December 17, 2008. Posted by Joshua Jackson.
We're an hour from showtime. Earlier today, I visited Cedar Walton at his home in Brooklyn. I'll post the interview with the complete wrap-up of our time at the Vanguard tonight. Stay tuned.
Not a full house expected tonight. Could be that the recession is starting to put a dent in recreation budgets. Not a good sign for jazz.
Epoch Films is shooting a Heineken commercial in the Village Vanguard tomorrow. Keep an eye out for that in the near future. Real musicians will not be a part of the shoot. Just actors. They have reserved all parking spots on both sides of the club. As you might know, parking spaces in NYC are a premium, so the neighbors are none too thrilled about finding a spot for their cars.
Bassist David Williams is the first member of the trio to arrive tonight. More later.
Drummer Lewis Nash just arrived. He recently finished recording a studio date for Willie Nelson with Joe Sample, Christian McBride, and guitarist Anthony Wilson. Willie sings standards!
Still no leader...Cedar Walton, paging Cedar Walton???
Cedar must have heard the page. And he was looking for parking...
"Cedar's Blues" opens the show, and the trio is swinging mercilessly.
"Dear Ruth," an original composition dedicated to Cedar's mom. She was a piano teacher. She must have been a good one!
Lots of original compositions so far. This one is "Sixth Avenue." Funky.
This is "Back to the Holy Land," I think. Cedar is calling songs on the fly.
Sorry for the long break in action. We're listening to "Time After Time." This is such a great trio. Plenty of chemistry.
"Body and Soul" with a samba beat. I just heard a reference to "Mona Lisa" go by...
A little Christmas Music, anyone? With some blues for good measure.
© 2008 WBGO
November 19, 2008. Posted by Joshua Jackson.
Doors have opened at the Village Vanguard for tonight's show. More than 40 years have passed since a saxophonist named Coltrane led a group at this club. This evening, we will hear Ravi Coltrane's debut. Welcome.
None of the musicians are here. Ravi and the band tend to operate freely on their own internal clock. We, on the other hand, are following a master clock. Thirty-two minutes to showtime!
We're live from the Village Vanguard. Saxophonist Ravi Coltrane is playing an original, "Amalgams," from his upcoming release, Blending Times. The quartet includes pianist Luis Perdomo, bassist Drew Gress, and drummer E.J. Strickland.
Pianist Luis Perdomo just crashed the keyboards. Bassist Drew Gress is now taking a solo. Gress was featured in pianist Uri Caine July performance of Live at the Village Vanguard. Check out the entire series.
Another Ravi Coltrane original, "Round Two," begins peacefully.
"Trading Duos" seems fairly self-explanatory. Band members sort of move in and out of this composition. I'malways a fan of the sax/drums sections.
This composition named after Ravi's first son, William (John Coltrane's middle name). "One Wheeler Will."
After a long and heartfelt introduction, Ravi plays "Jagadishwar," a composition by Alice Coltrane, his mother. She passed away on January 12th 2007. On Ravi's upcoming release, Blending Times, he closes with a harp/bass/saxophone version of Charlie Haden's "For Turiya." Turiya is Alice Coltrane.
The quartet is closing with "Giant Steps," a Coltrane original. John Coltrane, that is.
© 2008 WBGO
October 22, 2008. Posted by Joshua Jackson.
Anat walked into the club a few minutes before doors opened to the public. She's using a new reed on her soprano saxophone tonight, so she spent some time warming up the soprano and breaking in the new reed.
The first set is sold out tonight. There's a party of 16, a party of 10, and a party in the Village Vanguard tonight.
Anat and I have talked through tonight's program. Should be a good one!
Pianist Jason Lindner just arrived. He and Anat are talking about how to end the second set. They're ahead of everyone tonight.
The band's all here. Showtime in T minus 8 minutes.
We're live. Anat Cohen and her quartet (Jason Lindner, piano; Joe Martin, bass; Daniel Freedman, drums) are blasting into a modern arrangement of Fats Waller's "Jitterbug Waltz."
Anat quotes "Pop Goes the Weasel." Thad Jones would be proud. His quote of it from Count Basie's version of "April in Paris" is one for the ages. One more time!
Montuno, baby! Ernesto Lecuona's "Siboney," played with vigor. Anat's clarinet tone is the sound of unbridled optimism. It's refreshing.
This is such a difficult song to cover. If you're gonna tackle Sam Cooke's "A Change is Gonna Come," you better bring everything you have to this song. I believe Anat has done that.
"Washington Square Park" opens with Jason Lindner plucking the piano strings, which are covered with paper. It makes the piano sound like a berimbau, or some kind of African-based instrument. Very cool.
Anat switches to tenor sax.
That song went to a lot of places. All in Washington Square Park. Now, we're moving into the blues with Don't Let the Sun Catch You Cryin'. As an aside, I really love Taj Mahal's version...
Clsong out the set with the Brazilian Duke Ellington, Pixinguinha. His composition "Um A Zero." Tudo bem!
© 2008 WBGO