November 16, 2011. Posted by Joshua Jackson.
A vibraphonist from down the turnpike in Baltimore; a guitarist from across the pond in Norway. Both have dedicated themselves to hard-swinging jazz of the highest order, and both journeyed to downtown Manhattan to lead bands in the next installment of The Checkout: Live From 92Y Tribeca.
Warren Wolf is best known as a vibraphonist — notably, on his 2011 self-titled album, and as the malletman in Christian McBride's Inside Straight band. Plenty of musicians know him also as a drummer or as a pianist; he's toured and recorded in both capacities. After studying, then teaching at Berklee College of Music in Boston, he moved back to Baltimore — the place where he met several of the musicians joining him on stage here.
Lage Lund came to New York City in 2002 — after a stint at Berklee — and he quickly found his way into the jazz scene. His chops and vision won him the prestigious Thelonious Monk International Jazz Competition in 2005. He's been able to lead more bands lately; in 2010, he issued Unlikely Stories, a disc of original tunes, followed up with a live trio set this year called Small Club, Big City. He brings a band of first-call New York musicians to the date.
On Wednesday, Nov. 16, The Checkout: Live series paired the bands of Lage Lund and Warren Wolf in a double bill, in performance at 92Y Tribeca. The concert was broadcast on air via WBGO and in an online video webcast at this page on NPR Music, with a live online chat. For more information about this series and the full concert archive, visit npr.org/checkoutlive.
© 2011 WBGO
November 15, 2011. Posted by Simon Rentner.
Remember when jazz was a so-called "dance" music? When swing drove masses to ballrooms and inspired popular dances like the Lindy Hop, Charleston and Jitterbug?
Probably not; most of us will never know what the '30s and '40s were like, when jazz was more than a spectator sport. But in this age of electronic music, with sampling and loops, getting down to jazz sounds isn't so uncommon — sampled saxophones and ride cymbals have re-emerged in dance halls in innovative forms of house music. Here are few successful fusions of jazz and electronica.Read more
© 2011 WBGO
October 26, 2011. Posted by Simon Rentner.
What would it sound like if a jazz bassist who scores films and arranges for live hip-hop and R&B were to put together his own record? What's next for a twenty-something pianist, already one of the great composers of his generation, now that he has a completely new band and repertoire for it?
Pianist Aaron Parks — once a Blue Note recording artist, and the "A" in the collective band James Farm — has for some time been brewing up a new project. Intriguingly, Pete Rende will be playing analog synthesizers, making for a two-keyboard lineup with bass (Chris Smith) and drums (Marlon Browden). The band has a collection of original tunes, all relatively new; it's yet unrecorded, though when it comes time to document the stuff, Rende's experience as a recording engineer may come in handy.
Bassist Derrick Hodge plays mean straight-ahead jazz on the acoustic bass — notably, he and Parks served together in Terence Blanchard's quintet. But he's also a film composer like Blanchard, and the electric bassist of choice for many a hip-hop or R&B artist. (He's currently the musical director for Maxwell.) His unclassifiable debut album, Live Today, is soon to be released; it features an even wider palette of references, including gospel, singer-songwriter music and funk. The band he's assembled for this occasion can follow him to all those places.
On Wednesday, Oct. 26 at 8 p.m. ET, The Checkout: Live From 92Y Tribeca paired the bands of Aaron Parks and Derrick Hodge in a double bill. The concert was broadcast on air via WBGO and in an online video webcast at this page on NPR Music, with live online chat. For more information about this series and the full concert archive, visit npr.org/checkoutlive.
© 2011 WBGO