All About Jazz

Home » Articles » Live Reviews

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

220

Justo Almario Quartet: L. A. County Museum of Art Jazz Series, May 2, 2008

By

Sign in to view read count
Justo Almario Quartet
Friday Night Jazz Series, Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Los Angeles, California
May 2, 2008

The weather was just right as a crowd of jazz enthusiasts gathered to experience the glorious and tireless musicianship of woodwind virtuoso Justo Almario and his ensemble May 2 at the Friday Night Jazz Series hosted by Los Angeles County Museum of Art. It was jazz served up with sizzling sound-check appetizers, marvelous main courses, and dazzling desserts.

Almario conducted a sound check with the Jerome Kern standard, "All The Things You Are," which quickly captivated all those on hand. His attention to melody, harmony, and the essence of the tune during his warm-up was exquisitely beautiful, more like a finished product. Almario humbly accepted the applause and whispered into his microphone with a mischievous smile, "sound check, just a sound check." Merely a teasing appetizer for what was yet to come. The seating quickly filled at the outdoor venue, but latecomers weren't complaining even as they stood in crowded spaces. They were eagar to see Almario and his matchless supporting cast concoct a scrumptious musical meal for us.

The Thelonius Monk tune "I Mean You" was the starter course for the evening, intertwined with a quote from a Thelonius Monk/Kenny Clarke bop favorite "Epistrophy," which evoked nods of approval from both the rhythm section and the audience. Next up was Sonny Rollins' "Oleo," wonderfully performed at high speed. We continued our fine dining, enjoying the interaction of a trade of fours between the rhythm section and Almario. Staccato, legato, slurred, or tongued—the articulations of each note, effortless phrasing, and deft negotiation of chords made for an exciting statement, filling the atmosphere with joy. The audience even had an opportunity to join in during a soulful rendition of Herbie Hancock's "Watermelon Man," chanting the piece's title whenever cued by the leader.

The night provided another tempting course with a beautiful Cuban piece composed in the 1920s by Ernesto Lecuona—"Al Fin Te Vi." Adding to the enticement were Walter Rodriquez on drums and Edwin Livingston on bass, each providing alluring solos in addition to supporting Almario's brilliant mastery on clarinet. As the evening progressed, so did the quartet's vibrant expressiveness on each tune, assuring that no one was left unsatisfied by the delectable jazz delights of this rich musical feast.

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) holds its Friday Evening Jazz Series throughout the remainder of spring and the entire summer for your music consumption.

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Abdullah Ibrahim at the Michigan Theater Live Reviews
Abdullah Ibrahim at the Michigan Theater
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: April 25, 2018
Read The Jane Getter Premonition at Iridium Live Reviews
The Jane Getter Premonition at Iridium
by Roger Weisman
Published: April 24, 2018
Read Liberty Ellman Trio at Crescent Arts Centre Live Reviews
Liberty Ellman Trio at Crescent Arts Centre
by Ian Patterson
Published: April 22, 2018
Read Tallinn Music Week 2018 Live Reviews
Tallinn Music Week 2018
by Henning Bolte
Published: April 19, 2018
Read James Blood Ulmer and the Thing at Bochum Art Museum Live Reviews
James Blood Ulmer and the Thing at Bochum Art Museum
by Phillip Woolever
Published: April 17, 2018
Read Jocelyn Medina at Jazz at Kitano Live Reviews
Jocelyn Medina at Jazz at Kitano
by Tyran Grillo
Published: April 16, 2018
Read "Brilliant Corners 2018" Live Reviews Brilliant Corners 2018
by Ian Patterson
Published: April 3, 2018
Read "Kraak Festival 2018" Live Reviews Kraak Festival 2018
by Martin Longley
Published: March 24, 2018
Read "Omar Sosa Residency at SFJAZZ" Live Reviews Omar Sosa Residency at SFJAZZ
by Harry S. Pariser
Published: May 8, 2017
Read "WDR 3 Jazzfest 2018" Live Reviews WDR 3 Jazzfest 2018
by Henning Bolte
Published: February 16, 2018
Read "Wadada Leo Smith At Firehouse 12" Live Reviews Wadada Leo Smith At Firehouse 12
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: May 11, 2017