Amazon.com Widgets

"Lone Wolf" Finds Plenty to Chew On

By Published: | 10,859 views
With Betty sidelined by a bad cough, it was up to me to seek out local jazz events in February, and I managed to find a couple of pretty good ones, starting February 7 at the University of New Mexico's Keller Hall where SuperSax New Mexico performed for the third time in Albuquerque. As you may know, SuperSax NM is patterned after the highly popular West Coast group formed in the early '70s by Med Flory
Med Flory
Med Flory
1926 - 2014
sax, tenor
and Sonny Clark
Sonny Clark
Sonny Clark
1931 - 1963
piano
and devoted to the music of Charlie Parker
Charlie Parker
Charlie Parker
1920 - 1955
sax, alto
, specifically his classic solos, rearranged and played by a full sax section. It's a tough assignment, one that would test any reed player's technique and stamina. Those who laid their aptitude on the line this time around were alto saxophonists Sam Reid and Dave Anderson, tenors Lee Taylor and Aaron Lovato, and baritone Glenn Kostur. They were ably supported by pianist Bert Dalton, bassist Colin Deuble and drummer Cal Haines, with Paul Gonzales sitting in for SuperSax NM's trumpet mainstay, Bobby Shew
Bobby Shew
Bobby Shew
b.1941
trumpet
, and acquitting himself quite well. The program, even though familiar, was no less invigorating, opening with Dizzy Gillespie
Dizzy Gillespie
Dizzy Gillespie
1917 - 1993
trumpet
's "Blue 'n Boogie" and continuing without pause through "Yardbird Suite," "Blues for Alice," "If I Should Lose You," "KoKo," "Just Friends," "Salt Peanuts," "Parker's Mood" and "A Night in Tunisia." Gonzales was showcased on "If I Should Lose You" and "Just Friends," and there were splendid solos along the way by Dalton and all the saxophonists who also traded fours on "Parker's Mood." A first-rate concert.

On February 16, guest saxophonist Dick Oatts joined the Albuquerque Jazz Orchestra for a concert at Eldorado High School that wrapped up the annual two-day Albuquerque Jazz Festival. Oatts, a long-time member of New York City's Vanguard Jazz Orchestra who excels on a number of reed instruments, employed only an alto on this occasion, dazzling on half a dozen numbers from fast-moving riffs to Bob Brookmeyer's slow-paced arrangement of Hoagy Carmichael's lovely ballad, "Skylark." Preceding Oatts' star turn, the AJO opened the concert with three numbers, Bert Joris' "Song for Bilbao," the standard "They Can't Take That Away from Me" and Don Sebesky's delightful "Fan It, Janet," the last featuring tenor Lee Taylor and trombonist Ben Finberg. Finberg, trumpeter Kent Erickson and alto Sam Reid were the soloists on "Bilbao," Reid and pianist Jim Ehrend on "Away from Me." Oatts then performed two of his own compositions, "Gumbo G" and "Organic Lady," along with "Skylark," "Just Like That" and the standard "Beautiful Love," closing with Nat Adderley's high-energy "Teaneck." His luminous unaccompanied coda on "Skylark" lasted longer than most solos and brought the near-capacity audience to its feet. The AJO kept pace with apt statements by Ehrend, Reid, Erickson, Finberg, trumpeters Brad Dubbs and Henry Estrada, trombonist John Sanks and drummer Paul Palmer III (who was also celebrating his birthday). It was, however, Oatts' show, and he was on his toes throughout, showing why he has been one of the Vanguard Orchestra's bellwethers for more than three decades.

International Jazz Day


Until recently I had no idea there was anything like an International Jazz Day, but I'm happy to learn that there is. In fact, this is the second annual such event, co-sponsored by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the Thelonious Monk
Thelonious Monk
Thelonious Monk
1917 - 1982
piano
Institute of Jazz. The date is April 30, and this year's IJD concert will be held in Istanbul, Turkey, where, apparently, jazz is held in high regard. An early-morning performance by high school students conducted by Herbie Hancock
Herbie Hancock
Herbie Hancock
b.1940
piano
, Wayne Shorter
Wayne Shorter
Wayne Shorter
b.1933
saxophone
and others (you heard right) is to be followed by an evening concert featuring, among others, Hancock, Shorter, Igor Butman
Igor Butman
Igor Butman
b.1961
sax, tenor
, Terri Lyne Carrington
Terri Lyne Carrington
Terri Lyne Carrington
b.1965
drums
, Anat Cohen
Anat Cohen
Anat Cohen

sax, tenor
, George Duke
George Duke
George Duke
1946 - 2013
piano
, James Genus
James Genus
James Genus
b.1966
bass
, Robert Glasper
Robert Glasper
Robert Glasper
b.1978
piano
, Abdullah Ibrahim
Abdullah Ibrahim
Abdullah Ibrahim
b.1934
piano
, Al Jarreau
Al Jarreau
Al Jarreau
b.1940
vocalist
, Hugh Masakela, John McLaughlin
John McLaughlin
John McLaughlin
b.1942
guitar
, Marcus Miller
Marcus Miller
Marcus Miller
b.1959
bass, electric
, Milton Nascimento
Milton Nascimento
Milton Nascimento
b.1942
guitar
, Eddie Palmieri
Eddie Palmieri
Eddie Palmieri
b.1936
piano
, Jean-Luc Ponty
Jean-Luc Ponty
Jean-Luc Ponty
b.1942
violin
, Dianne Reeves
Dianne Reeves
Dianne Reeves
b.1956
vocalist
, Lee Ritenour
Lee Ritenour
Lee Ritenour
b.1952
guitar
, Ben Williams and Liu Wan (with other special guests to be announced). How all those musicians will have time to do more than take a bow is a mystery, but one that would no doubt be worth seeing. Getting back to IJD, to date nearly eighty events have been organized in thirty countries including Argentina, Australia, the Republic of Korea, France, Gabon, Malaysia and Trinidad and Tobago (no mention of the United States). There's even a web site, www.jazzday.com. I'm sure you can find out more about International Jazz Day there.

Brubeck Memorial

comments powered by Disqus
Support All About Jazz Through Amazon

Weekly Giveaways

Mark Elf

Mark Elf

About | Enter

Stefano Bollani

Stefano Bollani

About | Enter

Carmen Lundy

Carmen Lundy

About | Enter

Wadada Leo Smith

Wadada Leo Smith

About | Enter

Sponsor: Nonesuch Records | BUY NOW

Enter it twice.
To the weekly jazz events calendar

Enter the numbers in the graphic
Enter the code in this picture

Log in

One moment, you will be redirected shortly.

or search site with Google