Thursday, April 23, 2015

Now's the Time: Danilo Pérez

A dazzling survey of centuries of Panamanian music, Panama 500 was one of the most exciting releases of 2014.  The bandleader and pianist Danilo Pérez is likely to reinterpret some of that memorable material at the Folly Theater on Saturday, April 25.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Confirmation: Weekly News & Notes

*Eldar Djangirov promotes World Tour Vol. 1 album in a video. The new release that is “exclusively available” at his site.

*KC Jazz Lark foresees a bright future for the Kansas City Jazz Orchestra.

*Steve Lambert’s full calendar is noted by The Pitch.

*Danielo Perez’s forthcoming concert is highlighted in Joe Klopus’ latest column.

*Matt Kane’s album was featured on KCUR’s weekly Local Listen segment.

*Chris Burnett lists “6 Things You Can Do to Appreciate Jazz.”

*Joe Locke and Marc Cary chatted with Joe Dimino.

*St. Louis Jazz Notes reminds readers that Robert Glasper performs at Jazz at the Bistro tonight and tomorrow.

*Tweet o’ the Week: Adrienne B. Haynes- I had an impromptu history lesson about Kansas City's Historic Jazz District in the 30's tonight over senior coffee & strawberry creme pies

*Comment o’ the Week: Anonymous- Once you get past the tiresome and curmudgeonly reference to hard bop as an "inauspicious format," that wasn't a half bad review. Consider yourself chastised.

*From Mike Metheny: Exactly 100 years after the arrival of patriarch Harrison Metheny (1887-1980) in Lee's Summit MO, the story of the Metheny family is being told in an exhibit at the new Lee's Summit History Museum. What an honor it is for us to be included! The museum's grand opening is on Wednesday, April 22 at 5 p.m. And normal museum hours will be 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays. For more information, please visit the Museum's Facebook event page or the website.

*From Take Five Coffee + Bar: Thursday, April 23, 7pm: Marcus Lewis Big Band- …Ferocious swing the way only a high-caliber big band can deliver it… $5 cover.  Friday, April 24, 8pm: Schlambert- Vibraphonist Peter Schlamb and saxophonist Steve Lambert join forces… With Karl McComas-Reichl on bass and John Kizilarmut on drums… $5 cover.  Saturday, April 25- … closed this night for a private event. (A wedding!)  Sunday, April 26, 10am - 2pm: Sunday Jazz Brunch: Paul Roberts and Peter Schlamb… and bassist Forest Stewart for a tribute to the great Chick Corea/Gary Burton group… No cover.

(Original image by Plastic Sax.)

Monday, April 20, 2015

Album Review: Matt Kane & the Kansas City Generations Sextet- Acknowledgement

Creating a compelling straight-ahead album in the style of the Jazz Messengers is difficult in 2015.  Yet Acknowledgement, the new release by Matt Kane and the Kansas City Generations Sextet, manages to infuse the inauspicious format with fresh energy.

The New York-based drummer has devised an essential document of Kansas City’s jazz scene.  Kane, saxophonists Steve Lambert and Michael Shults, trumpeter Hermon Mehari, pianist Andrew Ouellette and bassist Ben Leifer apply their formidable talents to the compositions of Ahmad Alaadeen, Pat Metheny and Bobby Watson.

The pairing of excellent musicians with the melodies that have come to define the Kansas City sound is consistently persuasive.

Kane deserves credit for allowing Shults and Lambert to shine.  Their contributions consistently elevate Acknowledgement.  The pair tear it up on Alaadeen’s “ASR."

The programming of Alaadeen’s “And the Beauty of It All” and Watson’s “Wheel Within a Wheel”- the familiar selections are album’s fifth and sixth tracks- is capable of acting as an emotional one-two punch on Kansas City's jazz advocates.

For anyone who has logged significant time at clubs including the Blue Room and the Green Lady Lounge in recent years, Acknowledgement sounds like home.

(Original image by Plastic Sax.)

Friday, April 17, 2015

Now's the Time: The Joe Locke Quartet featuring Kenny Washington

While Saturday’s concert at the Gem Theater is billed as an appearance by the Joe Locke Quartet, the vocalist Kenny Washington will almost certainly be the star of the show.  Pianist Ryan Cohan, bassist Lorin Cohen and drummer Jaimeo Brown round out the vibraphonist's band.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Confirmation: Weekly News & Notes

*New albums by Matt Kane, OJT and Dominique Sanders are reviewed by KC Jazz Lark.

*Joe Klopus highlighted Joe Locke’s forthcoming concert in his column for The Kansas City Star.

*The Pitch recommends the Kansas City Jazz Orchestra’s tribute to Stan Kenton.

*The trio of Avishai Cohen, Justin Brown and Eric Revis will perform at Take Five Coffee + Bar on May 14.

*A blogger reviewed the Kansas City debut of Max Raabe und Palast Orchester at Helzberg Hall.

*Anat Cohen is among Joe Dimino’s recent interview subjects.

*Tweet o’ the Week: Matt Wilson- Trio M finished up our tour with an incredible night at the Take Five Cafe in Kansas City! Dig the LMO order card! (photo)

*From Take Five Coffee + Bar: Thursday, April 14, 7pm: Rob Scheps/Jason Jackson Sextet: The Music of Wayne Shorter- Saxophonist Rob Scheps is a roving powerhouse… he’s got Jason Jackson with him, trombonist with the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra… (with) hand-selected Kansas City players (Brad Gregory on alto saxophone, Roger Wilder on piano, Bob Bowman on bass, Brian Steever on drums). $5 cover.  Friday, April 15, 8pm: Brandon Draper Flux Trio- Brandon Draper is a superlative percussionist… he’ll be launching into an evening of “mind altering soundscapes, groove and improvisation” in the company of Matt Otto on saxophones and EWI and Luke Polipnick on guitar and bass… $5 cover.  Saturday, April 16, 8pm: Steve Houghton Trio- Drummer Steve Houghton (is) Professor of Percussion and Jazz at Indiana University. (with) Bob Bowman on bass and Danny Embrey on guitar. $5 cover. Sunday, April 17, 10am - 2pm: Sunday Jazz Brunch: Paul Roberts – Origins of Groove… No cover.

*From a press release: Jazz music will be the focus as dozens of students arrive on the Kansas City Kansas Community College campus for the 2015 Kansas City Jazz Summit. The summit is 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. April 22, 23 and 24 in the KCKCC Performing Arts Center... The event, which is produced by the Kansas City Jazz Alliance, is free and open to the public… The Jazz Summit caters to jazz groups at the middle school, high school and college level in both competitive and non-competitive sessions… “This is a one of a kind festival that celebrates jazz of all kinds, but in particular the music of Count Basie,” Mair said. “The Basically Basie competition has grown from three groups to 15 groups since its inception.”

(Original image by Plastic Sax.)

Monday, April 13, 2015

Concert Review: Trio M at Take Five Coffee + Bar

If the musicians in attendance at Take Five Coffee + Bar on Sunday felt the same way I did, the Kansas City jazz scene may never be the same. 

Kansas City’s elite masters of improvised music represented about a third of the audience of about 50 that witnessed an ingenious performance by Trio M.  The efforts of bassist Mark Dresser, pianist Myra Melford and drummer Matt Wilson might inspire them to create even more expansive sounds.

Trio M demonstrated that experimental jazz can be every bit as fun as mainstream swing.  Dresser windmilled.  Medford came down with a case of crazy feet.  Wilson seemed to use everything but the ceiling to create percussive effects.

By ignoring conventional boundaries, Trio M reframed the case for acoustic jazz in 2015.  I look forward to the ripple effect.

(Original image by Plastic Sax.)

Friday, April 10, 2015

Now's the Time: Trio M

Admirers of adventurous jazz shouldn’t let Trio M’s pedestrian moniker deceive them.  The ensemble features three extremely accomplished musicians. 

As the embedded video indicates, pianist Myra Melford has a unique conception.  Bassist Mark Dresser has recorded with Anthony Braxton, Joe Lovano and John Zorn.  Drummer Matt Wilson is one of the most engaging figures in modern jazz.

Trio M performs at Take Five Coffee + Bar on Sunday, April 12.