Monday, May 18, 2009

It's a New Day

I caught Esperanza Spalding at The Folly Theater Saturday night. I more or less concur with the guy who wrote this rave review of the concert.

Spalding, 24, served notice that the game has changed.

With breathtaking versatility- the performance included straight-ahead jazz, crossover pop, fusion, avant-garde edginess and forays into the sounds of Brazil and Argentina- Spalding demonstrated that a jazz-based musician can engage a diverse audience if he or she displays enthusiasm, charisma, and most importantly, immeasurable talent.

Musicians in Kansas City's jazz community need to step up or be left behind. There's no shortage of local talent or innovation- but the ability to combine those elements into a forward-thinking concept is largely absent.

The sixty-plus set that has propped up the local scene for decades won't be around much longer. Only a handful of jazz hermeticists, Plastic Sax among them, will be eager to consume the music in its purest forms in ten years.

Spalding understands that she's competing directly against Bjork, Ben Harper, Alicia Keys and Radiohead. She accepts that challenge without compromising her art.

Spalding proved Saturday that it's possible to blaze a new trail in which jazz might find an artistically and commercially bright future. Are you going with her?

(Original image by Plastic Sax.)


punkyjunk said...

well said, all true things. would have been there had i not been in STL all weekend, but am extremely glad to hear positive word on the show. i plan to be along for the journey and see what happens.

Anonymous said...

The reviewer from the Star is an excellent writer. It's too bad he does not write more because he is knows his stuff and writes so eloquently.

Happy In Bag said...

I disagree, Anon. My sources tell me that he's a complete weirdo.

Anonymous said...

He maybe a wierdo but the guy can write extemely well. That left wing rag of newspaper would be lucky to have a writer of Bill's quality as a full time reviewer.

Can you believe they devoted the entire front page of Sundays paper to defending that dirt bag Dennis Skillicorn who murdered the good samaritan. I remember when that happened. They should have done a story on the family of the good samaritan.

Happy In Bag said...

While greatly appreciated, Anon, flattery will not draw me into a discussion of the death penalty.

Anonymous said...

How about discussing the Star?