Friday, October 24, 2014

Now's the Time: Bucky Pizzarelli


Octogenarian guitarist Bucky Pizzarelli and his musical partner Ed Laub will perform Sunday, October 26, at the Topeka Jazz Workshop and on Monday, October 27, at Broadway Jazz Club.  The latter show is a taping of 12th Street Jump.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Confirmation: Weekly News & Notes















*The Kansas City Star elicits comments from Hermon Mehari about his participation in the upcoming Thelonious Monk competition.

*KC Jazz Lark documents the 18th & Vine Jazz & Blues Festival.  A 17-minute video captures many of the event's sights and sounds.

*The Pitch recommends a show at Take Five Coffee + Bar featuring Gerald Spaits' band.

*A major ticketing site posted an interview with Eddie Moore.

*Tweet o' the Week: ReallyRylie- Sitting in Music Appreciation of Jazz wanting to cry of boredom. Remember this: The Royals are in the World Series.

*From Broadway Jazz Club: 12th Street Jump, the public radio syndicated Jazz and Comedy program, will be recording their broadcast honoring the music of Bucky Pizzarelli with special guests Bucky Pizzarelli and Ed Laub!! After the live recording stay for Eboni Fondren and Two Guitars (Matt Hopper & Charlie Gatschet), who will play from 9pm-11pm... Ticket prices range from $15 - $25.

(Original image by Plastic Sax.)

Monday, October 20, 2014

Horace Washington


Horace Washington died last week.  His friendly stage presence and penchant for danceable soul-jazz made him one of Kansas City's most popular musicians in the 1980s.  I last heard him with the Elder Statesmen of Kansas City Jazz at the Blue Room during the 18th & Vine Jazz & Blues Festival on October 11.  As a review in The Kansas City Star noted, he led the band in a lively rendition of Herbie Mann's "Memphis Underground."  Washington was last featured at Plastic Sax in 2011.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Now's the Time: Phillip Johnston


Phillip Johnston, the founder of the Microscopic Septet, will perform at Helzberg Hall on Sunday, Oct. 19.  Wordless!, a collaboration with graphic novelist Art Spiegelman, is a "multimedia presentation with new original music." 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Confirmation: Weekly News & Notes















*Hermon Mehari is one of 13 musicians who will participate in the semifinals of the Thelonious Monk International Jazz Trumpet Competition in New York on November 8.

*The Kansas City Star reviewed the 18th & Vine Jazz & Blues Festival.

*A television station broadcast a five-minute preview of the 18th & Vine Jazz and Blues Festival.  CJ Janovy of KCUR captured a rendition of "Kansas City" at the event.

*The Pitch recommends Harold O'Neal's return to the Blue Room.

*KCPT provides a seven-minute overview of the recent Charlie Parker Celebration.

*OJT was featured on KCUR's Local Listen segment.

*A revival of the 1959 jazz musical "The Nervous Set" is previewed by The Kansas City Star.

*A blogger notes that Lalah Hathaway performed for over 5,000 people on Sunday.

*Joe Dimino interviewed Phil Woods for his Neon Jazz podcast.

*Tweet o' the Week: Clint Ashlock- KC, if you're going to the K tonight, get there early and hang with New Jazz Order in the Outfield at 5:00! #TakeTheCrown @Royals #kcjazz

*From Gerald Spaits: Saturday October 25th, Passit Productions and Take Five Coffee Bar will feature Jazz bassist Gerald Spaits in an evening of his own compositions. Gerald, known for backing up many of KC jazz greats will step into the role of composer and bandleader for a very special one-time performance. Joining Gerald on the new stage will be: Dave Chael on sax. T.J. Martley on grand piano. Brian Steever on drums.

(Original image by Plastic Sax.)

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Concert Review: The Andrew Ouellette Trio at Westport Coffee House
















I've heard Andrew Ouellette perform straight-laced mainstream jazz and wild-eyed music with adventurous ensembles, but until Thursday I'd never attended one of his gigs as a leader. 

I was curious to see where the keyboardist would plant his musical flag as he collaborated with bassist Zach Beeson and drummer Brian Steever at the superb venue below the Westport Coffee House.

The selections performed during the first set are revealing.  In addition to at least one original composition, the trio played renditions of Harry Warren and Al Dubin's "September in the Rain," John Lewis' "Milestones," Brad Mehldau's "When It Rains," Milton Nascimento's "Cravo e Canela" and the unhappy ballad "Some Other Time."

The mix of standards, a show tune, a Brazilian number and a piece by a new jazz leader indicate that Ouellette embraces a wide range of styles. 

Steever, one of Kansas City's most excitable drummers, was as active as Ouellette was reserved.  Positioned between the very different men, Beeson ably connected their disparate styles for an audience of less than 10.

(Original image by Plastic Sax.)

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Now's the Time: Lalah Hathaway


Lalah Hathaway, one of the headliners of the American Jazz Museum's festival in 2010, headlines a free concert in the Power & Light District on Sunday, October 12, a day after the 2014 edition of the 18th & Vine Jazz & Blues Festival.  She and the jazz band Snarky Puppy won a Grammy Award in January for "Something," the song in the embedded video.