National Jazz Museum in Harlem 2010 December Schedule

The National Jazz Museum in Harlem closes out 2010 in swinging style as we focus on the history, function and joy of jazz drums at Jazz for Curious Listeners and our Saturday panel. Among the drummers leading these sessions will be: Otis Brown III, Kenny Washington and Adam Nussbaum. Bassist and composer Sean Smith fronts a trio for our last Harlem in the Himalayas performance of the year, whereas the National Jazz Museum in Harlem All Stars will mambo and salsa your feet and hips, replete with grooves that'll make your holiday season complete, at the Dwyer Cultural Center.And while rhythm is most certainly our business, we also endeavor to share the stories of jazz and jazz artists with you, our patrons and visitors. So come enjoy discussions with author Ed Berger for Jazz for Curious Readers, pianist Jonathan Batiste for Jazz is Now!, and, for our flagship Harlem Speaks series, talks with pianist Mike LeDonne and saxophonist Greg Osby.

We wish you a merry and joyous holiday season, and hope the new year brings you good health and everything else your heart desires. Thanks for your support of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Jazz Is: Now!
Jonathan Batiste
7:00pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
Join young pianist Jonathan Batiste as he performs and leads a discussion on jazz culture and its relevance in today's society. The Juilliard Jazz grad is one of the most exciting and sui generis artists on the jazz scene; you'll discover that his point of view is too. Join the celebration in the midst of the discourse.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Harlem Speaks
Mike LeDonne, Pianist
6:30 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Pianist Mike LeDonne, born in Bridgeport Connecticut in 1956, was raised in his parent's music store and by the age of 10 his father, a jazz guitarist, began booking him on gigs. At age 21, Mike graduated from New England Conservatory and moved to New York City.

In 1981, he left to travel to the UK with Panama Francis and the Savoy Sultans. On returning, he began a two-year stint as the house pianist at Jimmy Ryan's, then one of New York's oldest jazz clubs. It was there that he came under the influence of and played with many old masters such as Roy Eldridge, Papa Jo Jones and Vic Dickenson. He spent 1982-1983 with the Benny Goodman sextet and went on to play with Buddy Tate, Al Grey, Ruby Braff and many others.

In 1988 he started playing with the Milt Jackson Quartet; Milt recorded Mike's compositions and arrangements and selected him as the band's musical director. In the fall of 1992, Mike was chosen to be part of a group of top young musicians (Ryan Kisor, Joshua Redman, Jesse Davis, Christian McBride, and Lewis Nash) for the Phillip Morris Superband World Tour. Around this time, Mike toured with the Newport All-Stars in lineups that also featured Harry "Sweets" Edison and Clark Terry. Mike has been playing and recording with Benny Golson since 1997. He has also been leading trios which have included Ron Carter, Jimmy Cobb, Billy Hart, Pete LaRoca and Louis Hayes.

Along with his many recordings as a sideman, he has five CDs on Criss Cross Jazz and three on Double Time Records, featuring music artists such as Tom Harrell, Gary Smulyan, Dennis Irwin, Kenny Washington, Steve Nelson, Peter Bernstein, Peter Washington, Mickey Roker, Eric Alexander, Jim Rotondi, and Joe Farnsworth. Mike is the co-author of Jim Snidero's Jazz Conception for Piano and Piano Comping books, on Advance Music. In 2002 Mike joined the faculty at the Juilliard School of Music. He has won praise not only from critics but from master musicians: the late Oscar Peterson picked him as one of his favorite pianists.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Harlem in the Himalayas
Sean Smith Trio
7:00pm
Location: Rubin Museum of Art
(150 West 17th Street)
$18 in advance | $20 at door |
For tickets: RMA Box Office or call 212-620-5000 ext. 344

Bassist and composer Sean Smith has been part of the international jazz scene for more than 20 years. He has appeared in many of the major jazz rooms and concert halls all over the world. He has toured extensively in North and South America, throughout Europe and the Mediterranean, and as far away as Russia, Turkey, Morocco, and Japan.

In addition to leading his own quartet, Sean has been a member of the Jacky Terrasson Trio since 2000. His work with Jacky Terrasson and Emmanuel Pahud on the EMI/Blue Note recording Into The Blue was recently nominated for a 2003 Grammy Award. Sean has performed with many jazz superstars including Gerry Mulligan, Phil Woods, Benny Carter, Flip Phillips, Clark Terry, Johnny Griffin, Lee Konitz, Art Farmer, and Tom Harrell. He has also been the accompanist of choice for such world-renowned vocalists as Peggy Lee, Rosemary Clooney, Mark Murphy, Jimmy Scott, and Andy Bey. Sean has also performed and recorded with up-and-coming vocalist Kate McGarry.

A Manhattan School of Music graduate, Sean is also a prolific composer whose works have been played and recorded by such artists as Phil Woods, Mark Murphy, Bill Charlap, Gene Bertoncini, Bill Mays, and Leon Parker. His Song For The Geese was recorded by Mark Murphy as the title track of Murphy’s RCA/BMG release, which was nominated for a Grammy Award in 1998. Sean received a Bistro Award for outstanding instrumentalist in 2007.

Sean’s first recording, Sean Smith Quartet Live! (on Chiaroscuro), featured some of his compositions and was received with outstanding reviews. Sean’s most recent recording, Poise (on Ambient), features new compositions performed by his working band.


Monday, December 6, 2010

Jazz for Curious Readers
Ed Berger, author of books on Benny Carter and George Duvivier
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Biographer and photographer Ed Berger is the Associate Director and Head of Research Services of the Institute of Jazz Studies at Rutgers University. He's a graduate of Indiana University and has a M.L.S. from Rutgers University. He is co-author of Benny Carter: A Life in American Music, Reminiscing in Tempo, and Basically Speaking: An Oral History of George Duvivier. He served as record producer and road manager for Benny Carter and will delight us this evening with anecdotes about two of the gentlemen of jazz who lit up the stages of jazz for decade upon decade with sophisticated artistry.


Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Jazz for Curious Listeners
Rhythm is Our Business: The Drummers
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
Otis Brown III

Tonight the New Jersey native Otis Brown III will bring his joyful style to Jazz for Curious Listeners in a discussion about his favorite drummers.

Since his birth in Hackensack, NJ, Otis has traveled a path that has led to him being one of the most in demand, and well respected musicians today. Expressing an early interest in music, Otis began his musical studies at age 7; by age 12 he was playing lead alto saxophone in the school bands while playing the drums in the Baptist church.

After moving to Newark, N.J., he continued performing double duty in his school bands playing snare drum in marching band, and alto saxophone in the jazz and concert ensembles, all of which were directed by his father Otis Brown Jr. He decided to pursue his musical education in college at Delaware State University, where he met legendary trumpeter Donald Byrd, an encounter that changed his life. He spent countless hours under the wings of Dr. Byrd, who later suggested that Otis continue his studies in New York, the jazz capital. He was awarded a scholarship to attend the prestigious New School University.

Since his arrival in New York Otis has performed and toured with musicians the caliber of Herbie Hancock, Christian McBride, Eric Lewis, Ron Blake, Roy Hargrove, Frank Lacy, Jeremy Pelt, Don Braden, Marc Ribot, Adam Rodgers, Pete Malinverni, Tim Hagans, Conrad Herwig, John Hicks, Oliver Lake, Aaron Goldberg, Bob Mintzer, George Garzone, and many others.

He currently can be seen touring with the Thelonious Monk Institute’s Jazz in America initiative, Joe Lovano’s trio quartet and nonet, the Laurent Coq trio, the Franck Amsallem trio and quartet, the Steve Wilson quartet, the Oliver Lake Big Band, the Bob Stewart tuba project and several other musical configurations.


Saturday, December 11, 2010

Jazz at the Dwyer
Afro-Cuban Jazz Dance Night with Bobby Sanabria & Quarteto Aché
7:00 – 11:00pm
Location: The Dwyer Cultural Center
(258 St. Nicholas Avenue at W. 123rd Street)
$20 | More information: info@DwyerCC.org

Bobby Sanabria - drummer, percussionist, composer, arranger, recording artist, producer, filmmaker, conductor, educator, multi-cultural warrior and multiple Grammy nominee – has performed with a veritable Who's Who in the world of jazz and Latin music, as well as with his own critically acclaimed ensembles. His diverse recording and performing experience includes work with such legendary figures as Dizzy Gillespie, Tito Puente, Paquito D'Rivera, Charles McPherson, Mongo Santamaría, Ray Barretto, Marco Rizo, Arturo Sandoval, Roswell Rudd, Chico O'Farrill, Candido, Yomo Toro, Francisco Aguabella, Larry Harlow, Henry Threadgill, and the Godfather of Afro-Cuban Jazz, Mario Bauzá.

Bobby, the son of Puerto Rican parents, was born and raised in the "Fort Apache" section of New York City's South Bronx. Inspired and encouraged by maestro Tito Puente, another fellow New York-born Puerto Rican, Bobby "got serious" and attended Boston's Berklee College of Music from 1975 to 1979, obtaining a Bachelor of Music degree and receiving their prestigious Faculty Association Award for his work as an instrumentalist. Since his graduation, Bobby has become a leader in the Afro-Cuban, Brazilian and jazz fields as both a drummer and percussionist, and is recognized as one of the most articulate musician-scholars of la tradición living today.

He has been featured on numerous Grammy-nominated albums, including The Mambo Kings and other movie soundtracks, as well as numerous television and radio work. Mr. Sanabria was the drummer with the legendary “Father of the Afro-Cuban Jazz movement,” Mario Bauzá’s Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra. With them he recorded three CD’s (two of which were Grammy-nominated) which are considered to be definitive works of the Afro-Cuban big-band jazz tradition. Mr. Sanabria was also featured with the orchestra in two PBS documentaries about Bauzá and also appeared on the Bill Cosby show performing with the orchestra. He also appeared and performed prominently in a PBS documentary on the life of Mongo Santamaria and on camera in the CBS television movie, Rivkin: Bounty Hunter.

Bobby and his Quarteto Aché toured Armenia in June of 2007 being personally invited by the U.S. Embassy to represent the United States in a series of concerts. Headlining in the final event, The Cascade Jazz festival in Yerevan, Armenia’s capitol, the group received a thunderous ovation from the estimated 8,000 person audience which was broadcast throughout the country. In a pre-concert press conference when asked what jazz represented, Bobby simply stated, “Freedom.“ His group has the unique distinction and honor of being the first ensemble ever to perform Latino oriented jazz in this country and spread clave consciousness in a unique master class that he held at the Yerevan Conservatory. If this weren’t enough, the ensemble performed a private concert for Armenia’s Heads of State, and President Robert Khachaturian who stated that, “I simply love jazz! Its spirit of improvisation in a collective democracy is the inspiration for my vision for Armenia."

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Jazz for Curious Listeners
Rhythm is Our Business: The Drummers
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: Maysles Institute
343 Lenox Ave
New York, NY 10027
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
Kenny Washington

Jazz drummer and historian Kenny Washington is a repository of jazz music in story and in practice. He can tell you the history of jazz and jazz drumming, and then show you what he's talking about. Hailing from Staten Island, NY, Kenny began his career in the late '70s with Lee Konitz, and was a favorite of stalwart musicians such as Johnny Griffin, Betty Carter, and countless others. His record collection is the envy of jazz collectors, his moniker "the jazz maniac," was earned while doing deejay work on WBGO. Today, he can be found playing in the trio of pianist Bill Charlap as well as the ensemble led by legend Ahmad Jamal. And tonight he'll share the legacy of jazz drumming on film featuring Max Roach, Kenny Clarke, Ray McKinley, Papa Jo Jones, Sid Catlett, and many others, so don't miss this rare opportunity!

December 15, 2010

Jazz Is: Now!
Jonathan Batiste
7:00pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
Join young pianist Jonathan Batiste as he performs and leads a discussion on jazz culture and its relevance in today's society. The Juilliard Jazz grad is one of the most exciting and sui generis artists on the jazz scene; rest assured that his point of view is too. Join the celebration in the midst of the discourse.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Harlem Speaks
Greg Osby, Saxophonist     
6:30 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Saxophonist, composer, producer and educator Greg Osby has made an indelible mark on contemporary jazz as a leader of his own ensembles and as a guest artist with other acclaimed jazz groups for the past 20 years. Highly regarded for his insightful and innovative approach to composition and performance, Osby is a shining beacon among the current generation of jazz musicians. He has earned numerous awards and critical acclaim for his recorded works and passionate live performances.

Born and reared in St. Louis, Greg Osby began his professional music career in 1975, after three years of private studies on clarinet, flute and alto saxophone. Coming from a vibrant and musical city, Osby showed an early interest in the performing arts and spent his years in secondary school with a heavy involvement in Blues and Jazz groups. In 1978 Osby furthered his musical education at Howard University (Washington, D.C.) where he majored in Jazz Studies. He continued his studies at the Berklee College of Music (Boston, MA) from 1980 to 1983.

Upon relocating to New York in early 1983, Osby quickly established himself as a notable and in demand sideman for artists as varied as Herbie Hancock, Dizzy Gillespie, Jack DeJohnette, Andrew Hill, Muhal Richard Abrams, Jim Hall and Jaki Byard as well as with many ethnic and new music ensembles in the New York area.

In 1985 Osby was invited to to join Jack DeJohnette's innovative group, "Special Edition". It was as a member of this ensemble Osby was able to fine tune the more challenging aspects of his conception in an open ended, no holds barred musical situation. Says Osby, "My musical thinking for performance and composition advanced by light years as Jack was open to my input and was very encouraging in pushing me to to maintain a steady flow of experimentation. It marked a major turning point in my development as an artist."

In 1987, Osby signed his first recording deal with a new German label, JMT (Jazz Music Today). With this situation, he felt that he was finally able to document life as he saw it through music. He had free creative reign to do whatever he liked. He recorded four CD titles for that label. Osby signed with Blue Note Records in 1990 and recorded fifteen outstanding recordings for that label as a leader. In 2008, Osby launched his own label, "Inner Circle Music", which serves as a platform for many of today's brightest artists. From the pulse of the streets and the language of a generation, Osby has sketched numerous musical essays set to a contemporary score using the improvisational nature of Jazz as the connecting thread.

On "9 Levels," his latest recording on Inner Circle Music, Osby presents his wares in a sextet format and is joined by special guests, Nir Felder, guitar; Adam Birnbaum, piano; Joseph Lepore, bass; Hamir Atwal, drums; and a welcome newcomer to the international jazz scene, vocalist Sara Serpa.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Saturday Panels
Jazz is a Drum
12:00 - 4:00pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
LIVE MUSIC/FILM + MORE

Today's Saturday panel is a retrospective of a century of jazz drumming, including rare films, panels and live music. If you are curious about the role of the drum in jazz, or simply love the swinging groove and powerful solos of jazz drummers as they lockstep with the walking or funking bass and the comping piano, come on through and bring some other friends who'll appreciate that move.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Jazz for Curious Listeners
Rhythm is Our Business: The Drummers
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
Adam Nussbaum

Adam Nussbaum grew up in Norwalk, Connecticut and started to play drums at age 12 after studying piano for 5 years, also playing bass and saxophone as a teenager.

The multi-instrumentalist moved to New York City in 1975 to attend The Davis Center for Performing Arts at City College. While there he began working with Albert Dailey, Monty Waters, Joe Lee Wilson, Sheila Jordan and he played with Sonny Rollins in 1977 in Milwaukee. In 1978 he joined Dave Liebman's quintet and did his first European tour with John Scofield. During the early eighties he continued working with John Scofield in a celebrated trio with Steve Swallow. In 1983 he become a member of Gil Evans Orchestra and played with Stan Getz as well. He later joined Eliane Elias/Randy Brecker Quartet, Gary Burton, and Toots Thielemans. In 1987 he began touring with the Michael Brecker Quintet. In 1988 they recorded the Grammy winning "Don't Try This At Home" During 1992 he was part of the Carla Bley Big Band and that same year John Abercrombie hired him to complete his organ trio.

Since then he has kept active in a wide variety of groups. Among them a recently formed quartet 'BANN' with Seamus Blake, Jay Anderson & Oz Noy, A co-op quartet "NUTTREE" with Abercrombie, Jerry Bergonzi & Gary Versace, The James Moody Quartet, 'We Three' w/ Dave Liebman & Steve Swallow, Eliane Elias Trio, 'Playing in Traffic' w/ Steve Swallow & Ohad Talmor and also busy maintaining an active freelance schedule. Adam has taught as an Adjunct professor at New York University, the New School and State University of New York at Purchase. He also does clinics and master classes around the world.

And today, free, you can have your own master class with a master of jazz drumming.

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