in jazz in the mid- 1940s and fell under the spell of Thelonious Monk, Charlie Parker, and Bud Powell. As a professional, he would become a key translator of Monk's music. Dr. Harris will be joined by his rhythm section of Chuck Israels on bass and Leroy Williams on drums. 

Chris Thomson Celebrates Empathy at the Icehouse, April 19 E-mail
Written by Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor   
Chris Thomson © Andrea Canter

Among the most inventive local jazz artists, Chris Thomson keeps a relatively low profile. He keeps busy teaching, composing, and performing with bands like the Enormous Quartet and Chris Bates' Red Five. Now he has recorded a five-track EP, Empathy, which he celebrates on Sunday, April 19 (5 pm) at the Icehouse, with cohorts Patrick Harison, James Buckley and Martin Dosh.

One World Consort and JP Jofre at Studio Z, UW-River Falls (April 17-19) E-mail
Written by Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor   
  "Juan Pablo [Jofre] is tremendously talented. His composition is less familiar than Piazzolla, but equally absorbing. They don’t make bandoneons anymore, but apparently they still make great bandoneon players.” -- New York Latin Culture

One World Consort © Andrea Canter

A year after their Twin Cities concert debut, the One World Consort will again celebrate Earth Day with a concert in St Paul at Studio Z on April 17, and in River Falls on April 19, featuring special guest, Argentinian bandoneonist J.P. Jofre. Jofre will also perform on April 18 with the UW-RF Jazz Ensemble. Led by acclaimed saxophonist/educator David Milne, the One World Consort is a double quartet merging a classical string quartet and jazz quartet playing a repertoire of ethnic world folk music transcribed for this ensemble. The One World Consort seeks to promote the preservation of Earth's natural resources and the indigenous music traditions of world cultures.

Tammy Hall Scores the Perfect Set at SFJAZZ E-mail
Written by Ken Vermes   
Tammy Hall

There is the no-hitter, the perfect game, the hole-in-one, and my favorite, the golden set in tennis. All these “perfects” occur in music as well. Yet to our knowledge, no one has named this phenomena. How about just stealing that tennis accolade, the “golden set," the achievement of a musical “set” that starts and finishes in the special dimension of life that few people on the planet ever occupy: absolute perfection.

Tammy Lynne Hall is a pianist who spends most of her time playing behind Bay Area singers and others. In this role, she is often in the background, while the lead performer gets all of the notice. Of course this has begun to change as performers such as Pamela Rose, for example, have made a special point of emphasizing that Tammy plays an essential role in many of these gigs. She is not just playing the chords and soloing, but also running the band, adjusting the music, and analyzing the arrangements for possible improvements among many other chores. This is the role so many pianists play, especially for singers. In a recent performance by Cecil McLorin Salvant streamed live from Lincoln Center, it was the pianist Aaron Diehl watching and listening to every note of the tribute to Billie Holiday.


Chris Potter Takes Charge at SFJAZZ E-mail
Written by Ken Vermes   
Chris Potter © Andrea Canter

There is a reason that the saxophone has been one of the most dominant instruments in the history of jazz. Its range, timbre, flexibility, and long history in the music gives it a dynamic hard to match. It isn’t that there have not been great pianists, trumpeters, bass players, and the rest. But when sax players take charge, master the instrument, and propel themselves to the head of the class, it can be said that there is cause for a major celebration. Such moments are rare in any art. In music they happen when one player, or an entire band, creates a sense of peak effort that is sustained and memorable beyond any others like it. There are many fans of this music who never see any moments like these. And they were a lot more frequent when the great masters were on the planet, such as August 12, 1958 when the “Great Day in Harlem” photo was created, for example. Or in the time when one could walk the jazz listeners' paradise on 52nd Street in New York City.

Roberta Gambarini Quartet at Catalina's Jazz Club E-mail
Written by Glenn A. Mitchell, LA Jazz Scene   
Roberta Gambarini Quartet with Johnny Mandel (far right) © Glenn A. Mitchell

Roberta Gambarini is a jazz singer born in Turin, Italy. She was raised in a musical family and began singing at a young age in venues in her home city. Later, she had the opportunity to come to the U.S. to study music at the New England Conservatory. In Boston and later New York, she met and worked with many great musicians, becoming a protegé of Benny Carter and James Moody. A finalist in the 1998 Thelonious Monk International Vocal Competition, Roberta is now one of the most lauded jazz vocalists on the American scene, with two Grammy nominations for Best Vocal Album.

Talent Indestructible: Ashley Daneman ("Beauty Indestructible," 2014) E-mail
Written by Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor   


Beauty Indestructible

"I believe in the indestructible beauty of people and of life. No matter what may happen, we are redeemable.  That is the message of this album." --Ashley Daneman

“…an uncompromising concoction of subtle and intimate jazz with a touch of hipster singer-songwriter.” --West Michigan Jazz Society

Twin Cities Jazz Festival Announces 2015 Headliners! E-mail
Written by Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor   


Francisco Mela©Andrea Canter

Five bands of incomparable artists will headline the 17th annual Twin Cities Jazz Festival, held June 25-27 in and around Mears Park in St Paul's historic Lowertown Arts District. The new stage at the CHS (Saints) Field will host six-time Grammy winner Dr. John and the Night Trippers on the festival's closing afternoon. Appearing on the Mears Park Main Stage will be the Araya Orta Latin Jazz Quartet Featuring Othello Molineaux, Festival Artistic Director Francisco Mela's new quartet with special guest Nicholas Payton, 2014 Thelonious Monk International Trumpet Competition winner Marquis Hill, and an all-star quartet featuring Chris Potter, Dave Holland, Lionel Loueke and Eric Harland. In addition to CHS Field and Mears Park Main Stage, the festival will present events on the Sixth Street and Union Depot Stages, and throughout downtown St Paul and beyond at over 20 clubs, bars and studio venues. 


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