Dewey Redman Blows His Birthday in Miami Beach


Sign in to view read count
The second coming of the JVC Jazz Festival-Miami Beach started small on May 15 2002. A trio, consisting of Matt Wilson on drums, a John ­something or other in bass­ and Redman playing tenor sax, Chinese cornet, his voice, gestures and character at Jazid. In such a venue, almost anyone can conjure a “standing room only” crowd since it can pass as a living room with a bar and a second floor master bedroom with yet another bar. Having said that, the music and the good times had were enormous and the WDNA 88.9 FM staff in attendance duly appreciated the support.
Redman played two sets, with an upstairs solitude-seeking break, that had the audience, whooping and hollering throughout the evening. These fellows engaged the material with earnest as the repertoire included plenty of opportunities for all concerned to shine. Jazz was represented by both accessible and challenging expressions, although the vocabulary of the musicians was rather advanced. Since there were so many knowledgeable people in the public, such as Gary Keller, Arturo Gómez Cruz, personnel from the Rhythm Foundation, Nicole Yarling, Frank Consola, Joe Donato, Gary Campbell, old radio hands from the heyday of Miami’s radio jazz days (during the ‘70s, Miami had China Valles, Symphony Sid and a host of similar radio giants all under one radio roof), a slew of local musicians and an admiring crowd that encompassed any age and lifestyle you can almost imagine, the reigning vibe was thrilling.
Dewey Redman can play. He blew, honked, lured, entertained and mingled with the crowd as he played, while leading the rest of the group with his expertise. His playing was very strong and as updated, ahead and traditional as he could muster. His tone, ideas and framework for them, was impeccable. Matt Wilson’s drumming was a delight to hear and behold as he kept a steady driving impetus flowing through various textures, hits and uncommon percussive notions. The bassist did not lag behind in swing, intelligence and challenges for himself, the members of the band, as well as the audience at hand.
During the last tune, a fellow joined the musicians during the final frolic axing his alto sax. Redman indicated that he was a friend who just had moved to Miami. His name was Byard Lancaster. He had a great time with the group and showed sturdy chops.

Although every source I know lists Redman’s birthday as May 17, a birthday cake appeared at the end of the gig as everyone wished him a happy birthday in collective song. Just as the cake appeared, the gig was up and Redman quickly exited the night upstairs and into a memorable register in everyone who had the chance to have fun while blowing all cares into superb jazz à la Redman. However, was it his birthday or not?


comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Jay Phelps at the Harrow Arts Centre Live Reviews Jay Phelps at the Harrow Arts Centre
by Barry Witherden
Published: July 25, 2017
Read The Seth Yacovone Blues Trio At Red Square Live Reviews The Seth Yacovone Blues Trio At Red Square
by Doug Collette
Published: July 23, 2017
Read Earl Thomas At Biscuits & Blues Live Reviews Earl Thomas At Biscuits & Blues
by Walter Atkins
Published: July 22, 2017
Read My Morning Jacket on The Green At Shelburne Museum Live Reviews My Morning Jacket on The Green At Shelburne Museum
by Doug Collette
Published: July 22, 2017
Read Garana Jazz Festival 2017 Live Reviews Garana Jazz Festival 2017
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: July 20, 2017
Read "Hot Autumn Nights featuring Peter Noone's Herman's Hermits, the Grass Roots, the Box Tops and Gary Lewis & The Playboys at the NYCB Theatre at Westbury" Live Reviews Hot Autumn Nights featuring Peter Noone's...
by Mike Perciaccante
Published: September 30, 2016
Read "Shirlee Temper At The Empress Theatre" Live Reviews Shirlee Temper At The Empress Theatre
by Walter Atkins
Published: April 30, 2017
Read "Soule Indomitable at Nectar's" Live Reviews Soule Indomitable at Nectar's
by Doug Collette
Published: April 2, 2017
Read "John Hart at The Turning Point Cafe" Live Reviews John Hart at The Turning Point Cafe
by David A. Orthmann
Published: May 2, 2017
Read "Tony Bennett at Birmingham Symphony Hall" Live Reviews Tony Bennett at Birmingham Symphony Hall
by David Burke
Published: July 5, 2017
Read "Chris Oatts Quintet at Chris’ Jazz Cafe" Live Reviews Chris Oatts Quintet at Chris’ Jazz Cafe
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: June 26, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.