Make a difference: Support jazz online

Support All About Jazz Your friends at All About Jazz are looking for readers to help back our website upgrade project. Of critical importance, this project will result in a vastly improved reader experience across all devices and will make future All About Jazz projects much easier to implement. Click here to learn more about this project including donation rewards.


All That Jazz Month: Phoenix, AZ, November 9-30, 2012

Patricia Myers By

Sign in to view read count
All That Jazz Month
Musical Instrument Museum
Phoenix, AZ
November 9-30, 2012

All That Jazz Month, in November 2012 at the Musical Instrument Museum (MIM), featured a star-studded concert series that included the saxophonist Branford Marsalis Quartet, vocalese masters The Manhattan Transfer, DIVA Jazz with saxophonist Grace Kelly, and a Django Reinhardt Tribute, all staged to introduce a newly expanded jazz history exhibit.

The month was launched Nov. 9-11 with an All That Jazz weekend that included concerts, curatorial talks, presentations by guests from the Smithsonian Institution and the Ella Fitzgerald Charitable Foundation, and live music by local jazz groups. MIM is an ethnic music museum that opened in April 2010 with collections representing five global regions. The original small American jazz component was expanded this year into one of the museum's larger genre exhibits, with three sections of 66 instruments, 31 video clips and 23 images that represent jazz from its early days through swing, bebop, cool, hard bop and contemporary forms.

MIM, a Smithsonian affiliate, expanded its permanent jazz collection by borrowing several instruments from the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History for display including clarinets played by Benny Goodman and Artie Shaw, and a trombone played by J.J. Johnson. Other pieces include a trumpet mouthpiece and mute used by Miles Davis and a guitar played by Charlie Christian. A cornet associated with Louis Armstrong is part of the Early Jazz segment, a beaded gown and lyric sheets owned by Ella Fitzgerald is in the Women in Jazz exhibit, and a saxophone played by Mario Bauza and timbales are on loan to MIM from Eddie Palmieri for the Latin Jazz exhibit.

The month's focus also included concerts by saxophonist/flautist Jane Bunnett's "Cuban Rhapsody" with pianist Hilario Duran and 92-year-old congero Candido Camero, the Ivory & Gold duo (pianist Jeff Barnhart and flutist Anne Barnhart) and the opening of a touring exhibition, "Portraits from the Golden Age of Jazz: Photographs by William Gottlieb," on display through April 6, 2013. MIM is showcasing instruments and video footage of many of the featured musicians alongside 71 photographs of jazz legends.

Marsalis performed back-to-back evening concerts on Nov. 13 with his dazzling trio of pianist Joey Calderazzo, bassist Eric Revis and drummer Justin Faulkner. The leader chose tenor sax for "The Return of the Jitney Man," written by his longtime drummer Jeff "Tain" Watts, that featured Faulkner, a 20-year-old explosion master who joined the group three years ago. (Revis and Calderazzo date back to 1997's Music Evolution (Columbia). The repertoire reflected the newest Marsalis issue, Four MFs Playin' Tunes (Marsalis Music, 2012).

Marsalis switched between soprano and tenor saxophones to explore various moods and modes of subsequent charts, delivering Uzi-speed post-bop arpeggios against Calderazzo's equally agile keyboard work. The pianist's impressionistic composition, "As Summer into Autumn Slips," featured alternately fiery and tranquil segments. Thelonious Monk's "Teo" tribute offered a quirky contrast to the ethereal "Maestra," each buoyed by the solid warmth of Revis and Faulkner's awesome foundation. The encore of the 75-minute concert brought a 180-degree shift in content and style, Marsalis bringing out his tenor sax for a straight-ahead rendition of George Gershwin's last composition, "Our Love Is Here to Stay." It was a mystifying change of pace, but definitely audience-satisfying.

Manhattan Transfer performed four holiday-themed shows on Nov. 29-30 for age-mixed audiences that reflected the four-decade popularity of the vocalese aggregation. The first five songs were holiday themed and included Johnny Mandel's "A Christmas Love Song" and, later, a rendition of Mel Torme's "The Christmas Song." As expected, the most enthusiastic response was for keyboardist Joe Zawinul's "Birdland," the group's anthem since 1979 via the Jon Hendricks lyrics to the Weather Report hit.


comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Jazztopad 2017: Concerts In Living Rooms Live Reviews Jazztopad 2017: Concerts In Living Rooms
by Martin Longley
Published: January 17, 2018
Read Lean On Me: José James Celebrates Bill Withers @ NYC Winter Jazzfest Live Reviews Lean On Me: José James Celebrates Bill Withers @ NYC...
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: January 15, 2018
Read Carl Bartlett, Jr. at Jazz At Kitano Live Reviews Carl Bartlett, Jr. at Jazz At Kitano
by Keith Henry Brown
Published: January 13, 2018
Read Kurt Rosenwinkel at Chris’ Jazz Café Live Reviews Kurt Rosenwinkel at Chris’ Jazz Café
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: January 2, 2018
Read Terence Blanchard at Christ Church Cranbrook Live Reviews Terence Blanchard at Christ Church Cranbrook
by Troy Dostert
Published: December 29, 2017
Read "We Jazz: Moveable Feast Fest Theory" Live Reviews We Jazz: Moveable Feast Fest Theory
by Josef Woodard
Published: December 16, 2017
Read "Lewis Nash and Steve Wilson at JazzNights" Live Reviews Lewis Nash and Steve Wilson at JazzNights
by David A. Orthmann
Published: April 18, 2017
Read "Gary Peacock Trio at the Regattabar Jazz Club" Live Reviews Gary Peacock Trio at the Regattabar Jazz Club
by Nat Seelen
Published: December 27, 2017
Read "Edgefest 2017: Give the Drummers Some, Part 1-2" Live Reviews Edgefest 2017: Give the Drummers Some, Part 1-2
by Troy Dostert
Published: October 30, 2017
Read "Arturo Sandoval at the Blue Note" Live Reviews Arturo Sandoval at the Blue Note
by Nicholas F. Mondello
Published: October 30, 2017
Read "Bonerama at the Iridium" Live Reviews Bonerama at the Iridium
by Mike Perciaccante
Published: August 5, 2017