A Glacial Summer Month

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September was an up-and-down month—mostly down—as I traded in the old computer for a newer model and was out of commission for nearly two weeks while I had the data from the old transferred to the new (I'll admit I'm incapable of doing it myself). So there's not much to write about, given that nothing was happening on the Jazz scene here in Albuquerque and not much elsewhere either, as far as I can see.

There was an all-star tribute to Maynard Ferguson in St. Louis, with somewhere near twenty world-class trumpeters on hand to pay their respects, but I didn't learn about it until after the fact, else I may have tried to make the trip (especially as I had nothing else to do). I'm sure there must be accounts of it online, at Ferguson's web site and elsewhere. I hope one of those trumpeters played "Danny Boy.

I've received some literature about what seems to be an interesting new online newsletter, jazzView, produced by Bob Taylor, owner of Visual Jazz Productions. Taylor has taught Jazz Studies courses at Brigham Young University, Cal State-Los Angeles, Pasadena City College and Westminster College, and is author of The Art of Improvisation, Sightreading Jazz, Sightreading Chord Progressions and other popular jazz education textbooks.

Unlike allaboutjazz, which is directed toward the general public with reviews, news and articles about albums and musicians, jazzView is a service for musicians and educators, for the most part, with tips for players and teachers, an improvisation q&a, and articles (in the first issue) ranging from "Visual Jazz in the Classroom and "Melodic Memory to "An Approach to Solo Phrases, "Improvisation Warm-Ups and "The Three 'ilies' of Improvisation (stability, agility, humility). There's also a jazzView Spotlight, the first one on Lone Peak High School in Cedar Hills, Utah, and its Jazz Education program.

The jazzView newsletter is free. For information, write to subscribe@visual-jazz.com

Looking ahead...

The 34th annual Conference of the International Association for Jazz Education will be held January 10-13 in New York City. Artists and groups scheduled to appear include Michel Legrand, The Clayton Brothers Quintet, Avishai Cohen, the Charles Tolliver Big Band, Bruce Gertz Quintet, John Patitucci Trio, Dave Liebman, Soul Bop featuring Randy Brecker, the Dizzy Gillespie All-Star Big Band directed by Slide Hampton, Rebecca Paris, Ingrid Jensen, the Joey DeFrancesco Trio, JoAnne Brackeen Quartet, John Fedchock Big Band, Ornette Coleman, Roy Haynes, Phil Woods and George Robert, Hank Jones, Sheila Jordan, Ramsey Lewis, Oliver Lake, Joe Lovano, Sean Jones, Steps Ahead, James Moody, Teo Macero, Christian McBride, Tiger Okoshi, Kenny Werner, Randy Weston, Greg Osby, Jim McNeely, Peter Erskine and Eric Marienthal.

Of course, there'll be many college and high school groups, as well as artists and bands from overseas, talent recognition events, clinics, workshops, audio-visual presentations and the ever-popular exhibit hall, among other things. For information, go online to www.iaje.org The conference returns to Toronto, Canada, in January 2008, and makes its debut in Seattle in January 2009.

Even further down the line...

Betty Carter's Jazz Ahead, a music residency program for young jazz musicians, will be held next April 3-14 at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. The program identifies outstanding emerging jazz artists in their mid-teens and twenties, and brings them together under the tutelage of experienced artist-instructors who coach and counsel them, helping to polish their performing, arranging and composing skills. The Jazz Ahead program, begun in 1998, has launched the careers of a number of today's star performers including pianists Cyrus Chestnut and Jacky Terrasson. The program is seeking applicants under age 30 who are proficient in English and are dual composers/performers. For information, phone Kennedy Center Jazz, 202-416-8348.

Jazz cruises have become more frequent in recent years, but those that cross the Atlantic are rare. Mike Vax intends to buck the trend next April, taking his big band on an eight-night cruise from Miami to Funchal, Madeira. Those who wish to extend it are invited to join the Mike Vax Sextet on the second leg, from Funchal to Arrecife, Canary Islands; Agadir, Casablanca, Malaga, Valencia and on to Barcelona, fourteen nights in all. The cruise is being booked by Jeri Ann Kelly, who handled last year's voyage down the Pacific Coast to Mexico and beyond. She can be reached at irish12348@msn.com

There will be a jazz festival here in Albuquerque next February, and the guest artist will be one of the world's foremost Jazz trombonists, Andy Martin, who'll be backed by the Albuquerque Jazz Orchestra in a Saturday evening concert at the Kimo Theatre. Something to look forward to.

And that's it for now. Until next time, keep swingin'!




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