Tag Archives: jazz

Versatile Jazz Trumpet

Shunzo Ohno - ReNew (Pulsebeats, 2015)
Shunzo Ohno – ReNew (Pulsebeats, 2015)

Japanese musician and composer Shunzo Ohno is one of the finest trumpeters in the current jazz scene. ReNew showcases his versatility with a set of modern jazz combined with funk and world music elements. The album features notable performances by Ohno and his colleagues. It’s dedicated to the people of Northern Japan and Nepal who are recovering from natural disasters.

Highlights include “Musashi” where Ohno injects funk, global percussion, spoken word, and electronic processed trumpet. Another high point is “Tairo Bushi”, a folk song from northern Japan. This piece includes Indian tabla, a synth solo and Ohno’s trumpet delivering a Japanese folk melody.

Another high spot is “First Step.” This is the classic jazz piece where practically every musicians gets his noteworthy solo. Ohno uses various trumpet techniques. The electronic processed trumpet is especially mesmerizing.

Lastly, another great track is the final composition, “ReNew Reprise”. It’s a slow tempo piece with a wonderful mix of trumpet, cello global percussion.

The lineup on ReNew includes Shunzo Ohno on trumpet; Buster Williams on bass; Billy Drummond on drums; Cyro Baptista on percussion; Jerome Jennings on drums; Ray Spiegel on tabla; Clifford Carter on keyboards; Ed Howard on bass; David Berkman on piano; Sasha Ono on cello; Paul Bollenback on guitar; Jerome Jennings on drums; Ira Coleman on bass; and George Yamazawa on spoken word.

Multifaceted Earthscapes

Julian Julien - Terre II (A Bout De Son, 2015)
Julian Julien – Terre II (A Bout De Son, 2015)

French musician and composer Julian Julien delivers a series of musical vignettes inspired by international photography and cinema. The music crosses numerous stylistic boundaries, depending on the context or theme. You’ll find ambient electronic moods, avant-garde experimentation, new jazz, world music, classical music, minimalism, Zeuhl-style electric bass, and cinematic environments.

Julian Julien uses a mix of wind instruments and percussion performed by musicians who come from a jazz, classical and rock background, including Frédéric Collignon (cornet, vocals), Siegfried Canto (flute), Michaël Havard (soprano, tenor and baritone saxophone) and Rémi Dumoulin (bass clarinet). Other musicians include Hélène Argo (vocals), Guillaume Billaux (guitar), and Adeline Lecce (cello).

Terre II is a beautifully crafted collection of multifaceted music pieces deeply inspired by the various currents in today’s progressive music.

Buy the album from www.julianjulien.com

The Claudia Quintet Announces European and North American Tour Dates

The Claudia Quintet [L-R: Red Wierenga, Matt Moran, John Hollenbeck, Chris Speed, Drew Gress]
The Claudia Quintet [L-R: Red Wierenga, Matt Moran, John Hollenbeck, Chris Speed, Drew Gress]

The Claudia Quintet, an ensemble led by composer and drummer and John Hollenbeck has will be touring Europe and North America in the next weeks.
The Claudia Quintet plays jazz influenced by classical minimalism, new music, progressive rock and post-rock. The ensemble has released seven albums, six of them on Cuneiform Records. The eighth album, Super Petite, is scheduled for release on Cuneiform in Summer 2016.

The available discography includes September, I Claudia, What Is The Beautiful?, For, Royal Toast, and Semi-Formal.

The Claudia Quintet European Tour:

March 2016
Wednesday, March 2
Pannonica
9 rue Basse Porte
Nantes, France
20:00 (8:30 p.m.)

Thursday, March 3
Sunset
60, rue des Lombards
Paris, France
20:00 (8:30 p.m.)

Friday, March 4
West Germany
Skalitzerstr. 133
Berlin, Germany
22:00 (10:00 p.m.)

Saturday, March 5
Kunstlerwerkstatt
Münchener Straße 68
Pfaffenhofen, Germany
21:00 (9:00 p.m.)

Sunday, March 6
Stadtgarten
Venloerstr. 40
Köln, Germany
20:30 (8:30 p.m.)

Monday, March 7
Cafe De Ruimte
Distelweg 83
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
20:30 (8:30 p.m.)

Wednesday, March 9
Le Rocher de Palmer
1 avenue Aristide Briand
Bordeaux, France
20:30 (8:30 p.m.)

Thursday, March 10
Le Rocher de Palmer
1 avenue Aristide Briand
Bordeaux, France
20:00 (8:00 p.m.)

Friday, March 11
Paradox
Telegraafstraat 62
Tilborg, The Netherlands
20:30 (8:30 p.m.)

Saturday, March 12
Teatro Villa de Leoni
Riviera Silvio Trentin, 5, Venice, Italy
21:00 (9:00 p.m.)

Sunday, March 13
Auditorium Villa Widmann
Via Nazionale, 420,
Oriago di Mira (VE), Venice, Italy
10:00 a.m. & 3:00 p.m.

Monday, March 14
Narodni dom Maribor
Ulica kneza Koclja 9
Marlibor, Slovenia
20:30 (8:30 p.m.)

Claudia Quintet North American Tour

Thursday, April 14
Cornelia Street Cafe
29 Cornelia St
NYC, NY

Friday, April 15
Boot & Saddle
1131 South Broad St.
Philadelphia, PA
20:30 (8:30 p.m.)

Saturday, June 18-19
San Francisco Jazz Center
201 Franklin St.
San Francisco, CA
20:00 (8:00 p.m.)

Wadada Leo Smith and Vijay Iyer Announce New Album and Tour

Keyboardist Vijay Iyer and trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith have recorded a new album titled “a cosmic rhythm with each stroke,” scheduled for release March 25th, 2016.
Vijay Iyer is a former member of Wadada Leo Smith’s Golden Quartet and the two had been looking for an opportunity to collaborate as a duo for some time. They recorded “a cosmic rhythm with each stroke” in November 2015 with Manfred Eicher in the studio.

The key feature of the new album is a suite dedicated to the late Indian artist Nasreen Mohamedi, whose work will be on display at the opening this March of The Metropolitan Museum’s Breuer Gallery (at the site of the old Whitney Museum on Manhattan’s Upper East Side), where Iyer will be Artist-In-Residence.

Vijay Iyer & Wadada Leo Smith on tour:

March 30-31 – New York, NY – Metropolitan Museum of Art Breuer Building
April 1 – Knoxville, TN – Big Ears Festival
April 7-8 – Cambridge, MA – Fromm Concert Series at Harvard
April 15 – Los Angeles, CA – Occidental College
April 16 – Fullerton, CA – Cal State Fullerton
Additional dates to be announced

Russian Progressive Duo Iamthemorning to Release New Album “Lighthouse”

iamthemorning
iamthemorning

Lighthouse (Kscope) is the title of the new album from Russian progressive duo iamthemorning, scheduled for release on April 1. Lighthouse is the follow up to the band’s 2014 album Belighted. The iamthemorning includes Marjana Semkina on vocals and Gleb Kolyadin on grand piano and keyboards.

Lighthouse includes guest musicians Gavin Harrison (Porcupine Tree, King Crimson) on drums, Colin Edwin (Porcupine Tree) on bass and additional vocals on the album’s title track by Mariusz Duda (Lunatic Soul, Riverside).

Lighthouse features classical music, Canterbury-style progressive rock, northern folk, jazz and electronic influences. Featuring a story of the progression of mental illness, the album takes the listener through the stages with the story’s central character, her attempts to fight it, and temporal remission leading to a final breakdown. Lyrically, the works and lives of Virginia Woolf and Sylvia Plath inspire the album.

iamthemorning - Lighthouse
iamthemorning – Lighthouse

The album artwork for Lighthouse was created by watercolor artist Constantine Nagishkin who the band has previously collaborated with before.

Lighthouse will be released on CD, LP (with MP3 download code) and digitally.

Groundbreaking Progressive Music Band Magma Announces 2016 North American Tour

Magma
Magma

Magma, one of the seminal progressive rock bands of the 1970s has announced its 2016 North American Tour. Magma is known for its sensational mix of rock, jazz, odd time signatures, theatrical choir arrangements, heavy and distorted pulsing electric bass, epic pieces, downtempo grooves and much more. The legendary influential group led by drummer Christian Vander will be performing new and classic Magma material.

The current lineup includes Christian Vander on drums, vocals; Stella Vander on vocals and percussion; Isabelle Feuillebois on vocals and percussion; Hervé Aknin on vocals; Jérôme Martineau on Fender Rhodes; Benoit Alziary on vibraphone; Jim Grandcamp on guitar; and Philippe Bussonnet on bass.

Magma’s most recent releases include Slag Tanz, Ëmëhntëhtt-Ré, Félicité Thösz, and the 12-CD live collection Kohnzert Zund.

March 15 – San Diego, CA at Brick By Brick – www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1050007
March 16 – Los Angeles, CA at The Regent – www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1051495
March 18 – San Francisco, CA at Great American Music Hall – www.eventbrite.com/e/magma-gamh-whelen-money-tickets-20525684876
March 19 – Portland, OR at Wonder Ballroom – http://bit.ly/MAGMAwon2016
March 20 – Seattle, WA at Crocodile – www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1049861
March 22 – Denver, CO at Gothic Theater – www.gothictheatre.com/events/detail/306226
March 23 – Cleveland, OH at Beachland Ballroom – http://www.ticketweb.com/t3/sale/SaleEventDetail?eventId=6435075&pl=beachland&dispatch=loadSelectionData
March 25 – Chicago, IL at Reggies – www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1050071
March 26 – Chicago, IL at Reggies – www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1050083
March 27 – Austin, TX at Mohawk – https://mohawk.queueapp.com/events/17011
March 29 – Atlanta, GA – TBA
March 30 – Philadelphia, PA at Underground Arts – www.ticketweb.com/t3/sale/SaleEventDetail?dispatch=loadSelectionData&eventId=6470355&pl=uarts
April 1 – New York City at Le Poisson Rouge – http://lpr.com/lpr_events/magma-45th-anniversary-tour-april-1st-2016/
April 2 – Toronto, ON at Opera House – www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1057787

MagmaTour_2016

A Passionate Spark

Hiromi – Spark (Telarc, 2016)

Spark is the 10th album by Hiromi, one of the greatest pianists in the current jazz music scene. In this recording, Hiromi continues her power trio format, collaborating with bassist Anthony Jackson (Paul Simon, Steely Dan, Chick Corea, The O’Jays) and drummer Simon Phillips (Mike Oldfield, The Who, David Gilmour, Judas Priest, Toto, Jack Bruce).

What makes Hiromi’s music so attractive is the fact that she breaks musical boundaries, incorporating elements from classical music, Latin jazz and rock. Her structured sections as well as her improvisational skills are impeccable examples of open minded contemporary jazz craftsmanship. At the same time, she leaves plenty of space to Simon Phillips and Anthony Jackson who contribute remarkable creative drumming and bass work

Simon Phillips’ powerful drum strikes provide a rock-like energy that permeates the entire album.

Playing with this trio is like a never-ending adventure,” Hiromi says. “They never play safe and they always look for new things; we always play as if this is our first and last show. With how much passion and love we feel for the music, every show I feel a spark.”

Tundra Jazz

Oddjob – Folk (Caprice, 2015)

Swedish jazz-rock band Oddjob has recreated traditional folk songs related to herding and transformed them into contemporary jazz pieces. There are barely any visible folk music elements aside from the brief field recordings of herding calls.

The music resolves around the outstanding fiery interplay between the trumpet, saxophone and piano supported by creative drumming and bass lines. There are also exquisite laid back occasions like tracks 3 and 7, titled simply “Folk #3” and “Folk #7”.

The lineup includes Peter Forss on acoustic bass, Per “Ruskträsk” Johansson on saxophones, bass clarinet and alto flute; Goran Kajfes on trumpet and modular synthesizer; Daniel Karlsson on grand piano and Crumar organ; and Janne Robertsson on drums.

Oddjob delivers beautifully crafted jazz pieces inspired by traditional folk music.

Buy Folk

Herbie Hancock Receives The Recording Academy’s Lifetime Achievement Award

The Recording Academy announced today that Herbie Hancock is one of the honorees of the Lifetime Achievement Award. One of the most influential and idiosyncratic figures in contemporary jazz, Herbie Hancock has been at the forefront almost every development in electronic and acoustic jazz and R&B.

A stylistically diverse and ever-intriguing canon of songs, including “Maiden Voyage” and “Rockit,” has helped earn him 14 GRAMMY Awards during his impressive five-decade-plus professional solo career. Some of his most influential albums include Empyrean Isles (1964), Maiden Voyage (1965), Mwandishi (1970), Crossings (1972), Sextant (1973) and Head Hunters (1973).

Other honorees include Ruth Brown, Celia Cruz, Earth, Wind & Fire, Herbie Hancock, Jefferson Airplane, Linda Ronstadt, and RUN DMC. John Cage, Fred Foster, and Chris Strachwitz are Trustees Award honorees; and EMT and Dr. Harvey Fletcher are Technical GRAMMY Award recipients.

A special ceremony and concert celebrating the honorees will be held in the spring of 2016.