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!

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

More Articles

Read Jazztopad Festival 2017 Live Reviews Jazztopad Festival 2017
by Henning Bolte
Published: December 13, 2017
Read Vivian Reed at Feinstein's/54 Below Live Reviews Vivian Reed at Feinstein's/54 Below
by Tyran Grillo
Published: December 12, 2017
Read Henry Threadgill at Tilton Gallery Live Reviews Henry Threadgill at Tilton Gallery
by Kurt Gottschalk
Published: December 10, 2017
Read The Brian McCarthy Quartet At FlynnSpace Live Reviews The Brian McCarthy Quartet At FlynnSpace
by Doug Collette
Published: December 10, 2017
Read Mindi Abair at The Empress Theatre Live Reviews Mindi Abair at The Empress Theatre
by Walter Atkins
Published: December 8, 2017
Read BAN BAM: Music Talking Live Reviews BAN BAM: Music Talking
by Ian Patterson
Published: December 7, 2017
Read "Amadou & Mariam At Stern Grove" Live Reviews Amadou & Mariam At Stern Grove
by Walter Atkins
Published: August 27, 2017
Read "Buenos Aires Jazz Festival 2016" Live Reviews Buenos Aires Jazz Festival 2016
by Mark Holston
Published: January 9, 2017
Read "April Jazz Festival in Espoo, Finland" Live Reviews April Jazz Festival in Espoo, Finland
by Anthony Shaw
Published: May 9, 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!