WBGO Blog
  • Live Blog - Village Vanguard 7.1.08

    July 1, 2008. Posted by Joshua Jackson.

    Uri Caine at the Village Vanguard

    Join the live chat.
    Check out some photos from today and tonight.

    9:00pm Opening with "Loose Trade." This may or may not lead into Wayne Shorter's "Nefertiti." We'll see.

    9:03pm Lorraine Gordon, the Vanguard owner, just arrived. She's gracious enough to allow us to be here at the Vanguard. That, and she lets me set up shop in her office.

    9:06pm I seem to be having an issue with the Chat Room. Bear with me.

    9:11pm I saw this trio here in 2003. I was captivated by the improvisation of it all. When I looked onstage, I saw all of the high quality microphones, and realized that the show was being recorded. It's a great record.

    9:13pm That last song premiered tonight. Simply called "1." Originally it was called "Vanguard 1." Not sure if this title will stick...but that's what it is tonight.

    9:15pm "Foolish Me." Beautiful and quiet.

    9:20pm You'll find this one, "Snaggletooth," on that Live at the Village Vanguard recording from 2003

    9:25pm This is "Interloper." Uri named it tonight, while he was picking the set list. Originally, it was "Vanguard 2."

    9:31pm This is "Othello," if I remember correctly.

    9:38pm "The Axis of Evil" Suite Three songs that clearly identify Uri's political leanings.
    They are "Stuff Hapens," "What Have They Done" and "BushWhack."

    9:42pm You can also clearly detect Uri's comedic side on this music. He's a funny guy.

    9:43pm I've yet to join the chat. All apologies. I'm having a problem reaching it, but I know that Patrick Jarenwattananon at NPR is holding down the fort. For those visiting the chat, you're in safe hands. I'm afraid that Iwon't be joining tonight. Too much going on. But check out the photo. Link is above.

    9:50pm "What Have They Done" This is an abridged title. You might be able to figure out the rest. I'm not saying. For the record, is was a bit of self-censorship on Uri's part. That's why we have a disclaimer...

    9:53pm I hope you all are enjoying the show. Let us know.

    9:55pm Some flourishes a la McCoy Tyner. Uri and McCoy both from Philadelphia.

    9:57pm There are more than 25 photos from today and tonight's experience at the Village Vanguard. Check them out.

    10:00pm I hear the subway rumbling beneath Uri talking.

    10:01pm "Smelly" is another Uri original.

    10:02pm The Village Vanguard and its acoustics are really the perfect setting for a piano trio. The Vanguard website has a list of commercially available recordings from the club. You'll find quite a few great piano trio recordings. Lots, in fact.

    10:04pm And I think that the Cuban legend Bebo Valdes is releasing a duo w/ bass album in early September. I'm getting off topic, though...

    10:05pm  We've finally moved to Wayne Shorter's "Nefertiti." Uri and the trio are caling options at this point.  We're past the set list that he gave me earlier.  Unchartered territory for thebroadcast, but the band knows this song well.  Also on their Vanguard recording.

    10:07pm  Gotta go for now.  Will be back.

  • Bourne in Montreal - Part Five

    July 1, 2008. Posted by Joshua Jackson.

    Melody Gardot by Denis Alix
    Day 5 Monday June 30th

    Lunch on the terrasse, plateau of the Place des Arts where they have boutiques, games for kids, sponsor outlets, and eats. I was joined by one of my loved ones in Montreal, Catherine Simard, daughter of Alain Simard, president and co-founder of the jazzfest. Catherine endeared herself to me years ago when she was my virtual minder during the 25th anniversary jazzfest. We were supposed to catch a boat from the Old Town out to an anniversary concert on an island in the St Lawrence where the festival actually began almost 30 years ago. When we got to the dock, the boat was pulling out. I'll never forget Catherine -- in flip-flops! -- running along the dock shouting to the boat. Which actually stopped and came back...for me. Since then she's worked in most of the departments of Spectra, the arts company that produces the jazzfest and so much more. This year she's responsible for marketing, and the sponsor logos hanging ariound the Place are her work. I said years ago that she's not the "heir apparent" because she's Alain's daughter. I believe Catherine will be a boss some day because of her smarts, her charms, and her willingness to do whatever the work is -- whether she's running an enormous jazzfest or running in flip-flops ...

    Public Enemy was playing Metropolis. I know nothing about them, except that they're among the first doing hip-hop. I have never heard them, and was not going to their press conference, but Marie-Eve Boisvert, boss of the salle de presse (and another of my loved ones), said "You should go. They're interesting." I recognized Flavor Flav from posters in the subways for his TV "reality" show, and he was as amusingly goofy as he looks. Chuck D, the other singer, was indeed interesting. He talked about politics, racism, and other seriousness that they've sung about, and he was also insightful about the music business, always speaking with a remarkable forthrightness and yet also with a very quick wit. "Our press conferences are more entertaining than most hip-hop shows," he said, and I believed him. I'm sorry I couldn't go to their show. I was booked to various of the other 39 musical events happening today from midi to minuit.

    I was especially aware today of how many people come every day, countless thousands of people, all ages, all colors, all cultures, all having a good time. I saw babies dancing in the street, also little old ladies dancing in the street. I'd see whole families dressed in the saris or scarves or hats of wherever they came from. Montreal often seems even more international than New York, especially in the musicians and everyone listening to them at FIJM.
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