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 Saturday, 25 October 2014
Los Angeles Jazz

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Brian Swartz & The Gnu Sextet CD Release at the Blue Whale, October 26th PDF Print
Written by Ronaldo Oregano   
Sunday, 19 October 2014

Brian Swartz & The Gnu Sextet will celebrate the release of  Portraiture at the Blue Whale on Sunday, October 26th. The track "Down with Downs" was chosen as the Winner of the 2009 John Lennon Songwriting Contest. The Gnu Sextet features some of the best young jazz stars in Los Angeles including Brian Swartz on Trumpet/Flugelhorn, Frederick Keith Fiddmont on Tenor Sax, Martin Sullivan on Trombone, Andy Langham on Piano, Edwin Livingston on Bass, and Jens Kuross on Drums. 
Freda Payne CD Release and Birthday Celebration at Catalina Jazz Club PDF Print
Written by Glenn A. Mitchell, LA Jazz Scene   
Wednesday, 01 October 2014

Freda Payne and friends, R: actor James Pickens Jr., Freda Payne, Quincy Jones and actor Justin Chambers(photo - The Stander Group)

I did not know much about Freda Payne.  She has had a long and impressive career of many years and made a Gold Record in 1970, “Band of Gold.”  She started out singing at age 14 in Detroit, MI, beginning by sitting in with some very good big bands.  Her career naturally grew as time went on.  At age 17 she was invited to sing with Duke Ellington’s band in New York City, which she did for a short while, although not wanting to go on the road then, she didn’t continue. She is also a fine actress and has been in several notable movies.

NEA Jazz Master Toshiko Akiyoshi Returns to Los Angeles, Cathlene Pineda Opens 9/26 PDF Print
Written by Ronaldo Oregano   
Sunday, 21 September 2014

Toshiko Akiyoshi
Toshiko Akiyoshi

Toshiko Akiyoshi’s unique contributions to the jazz world started with a piano-loving little Japanese girl in China and brought her to prominence as an unparalleled pianist, composer and leader of the Toshiko Akiyoshi Jazz Orchestra, which began in Los Angeles. Toshiko’s recordings have received a total of 14 Grammy Award nominations, and she was the first woman to win the Best Arranger and Composer awards in Down Beat magazine's Readers Poll. The Toshiko Akiyoshi appears in trio format with bassist Paul Gill and drummer Aarron Kimmel on Friday, September 26th at REDCAT in Los Angeles. Opening this evening's double bill is emerging pianist/composer Cathlene Pineda with her quartet. Her unique approach to harmony makes her a fresh and innovative contribution to the Los Angeles jazz scene.

The Ray Brown Tribute Trio Featuring Larry Fuller, Jeff Hamilton and Christoph Luty PDF Print
Written by Glenn A. Mitchell, LA Jazz Scene   
Thursday, 04 September 2014

Ray Brown Tribute Trio (L-R) Jeff Hamilton, Larry Fuller and Chris Luty (photo Art Pazornik)

A special tribute to the late, great Ray Brown was put together beautifully by drummer great Jeff Hamilton on Wednesday, August 20, 2014 at Newport Sunset Concerts at the Marriott Hotel.  This special trio is made up of Larry Fuller (piano), Christoph Luty (bass) and Hamilton (on drums).  All three are familiar with Ray Brown and his music compositions.  What was nice was that each of them took turns not only announcing the tunes, but sharing pertinent information about each tune, including for whom it was originally written or who first played it. Earlier in their careers,  Hamilton and Fuller spent a lot of time with Ray Brown’s trio, and memories of their days with Brown continue to inform their playing.       


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