Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for 1,000 backers to help fund our 2018 projects that directly support jazz. You can make this happen by purchasing ad space or by making a donation to our fund drive. In addition to completing every project (listed here), we'll also hide all Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

3

June Means Jazz as Festivals Flourish

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
June, as always, is a harbinger of exciting things to come as the jazz festival season springs forth in earnest, causing even the most ardent couch potatoes to bestir themselves and start perusing the calendar to locate interesting events in their neck of the woods. Here in New Mexico, the "outdoor" season comes to life with the annual Jazz, Blues & Salsa Under the Stars series at the Museum of Art and History, which is where Betty and I were on June 2 for a concert by the Albuquerque Jazz Orchestra with guest artist Matt Catingub.

Catingub, whose mom was jazz singer Mavis Rivers, began his career playing in the Louie Bellson Big Band and since then has enjoyed a successful career as a composer, arranger, pianist, vocalist and saxophonist extraordinaire. He did all of that with the AJO, charming the overflow audience with his outgoing stage presence while showing them every facet of his extensive musical persona. Catingub even brought his own drummer, Steve Moretti, from Los Angeles to sit in for the AJO's Paul Palmer III who took advantage of the day off to get married.

The first half of the evening's performance consisted of music by the New Mexico Jazz Workshop's high school and middle school Honor Bands directed by Christian Pincock (high school) and Sam Nesbitt (middle school). After intermission, the AJO came out roaring with a pair of flag-wavers, Phil Kelly's "Sweet Georgia Upside Down" and the Gershwins' "They Can't Take That Away from Me," with muscular solos on the first by trumpeter Bruce Dalby, on the second by pianist Jim Ahrend and music director / alto saxophonist Glenn Kostur. Catingub opened (on alto sax) with yet another swinger, "There Will Never Be Another You," on which Dalby, tenor Lee Taylor and valve trombonist Pincock added sharp solos while Moretti drove the ensemble with alacrity. Catingub then invited everyone to dance (a request that was answered by more than a dozen intrepid couples) to a medley of Swing Era favorites, "Don't Be That Way" and "Stompin' at the Savoy," arranged, as was everything else, by Catingub himself.

Ellington's "It Don't Mean a Thing," scored as a mambo with Catingub at the piano, preceded Catingub's "Salute to Elvis Costello," written, he said, as a sarcastic swipe when he was still a young man and before he came to appreciate Costello's first-rate musicianship. Catingub next displayed his vocal prowess on a pair of songs he arranged for Rosemary Clooney, "You Go to My Head" and her surprise pop hit from the early '50s, "Come On-a My House," before closing the performance with his crafty satire of Oliver Nelson's "Blues and the Abstract Truth," entitled "Blues and the Abscessed Tooth." Ahrend's crisp piano solo followed a spirited alto duel between Catingub and Kostur. As the concert had to end, that was arguably the best possible way to ring down the curtain.

NYJO News

Trumpeter Mark Armstrong, who came up through the ranks of Great Britain's National Youth Jazz Orchestra, has been appointed NYJO's artistic and music director. Armstrong is a professor at the Royal College of Music and teaches composing and arranging at the Royal Centre for Contemporary Music. He performs regularly with the Ronnie Scott Jazz Orchestra and is an alumnus of the Clark Tracey Quintet. Armstrong's appointment to lead NYJO is for five years.

It Happened in Monterey . . .

The Monterey Jazz Festival has named the young musicians who will comprise the 2012 Next Generation Jazz Orchestra. The twenty-one high school musicians hail from California, Florida, Iowa, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Washington State. The orchestra will tour Japan from July 23-August 6 and perform with trumpeter (and NGJO alumnus) Ambrose Akinmusire at the fifty-fifth Monterey Jazz Festival, September 23.

Returning from last years's NGJO are saxophonists Jasper Dutz and Conner Anderson (both from CA), bassist Daryl Johns (NJ), trombonist Joonas Lemetyinen (OR), trumpeter Adam O'Farrill (NY) and bass trombonist Chris Palowitch (CA), the band's only three-year member. Former members of the orchestra include pianists Benny Green and Patrice Rushen, bassist Larry Grenadier, drummer Chad Wackerman, saxophonists Joshua Redman, Donny McCaslin, Eric Marienthal and Dave Koz, trombonist Andy Martin, trumpeter Gilbert Castellanos and multi-instrumentalist and big-band leader Gordon Goodwin, to name a few. The band's director, Paul Contos, succeeds such former directors as Ladd McIntosh, Don Schamber, Benny Golson and Bill Berry.

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Los Angeles Jazz Institute Festival "Big Band Spectacular" 2017, Part 1-4 Big Band Report Los Angeles Jazz Institute Festival "Big Band...
by Simon Pilbrow
Published: July 18, 2017
Read A Big Band Spectacular? You Bet Your Brass! Big Band Report A Big Band Spectacular? You Bet Your Brass!
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 5, 2017
Read Time Check: A Paucity of Riches? Big Band Report Time Check: A Paucity of Riches?
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 2, 2016
Read Buddy Rich Rides Again Big Band Report Buddy Rich Rides Again
by Jack Bowers
Published: January 27, 2016
Read Buddy Rich: The Beat Goes On Big Band Report Buddy Rich: The Beat Goes On
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 11, 2014
Read Swingin' on a Riff . . . Hangin' by a Thread? Big Band Report Swingin' on a Riff . . . Hangin' by a Thread?
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 14, 2013
Read "Los Angeles Jazz Institute Festival "Big Band Spectacular" 2017, Part 1-4" Big Band Report Los Angeles Jazz Institute Festival "Big Band...
by Simon Pilbrow
Published: July 18, 2017
Read "A Big Band Spectacular? You Bet Your Brass!" Big Band Report A Big Band Spectacular? You Bet Your Brass!
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 5, 2017
Read "Brubeck Institute Summer Jazz Colony 2017" In Pictures Brubeck Institute Summer Jazz Colony 2017
by Gregory Savage
Published: August 22, 2017
Read "C. Michael Bailey’s Best Releases of 2016" Best of / Year End C. Michael Bailey’s Best Releases of 2016
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: December 15, 2016
Read "Misterioso" What is Jazz? Misterioso
by Annette Johnson
Published: August 3, 2017
Read "Los Lobos at The Barre Opera House" Live Reviews Los Lobos at The Barre Opera House
by Doug Collette
Published: February 4, 2017
Read "The University of the Arts “Z” Big Band: Monterey, Here We Come!" Jazz Goes to College The University of the Arts “Z” Big Band:...
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: September 13, 2017

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Please support out sponsor