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STLJN Saturday Video Showcase: Les McCann and Javon Jackson


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This week's videos feature keyboardist Les McCann and saxophonist Javon Jackson, who will be in St. Louis next week to perform Wednesday, October 22 through Saturday, October 25 at Jazz at the Bistro. Their team-up is billed as “Swiss Movement Revisited," a reference to McCann's collaboration with the late saxophonist Eddie Harris and the famous live album the two recorded in 1969 at the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland.

In part because their collaboration is relatively recent, there's not a whole lot of footage online showing Jackson and McCann playing together, but let's take a look at what is out there. First up is an excerpt from a recent performance at the Deer Valley Jazz Festival in Park City, Utah (also the home of the Sundance Film Festival). This clip apparently comes from some sort of promo for the Deer Valley fest, so there's also some interview footage with an audience member before the music starts.

The second clip features Jackson and McCann playing a tune called “Fun Time", composed by bassist Kenny Davis, at a show in May at the Dakota Jazz Club in Minneapolis. The video quality is rough, as it's from a cellphone camera. The third clip was shot around the same time, and shows McCann and Jackson on a visit to the High School for the Performing Arts in St. Paul, MN, where they interact with and listen to some student performers and then play a bit themselves. And finally, as a reminder of the collaboration that helped inspire the McCann/Jackson pairing, the fourth video is a vintage clip showing McCann and Eddie Harris performing the most famous song they recorded together, “Compared to What".

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