Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Confirmation: Weekly News & Notes

*The NEA has awarded $200,000 for the restoration of Boone Theater in the Jazz District. A press release is available as a PDF here. Key line: The restoration and redevelopment of the historic Boone Theater – a $2.5 million project – is being undertaken with the goal of creating a new home for Folk Alliance International, a non- profit cultural organization presently based in Memphis, Tennessee... (Before jazz fans get too giddy, they should know that F.A.I. is, as its name suggests, an organization dedicated to folk music.) Here's the story in The Star. KCUR also covers the development.

*Hearne Christopher reports that Marilyn Maye will return to Jardine's August 25- September 2. A medical condition forced her to cancel her dates at the club in June.

*Hunter Long conducts a heady interview with Matt Leifer. Long also ponders tribute albums here.

*Credentials Hip Hop posted an interview with Hermon Mehari.

*KCJazzLark is disappointed by two area jazz establishments.

*Beau Bledsoe uploaded video of Bach Aria Soloists' Night of Tango concert. The February event is one of my favorite musical experiences of 2011.

*Plastic Sax readers aside, most Kansas Citians don't appreciate Bobby Watson's status as an international star. They might be surprised to learn that the saxophonist is a headliner at the forthcoming Guinness Jazz Festival in Cork, Ireland.

*Bobby Watson is featured in a new video documenting a performance at Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola at Jazz at Lincoln Center led by Matt Savage.

*Here's a set of photos from the recent A Vibe Called Def performance at The Blue Room.

*Kansas City-related artists were shut out of the 2011 DownBeat Critics Poll.

*The saga of John Coltrane's former home in Philadelphia will sound all too familiar to Kansas City jazz historians. (Tip via AZ.)

*Tweet o' the Week: KCJazzLark: 5 minutes until Ernie Andrews & Bobby Watson is scheduled to start & I'm one of 30 patrons in The Blue Room. Sad.

*Via Facebook, regarding the late Ahmad Alaadeen: To celebrate Alaadeen's birthday, there will be a book signing/release for "Dysfunctional" at the American Jazz Museum, 1616 East 18th Street in Kansas City, Missouri on July 23rd from 11:00 - 1:00. And then, the tribute for Alaadeen will be the next day at The View Community Center, 13500 Byars Road in Grandview. Najee will come in to play a couple of Alaadeen's originals. See you there. Fanny

(Original image by Plastic Sax.)


kcjazzlark said...

Let's note that 80 or so people wound up coming through The Blue Room the night Ernie Andrews and Bobby Watson performed. Still not great (I think The Blur Room seats around 140), but better than 30.

Myrna Jonson said...

Lets put our tax dollars somewhere else. This NEA grant is a collossal waste too.

The problem with Kansas City is that it is an exclusive town and not inclusive. The Kauffman Center...for rich white folk. The 18th and Vine District...."built by and funded by black people for the use of black people"....a quote mentioned to a white musician playing at the Gem Theater several years back.

Our state line going smack dab in the middle creates adversity. The Kansas City Metro area should be one large city with one mayor and not all these little missmanaged towns, cities and suburbs.

Think about it. We'll never move forward. Smaller ciites have jazz radio, jazz festivals with Sonny Rollins and heavy acts on the pun intended.

You know what else? The 18th and Vine district inflate their numbers and so does the KC Symphony and Ballet. They manufacture phony diversity reports and missleading demographic information of audiences served.

It about time that people stop sugarcoating and speak the truth.

Myrna Johnson

Anonymous said...

Cheers for Myrna.

Anonymous said...

Myrna makes valid statements and offers a couple of reasonable suggestions. The Kansas City jazz scene is so political that it is no wonder the music is dying. Relatively insignificant local musicians are constantly made out to be legendary figures. Even if it means re-writing history in order to do so. We have people who are not even native to this area in charge of most of the significant venues and organizations. No wonder we are where we are. The litmus test to be let into this "good ole boys club" inherently disqualifies the candidate from being capable of providing any real solutions or innovations to help the scene. Holding on to power is paramount. It would be comical, if it weren't so sad. A generation of these current folks has to die out, similar to the wandering in the wilderness from biblical history. Then, the replacements would have to be of a totally new mindset that is not racist, toward any ethnicity.