SoCal Jazz

Sometimes poignant.... sometimes humorous....always about jazz. The musings of a lifetime jazz listener in stories, concert reviews, profiles, interviews, and more.

16

Pasqua, Erskine, and Oles: The Art of the Jazz Trio

Read "Pasqua, Erskine, and Oles: The Art of the Jazz Trio" reviewed by Jim Worsley


"We've known each other and have been playing together for fifty years now," was proudly, if even more sentimentally, reminisced by pianist Alan Pasqua in reference to drummer Peter Erskine to an intimate and appreciative audience at Sam First in Los Angeles during a recent performance. Bassist Darek Oleszkiewicz, who has been part of the mix for a “mere" twenty years, rounded out this stellar and superbly connected trio. Pasqua's warm hearted moment also included a remembrance of the late ...

8

L.A. Jazz Quartet: Live at The Baked Potato

Read "L.A. Jazz Quartet: Live at The Baked Potato" reviewed by Jim Worsley


The Baked Potato in Studio City (Los Angeles) is an iconic little jazz club that has been serving it up hot, both live music and scrumptious baked potatoes, for a half century now. The intimate space has played host to a long and impressive list of jazz elites. With a pre-pandemic capacity of not much more than seventy-five people, the BP recently reopened with a maximum of just twenty patrons inside! It amounts to a private show. For the record, ...

10

John Patitucci: The Quintessence of Acoustic and Electric

Read "John Patitucci: The Quintessence of Acoustic and Electric" reviewed by Jim Worsley


John Patitucci had his life's work in mind at age twelve, At a time when most of us were worried about junior high school and pimples, Patitucci concluded that he was to be a professional musician. This was no typical young boy fantasy of playing center field for the Yankees, being an astronaut, or even being the next great rock star. No, wise beyond his years, he modestly knew that he had the skills and musicality. It takes more than ...

16

Dean Brown: Global Fusion on Acid

Read "Dean Brown: Global Fusion on Acid" reviewed by Jim Worsley


From the outset, the equation was simple enough. Jazz + rock = fusion. However, whether it was Miles Davis, Larry Coryell, John McLaughlin, or any of the pioneers of fusion, the music has always been far from simplistic. Musical depth has long been the trademark of a genre that has been through many incarnations and traversed a multitude of directions. Jazz and rock has been supplemented through time by funk and Latin and other enriching flavors of sound.

21

Philippe Coignet: The Fusion of Paris, Rio, and New York

Read "Philippe Coignet: The Fusion of Paris, Rio, and New York" reviewed by Jim Worsley


A thirteen-piece ensemble ensconced in the immersion of three unique and divergent cultures is enough to get your attention. Veteran musician Philippe Coignet [pictured above with saxophonist Sulaiman Hakim, on the right] set out to do just that, skillfully fusing the rhythms, harmonic structures, and variant melodicism of Paris, Rio de Janeiro, and New York City. The French guitarist, composer, and arranger let us in on the many-faceted process of creating this highly dense, and highly spirited creation.

12

Bill Cunliffe: Always Doing It The Right Way

Read "Bill Cunliffe: Always Doing It The Right Way" reviewed by Jim Worsley


Most notably a jazz pianist, it comes as more than a surprise that Bill Cunliffe was not in the same orbit as jazz until he was in college. With the sheer volume of top shelf jazz he has written and recorded since, he would seem to have made up for any lost time. That time, those early years, were hardly lost. Instead filled with learning to play classical, pop, and Broadway. Cunliffe is remarkable not just in the ...

26

Gergo Borlai: Talkin' Drummers and Drumming

Read "Gergo Borlai: Talkin' Drummers and Drumming" reviewed by Jim Worsley


Most kids have heroes. Whether they be athletes, astronauts, artists, astrophysicists, (and that's just the “A's") or any of the many asundered possibilities. Gergo Borlai needn't go passed the “D's" to find his calling. Drumming came early, incredibly early, and he has never looked back. Determination and commitment can be a powerful force. Before long the powerful force was in the hands, feet, and mental acuity of Borlai. In this upbeat conversation Gergo gentlemanly fills the role of ...


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