jazz

Jazz Museum Events: August 26-29, 2008

Dr. Billy Taylor- for the Grateful Web

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

JAZZ FOR CURIOUS LISTENERS
7:00pm
A Celebration of Dr. Billy Taylor

Location: NJMIH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | register online

Instructors: Loren Schoenberg & Christian McBride

This week come greet and meet Dr. Billy Taylor in person.

Last week instructor Greg Thomas continued the month-long tribute to Dr. Taylor with a focus on trio configurations throughout his career, from the 50s 'til this century. Tempos ballad to brisk, and styles from straight-ahead swing to spiritual solemnity to dance-groove funk to a classically-tinged composition featuring his trio with a symphony orchestra, were appreciated by the attendees at the National Jazz Museum in Harlem's Visitors Center.

Dr. Taylor is one of the few musicians extant tutored by Art Tatum, and who, as house pianist at Birdland, can recount his days playing and recording with Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Ben Webster, Coleman Hawkins and other standard bearers of jazz innovation. So expect the living jazz master to share wisdom in his inimitably warm style of conversation...with Loren Schoenberg and Christian McBride.

 

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Harlem Speaks
6:30 – 8:30pm                                            Eddie Bert Trombonist

Location: NJMIH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE

Trombonist Eddie Bert's career spans nearly seven decades of jazz, from big bands to bebop and beyond. In addition to being a jazz musician who's played with one and all, he's been a regular in Broadway show bands, and a first call studio player. Yet no matter what the musical setting, Eddie has always played his uniquely personal, warm and melodic style of jazz.

When renowned jazz leaders needed a dependable, original trombonist for a significant recording or event in the second half of the twentieth century, they turned to Eddie Bert. In fact, his resume reads like a Who's Who of modern Jazz, including musical relationships with Thelonious Monk, Charles Mingus, Coleman Hawkins, Woody Herman, Stan Kenton, Machito, Tito Puente, Benny Goodman, Thad Jones and Mel Lewis.

There's a reason Eddie Bert has played with the jazz masters - he's a truly gifted musician, a trombonist who has easily traversed eras and genres, from bop to swing, Mingus to Hampton, and Kenton to Herman. Eddie straddled the racial divide as well. He played in one of the first integrated big bands, Charlie Barnet's 1943 aggregation, which included Howard McGhee, Buddy DeFranco and Oscar Pettiford.

In addition to being one of the most dependable players in jazz history, always in demand because of his sight-reading skills and his ability to lend a passionate and individual approach to all music, Eddie is a soloist and arranger with a distinctive musical voice. In 1955, when he stopped playing only to sleep, he won Metronome's Musician of the Year award. He followed that with a top rated album of the same name for Savoy. He has led a number of other recordings during his distinguished career, featuring such sidemen as Duke Jordan, Joe Morello, Hank Jones and Kenny Clarke.

Yet during Eddie's teenage years, 52nd Street was a hotbed of musical activity. At fifteen, he began frequenting "The Street," where musicians of all generations played and gathered nightly. Being too young to get into the clubs at night, Eddie hung around during the afternoon when he knew the bands would be rehearsing.

Fast-forwarding several decades, in the 1990s Eddie started working with drummer T.S. Monk's group. "We did a European tour in 1997 and an album that featured a lot of Thelonious' new material that T. S. had found around the house. He hired me because I had played with his father-if you hang around long enough, you find that you have played with everyone's father!"

Now in his eighth decade, Eddie Bert is still playing the trombone, still traveling, and still married to Mollie, his wife of 60+ years. With three daughters and four grandchildren, he enjoys spending time with his family and, when not playing, also likes photography.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Harlem in the Himalayas
7:00pm                                   Theo Croker Quartet featuring Marcus Belgrave

Location: Rubin Museum of Art
(150 West 17th Street)
$18 in advance | $20 at door |
Box Office: 212.620.5000 ext. 344
 
Marcus Belgrave, trumpet
Theo Croker, trumpet
Joe Sanders, bass
Sullivan Fortner, piano
Kassa Overall, drums
 
Trumpeter Theo Croker, Doc Cheatham's grandson, has been featured all summer at Harlem in the Himalayas. This last performance promises to be hot, with Croker locking horns in antagonistic cooperation with elder trumpet legend Marcus Belgrave.
 
Trumpeter, composer, arranger, educator, recording artist, and producer Marcus Belgrave was born in Chester, Pennsylvania June 12 1936.
 
He began playing the trumpet at age six and professionally at age twelve.  Mr. Belgrave describes himself as "born into bebop."  An early inspiration and mentor was Clifford Brown.  At age eighteen, Marcus earned his initial reputation joining the Ray Charles Orchestra.  His solo on Alexander's Ragtime Band from the album The Genius of Ray Charles put him on the map. He toured for five years and is heard on such Charles hits as  Night Time is the Right Time, What'd I Say, You are My Sunshine, Margie, Ruby and Stella by Starlight.
 
In the early 60's he worked and recorded in the bands of leading innovators of post-bop modern jazz: Max Roach, Charles Mingus and Eric Dolphy. In 1963 Marcus settled in Detroit, becoming one of the prominent studio musicians with Motown Records.  He is heard on many Motown hit recordings including Dancing in the Street, The Way You Do the Things You Do, and My Girl. His distinguished career as a player includes performances with legendary stars from both the pop music and jazz world: Ella Fitzgerald, Bud Powell, Tony Bennett, Aretha Franklin, Sammy Davis Jr., Wynton Marsalis, Lena Horn, Liza Minnelli, Doc Cheatham, Sarah Vaughn, Dizzy Gillespie, Billy Eckstein, Gene Krupa (with whom he recorded) and many others.
 
As an original member, starting in 1988, he toured with the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, appearing on national television and recording for CBS/Sony. Marcus Belgrave's own recordings began in 1974 with the release of his self-produced album Gemini II, showcasing a collective of Detroit jazz artists, which he led. This record was the first to garner the attention of the international jazz press, about new "cutting edge" jazz activity emanating from that famous music city. Belgrave's recordings from the 1980's and '90's include the critically acclaimed Detroit Piano Legacy with Tommy Flanagan and Geri Allen and Working Together, Marcus' collaboration with composer/drummer Lawrence Williams. Recording more traditional jazz material in this period, Marcus co-led on albums with several of the last surviving "pioneers" of the pre-bebop era including saxophonist Franz Jackson (Live at Windsor Jazz Festival III) and pianist Art Hodes (Hot 'n Cool Blues). Critical accolades for these releases are cited in The Biographical Encyclopedia of Jazz, The Rolling Stone Guide to Jazz and Blues on CD, other jazz reference books, and major news publications.
 
Since 2001 Marcus Belgrave has led his Tribute to Louis Armstrong octet, appearing in thirty states, Canada and Puerto Rico and playing Armstrong's music in pops programs with the Detroit Symphony and other US orchestras.

As a soloist, Marcus continues to travel the US for appearances at jazz festivals, night clubs and concert hall performances. In January 2006 he was featured on three concerts at Jazz at Lincoln Center's presentation Detroit: Motor City Jazz, later broadcast on National Public Radio.

Mr. Belgrave is internationally known for his dedication to educational endeavors. He is founder of Detroit's Jazz Development Workshop and co-founder of the Jazz Studies Program at the Detroit Metro Arts Complex (recognized with grants from federal and state levels). He was also an original faculty member with the Oakland University Jazz Studies Program and in 2003 became the first Chair of Jazz Education and Programming for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Beneficiaries of his musical tutelage include leading names of today's jazz scene: pianist Geri Allen, bassist Robert Hurst, saxophonist Kenny Garrett, violinist Regina Carter and bassist Rodney Whitaker. The past five years Marcus has served as Professor of Jazz Trumpet at Oberlin University in Ohio.
 
In recognition of his outstanding artistry, vision, and life-long achievement in jazz education, Marcus Belgrave is the recipient of numerous honors including the Arts Midwest Jazz Master Award, the Michigan Governor's Arts Award, and the Louis Armstrong Award.

Gabe Dixon Band tour and new CD Streets 8/26

Photo by Henry Diltz- for the Grateful Web

To kick off the release of their eponymous Fantasy Records debut, the Gabe Dixon Band will tour clubs nationwide in September and October, including shows at New York's Bowery Ballroom, Philadelphia's Theatre of Living Arts, Los Angeles' Roxy Theatre, and San Francisco's Great American Music Hall. The band will share the stage with Stephen Kellogg & the Sixers September 10 –14, and with VH1 "You Oughta Know" buzz artist Justin Nozuka September 18–October 21.
 
The band will make their network television debut Labor Day week on "The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson." Even before the release of the album, the band is being lauded by a choir of fellow musicians: chart-topper Sara Bareilles says "Gabe's voice is flawless, and it delivers some of the most well-crafted, heart-felt, kick ass songs I've heard in a long time. He and the band are truly gifted, and we're lucky they decided to share those gifts with the world." Adds international sensation Jamie Cullum, "Seeing and hearing Gabe Dixon inspires me and upsets me. It inspires me because he plays superbly written songs, beautifully with a superb band. It upsets me because I fret that I may never be this good!" And Grammy Award-winning songwriter Dan Wilson comments, "I can't decide whether Gabe Dixon's secret weapon is his brilliance on the piano or his heart-melting voice. I guess I'll call it a tie. We fans have already witnessed this trio's blazing live performances — their self-titled album is the recorded proof. I'm guessing that Gabe won't be a secret for long after people hear these songs."
 
Gabe Dixon formed the band with bassist Winston Harrison and drummer Jano Rix when they were students at the University of Miami. Dixon has already been recognized as the "next great pop piano man" (Paste) by artists as varied as Alison Krauss, O.A.R. and Sir Paul McCartney, who have all tapped Dixon to play keyboards both live and in the studio.
 
The trio cut their debut CD live off the floor during ten days at Nashville's renowned Blackbird Studios with co-producer/engineer/mixer Neal Cappellino (Alison Krauss, Mindy Smith, Jonny Lang). The album embeds vividly detailed, intensely personal and universally relatable songs in elegant yet muscular settings that draw, unabashedly and expertly, on classic rock.

The Tennessean
, the newspaper in the band's hometown of Nashville, called it early when it stated in 2005 that Dixon "is a classic pop songwriter [who] deserves to join the ranks of Jackson Browne and early Elton John in the pop pantheon."

THE TOUR DATES:

Wed., Sept. 10  CARRBORO, NC   Cat's Cradle
Thurs. Sept. 11   ASHEVILLE, NC    The Orange Peel
Fri., Sept. 12   NASHVILLE, TN  The Belcourt Theater
Sat., Sept. 13  ATLANTA, GA  Smith's Olde Bar
Sun., Sept. 14   BIRMINGHAM, AL  WorkPlay Theater
Thurs., Sept. 18   BUFFALO, NY  The Town Ballroom
Fri., Sept. 19   BOSTON, MA   Paradise Rock Club
Sat., Sept. 20   NORTHHAMPTON, MA Pearl Street
Mon., Sept. 22   NEW YORK, NY  Bowery Ballroom
Wed., Sept. 24   STATE COLLEGE, PA  The State Theater
Thurs., Sept. 25  PITTSBURGH, PA  Rex Theatre
Sat., Sept. 27  TOWSON, MD  Recher Theatre
Sun., Sept. 28  PHILADELPHIA, PA Theatre of Living Arts
Tues., Sept. 30  CLEVELAND, OH  House of Blues Cambridge Room
Wed., Oct. 1  DETROIT, MI  Shelter
Thurs., Oct. 2  PLYMOUTH, WI  Turner Hall
Sat., Oct. 4  CHICAGO, IL  Martyr's
Sun., Oct. 5  MINNEAPOLIS, MN Varsity Theatre
Wed., Oct. 8  DENVER, CO  Bluebird Theater
Thurs., Oct. 9  MURRAY, UT Murray Theater
Sun., Oct. 12  SEATTLE, WA  Neumo's
Mon., Oct. 13  PORTLAND, OR  Berbati's Pan
Wed., Oct. 15  LOS ANGELES, CA  Roxy Theatre
Fri., Oct. 17  SCOTTSDALE, AZ  Martini Ranch
Sun., Oct. 19  POMONA, CA  The Glass House
Tues., Oct. 21  SAN FRANCISCO, CA Great American Music Hall

Mingus Dynasty Tonight at The Iridium Jazz Club

Mingus Dynasty- for the Grateful Web

IRIDIUM JAZZ CLUB
1650 BROADWAY (Corner of 51st)
NEW YORK, NY 10023
RESERVATIONS: 212-582-2121
http://www.iridiumjazzclub.com/
Sets At 8:30 & 10:30PM

EVERY MONDAY LES PAUL AND HIS TRIO
JOHN COLIANNI – PIANO - LOU PALLO – GUITAR, NICKI PARROTT - BASS
Les Paul Sets Remain at 8:00 & 10:00PM

EVERY TUESDAY
MINGUS LEGACY
Sets at 8:30 & 10:30PM

This Tuesday, August 19th
 Mingus Dynasty

Lineup
Alto saxophone Mark Gross
Tenor Saxophone Wayne Escoffery
Trumpet Kenny Rampton
Trombone Conrad Herwig
Bass Ugonna Okegwo
Piano Orrin Evans
Drums Donald Edwards

Watch video clips of Mingus Dynasty with Kenny Drew Jr., Donald Edwards, Craig Handy, Boris Kozlov, Ku-umba Frank Lacy, and Kenny Rampton Info Visit:  http://www.mingusmingusmingus.com/MingusBands/

Gabe Dixon Band plan release and fall tour

photos by ericmichaelphotography.com- for the Grateful Web

Nashville piano rockers, The Gabe Dixon Band, have a busy few months ahead.  The trio just shot the video for their single "Till You're Gone" and will release their debut, self-titled album on August 26th.  The band is set to play select dates with Stephen Kellogg & The Sixers and then join soulful, singer/songwriter Justin Nozuka on a slew of tour dates throughout September and October.   Check out more info on their Myspace page to read what other musicians have been saying about the band and find out why Dixon turned down a spot to play on Paul McCartney's tour.

Date      Venue                                 Location

9/10       Cat's Cradle                          Carborro, North Carolina **

9/11       Orange Peel                         Asheville, North Carolina **

9/12       Belcourt Theatre                    Nashville, Tennessee **

9/13       Smith's Olde Bar                    Atlanta, Georgia **

9/14       Workplay                              Birmingham, Alabama **

9/18       Town Ballroom                      Buffalo, New York  *

9/19       Paradise Rock Club                Boston, Massachusetts *

9/22       Bowery Ballroom                   New York, New York *

9/24       State Theatre                        State College, Pennsylvania *

9/25       Rex Theatre                          Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania *

9/27       Recher                                  Towson, Maryland *

9/28       Theatre of the Living Arts       Philadelphia, Pennsylvania  *

9/30       Cambridge Room                   Cleveland, Ohio *

             @HOB Cleveland

10/2       Turner Hall                            Plymouth, Wisconsin *

10/4       Martyr's                                Chicago, Illinois *

10/5       Varsity Theater                      Minneapolis, Minnesota *

10/8       Bluebird Theater                    Denver, Colorado *

10/15     The Roxy                               West Hollywood, California *

10/19     The Glass House                     Pomona, California *

10/21     Great American Music Hall       San Francisco, California *

The National Jazz Museum in Harlem

- for the Grateful Web

The National Jazz Museum in Harlem begins the first full week of programming today, August 4th with a presentation on the life and work of one of the greatest living authors on blues and jazz, Albert Murray for Jazz for Curious Readers, followed by the first of four weeks of focus at Jazz for Curious Listeners on the great jazz pianist, educator and media man, Dr. Billy Taylor.

We round out the week with two pianists; first a discussion with pianist Dick Katz for Harlem Speaks, then a live performance by Michael Wolff in a trio setting at the Rubin Museum of Art for Harlem in the Himalayas.

Come join us at the National Jazz Museum in Harlem, because we're all for you, body and soul. (And don't forget our final Summer Film Series program this Sunday at the Museum of the City of New York.)

Sunday, August 3, 2008
MCNY SUMMER FILM SHOWS
2:00pm
Harlem Rent Party: Jazz Film Series      
Location:
Museum of the City of New York
(1220 Fifth Avenue | get directions)
FREE with Museum admission! |
More information: 212.534.1672, ext. 3395
 
Although they were held to help friends pay their bills, Harlem rent parties of the early 20th century were filled with music and good times. Join Loren Schoenberg, Executive Director of the Jazz Museum in Harlem, for a swinging afternoon of rare film clips featuring the kind of music you would have heard there — Fats Waller, Louis Jordan, Count Basie, Billie Holiday, Lena Horne, and many others. Presented in conjunction with Harlem Week.

Monday, August 4, 2008
JAZZ FOR CURIOUS READERS
6:30pm
Albert Murray: Philosopher of the Blues and Jazz
Guest: Greg Thomas
Location:
NJMIH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | Reservations: 212-348-8300 or register online

Essayist, novelist, and cultural critic Albert Murray's contribution to American literature has established the value and importance of the "blues idiom as the basis for approaching life in contemporary times.

Born in Nokomis, Alabama, on May 12, 1916, Murray received his BS from Tuskegee Institute in 1939. He joined the Air Force in 1943 and retired with the rank of major in 1962. During his period in the service, Murray earned his MA from New York, University (1948) and taught literature and composition to civilians and soldiers both in the United States and abroad.

The Omni-Americans (1970), Murray's first book, contains reviews, essays, and commentaries that engage and challenge the predominant frameworks within which matters of "race and culture were then being discussed. Critiquing what he called "the folklore of white supremacy and the fake lore of black pathology," the book argues that all Americans are multicolored and that social scientific attempts to explain black life in America are fundamentally mistaken. His next book, South to a Very Old Place (1971), extends that argument with a series of memoirs, interviews, and reports that document the positive, nurturing aspects of the African-American community in the South.

In 1972, Albert Murray was invited to give the Paul Anthony Brick Lectures on Ethics at the University of Missouri. These lecturers were published as The Hero and the Blues (1973). Here Murray develops his concept of literature in the blues idiom, a theory he eloquently practiced in the novel Train Whistle Guitar (1974), which won the Lillian Smith Award for Southern Fiction. The hero of this novel received from his family and neighbors in the segregated South the cultural equipment necessary for leading a successful life—a sense of fundamental individual worth combined with community responsibility akin to the relationship between the improvising jazz soloist and the supporting band.

In 1976, Murray turned the concept of the blues idiom back on itself, writing perhaps the best book ever published on jazz aesthetics, Stomping the Blues. Murray collaborated with Court Basie on his autobiography, Good Morning, Blues (1985), and in 1991 published The Spyglass Tree, the long-awaited sequel to his first novel. A catalog essay on the paintings of Romare Bearden (Romare Bearden, Finding the Rhythm, 1991) extends Murray's concepts of improvisation, rhythm, and synthesis even to the realm of the visual arts.

Greg Thomas, consultant to the National Jazz Museum in Harlem, will delve into Murray's work and thought with particular focus on the blues and jazz as a philosophical strategy to swing in spite of existential chaos, the tragedy of human history and the vicissitudes of modern life. Murray's relationship with essayist and novelist Ralph Ellison, author of the celebrated mid-century novel, Invisible Man, and path-breaking artist Romare Bearden, will also be explored.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008
JAZZ FOR CURIOUS LISTENERS
7:00pm
A Celebration of Dr. Billy Taylor
Location:
NJMIH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | Reservations: 212-348-8300 or register online

Instructors: Loren Schoenberg and Bret Primack
National Jazz Museum in Harlem board member Dr. Billy Taylor encompasses that rare combination of creativity, intelligence, vision, commitment and leadership, qualities that make him one of our most cherished national treasures.

The distinguished ambassador of the jazz community to the world-at-large, Dr. Billy Taylor's recording career spans nearly six decades. He has also composed over three hundred and fifty songs, including "I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free," as well as works for theatre, dance and symphony orchestras.
Playing the piano professionally since 1944, he got his start with Ben Webster's Quartet on New York's famed 52nd Street. He then served as the house pianist at Birdland, the legendary jazz club where he performed with such celebrated masters as Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie and Miles Davis. Since the 1950s, Billy Taylor has been leading his own Trio, as well as performing with the most influential jazz musicians of the twentieth century.
Dr. Taylor has not only been an influential musician, but a highly regarded teacher as well, receiving his Masters and Doctorate in Music Education from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and serving as a Duke Ellington Fellow at Yale University. He founded the Harlem-based JazzMobile in the 1960s.

He has also hosted and programmed on radio stations WLIB and WNEW in New York, and an award-winning series for National Public Radio. In the early 1980s, Taylor became the arts correspondent for CBS Sunday Morning.
Dr. Billy Taylor is one of only three jazz musicians appointed to the National Council of the Arts, and also serves as the Artistic Advisor for Jazz to the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, where he has developed one acclaimed concert series after another, including the Louis Armstrong Legacy series, and the annual Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Festival.

With over twenty three honorary doctoral degrees, Dr. Billy Taylor is also the recipient of two Peabody Awards, an Emmy, a Grammy and a host of prestigious and highly coveted prizes, such as the National Medal of Arts, the Tiffany Award, a Lifetime achievement Award from Downbeat Magazine, and, election to the Hall of Fame for the International Association for Jazz Education.

Now in his eighties, and officially retired from active touring and recording, he remains active with his educational activities and a full schedule of speaking engagements and appearances on radio and television.
Writer/Video Journalist Bret Primack has been at the forefront of new media since he co-founded Jazz Central Station in 1995. In 1997, he was the first Jazz blogger with Bird Lives, where, as the Pariah, his heartfelt diatribes struck a responsive chord in the music industry. Bret has also created websites for Sonny Rollins, Joe Lovano and Dr. Billy Taylor, among many others.

An NYU Film School graduate, Bret began producing video for the web in 1999.
His documentaries and Video Podcasts include Orrin Keepnews, Producer for the Concord Music Group and The Sonny Rollins Podcast for Rollins' own Doxy Records, an ongoing documentary about the Saxophone Colossus.

Thursday, August 7, 2008
HARLEM SPEAKS
6:30pm
Dick Katz, Pianist
Location:
NJMIH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | Reservations: 212-348-8300 or register online

Come meet and hear the story of Dick Katz, a versatile pianist and arranger responsible for a host of memorable recordings through the years, often as an important sideman and/or producer. He studied at the Peabody Institute, the Manhattan School of Music, and Juilliard, in addition to taking piano lessons from Teddy Wilson. In the 1950s, he picked up priceless experience as a member of the house rhythm section of the Café Bohemia, with the groups of Ben Webster and Kenny Dorham, the Oscar Pettiford big band, and later with Carmen McRae. Katz was part of the popular J.J. Johnson/Kai Winding Quintet (1954-1955) and Orchestra USA and participated on Benny Carter's classic  Further Definitions album. He has freelanced throughout much of his career and was a guiding force behind some of Helen Merrill's finest recordings. Katz, who played with Roy Eldridge and Lee Konitz starting in the late '60s, co-founded Milestone Records in 1966 with Orrin Keepnews. In the 1990s, Dick Katz worked both as a pianist and an arranger with the American Jazz Orchestra and Loren Schoenberg's big band.

Friday, August 8, 2008
HARLEM IN THE HIMALAYAS
7:00pm
The Michael Wolff Trio
Location: Rubin Museum of Art
(150 West 17th Street)
$18 in advance | $20 at door |
Box Office: 212.620.5000 ext. 344
Michael Wolff, Piano
Chip Jackson, Bass
Mike Clark, Drums

A baby boomer in his prime, Michael Wolff is renowned for his old school jazz roots, melodically fresh and rhythmically compelling multi-keyboard style, and ever-expanding media presence. A New Orleans native whose father taught him blues on piano before he began classical lessons at age eight, Michael also grew up in Memphis and Berkeley, California, getting his first significant professional gig when he was 19 from Latin jazz vibist Cal Tjader. He made his recording debut with Cannonball Adderley's band in 1975, and has worked extensively with the Thad Jones-Mel Lewis Orchestra, Sonny Rollins, Wayne Shorter, Tony Williams, Christian McBride and others including his late friend Warren Zevon and singer Nancy Wilson, for whom he wrote orchestral arrangements and conducted more than 25 major symphony orchestras during world-wide tours. Wolff's own band Impure Thoughts, launched in 2000, is an infectious improvising ensemble, richly percussive thanks to Indian tabla player Badal Roy, drummer Mike (Headhunters) Clark and electric bassist John B. Williams (on his new Trio CD, Wolff is joined by Williams and drummer Victor Jones.) Wolff's recent performances include an Impure Thoughts concert at the Royal Albert Hall as part of the BBC Proms and a trip to the British Virgin Isles. He tours the U.S. regularly, and will perform a series of Trio dates in support of his latest recording, jazz, JAZZ, jazz.

Wolff's growing corpus of movie soundtracks includes Dark Angel and The Tic Code (2000), a feature for actor-dancer Gregory Hines, that was semi-autobiographical in its depiction of the Tourette's Syndrome with which Wolff copes. His five-and-a-half year stint as musical director of the Arsenio Hall Show heightened his visibility and gave him the occasion to meet his wife, actress and writer/director Polly Draper. He is producer, and Draper writer-director of the smash hit Nickelodeon cable TV series The Naked Brothers Band, starring their sons Nat, 12, and Alex, nine (Wolff appears regularly as the boys' "hapless, accordion-playing dad"), and he produced his first music video for 2006's Love and Destruction's plaintive "Underwater," shooting on location in post-Hurricane Katrina New Orleans.

Described as a "Renaissance Man" by Miami New Times, Wolff won praise for his surprising CD Love and Destruction, his first to feature vocals on all songs. Add to that his virtuoso piano playing, his amalgam of rock-jazz and his World music-inspired live performances, and you have the makings of a multi-faceted artist, unafraid of labels and boundaries. In fact, The New York Times praised Wolff as "A pianist and vocalist with a style both global and contemporary." "It's not a sudden departure," Wolff says of his video efforts, as well as his affectively husky and hushed singing on Love and Destruction. "I'm making developmental steps. I've had some interesting years doing a lot of different things, and that was where I arrived." Wolff's late night, blue light singing on the CD brought new cool to an inspired selection of rock/pop classics as well as his own tunes about the well-lived life, now. JazzTimes Magazine raved that Michael Wolff is "one of the most innovative and dynamic pianists of his generation." "Wolff proves himself an exceptionally astute vocal stylist. His sound, a rock-jazz hybrid that exists somewhere in the vast expanse between Donald Fagen and Mark Murphy, is at once as distinctly powerful and as cunningly seductive as his playing." At radio, Wolff generated airplay on Acoustic Café and other key outlets. Starbucks put four tracks in rotation, in 5000 locations nationwide.

CAPE MAY JAZZ FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES NOV 7-9 CELEBRATION

Maynard Ferguson- for the Grateful Web

November 7-9, 2008, presented by Bank of America will mark the Cape May Jazz Festival's 15th year and 30th celebration.  Friday night's opener kicks off with a Tribute to Maynard Ferguson featuring a 16-piece big band led by Ed Vezinho and Jim Ward.  This performance will be held at the Lower Regional High School in the theatre.  Jon Faddis, internationally acclaimed high-register trumpeter, will solo with the band saluting Ferguson's music.

Pieces of a Dream returns to perform on Saturday night, also in the theater.  To fill out the schedule, well-known jazz vocalist Jackie Ryan will perform in the Grand Hotel Ballroom Friday, and smooth jazz saxtress Pamela Williams will lend her talents on Saturday night.  Ex-Ferguson musician Denis DiBlasio will bring his band to Carney's on Saturday night, featuring Jim McFalls on the trombone.  Also included on this bill are Michael Pedicin, Frank Bey, Edgardo Cintron, Antoinette Montague, David Cole, Bob Ferguson, the Little Jazz Giants and many more plus the always-popular high energy jam sessions and complimentary workshops.
 
The schedule in its entirety can be found on the web at the best source for all the latest on the Cape May Jazz Festival, including music bytes from your favorite artists. For more information or to be put on the mailing list please call 609-884-7277.
 
Funding for the Cape May Jazz Festival is provided in part through a grant from the New Jersey State Council on the arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts; and the New Jersey Department of State Travel and Tourism Commission.  Bank of America is the Presenting Sponsor along with sponsorship provided by the Delaware River and Bay Authority, Barefoot Wines, Cape Savings Bank, Jazz Times, WBGO Jazz 88, WRTI 90.1FM, WTTH, 101.5 WCFA, WJJZ 97.5, Verizon, and Cape May Star & Wave.

The Dixon-Rhyne Project

Rob Dixon- for the Grateful Web

Reinvention, the new album and experiment from Rob Dixon and Melvin Rhyne, is a melding of the bebop jazz organ quartet with world music and jam. Though jazz has always been steeped in improvisation, it has had periods where its intricacies have been ingrained into composition on the page with little room for individual color or influence. This album has touches of the San Francisco cool jazz scene and free bop where a jazz combo moves with a melody like a patch of wild mint around a garden, finding new soil and nutrients for its growth.  It's an organic thing, and Dixon and Rhyne are showing that age (whether young or old) isn't any barrier to creating something called jazz.

Rob Dixon, who is comfortable with tenor and alto saxophones, is 37 years old. Born in Georgia, he studied jazz at Indiana University and then went on to New York to work as a side man with The Count Basie Orchestra, The Ellington Band, Rufus Reid, Tony Bennett, and Ray Charles. When he returned to Indianapolis, he formed a trio with drummer Kenny Phelps and organist Brad Whitely. They combined straight jazz with funk influences from Soulive and released an album, "What Things May Be," in 2006.

It was around this time that Dixon met Melvin Rhyne, who plays Hammond B3 organ and Mini Moog. Over three decades Dixon's senior, Rhyne had a history in jazz. Though he was a self-taught jazz pianist, he found work with up-and-coming jazz groups. In the mid 50s, he played with the reed multi-instrumentalist Rahsaan Roland Kirk and switched to organ at that time. Rhyne collaborated with jazz guitar legend Wes Montgomery in the early 60s. Soon after, Rhyne moved to Wisconsin and became active in the local music scene. In 1990, he returned to recording and did a record with guitarist Herb Ellis and trumpeter Brian Lynch. He even did a quartet session with Joshua Redman. When he moved back to his hometown of Indianapolis, he and Dixon seemed fated to work together. Now, 71 years old, Rhyne is taking his hard-bop organ and adding his velvet touches to this new project.

Dixon asked his trio drummer, Kenny Phelps, to join the group. His solid drumming has made him a popular session player. Finally filling out the quartet is an unexpected player. Fareed Haque, the sensational guitarist and sitar player with Garage Mahal, came aboard to add color with several guitars.

For Rhyne, this might have been the biggest stretch, to come into a jam-rich environment with the likes of Haque, but Rhyne clearly shines in this new album, putting a mark of jazz authority to the project. His organ work is varied, lively, and inventive. The improvisation that Dixon calls forth from his saxophones sets a benchmark for the rest of the quartet, and Haque, in particular, excels in meeting that level of creativity. And Kenny Phelps keeps it all on track.

The quartet is joined by Salar Nader on tablas on "Shadow and Light" and "Tomorrow Sierra." These two tunes are perhaps the most risk-taking for a jazz ensemble (but not for a jam group with strong jazz roots). "Shadow and Light" is reminiscent of the work of San Francisco percussionist Babatunde Lea and his quartet featuring saxophonist Richard Howell. Though the tablas add an Eastern feel, rather than Afro-Cuban as in Lea's work, they are not as pronounced as in "Tomorrow Sierra." "Shadow and Light" is more jazz whereas "Tomorrow Sierra" has a pronounced world sound with a trippy edge to the jazz.

All of the tunes, except one, on this CD are written by Dixon but enhanced by the quartet. The only cover, "Chit'lins Con Carne" is a classic gleaned from jazz guitarist Kenny Burrell's 1967 recording, Midnight Blue. It's a soul jazz tune where Phelps' gospel backbeat carries the quartet along, allowing Haque to explore this old chestnut.

Throughout the entire album, the sax, organ, and guitar all take turns at soloing, without overstepping anyone's place in the group. No one outshines anyone else. They work as a cohesive whole, creating a real conversation between musicians and producing some of the best jazz I've heard in a long time.

Reinvention is an album to sit and savor. If you're a seasoned jazz enthusiast, you'll love the freshness in this album. If you're knowledge of jazz comes from jam, this will be one to add to your collection. It is one of the best new albums out that combines the long legacy of jazz with the richness of new innovators.

The Dixon-Rhyne Project is something to try to catch live. They are playing at the Jazz Kitchen in Indianapolis on July 9 and continue to play in the city when they can.

Dylan, Cash, Miles + More at Morrison Hotel's 30th St. Exhibit

Miles Davis - photos by Don Hunstein- for the Grateful Web

On July 18 the Morrison Hotel Gallery's Soho loft (116 Prince Street, NYC) will offer the first fine art photography exhibit drawn from the extensive Sony BMG archive. "In Session at the Columbia Records 30th Street Studio" will feature candid, in-the-studio photographs taken mostly by Columbia Records' in-house photographer Don Hunstein, at its legendary 30th Street Studio in New York City. The exhibit will feature over 30 limited edition fine art silver gelatin prints - many of them never-before-seen - of singular figures such as Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Billie Holiday, Tony Bennett, Miles Davis, Muhammad Ali, and Charles Mingus among others. Prior to the exhibit's public opening, the Morrison Hotel Gallery will host invitation-only previews of "In Session" on July 17.

In 1949, an abandoned Armenian Greek Orthodox church at 207 East 30th Street, between 2nd and 3rd Avenue in Manhattan, was transformed into one of the world's greatest recording studios, where some of the most dynamic and enduring records were created. From Bob Dylan's "Highway 61 Revisited" to Leonard Bernstein's "West Side Story," from Miles Davis's "Kind Of Blue" to Glenn Gould's interpretations of Bach's "Goldberg Variations," the 30th Street Studio provided a distinctive ambience, featuring a kaleidoscope of sublime sonic qualities unparalleled in the recording industry.

Though the building itself was demolished, "In Session" frames the momentous occasions that occurred within the 30th Street Studio walls and allows fans to hold on to them forever.

Each print to be featured in this exhibit was meticulously hand selected by the Morrison Hotel Gallery and Sony BMG's ICON Collectibles (www.Icon-Collectibles.com), and represents a piece of musical history. Prints by Don Huntstein are numbered and signed by the photographer, who still lives in New York, and plans to attend the 'In Session' preview events. Prints will also be available for sale at morrisonhotelgallery.com.

About The Morrison Hotel Gallery
Founded in 2001 by former record company executive and producer Peter Blachley, former independent record store owner Rich Horowitz and music photographer Henry Diltz, The Morrison Hotel Gallery has grown to become the major brand in fine art music photography. With already thriving locations in Soho in NYC, La Jolla California, and Los Angeles, MHG opened their largest location to date in March 2008, at 313 Bowery Street in NYC, former home to the legendary CBGB Gallery.

About ICON Collectibles
ICON Collectibles is a business specializing in selling unique Fine Art Prints, Music Plaques, Cover Art and one-of-a-kind memorabilia featuring a diversified collection of some of the world's greatest recording artists including: Bob Dylan, Tony Bennett, Miles Davis, Johnny Cash, Ella Fitzgerald and Muhammad Ali. All offerings are showcased and sold on Icon-Collectibles.com. Powered by SONY BMG Music Entertainment, ICON Collectibles is headquartered in New York City.

The Gabe Dixon Band's New Album Streets August 26th, 2008

Gabe Dixon- for the Grateful Web

The Gabe Dixon Band's new self-titled album, due out on Fantasy Records on August 26, is in fact the group's third release, following the 2002 album On a Rolling Ball and the 2005 EP Live at World Café. But there's good reason Dixon, the band's writer/singer/pianist, considers it the GDB's debut.

Formed nine years ago by Dixon — then a classical piano major — and his two college roommates, bassist Winston Harrison and drummer Jano Rix, the group added a sax player and spent several years specializing in jazz-inflected, heavily improvised excursions, showcasing the virtuosity of the players. Dixon's elevated piano chops subsequently led to performances with Alison Krauss, O.A.R. and no less than Paul McCartney who tapped Dixon to play keyboards on his Driving Rain album and back McCartney and others on the internationally broadcast 9/11 tribute "Concert For New York City."

Offered the keyboard slot for McCartney's world tour, Dixon respectfully declined to focus on his own band and its then-yet-to-be-released debut album. But after a bout of cutbacks and regime changes at Warner Bros., the band's original label, the band reinvented itself as a three-piece song-based unit. The band's rededicated attention to arrangement, classic song-craft, and performance can be heard on the band's eponymous new album, The Gabe Dixon Band.

The trio cut the album live off the floor during ten days at Nashville's renowned Blackbird Studios with co-producer/engineer mixer Neal Cappellino (Alison Krauss, Mindy Smith, Jonny Lang) and with bassist Harrison doubling on "mandotar," a modified guitar he created whose sound somewhat resembles that of an electric mandolin. The album embeds vividly detailed, intensely personal and universally relatable songs in elegant yet muscular settings that draw, unabashedly and expertly, on classic rock.

The Tennessean, the newspaper in the band's hometown of Nashville, called it early when it stated in 2005 that the young artist "deserves to join the ranks of Jackson Browne and early Elton John in the pop pantheon." The piano-driven band has also rated favorable comparisons with the Ben Folds 5 and Bruce Hornsby.

Both the material and the supple arrangements result from "the music we heard growing up, listening to our parents' record collections," Dixon points out. "Mostly '70s LPs by Elton John, Jackson Browne, Paul Simon, Stevie Wonder, Ray Charles, Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Carole King and James Taylor. It was a magical era, the pinnacle of pop, rock and folk in terms of songwriting and musicianship." Dixon and his bandmates have not only assimilated those influences but brought them back into the present tense, resulting in music that is instantly familiar both musically and thematically, yet still provocative and in the moment.

Given the band's innate feel for rock's glory days, it was fitting that the legendary Henry Diltz, whose unforgettable photos of The Doors and Crosby, Stills & Nash have become an indelible part of rock history, shot the album cover images.

While Dixon wrote all the album's songs, three were co-written by onetime Trip Shakespeare and Semisonic frontman Dan Wilson, whose co-write of "Not Ready To Make Nice" with the Dixie Chicks earned him a Grammy. Two songs were co-written with gifted Nashville songsmith Tia Sellers, who won a Grammy of her own for Lee Ann Womack's "I Hope You Dance." For the ballad "Further the Sky," Dixon duets with Mindy Smith, herself a Grammy nominee, at her most inspired.

Of the newfound song focus of his onetime jam band, Dixon says, "We love great songs and real musicianship, and we take time as a band to come up with something that isn't typical, because the arrangement and performance can be just as impactful as the song itself. We've become more refined, and to the point, making the impact direct and immediate. The idea is pretty simple, really: We're dedicated to playing music people like that we like too."

From this immensely promising vantage point, it's been quite a journey for a guy who a decade ago was playing Tootsie's Orchid Lounge in downtown Nashville every afternoon from 1 to 5 for tips. The bridge of the song "All Will Be Well" could serve as the credo for Dixon and his bandmates: "You've got to keep it up and don't give up and chase your dreams," he sings, "and you will find, all in time."

Esperanza Spalding on Letterman Tonight!

Esperanza Spalding- for the Grateful Web

Esperanza Spalding performs "Precious" TONIGHT (Wednesday, June 4) on the Late Show with David Letterman. This is Esperanza's network debut.

The song "Precious" is Esperanza Spalding's first single from ESPERANZA her debut on Heads Up International.

Esperanza and her band will perform this Saturday at The Roots Picnic in Philadelphia. Press Quotes and Tour Dates are below.

For more info, including performance video, press release, bio, sound samples, photos, hi-res cover art and more:

NPR's All Things Considered
"There are many gifted singers in jazz today, and no shortage of accomplished acoustic bass players. But few jazz artists can be both. Esperanza Spalding's new album, Esperanza, blends her soaring vocals and her deep bass lines. At 23, Spalding has already built an impressive resume: She earned a full scholarship to the Berklee College of Music in Boston, and graduated a year early to become the youngest faculty member in the school's history, and she's also played with jazz legends such as Patti Austin, Pat Metheny, and Herbie Hancock." To listen to the entire story, click here:

New York Times
"Esperanza has got a lot: accomplished jazz improvisation, funk, scat singing, Brazilian vernacular rhythm and vocals in English, Portuguese and Spanish. At its center is a female bassist, singer and bandleader, one whose talent is beyond question."
Billboard "Faces to Watch"
"Whether exploding into vocalese or making her bass solo sound like a horn, she's a spark plug who dances as she grooves through a funked-up and rocked-out repertoire."

Bass Player
"Esperanza, her debut for Heads Up, has the charismatic musician handily demonstrating her talents as a virtuoso instrumentalist, gifted multi-lingual vocalist, and potent songwriter. She plays and sings on a jazz-rooted program marked by catchy if tricky melodies, pliable grooves informed by Latin, Brazilian, African, and bebop rhythms, and multiple bursts of ripping fingerboard work and scat singing."

JazzTimes
"There's a Latin-jazz revolution going on courtesy of young Esperanza Spalding...Spalding's voice slips through each of her intricately crafted arrangements as if imbued with the spirit of Flora Purim. Only Spalding's melodies are more punctual and sprightlier than the airy Airto-isms of Purim. But they never lack in dynamism."

Keyboard
"Esperanza is the hottest thing going in the world of bass playing. So why is her CD in Keyboard? Easy. The heavily Brazilian-influenced self-penned jazz instrumentals and vocals are fantastic. Her lyrics are heartfelt yet not clichéd. Her voice is really something special. She's a freekin' awesome acoustic bassist. She's got soul. And she's got a keyboard player in the band that you need to know about: Leo Genovese...this CD provides much to discover and delight."

Christian Science Monitor
"As her voice sambas over vibrant South American rhythms and her Elastigirl fingers climb up and down the double-bass's skyscraper neck, you'd swear the girl was from Ipanema, not Portland, Ore. Even people who think they don't like jazz may respond to the melodies on Esperanza."

Relix
"It's an album that borrows inspiration from others' past achievements, but is perfectly now-and completely Spalding's."

Bass Musician magazine
"A seriously gifted vocalist/instrumentalist is a rare breed. That ability, or should I say gift to have command of two voices interchangeably, that capacity to handle counterpoint, 'with yourself', can leave most people, much less musicians, quite speechless at times. That 'could' almost be enough said in my introduction of Esperanza. But there's much more to this young (24, I believe) musician than meets the eye. Her obvious love affair with music, her clarity insofar as her awareness of her evolution, and her sound, which she has thought out well, make her at this early stage in her career a force to be reckoned with, and a voice (voices?) that deserves attention, which will surely ensue with the release of her new CD Esperanza. Contrary to how it sometimes may feel within our culture these days, there 'are' some young players out there that are dead serious about creating a 'life' within the arts, and Esperanza is easily a shinning example of that."

Seattle Times
"Spalding is obviously star material of the first order, the kind of performer whose passionate, uninhibited absorption in what she's doing ineluctably lures you into her world."

Sister2Sister
"She's being hailed because of her voice and sound. She's being hailed because of her style and looks. Andy she's being hailed because she has all this talent at the age of 23...The CD gave me much more than I expected. This musical prodigy should get many more people talking."

All About Jazz-NY
"Esperanza demonstrates that Spalding is an artist in development who keeps an open mind, avoiding the trappings of niche genres. She is a talented singer, bassist and tunesmith who is willing to take risks and explore different influences as a tool for her creativity."

Latin Beat Magazine
"Set for worldwide release on May 20, Esperanza's bandleading debut serves to display her acoustic bass chops and angelic vocals, spanning three languages (English, Spanish and Portuguese). This CD also showcases her composing and arranging skills, as well as her fresh and progressive approach to making music. Indeed, Esperanza is a bright, shining star to watch for."

Evening Standard (London)
"Young, gifted and black (plus charming, unaffected, intelligent and versatile), Esperanza Spalding is the brightest new star to swim into my ken for years. Scatting to her funky double-bass, she sings in Spanish and English and writes originals which tap into hip soul-jazz and urban-Latin trends. Her US group, with pianist Leo Genovese and handdrummer Horacio 'El Negro' Hernandez prominent, is dynamite and standards ('Body and Soul', 'Samba Em Preludio') are no problem." *****

Urban Network
"...her brand new sophomore release is a knockout! 23 and already an instructor at the Berklee School of Music, bilingual Spalding is as powerful a writer as she is a player, intuitively melding Latin, Jazz and Funk with youthful gusto...She describes this project as a groove-oriented 'crossover date that has the integrity of jazz.' I call it a must hear CD and the lady a guaranteed breakthrough artist for 2008."

AbyssJazz Magazine
"For as bold a statement as Esperanza Spalding makes in her Heads Up debut album, the obvious truth by the end of twelve tracks is that what we're hearing is just a taste of what's to come from this bright young star."

Boston Globe
"The package of talent offered by Berklee College of Music graduate Esperanza Spalding portends great things for this young artist. A classically trained musician who became a sizzling bass player and singer/composer, Spalding covers jazz and Brazilian music on her debut album with verve and energy. Most impressively, Spalding does the improvisational singing of the high notes while her fingers pound out the rhythmic line on bass."

Baltimore Sun
"[Spalding's] debut on the Heads Up/Concord label is a highly accessible jazz album, heavy on groove and shades of Afro-Latin swing. The warm, organic feel of the record reminds me of the sounds that emanated from the Prestige and Blue Note labels in the mid-'70s - sans the wah-wah guitar and Fender Rhodes. Even the throwback cover shot of the smiling, gloriously Afro'd artist looks as if it were taken in 1975...Spalding's sunny, melodic voice (shades of Flora Purim) is as prominent throughout the breezy 12-cut CD as her deft bass playing...she's somebody to watch."

Kalamazoo Gazette
The multilingual Spalding is a child prodigy who grew up poor in Portland, Ore., and eventually became the youngest teacher at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. This bassist, who sings while she plays, comes at the listener from a variety of angles - straight-ahead jazz, light jazz vocals, Brazilian ballads and scat. The CD shows lots of passion and vision and includes world-class percussionist Jamey Haddad."

Hill Rag (Wash, DC)
"Vocalist and bassist Esperanza Spalding's debut album uses jazz standards, pop styles, soul moods, and Afro-Latin rhythms and harmonies to create unmistakably distinctive stylish sound of her own. With a fresh, youthful voice, the music radiates a vibrant Latin/jazz format with an occasional burst of sensual magnetism. It's a lovely, charming, carefree music that captures the imagination of something new. But first things first. It's a romantic album for falling in love with that special person. Oh, what the heck, let's be real. It's that Latin sound (Spanish or Portuguese, does it matter) that always gets me. Nonetheless, this is very young music that hints at a great future on songs like 'I Adore You,' 'Cuerpo Y Alma (Body & Soul),' and 'Samba Em Preludio.'"

Virginian-Pilot
"Esperanza is one of the most impressive debuts to come along in many a year. Her future is as bright as her jazz."

Philadelphia Daily News
"Esperanza Spalding has 'the X factor,' proclaims admirer Pat Metheny. She's a fresh, dynamic jazz bass player, composer and singer, with a throaty, imperfect voice that could grow on you. Her debut album is called (what else?) Esperanza (Heads Up, B), and it won me over with her first selection, a Milton Nascimento tune sung in Portuguese."

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
"The young bassist has performed with players as important as Joe Lovano and in a variety of styles, and that range shows in this album dominated by Latin-tinged originals. One of them, 'I Adore You,' features a wordless vocal in a bebop style that moves along like a creation of Dizzy Gillespie and Bobby McFerrin. Her use of words also is good, though, as on the sarcastic 'She Got to You.' She also does a fine cover of 'Body and Soul' in an Afro-Cuban sense. For those of us who have seen her only as a bassist, her voice is a surprise - and a good one at that. The album tends to be built around it, but her strong bass playing always is there, too. The recording has a pop-like feeling upon first listening, but the jazz rhythms flex their strength on repeated visits." ***

All Music
"In sum, Esperanza sounds like the work of a much older, more experienced player, singer, and songwriter. Spalding not only has these gifts in natural abundance but is disciplined in her execution as well. On this recording she seeks to widen her musical adventure at every turn, but she does it with such with taste, refinement, and a playful sense of humor that virtually anyone who encounters this offering will find not only much to delight in, but plenty to be amazed by as well."

Daily News (McKeesport, PA)
"Bassist and vocalist Esperanza Spalding has released a complex little album that should give jazz fans great hope for the future of the art form."

Albany Times-Union
"The jazz wunderkind bassist-vocalist Esperanza Spalding sports an Afro as big as her musical talent. Enrolled at Boston's prestigious Berklee College of Music when she was just 16 years old, Spalding scored touring and recording gigs with the likes of Pat Metheny, Joe Lovano and Patti Austin before she left school. On Esperanza (2008, Heads Up International), she focuses on her multilingual vocal stylings, tackling Milton Nascimento's 'Ponta de Areia' in Portuguese, the jazz war horse 'Body and Soul' in Spanish (and a bold 5/4 time signature) and her own intimate ballad 'Fall In' in English. Showcased in a variety of small
combo settings, the multiculti 23-year-old is obviously headed for big things."

Jazz.com
"Music, like boxing, is more about interesting combinations than sheer brute force. Esperanza Spalding has a number of surprising combinations up her sleeves. First, her doubling on acoustic bass and vocals is an unusual mixture in the jazz world. Her songs also reflect an interesting combination of world music and jazz traditions. And even within the jazz sphere, she draws on both mainstream and crossover styles...She has a beguiling singing style, more pop than jazz, but with enough substance to satisfy the more reasonable members of the jazz 'authenticity' police. A gracious release by a promising talent."

AllAboutJazz.com
"Blessed with talent, youth, training and outrageously good looks, Spalding is a young woman ready to make some noise, and is here to stay in the jazz world."

Urban Music Scene
"Ms. Spalding delivers a riveting display of special skill & talent unlike I have ever heard in this generation. Exceeding every expectation I had of this project from the reception of this CD. I'm glad to see Heads Up International providing her the chance for the world to finally receive a special, musically endowed, jazz centerpiece. Not only am I soliciting the album for purchase into your collection, I will also go out on the limb, to promote a chance of seeing Ms. Spalding live when she comes to your neighborhood, sometime soon I hope..."

TOUR DATES

Sat    06/07/08         Philadelphia, PA        Festival Pier At Penn's Landing
Tue    06/10/08         Los Angeles, CA         Catalina Bar & Grill
Thu    06/12/08         Oakland, CA             Yoshi's Oakland
Thu    06/26/08         Alexandria, VA          Birchmere
Sat    07/12/08         Copenhagen, DEN         Haveselskabet
Wed    07/16/08         Pori, FIN               Otava Factory
Thu    07/17/08         Pori, FIN               Porin Teatteri
Fri    07/18/08         Pori, FIN               Kirjurinluoto Arena
Sat    07/19/08         Stockholm, SWE          Skeppsholmen
Tue    08/05/08         Buffalo, NY             University At Buffalo
Wed    08/06/08         Cleveland Heights, OH   Nighttown
Sat    08/30/08         Detroit, MI             Detroit International Jazz Festival
Wed    09/03/08         Osaka, JPN              Billboard Live Osaka
Thu    09/04/08         Fukuoka, JPN            Billboard Live Fukuoka
Fri    09/05/08         Tokyo, JPN              Billboard Live Tokyo
Sat    09/06/08         Tokyo, JPN              Billboard Live Tokyo
Mon    09/15/08         Amsterdam, NET          Bimhuis
Fri    09/19/08         Bergen, NOR             Sardinen USF
Sat    09/20/08         Trondheim, NOR          Dokkhuset
Wed    09/24/08         Copenhagen, DEN         Jazz House
Thu    09/25/08         Skerninge, DEN          Giant Steps
Fri    09/26/08         Goteborg, SWE           Nefertiti
Sat    09/27/08         Stockholm, SWE          Fasching Jazz Club
Sun    09/28/08         Helsingborg, SWE        Dunkers Kulturhus
Sat    10/04/08         Falmouth, MA            TBA
Wed    10/22/08         Rio de Janeiro, BRZ     Marina del Gloria
Fri    10/24/08         Sao Paulo, BRZ          Auditorio Do Ibirapuera