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National Jazz Museum September 2011 Schedule

For a combination of jazz dialogue, education, and live performance, look no further than the National Jazz Museum in September.

Our flagship conversation series, Harlem Speaks, first features soprano saxophonist Jane Ira Bloom in our first of several Harlem Speaks @ The New School events, which will occur in Greenwich Village (details below). Next, elder master Jimmy Heath will regale the live audience at our Visitor’s Center with tales from his illustrious history as a jazz artist.

Our Jazz for Curious Listeners series focuses on four classic recordings—Kind of Blue, Art Tatum: Solo Masterpieces, Red Clay, and Jazz at Massey Hall. The monthly Saturday panel peers into the legacy of jazz at Carnegie Hall.

We launch a new series this month, Tune Talk. We’ll find out where our favorite jazz songs come from and how they evolve into standards. This month’s featured song: “Body and Soul.”
Last but not least, our collaborative series with the Rubin Museum of Art—Harlem in the Himalayas—features alto saxophonist David Binney’s quartet and some special guests.
Mark your calendars, and bring some friends to share in pleasurable listening and learning!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011
Jazz for Curious Listeners
How to Listen to Jazz: “Kind of Blue”
7:00– 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center 
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C) 
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
Whether you’re new to jazz, or a seasoned listener, you’ll appreciate this session on the best-selling jazz recording of all time. Recorded and released in 1959, leader Miles Davis’s Kind of Blue has stood the test of time as a jazz classic.

Why? Is it the fact that the ensemble played a “modal” approach instead of a string of chord changes as was prominent in the bebop style? Is it the fact that legendary artists participated: trumpeter Davis, tenor saxophonist John Coltrane, alto saxophonist Cannonball Adderley, pianists Bill Evans and Wynton Kelly, bassist Paul Chambers, and drummer Jimmy Cobb? Was it songs such as “So What,” “Freddie Freeloader,” and “All Blues”? All of the above?

Come discover the answers, as explained by Executive Director Loren Schoenberg.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Jazz for Curious Listeners
How to Listen to Jazz: “Art Tatum: Solo Masterpieces”
7:00– 8:30pm
Location: : NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Pianist Art Tatum’s prodigious technical facility was awe-inspiring. His inventiveness, harmonic acuity, and melodicism puts him at the top of the jazz piano mountain.

The recordings you’ll hear tonight are from the latter part of his life. Impresario Norman Granz produced these dates, which displays Tatum’s marvelous agility and artistry at a peak.

We invite you to an enlightening listening and learning session that will take you inside of the genius of one of the most startling artists of the 20th century.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Harlem Speaks
Jane Ira Bloom
6:30 – 8:30pm
Location: The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music
(55 West 13th St., Arnhold Hall, 5th floor )
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Soprano saxophonist/composer Jane Ira Bloom has been full-time faculty at the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music since 1989, and holds degrees from Yale University and Yale School of Music. She is a pioneer in the use of live electronics and movement in jazz and winner of the Guggenheim Fellowship in music composition, the Mary Lou Williams Jazz Award for lifetime service to jazz, Downbeat International Critics Poll & Jazz Journalists Award for soprano saxophone, the IWJ Jazz Masters Award, and the Charlie Parker Fellowship for jazz innovation. Bloom also has an asteroid named in her honor by the International Astronomical Union (asteroid 6083janeirabloom).

She adjudicated the prestigious Thelonious Monk International Saxophone Competition, the BMI Jazz Workshop Composition Prize, and served on a distinguished panel of faculty composers at the new Jazz Composers Orchestra Institute at the Center for Jazz Studies at Columbia University.  Recipient of the Doris Duke Jazz New Works Award, and fellowships from the NEA, Rockefeller, Pew & Ford Foundations, she has performed, recorded, and/or collaborated with Charlie Haden, Ed Blackwell, Fred Hersch, George Coleman, Kenny Wheeler, Julian Priester, Rufus Reid, Bob Brookmeyer, Mark Dresser, Bobby Previte, Matt Wilson, Jerry Granelli, Marc Copland, Jay Clayton and Cleo Laine.

Her compositions and commissions include the American Composers Orchestra, St. Luke¹s Chamber Ensemble, Pilobolus & Paradigm Dance Companies, NY City Center's Fall for Dance Festival, and the NASA Art Program. She has also produced and recorded for CBS, ENJA, JMT, Arabesque Jazz Recordings and Artistshare.  Bloom has been presented in the most prestigious halls, clubs, and festivals around the world, and a new event in Brooklyn, NY featuring cutting edge woman artists was named in her honor (the 2009 Bloom Festival).

Friday, September 16, 2011
Harlem in the Himalayas
David Binney Quartet and Special Guests
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

David Binney, alto saxophone
Craig Taborn, piano
Elvind Opsvik, bass
Tyshawn Sorey, drums

Back after sold out shows in years past, acclaimed and highly individual saxophonist/composer David Binney is one of the most prolific jazz musicians on the scene today.  David's distinctive saxophone sound and innovative compositions have been heard from basement clubs in New York to jazz festivals in Europe.

In addition to David's extensive work as a leader, he has also been sought after as a sideman, appearing on recordings with Medeski, Martin & Wood and Uri Caine's Mahler Project. He has produced all of his own albums in addition to two Lost Tribe releases. David started his record label, Mythology Records, in 1998.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Saturday Panel
Carnegie Hall Jazz
12:00– 4:00pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Starting with Benny Goodman’s historic 1938 concert, Carnegie Hall has hosted jazz concerts that gained classic status when they were issued on commercial recordings. Join us for an afternoon of superlative music courtesy of Miles Davis, Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington, Count Basie and others.
Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Jazz for Curious Listeners
How to Listen to Jazz: Freddie Hubbard’s “Red Clay”
7:00– 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Trumpet icon Freddie Hubbard’s Red Clay marks a transitional moment in his career, in which he had been playing a form of straight-ahead jazz that some called “hard bop” on the Blue Note label. Red Clay incorporated electronic instrumentation (played on keyboard by Herbie Hancock, and bass by Ron Carter) and tapped into soul/funk styling. This was also the first recording on Creed Taylor’s CTI label, a forerunner of what came to be called “fusion jazz.”

Come to hear the various streams of style identified and made crystal clear, as this recording is placed within the historical context of Hubbard’s career as well as the stylistic direction of the music.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Tune Talk
“Body and Soul”
7:00pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

A key reason why“Body and Soul” is considered a classic is the very famous rendition by Coleman Hawkins in 1939. As a rite of passage, professional tenor saxophonists everywhere learned that solo. But is one famous version of a song enough to make it an enduring classic?

Or, in this case, do superlative versions by the Benny Goodman Trio, and Chu Berry and Roy Eldridge before Hawkins’, plus re-workings by John Coltrane, Dexter Gordon and others add to the aura of legend?

Tenor saxophonist and museum executive director Loren Schoenberg will go deep into the archives tonight, so join the journey!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Jazz for Curious Listeners
How to Listen to Jazz: Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie at Massey Hall
7:00– 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

In what turned out to be their last recording together, Dizzy Gillespie and Charlie Parker performed in Canada at Massey Hall on May 15, 1953 in a show marketed as “the greatest jazz concert ever.” The two primary founders of the bebop movement were joined by drummer Max Roach, bassist Charles Mingus, and pianist Bud Powell.

This concert was indeed a great affair in which they performed songs by Gillespie (“Salt Peanuts,” “A Night In Tunisia”), Thelonious Monk (“52nd Street Theme”), Tadd Dameron (“Hot House”), Juan Tizol (“Perdido”), Jerome Kern (“All the Things You Are”), among others. Come feed your ears with the thrilling sounds and your minds with the keen analysis of Loren Schoenberg.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Harlem Speaks
Jimmy Heath, saxophonist, composer and arranger
6:30 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
Long recognized as a brilliant instrumentalist, Heath is also a magnificent composer and arranger. He has performed with nearly all the jazz greats of the last 50 years, from Howard McGhee, Dizzy Gillespie, and Miles Davis to Wynton Marsalis. For the past 30 or so years, Heath performed regularly with his brothers, Percy and Albert, as the Heath Brothers, a band that often included contributions from his son Mtume, a noted percussionist, composer, and rhythm-and-blues producer.
During his career, Heath has performed on more than 100 albums. He has written more than 125 compositions, many of which have become jazz standards and have been recorded by artists such as Art Farmer, Cannonball Adderley, Clark Terry, Chet Baker, Miles Davis, James Moody, Milt Jackson, Ahmad Jamal, Ray Charles, Dizzy Gillespie, J.J. Johnson, and Dexter Gordon. Heath has also composed extended works, premiering his first symphonic work "Three Ears" in 1988 at Queens College (CUNY) with Maurice Peress conducting.
Heath retired from the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College in 1998, where he served as a Professor of Music for more than 11 years. Still, he maintains an extensive performance schedule and continues to conduct workshops and clinics throughout the United States, Europe, and Canada. He holds honorary degrees from Sojourner-Douglass College and the Juilliard School, and has a chair endowed in his name at Queens College. Currently, he serves on the board of the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz.
In January 2010, his long-awaited life story, I Walked With Giants, was published by Temple University Press.

National Jazz Museum in Harlem July 2011 Schedule

The National Jazz Museum in Harlem kicks off the summer of 2011 with our very first Music Festival! Dubbed “Summer Serenades,” the festival includes performances at the Highline Ballroom downtown, Orchard Beach in the Bronx, and Jackie Robinson Park, Grants Tomb and the NJMH Visitor’s Center in uptown Manhattan. Check schedule below for details.

Bassist Avery Sharpe leads a quintet in a live show at the Rubin Museum of Art, and live jazz on film will be presented for several of our programs at the Museum of the City of New York, Maysles Cinema, and at our home Visitor’s Center. A highlight of these film presentations will be two led by the museum co-director, Christian McBride.

The Midwest connection will be pursued at our Saturday Panel, where special guests will venture details about Missouri’s national music legacy.

As well, our flagship public program, Harlem Speaks, brings two keepers of the tradition of swinging jazz—trumpeter Warren Vache and tenor saxophonist and flutist Lew Tabackin—to share the story of their life and career in the music.

It’s a busy month with loads of events for you to attend—most free—so mark your calendar now and call some friends to share the musical wealth!

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Saturday, July 2, 2011

Summer Serenades: The NJMH Summer Music Festival
Jonathan Batiste Band plus Blackberry Winter Play the Music of“Winter’s Bone”

8:00pm
Location: Highline Ballroom
(431 West 16th Street)
$20 in advance | $25 at door | Doors open @ 6pm
For tickets: RMA Box Office or call 212-620-5000 ext. 344

This summer musicians from the Oscar nominated film Winter’s Bone and its soundtrack will be taking to the road, performing their unique take on the traditional music of the Missouri Ozarks to audiences across the US and Canada.

This intimate evening of music will feature Marideth Sisco, Blackberry Winter, Bo Brown, Van Colbert, Dennis Crider, Tedi May, and Linda Stoffel - the original Ozarks musicians from the Winter’s Bone film, playing their authentic blend of traditional Americana in what will be their first ever North American tour. Bear witness to a legacy that spans generations in the making, performed by the heirs of the Great American Songbook.

New Orleans native Jonathan Batiste is a young ambassador of the culture of jazz music in America. By the age of 17, he released his first of his two CDs as a leader entitled "Times In New Orleans" which features the talents of some of New Orleans’ finest musicians including Jason Marsalis, Donald Harrison and Christian Scott. He presently studies Jazz Piano at The Juilliard School of music in New York.

Seen recently on the HBO series Treme, Batiste has headlined numerous performance and discussion sessions for the NJMH, and swings his band into this new venue for the jazz museum.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Saturday Panel
Missouri on My Mind: An American Legacy
12:00– 4:00pm

Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Join us for an exciting and unusual afternoon as we trace the history of music in the great state of Missouri and its trail to Harlem. Some people think of Missouri as the home of ragtime, some as the home of KansasCity swing, but there are many strands that led to ragtime and Kansas City swing. Join music historian Jonathan Scheuer, radio host/singer Marideth Sisco and others for an afternoon you won’t forget.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Summer Serenades: The NJMH Summer Music Festival

Jazz in the Parks

3:00 – 7:00pm
Location: Jackie Robinson Park
(147th and Bradhurst Avenue)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

The National Jazz Museum in Harlem and Jonathan Batiste present a special afternoon of music in Harlem's own Jackie Robinson Park inside the newly renovated bandshell (at W147th and Bradhurst Ave.). Young performers,from a variety of genres, will come together to celebrate July 4th in the spirit of America. From modern dance, country western, to swinging jazz music and gospel music, this performance will have a
little something for everyone!

The Jonathan Batiste Band - 3pm
The Jonathan Batiste Band (with Mary Ellen Beaudreaux and guest) - 3:15pm
Jerome Bell (of American Idol) with Michael T's Eclectic- 3:30pm
The Bailen Brothers Band - 4:15pm
Damien Sneed - 4:45pm
The Tres Amigos- 5:15pm
Michael T's and the Eclectic - 6pm
Fourth of July Jam with all performers and guests - 6:45 - 7:00pm

(w/ D.J. UWS spinning all afternoon)

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Jazz for Curious Listeners
JAZZ ON A SUMMER’S NIGHT: Jazz on Film—Rare Ellingtonia

7:00– 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Duke Ellington’s leadership of his sui generis orchestra for over 50 years is a definitive accomplishment in the annals of 20th century America. Come witness on film the evolution of jazz through the prism of Maestro Ellington, the most comprehensive composer of the jazz idiom!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Harlem Speaks

Warren Vache, Trumpet
6:30 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Several years before Wynton Marsalis garnered headlines for breathing life into straight-ahead, acoustic jazz, Warren Vache had been leading the charge of a small group swing revival. He’s the son of bassist Warren Vache, Sr. and the brother of clarinetist Allen Vache, making yet another musical family of note in jazz. He studied music with Pee Wee Erwin, and early on played with Benny Goodman, Vic Dickenson, and Bob Wilber.

He’s played as a leader since the mid-‘70s, and was known in those days for teaming up with tenor saxophonist Scott Hamilton. His warm tone belies an adventurous, soulful style of playing, which is akin to Vache’s approach to conversational engagement also, as you will see tonight!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

MCNY Summer Film Shows
52nd Street Swing: Jazz Films

2:00pm
Location: Museum of the City of New York
(1220 Fifth Avenue)
FREE with Museum Admission| For more information: 212-348-8300

In the late 40s to early 50s, 52nd Street was known for its amazing array of jazz talent, sprinkling the cultural scene with the magic of jazz styles of every imaginable genre. Come and experience filmic representation of the excitement of an era central to jazz lore and history!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Jazz for Curious Listeners
The World of Christian McBride, Pt. 1: Rare Films at Maysles Cinema

7:00– 8:30pm
Location: Maysles Cinema
(343 Lenox Avenue, bet. 127th and 128th)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Coming off his world travels on the road, museum co-director Christian McBride will present rare films from his vast treasure trove of archival footage. It’s always a happening when McBride presents, so make sure to arrive early!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Summer Serenades: The NJMH Summer Music Festival
Film and Live Music(co-sponsored by Maysles Cinema)

7:00pm
Location: Jackie Robinson Park
(147th and Bradhurst Avenue)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Check http://jmih.org for more details.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Harlem in the Himalayas
Avery Sharpe Quintet
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

Avery Sharpe - acoustic bass

Onaje Allen Gumbs – piano

Yoron Israel – drums

Craig Handy - tenor and soprano sax

Maya Sharpe – vocals

CD release concert for "Running Man."

A bass player and composer of note who’s played with a plethora of jazz greats, from Dizzy Gillespie to Pat Metheny and McCoy Tyner, Avery Sharpe has an acclaimed career of his own. His quartet (with guest vocals) comes to the Rubin Museum to celebrate the release of their brand new album, Running Man.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Summer Serenades: The NJMH Summer Music Festival

SALSA MEETS JAZZ: Dave Valentin Live in a Free Concert

12:00pm

Location: Orchard Beach Stage in Pelham Bay Park, Bronx

FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Live music returns to the Orchard Beach stage as acclaimed Grammy Award-winning flutist and Bronx resident Dave Valentin offers a free, sizzling hot concert at Orchard Beach. Party all day starting at 12:00pm! Co-sponsored by Bronx Lebanon Hospital in association with the Bronx Tourism Council.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Jazz for Curious Listeners
JAZZ ON A SUMMER’S NIGHT: A Jazz Potpourri – 1927-2011

7:00– 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Jazz music was born in the sweltering heat of the tragic tale of race and culture at the turn of the century in New Orleans, but the resulting musical idiom carries the sweet smell of fine art. We invite you to a visual tour of jazz, from the early days of Armstrong to the biting modernity of today’s sounds!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Summer Serenades: The NJMH Summer Music Festival

Harlem Nocturne: Eric Comstock and Barbara Fasone

7:00pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

The husband-wife musical team, Eric Comstock and Barbara Fasone, have been thrilling cabaret audiences at renowned rooms such as the Algonguin for several years. In this special, intimate performance they will serenadeeach other and you too.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Jazz for Curious Listeners
The World of Christian McBride, Pt.2:

7:00– 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

The most acclaimed bassist of his generation, Christian McBride, will take visitors into his musical world, which encompasses jazz, funk, fusion, and other genres, and share select videos for your viewing pleasure. His commentaries are always humorous and soulful, so don’t miss this special evening.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Harlem Speaks

Lew Tabackin, Tenor Saxophone and Flute
6:30 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Lew Tabackin is known for co-leading one of the most innovative big bands of the past quarter century, the Toshiko Akiyoshi-Lew Tabackin big band. Yet he’s also one of the keepers of the flame of tenor sax stylings of masters such as Ben Webster, Coleman Hawkins and Don Byas. Plus, he’s one of the most original voices on jazz flute living today.

Come here his intriguing story of stylistic development from his days as a Philadelphia teen through his world travels as a soloist and bandleader with his wife Toshiko Akiyoshi, herself a former guest of Harlem Speaks, the flagship public program of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Summer Serenades: The NJMH Summer Music Festival

CONCERT UNDER THE STARS: NJMH Afro-Cuban All Stars

6:30 PM
Location: Grants Tomb
(122nd St. and Riverside Drive

FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

An explosive gathering of Latin jazz titans! Flutist Dave Valentin, trumpet legend Chocolate Armenteros, percussionist Johnny Rodriguez, pianist and arranger Edy Martinez and others will blaze the outdoor stage on the opening day of Harlem Week festivities. They’ll make you wanna move and groove, so bring your dancing shoes!

National Jazz Museum in Harlem Events, April 2011

The National Jazz Museum in Harlem cordially invites you to our April public programs, which we promise will warm your hearts as much as the weather of spring brings miles of smiles to your face.

Our bi-weekly discussion series first features flutist/saxophonist James Spaulding and then composer Maria Schneider, who will be premiering a large-scale works at Carnegie Hall in May. We continue in the spirit of celebration for our once-a-month Jazz for Curious Readers session, focusing on drummer Art Taylor's classic book of interviews, Notes and Tones.

For live performances, we direct you to The Rubin Museum's cherrywood-lined acoustic performance space, where Fred Hersch will play solo piano, and Scott Robinson will lead a quartet the likes of which you've never seen -  before for Harlem in the Himalayas. The Players Club is yet another beautiful setting for jazz players, which is why we point to this month's show by the National Jazz Museum in Harlem All Stars!

On the West Coast, at Stanford University, Executive Director Loren Schoenberg will lead a special class of Charles Mingus on film. And right here, at the Visitor's Center of the museum, we feature classes on the role of the rhythm section in jazz, from the 1930's to the 60's, in four Jazz for Curious Listeners sessions as well as our Saturday Panel, in which the Jonathan Batiste Trio will swing for you, and explain it at the same time.

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Friday, April 1, 2011

Harlem in the Himalayas

Fred Hersch, solo piano

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

Pianist and composer Fred Hersch has been called "one of the small handful of brilliant musicians of his generation" by Downbeat and has earned a place among the foremost jazz artists in the world today. From the late 70's onward as a sideman to jazz legends including Joe Henderson, Art Farmer and Stan Getz, he has solidified a reputation as a versatile master of jazz piano, as well as a relentlessly probing composer and conceptualist. His career as a performer has been greatly enhanced by his composing activities, a vital part of nearly all of his live concerts and recordings May of 2011 will see the premiere of My Coma Dreams for actor/singer, animation/multimedia and mixed ensemble. Hersch is considered to be the most prolific and widely-praised solo jazz pianist of his generation. Palmetto has just released Alone at the Vanguard which documents his second solo engagement at the legendary club.  An early review in All Music Guide calls it "a once-in-a-decade album that will stay with you long after the final track fades out."

Don't miss this opportunity!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Jazz for Curious Readers

Art Taylor: Notes and Tones, a celebration
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Notes and Tones is one of the most controversial, honest, and insightful books ever written about jazz. As a black musician himself, Arthur Taylor asked his subjects hard questions about the role of black artists in a majority white society. Free to speak their minds, these musicians offer startling insights into their music, their lives, and the creative process itself. Notes and Tones consists of twenty-nine no-holds-barred conversations which drummer Arthur Taylor held with some of the most influential jazz musicians in jazz—including: Thelonious Monk, Erroll Garner, Elvin Jones, Nina Simone, Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, and Dexter Gordon.

Arthur Taylor drummed with Coleman Hawkins, Bud Powell, Sonny Rollins, Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Thelonious Monk, and dozens of others. He was called ”one of the great drummers to come out of the fertile Harlem bebop scene” (New York Times) and ”one of the best bandleaders living or dead” (Village Voice). His band, Taylor’s Wailers, recorded several albums, and was based in New York City up until Taylor's death in 1995.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Jazz for Curious Listeners

It Don't Mean a Thing: Great Jazz Rhythm Sections

7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Count Basie's All American 4

The Count Basie Orchestra's All American rhythm section appropriately initiates our focus this month on great rhythm sections. Basie (piano), Walter Page (bass), Jo Jones (drums), and Freddie Green (guitar) together perfected what, after Louis Armstrong's style modeled it, became known as swing. From the mid-30's to early 40's, the Count Basie Orchestra popularized this feeling, contributing to the period of American history called the Swing Era. These four men blended into a "cohesive whole greater than the sum of its parts," as Loren Schoenberg, Executive Director of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem put it in The NPR Curious Listener's Guide to Jazz.

We invite you to swing on through to our Visitor's Center for this free event in which the sounds of Lester Young and the All American rhythm section will reign once again.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Harlem Speaks

James Spaulding, flutist/saxophonist

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

James Spaulding has established his reputation as a masterful soloist for ensemble performances, and for many years was among the busier sidemen for Blue Note Records. An exceptional saxophonist and flutist, he is one of the many fine artists to come out of the Indianapolis, Indiana area. James is a modernist, with solid roots in classical jazz; his saxophone style is an extension of the Charlie Parker influence, but his overall concept incorporates much of the broad jazz saxophone heritage.

Spaulding's musical training started early, as he came from a musical family in his place of birth Indiana (his father was a professional musician who played the guitar and led his own big band, traveling throughout the country). Jamesbegan playing a bugle when he was in grade school. He later took up the trumpet and saxophone on his own, and while in high school studied clarinet. He made his professional debut playing around Indianapolis with an R&B group.

From 1954 to 1957, Spaulding was in the army playing in service bands. When he was discharged, he settled in Chicago where he performed in clubs leading his own group, and had a stay with the Sun Ra Orchestra. He also furthered his flute studies there at the Chicago Cosmopolitan School of Music. In 1962, he arrived in New York City, and subsequently was associated with notables such as Freddie Hubbard, Bobby Hutcherson, Max Roach and the Ellington Orchestra.

In 1975, he received a bachelor's degree in music from Livingston College in New Jerseywhere he taught flute as an adjunct professor. James' daughters, Gina and Yvonne Spaulding were on the cover of his very first recording: The Legacy of Duke Ellington, recorded in 1975. Mr. Spaulding's range of performance experiences extends nationally and internationally, from the concert stage to jazz clubs to colleges and street fairs. His original music, a suite entitled "A Song of Courage," was performed by him with full orchestra and choir at the Voorhees Chapel at the RutgersUniversitycampus from funds awarded him by the National Endowment for the Arts. He has been recorded on over 100 recordings.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Special Event: Mingus on Film with Loren Schoenberg

Sunday, April 10, 2011 | 2:00pm
Cantor Arts Center, Stanford University | FREE

Loren Schoenberg, Director of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem, concludes the Remember Mingus series with an afternoon of rare film footage, live concert clips, and lively discussion about Charles Mingus’ music, life and legacy.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Jazz for Curious Listeners

It Don't Mean a Thing: Great Jazz Rhythm Sections

7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Duke Jordan/Tommy Potter/Max Roach

After Charlie "Bird" Parker and Dizzy Gillespie parted ways on the bandstand, Bird formed a quintet featuring Miles Davis and Jordan (piano), Potter (bass) and Roach (drums). Although they maintained the swing of their forebears as heard in last week's class, the way they dealt with accents and tempo transformed to perform the style that became known as bebop. Join us to hear the sonic transformation that revolutionized jazz.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Jazz at the Players

Melba Joyce and The National Jazz Museum in Harlem All Stars 7:00pm

Location: The Players

(16 Gramercy Park S. | get directions)
$20 | Reservations: reservations@theplayersnyc.org or 212-475-6116

If you've never been to the elegant setting of The Players, we urge you to reserve a seat asap, because the down-home swing of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem All Stars will make you tap your feet with glee, most happily, and swing your troubles away.

Melba Joyce was born in Dallas, Texas where she grew up under the warm and instructive musical influence of her mother and grand-parents.  Her father, Melvin Moore, a prominent vocalist with the jazz and swing bands of his era (including Dizzy Gillespie, with whom he toured and recorded )was also one of Melba's influences. After her family moved to Los Angeles, Melba was immediately noticed by musicians and soon found herself opening for such renowned artists as Miles Davis, Freddy Hubbard and Smokey Robinson & the Miracles.

Melba tirelessly toured the war-torn fields of Vietnam to entertain the troops at the height of that horrid conflict, an experience that raised her social conscience to new heights.  When Melba returned, she was appointed panelist for the Congressional Black Caucus of Women in Jazz Forum. She produced the first Women in Jazz Festival at Harlem's Schomburg Center for Black Culture; and became a principal in the Day of the Child Series for UNICEF.  With funding from the National Endowment for the Arts, Ms. Joyce produced Jazz For Special People, a musical education series for the handicapped.

In 2008, The Central Park Conservancy presented Melba with a very special recognition through the City of New York for creating and producing The First Women's Jazz Festival. The program, held in Harlem at the park's Dana House, featured  Kunle Abodunde reading of a chapter from his unreleased book.  During Melba's tour assignment in Nigeria as a Jazz Ambassador, Abodunde  attended her performance and being deeply impressed included a chapter in the book describing what he felt about the evening.

Her long and impressive career has spanned three decades in the company of and sharing top billing with such giants of the music world as Louis Armstrong, Sarah Vaughn, Louis Jordan, Lionel Hampton, Tony Bennett, Joe Williams, Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson and so many others.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Harlem in the Himalayas

Scott Robinson Quartet

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

Scott Robinson, bass saxophone
JD Parran, basssaxophone
Vinny Golia, bass saxophone
Warren Smith, drums, percussion

A respected performer in all areas of jazz, from traditional to avant-garde, Scott Robinson brings audiences an unusual pairing of three bass saxophones with percussion for this raucous and soulful concert—his encore performance at the Rubin Museum. The recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, Robinson, who is known for his work on unusual and obscure styles of saxophones, has been the winner of a number ofDown Beat Critics Polls and Jazz Journalists Association awards in recent years.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Jazz for Curious Listeners

It Don't Mean a Thing: Great Jazz Rhythm Sections

7:00 – 8:30pm

Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Red Garland/Paul Chambers/Philly Joe Jones

Miles Davis was a key member of the Charlie Parker Quintet, whose rhythm section was the focus of last week's class. This week we'll hear how Davis and other giants came into their own with the solid yet flexible support of one of the most grooving and soulful rhythm sections in the history of the idiom. The mid-50’s classics we'll listen to tonight are never old, but hearing them could make you feel younger. Don't miss it!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Harlem Speaks

Maria Schneider, Composer

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

Maria Schneider’s music has been hailed by critics as “evocative, majestic, magical, heart-stoppingly gorgeous, and beyond categorization.” She and her orchestra became widely known starting in 1994 when they released their debut recording, Evanescence. With that recording, Schneider began to develop a highly personal way of writing for her 17-member collective, tailoring her compositions to distinctly highlight the unique voices of the group. Subsequently, the Maria Schneider Orchestra has performed at festivals and concert halls worldwide. She has received numerous commissions and guest conducting invites, working with more than 85 groups from over 30 countries spanning Europe, South America, Australia, Asia and North America.

Schneider’s music blurs the lines between genres, and as a result, her long list of commissioners has become quite varied. They include the Norrbotten Big Band and Danish Radio Orchestra with Toots Thielemans and Ivan Lins, the Metropole Orchestra in the Netherlands (several works), Orchestra National de Jazz (Recapitulation), Carnegie Hall Jazz Orchestra (El Viento), Monterey Jazz Festival (Scenes from Childhood, Willow Lake), The American Dance Festival (for dance company, Pilobolus–Dissolution), University of Miami Concert Jazz Band (Three Romances), Jazz at Lincoln Center (Buleria, Soleá y Rumba), Los Angeles Philharmonic Association (Aires de Lando), Peter Sellars’ New Crowned Hope Festival (Vienna’s Mozart Festival–Cerulean Skies), Kronos Quartet (String Quartet No. 1) and the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra with soprano, Dawn Upshaw (Carlos Drummond de Andrade Stories), a work that will receive its New York premiere at Carnegie Hall, May 13th, 2011, conducted by Schneider.

Schneider’s most recent work (premiering June 12th, 2011), co-commissioned by the Ojai Festival, The Australian Chamber Orchestra and Cal Performances, will blur boundaries further as it features the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Dawn Upshaw, and two musicians long associated with Schneider’s own orchestra: pianist Frank Kimbrough, and multi-instrumentalist Scott Robinson. For this work, she is incorporating poems by poet Laureate and Pulitzer Prize winner Ted Kooser, from his book ”Winter Morning Walks.”

Schneider continues to be a pioneer in funding her projects. She recently composed two works for her own orchestra with the involvement of commissioners, not from arts organizations, but directly from her ArtistShare® fan base. "Concert in the Garden" and her orchestra’s latest album, "Sky Blue" (on which Cerulean Skies was recorded) were both named “Jazz Album of the Year” by the Jazz Journalists Association and the DOWNBEAT Critics Poll.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Saturday Panels

The Beat Goes On: The Jonathan Batiste Trio Demonstrates What The Rhythm Section does

12:00 – 4:00pm

Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

This Saturday panel is a perfect complement to and extension of our Jazz for Curious Listener's focus on great rhythm sections. Jonathan Batiste’s Trio will demonstrate how the piano comps, the bass walks and the drums ride the cymbals, yes, but that's only the start. You'll witness, live, how the bass and drums lock-in together creating the basis for the swing; how the trio ebbs and flows and communicates non-verbally to create musical magic. Not only should this class not be missed, it's also a chance to introduce jazz music to those curious about it, but haven't heard it up close and personal enough yet to connect with it. Do them and yourself a favor!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Jazz for Curious Listeners

It Don't Mean a Thing: Great Jazz Rhythm Sections

7:00 – 8:30pm

Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

 McCoy Tyner/Jimmy Garrison/Elvin Jones

We started in the 30's with the rhythm section fronted by Count Basie, then moved to the 40's with a foundational group of three, and thereafter transitioned to the 50's. For our last session of this month's Great Jazz Rhythm Sections theme, we land on the doorstep of a classic 60's rhythm section that supported the Great John Coltrane. McCoy's percussive style, with Garrison's booming bass, and Jones' polyrhythmic fire combined to change the course of the music yet again.

National Jazz Museum in Harlem Feb. 21 - Feb. 27, 2011

Upcoming events at the National Jazz Museum in Harlem for this week include

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Monday, February 21, 2011

* Please note the Museum will be closed in observance of President's Day.  

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Jazz for Curious Listeners
Jazz on Film: Miles Davis
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Miles Davis on film playing trumpet with the Gil Evans Orchestra as John Coltrane waits in the wings is one of the iconic moments caught on film in the 20th century. Come view this footage, and other examples of Davis, one of the most influential artists of the 20th century, on film, and share once again in the magic of Miles’s sound and musical spirit.

Wednesday, February 23, 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

Jazz is not a bygone relic of a gloried past, it’s alive and well right now. Jazz does have a storied past, filled with musical giants who walked the earth, yet there are vibrant young musicians such as Jonathan Batiste who are the legends in the making. Come witness the evolution, lend him your ear, and engage him in discussion about the current state of jazz and future prospects for what Dr. Billy Taylor called “America’s classical music.”

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Harlem Speaks
Otis Brown III, drummer
6:30 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)                                 
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
Tonight the New Jersey native Otis Brown III will bring his joyful style to Harlem Speaks in a discussion about his life and career as a jazz drummer.

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, in various of Joe Lovano’s ensembles, 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.

National Jazz Museum in Harlem Jan. 31 - Feb. 6, 2011

The National Jazz Museum in Harlem in early February includes:

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Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Jazz for Curious Listeners
Jazz on Film: Tenor Sax Legends
SPECIAL GUEST SPEAKER
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
Lester Young/Coleman Hawkins/Sonny Rollins/John Coltrane

We kick off this month’s Jazz for Curious Listeners with the most influential tenor saxophonists of the 20th century, bar none. Coleman Hawkins is recognized as the father of the tenor sax, the first virtuoso on the instrument. Lester “Prez” Young was the yin to Hawkins’ yang, and greatly influenced the developmental arc of solo improvisation in jazz. Sonny Rollins combined elements of the previous two pillars of jazz, with insights from Charlie Parker, Don Byas, and others, to create a style irresistible in its power and fluidity. And John Coltrane is perhaps the most influential jazz musician of the 20th century, following Louis Armstrong and Charlie Parker.

Where else can you see the sweep of the jazz tradition on tenor saxophone in such a short time on film? Don’t miss this class—it’s free!

Wednesday, February 2, 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 20-something 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 original artists on the jazz scene; you'll discover that his point of view is also. Be a part of the celebration in the midst of the discourse.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Harlem in the Himalayas
NJMH All Stars, directed by Aaron Diehl
featuring Dominick Farinacci
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

Aaron Diehl, piano
Paul Sikivie, bass
Lawrence Leathers, drums
Dominick Farinacci, trumpet

If you haven’t attended any of the Harlem in the Himalayas events, you’ve missed one of the best, intimate acoustic halls in New York City. But it’s not too late: come check out our all-star band under the direction of Executive Director Loren Schoenberg. And if you have been with us for Harlem in the Himalayas, you know it’s true, so come and stomp the blues!

National Jazz Museum in Harlem Jan. 3 - Jan. 9, 2011

The electric bass was actually Christian McBride’s first instrument. He began playing at age 8 when Jaco Pastorious was the bass guitar's standard bearer, having created masterpieces with the group Weather Report as well as his eponymously titled first solo recording. Jaco Pastorious transformed the bass guitar into an instrument of fine art, and there are few better, if any, to discuss Pastorious than McBride. This will be a night to remember - whatever you do, make it to this free class, and bring a friend.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011
Jazz for Curious Listeners
Christian McBride Hosts: My Musical Heroes
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
Christian’s Subject: Jaco Pastorious, Electric Bass Innovator
Friday, January 7, 2011

Signed to Sony Classical at the age of 17, Eldar has since established himself as one of the most brilliant and virtuosic solo jazz pianists of his generation. The possessor of a unique style, this is a rare solo performance in New York City. Along the way, Eldar’s had the good fortune to work with masters such as Dr. Billy Taylor, Dave Brubeck, Michael Brecker, Herbie Hancock, among others. The performance space is a wonderful place to hear acoustic music – no microphones, just a lot of wood to give the sound depth and warmth. This is a wonderful way to break in the New Year with live music!

Harlem in the Himalayas
Eldar, Pianist
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

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.

National Jazz Museum in Harlem Nov. 15 - Nov. 21, 2010 Schedule

Upcoming events at the National Jazz Museum in Harlem for this week include:

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Jazz for Curious Listeners
Savory Collection Part 2: Count Basie – 1930s
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
The Savory Collection may well redefine the critical view of jazz in the late 1930s. Dan Morgenstern, Director of the Institute of Jazz Studies, provides proof of this claim in the New York Times by "citing the case of Herschel Evans, a saxophonist who played in the Count Basie Orchestra but who died early in 1939, just before his 30th birthday. Evans played alongside Lester Young, who was one of the giants of the saxophone and constantly overshadowed Evans on the Basie group’s studio recordings.

“There can never be too much Lester Young, and there is some wonderful new Lester Young on these discs,” Mr. Morgenstern said. “But there are also some things where you can really hear Herschel, who is woefully under-represented on record and who, until now, we hardly ever got to hear stretched out. What I’ve heard really gives us a much better picture of what he was all about.”

That's just one of the wonders of Basie you'll hear tonight!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Harlem in the Himalayas
Meg Okura / Pan Asian Chamber Jazz Ensemble
7:00pm
Location: Rubin Museum of Art
(150 West 17th Street)
$18 in advance | $20 at door |
For tickets: RMA Box Office <http://click.icptrack.com/icp/relay.php?r=-1&amp;msgid=0&amp;act=11111&amp;c=246760&amp;destination=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.rmanyc.org%2Fharleminthehimalayas%2F>  or call 212-620-5000 ext. 344
Meg Okura is “the queen of chamber jazz,” says Dan Bilawsky in All About Jazz. In her Pan Asian Chamber Jazz Ensemble, Okura skillfully balances her roles as violin virtuoso, prolific composer, and master erhu player. Comprised of a group of young virtuosi, the Pan Asian Chamber Jazz Ensemble brilliantly weaves together jazz, classical, and traditional Japanese music to create their own unique blend of world-chamber jazz. They have been hailed by the New York Times as “vibrant” and “sophisticated.” See and hear why this evening in the intimate setting of the acoustically rich theater at the Rubin Museum of Art.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Saturday Panels
Savory Saturday
12:00 – 4:00PM
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
Come have an extended listening session and hear live music, all based around new discoveries unheard for 70 years. By now, if you're a jazz fan attuned to history, you're aware of the Savory Collection. But whether you're a long time fan, or a newbie, you owe it to yourself to experience this gold mine find from the vaults of jazz lore.

National Jazz Museum in Harlem September 2010 Schedule

Coming off the heels of the greatest archaeological find in jazz in decades, the National Jazz Museum in Harlem invites you to share in the treasures of the Savory Collection, featuring jazz legends of the Swing Era.

During the month of September 2010 our Jazz for Curious Listeners series and our special Saturday Panel on Bill Savory will open the vaults to selections from the 100 hours of live music that until now has been hidden in jazz lore.

Instead of resting on those laurels, we are happy to also present free public programs such as: Harlem Speaks (interviews with alto saxophonists Lou Donaldson and Steve Wilson), Jazz for Curious Readers (Langston Hughes on record with jazz music and artists), and Jazz at the Studio Museum in Harlem (the visual art of Pee Wee Russell and George Wettling, plus the NJMH All Stars).

For just a small fee you can witness the impeccable artistry of elder statesman pianist and composer Randy Weston, and the open-ended duet of bassist Henry Grimes and pianist Marilyn Crispell at the Rubin Museum of Art for the Harlem in the Himalayas program.

We invite you to share in the bounty of jazz at the National Museum in Harlem this month: you'll come away with priceless memories.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Jazz for Curious Listeners
The Savory Collection: Exploring a buried treasure-NEW sounds from 1935- 1940
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
You Won't Believe It: An Overview

If you appreciate jazz and American history, then you've heard about the acquisition of the Savory Collection by the National Jazz Museum in Harlem. News outlets from the New York Times and NPR to WNYC and Newsweek have covered this truly historical find, which museum Executive Director Loren Schoenberg had been tracking down intrepidly for 30 years. His efforts paid off; some of these recordings may cause scholars to adjust their take of this period of the jazz idiom's historical accounting.

Come early to claim your seat at the Visitor's Center . . . we expect a full house who will hear samples from the Savory Collection as well as the tale of this investigative find as told by Mr. Schoenberg.


Monday, September 13, 2010 (note date change)
Jazz for Curious Readers
Langston Hughes: The Recordings
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Back in the day Langston Hughes was called the voice of Harlem and even the poet laureate of Negro Americans. Hughes imbued his lines with the echoes of jazz and gospel, and may have been akin to a 20th-century Chaucer, capturing common experiences in bold new rhythms. He once said, "I tried to write poems like the songs they sang on Seventh Street... (these songs) had the pulse beat of the people who keep on going."

In 1926 he wrote the now classic "Weary Blues." In 1958 he took part in a recording of this work (which includes the famous "A Dream Deferred") paired it with compositions written in collaboration with Charles Mingus, Leonard Feather, and Horace Parlan. Mingus’s compositional style combined with Hughes “cool” prose and poetry, written with rhythms straight out of Harlem, made for a revealing outing.

Come hear this synthesis of music and poetry and more at the Visitor's Center of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Jazz for Curious Listeners
Tenor Madness: Lester Young/Coleman Hawkins/Chu Berry/Herschel Evans

7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

The Savory Collection featured songs and solos played by the two men who defined the sound and style on tenor saxophone in the first decades of the dispersal of jazz on record and in clubs and stages around the world: Coleman Hawkins and Lester Young. Yet Chu Berry and Herschel Evans were also two very important musicians on tenor from those years in the late '30s, now too often sidestepped by critics and fans that focus solely on Prez and Hawk.

Come experience each of these tenor greats at the height of their considerable powers and discover the context and place of each in the estimable history of jazz.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

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

Lou Donaldson, one of the true keepers of the classic jazz, is a witty raconteur with stories galore. His distinctive, blues-based tone has been heard in a variety of small-group settings, and he has recorded dozens of worthy and spirited sets throughout the years.
He began playing clarinet at 15, and soon switched to the alto sax. He attended college and performed in a Navy band while in the military. Donaldson first gained attention in 1952, when he started recording for Blue Note as a leader. At the age of 25, his style was fully formed, and although it would continue growing in depth through the years, Donaldson had already found his sound. In 1954, he participated in a notable gig with Art Blakey, Clifford Brown, Horace Silver and Tommy Potter that Blue Note records documented extensively, and which directly preceded the Jazz Messengers. He recorded as a sideman in the 1950s and occasionally with Thelonious Monk, Milt Jackson and Jimmy Smith, among others, yet he has been a bandleader from the mid-1950s up to now.

Donaldson's early Blue Note recordings were straight-ahead bop dates. In 1958 he began to incorporate a conga player, and from 1961 his bands often used an organist rather than a pianist. His blues-drenched style became a staple of soul-jazz, the musical context he's best known for by the jazz public. His association with Blue Note (1952-63) was succeeded by some excellent (if now-scarce) sets for Cadet and Argo (1963-66). Donaldson returned to Blue Note in 1967 and ventured into the more commercial leanings of the label; in this vein, he played an electronic Varitone sax, which some critics say watered down his sound. Yet, the success of "Alligator Boogaloo" in 1967 belied such criticism.

In the early '80s began recording soul-jazz and hard bop dates for Muse, Timeless and Milestone, which found him once again in prime form, not diminished to this very day. For proof of this claim, hear him proclaim that "Kenny G shouldn't try this," at one of his concerts, as he launches into a furious up-tempo number that he handles with aplomb, with blues and bebop lines and even occasional references to "Flight of the Bumblebee."

Friday, September 17, 2010

Harlem in the Himalayas
Randy Weston: Solo Piano
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

After 60 years of musical inspiration and African diasporic verve, Randy Weston remains one of the world's foremost pianists and composers today, a true innovator and visionary.

Encompassing the vast rhythmic heritage of Africa, his global creations continue to musically inform and inspire. "Weston has the biggest sound of any jazz pianist since Ellington and Monk, as well as the richest most inventive beat," declared jazz critic Stanley Crouch, "but his art is more than projection and time; it's the result of a studious and inspired intelligence...an intelligence that is creating a fresh synthesis of African elements with jazz technique".

Songs such as his "Little Niles" and "Hi Fly" are perennial contributions to the repertoire of the jazz songbook. In his solo performance tonight expect to hear such classics as well as others that embody the sound of surprise.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Jazz at The Studio
The Paintings of Pee Wee Russell and George Wettling 2:00 – 4:00pm
Location: The Studio Museum in Harlem
(144 West 125th Street)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

AN AFTERNOON IN HARLEM WITH GEORGE AND PEE WEE

Pee Wee Russell, one of jazz' most idiosyncratic clarinetists and George Wettling, one of its most swinging drummers, were also painters. The NJMH All Stars explore the swirling world of the 1920's that produced their mature works of the 1940's and 50's. Rare canvases by Russell and Wettling will be shown.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010  

Jazz for Curious Listeners
Trumpet Titans: Louis Armstrong/Roy Eldridge/Harry James/Bunny Berigan
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

As with the tenor giants discussed in last week's Jazz for Curious Listeners, two of the four men in this week's class have a firm place in the collective memories of jazz lovers. Louis Armstrong, the father of the idiom as it came through early small group and big band styling via his overwhelming approach to rhythm and sound on trumpet, his swing being irresistible. Whereas Armstrong made his mark starting in the 20s, Roy Eldridge came to prominence in the 30s with a style more akin to the facility of saxophonists that yet stayed true to the high-note range established by Armstrong.

We’ll also hear superlative jazz from trumpeters Harry James and Bunny Berigan—were also brass virtuosos worthy of historical reconsideration, as will occur tonight via excerpts of their work from the Savory Collection.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Harlem in the Himalayas
Henry Grimes with Marilyn Crispell
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

Master bassist Henry Grimes, missing from the music world since the late 1960s, has made an unprecedented comeback after receiving the gift of a bass  from William Parker in December 2002, replacing the instrument Grimes had been forced to give up some 30 years earlier. Between the mid-'50s and the mid-'60s, the Philadelphia-born, Juilliard-educated Grimes played brilliantly on more than 50 albums with an enormous range of musicians, including Albert Ayler, Don Cherry, Benny Goodman, Coleman Hawkins, Roy Haynes, Lee Konitz, Steve Lacy, Charles Mingus, Gerry Mulligan, Sunny Murray, Sonny Rollins, Roswell Rudd, Pharaoh Sanders, Archie Shepp, Cecil Taylor, Charles Tyler, McCoy Tyner, and many others. Then, one day, for reasons largely related to troubles in the music world at the time, he disappeared. Many years passed with nothing heard from him, yet recently, with his new bass, he reemerged to begin playing music again.

These days, he lives, works, and teaches in New York City and has been working almost exclusively as a leader with Marshall Allen, Fred Anderson, Rob Brown, Roy Campbell Jr., Daniel Carter, Marilyn Crispell, Andrew Cyrille, Bill Dixon, Hamid Drake, Charles Gayle, Edward "Kidd" Jordan, Joe Lovano, Sabir Mateen, Bennie Maupin, Jemeel Moondoc, David Murray, William Parker, and Marc Ribot, among others. Since 2003, Grimes has played and toured extensively in Europe, Canada, and the U.S. The recipient of a prestigious "Meet the Composer" award in 2003 and two more in 2005, Grimes was designated "Musician of the Year" by All About Jazz in 2004. One of his trios was chosen Best Jazz Trio of 2004 by New York Press, and one of his concerts, at HotHouse in Chicago, was named one of the 10 best of 2005 by Time Out/Chicago. Grimes's gentle, humble bearing and courageous life story have inspired all those privileged to know, hear, and play music with him.

"Hearing Marilyn Crispell play solo piano is like monitoring an active volcano. She is one of a very few pianists who rise to the challenge of free jazz," wrote Jon Pareles of the New York Times. Crispell, a graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music, where she studied classical piano and composition, came to Woodstock, New York, in 1977 to study and teach at the Creative Music Studio, and has lived there ever since. She discovered jazz through the music of John Coltrane, Cecil Taylor, and other contemporary jazz players and composers. She has been a member of the Anthony Braxton Quartet, the Reggie Workman Ensemble, the Barry Guy New Orchestra (and guest with his London Jazz Composers Orchestra), the Henry Grimes Trio, Quartet Noir (with Urs Leimgruber, Fritz Hauser, and Joelle Leandre), and Anders Jormin's Bortom Quintet. In 2005 she performed and recorded with the NOW Orchestra in Vancouver.

Besides working as a soloist and leader of her own groups, Crispell has performed and recorded extensively with well-known players on the American and international jazz scene as well as music by contemporary composers Robert Cogan, Pozzi Escot, John Cage, Pauline Oliveros, Manfred Niehaus, and Anthony Davis (including four performances of his opera X with the New York City Opera). In addition to performing, she has taught improvisation workshops and given lecture/demonstrations at universities and art centers in the U.S., Europe, Canada, and New Zealand, and has collaborated with videographers, filmmakers, dancers, and poets. In 1996 she was given an Outstanding Alumni Award by the New England Conservatory, and in 2004 was cited as being one of their 100 most outstanding alumni of the past 100 years.

Come expecting to hear and feel the fireworks and wisdom of an open conception to music.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Saturday Panels
Who Was Bill Savory?
Guest panelists: Gene Savory, George Avakian, Larry Appelbaum, Larry Rohter and others

12:00 – 4:00pm    Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

"For decades jazz cognoscenti have talked reverently of “the Savory Collection.” Recorded from radio broadcasts in the late 1930s by an audio engineer named William Savory, it was known to include extended live performances by some of the most honored names in jazz — but only a handful of people had ever heard even the smallest fraction of that music, adding to its mystique.

After 70 years that wait has now ended," begins the story reported in the New York Times (by Larry Rohter) on August 16, 2010.

Today's panel discussion will uncover the identity of this audio engineer whose 100 hours of fine-tuned recording will breathe new life into the archival imperative of jazz music. The National Jazz Museum in Harlem is proud to have this treasure trove as part of its collection, and invite you to learn more about the man who museum executive director Loren Schoenberg describes as "a musician and a technical genius" as well as the music he captured for posterity.

Guests include Savory’ son Gene, who rescued the collection from oblivion, legendary record producer and life-long Bill Savory friend George Avakian, NY Times writer Larry Rohter, who broke the story, Larry Appelbaum, archivist at The Library of Congress, and professor Susan Schmidt Horning, who interviewed Bill Savory as part of her research into his innovations.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010  

Jazz for Curious Listeners
Jam Sessions: Benny Goodman/Bobby Hackett/Lionel Hampton/Slim and Slam
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Benny Goodman, clarinet virtuoso, "King of Swing," and social pioneer as regards racial integration is captured in rare form in the Savory Collection, as are cornetist and trumpeter Bobby Hackett, vibraphone king Lionel Hampton, and Slim Gaillard (vocals, guitar, piano) and bassist Slam Stewart.

Gaps in jazz lore are filled to overflowing in the Savory Collection. Come listen and be one of the first to hear these fascinating records.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

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

Steve Wilson's creativity on alto saxophonist and dependability as a musical professional has allowed him to carve a prominent position on the bandstand and in the studio with the greatest names in jazz, as well as critical acclaim as a bandleader in his own right. A musician's musician, Wilson has brought his distinctive sound to more than 100 recordings led by such celebrated and wide-ranging artists as Chick Corea, George Duke, Michael Brecker, Dave Holland, Dianne Reeves, Bill Bruford, Gerald Wilson, Maria Schneider, Joe Henderson, Charlie Byrd, Billy Childs, Karrin Allyson, Don Byron, Bill Stewart, James Williams, and Mulgrew Miller among many others. Wilson has seven recordings under his own name, leading and collaborating with such stellar musicians as Lewis Nash, Carl Allen, Steve Nelson, Cyrus Chestnut, Greg Hutchinson, Dennis Irwin, James Genus, Larry Grenadier, Ray Drummond, Ben Riley, and Nicholas Payton.

A native of Hampton, Virginia, Wilson began his formal training at age 12. Playing saxophone, oboe, and drums in school bands, he also played in various R&B and funk bands throughout his teens, and went on to a year-long stint with singer Stephanie Mills. He then decided to major in music at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, affording him opportunities to perform and/or study with Jimmy and Percy Heath, Jon Hendricks, Jaki Byard, John Hicks, Frank Foster and Ellis Marsalis. In 1986, he landed a chair with O.T.B (Out of the Blue), a sextet of promising young players recording on Blue Note Records. In 1987 he moved to New York and the following year toured the US and Europe with Lionel Hampton. Becoming a first-call choice for veteran and emerging artists alike, Wilson was the subject of a New York Times profile "A Sideman's Life", highlighting his work with Ralph Peterson, Jr., Michele Rosewoman, Renee Rosnes, Marvin "Smitty" Smith, Joanne Brackeen, The American Jazz Orchestra, The Mingus Big Band, The Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra, Leon Parker, and Buster Williams' Quintet "Something More". In 1996 he joined the acclaimed Dave Holland Quintet, and from 1998-2001 he was a member of Chick Corea's Grammy winning sextet "Origin".

Wilson was a featured guest with Dr. Billy Taylor in his series "Jazz at the Kennedy Center" which is broadcast on NPR. He was artistic consultant to Harvey Keitel for the film "Lulu On The Bridge" as well as being featured on the soundtrack. He has been Artist-In-Residence at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Hamilton College, Old Dominion University, and for the 2002/2003 season with the award winning arts organization CITYFOLK in Dayton, Ohio which included the performance of a commissioned work. He has been a featured performer, panelist, and clinician at conferences of the International Association of Jazz Educators, Association of Performing Arts Presenters, and Chamber Music of America. Wilson was honored with the Marc Crawford Jazz Educator Award from New York University in 2001, and the Virginia Jazz Award 2003 Musician of the Year presented by the Richmond Jazz Society, recognizing his outstanding service in the advancement of jazz and education in their respective communities. Since 1997 he has been regularly cited in the Downbeat Magazine Critics and Readers Polls in the soprano and alto saxophone categories.

Wilson continues to tour with the Steve Wilson Quartet and Generations as well as National Jazz Museum in Harlem co-director Christian McBride's group Inside Straight. He also performs in duo with his long-time friend and colleague Lewis Nash, in the Lewis Nash/Steve Wilson Duo. He is also a touring member of the Grammy winning Maria Schneider Jazz Orchestra, T he Buster Williams Quartet, and Mulgrew Miller's Wingspan. In July 2009, Wilson made his orchestral debut performing the Villa Lobos Fantasia for Soprano Saxophone and Chamber Orchestra with the Vermont Mozart Festival Orchestra, conducted by Gil Shohat, at the Vermont Mozart Festival in Burlington, VT.

Wilson is on the faculty at The Manhattan School of Music, SUNY Purchase, and Columbia University, and is the Artist-in-Residence at the University of Manitoba, Winnipeg (Canada) for the 2008/2009 school year.

National Jazz Museum in Harlem 2010 July Schedule

The July 2010 National Jazz Museum in Harlem schedule puts particular focus on the visual side of the jazz genre, as we feature classic films in our Jazz for Curious Listeners series (inaugurating a new collaboration with The Maysles Institute), interview one of the premier jazz photographers in the nation, Frank Stewart, for our flagship Harlem Speaks public program, and screen a rare film of “The High Priestess of Soul,” Nina Simone.

Since jazz is music for the soul, we feed your ears too, as the NJMH All-Stars will perform at Marcus Garvey Park before the airing of the Nina Simone film as well as at the Studio Museum in Harlem (our new programmatic partners) for the first Jazz at the Studio event, where the shades of blue and the blues will be pursued in sound and aesthetic fury.

We’ll also play the music of pianist Mal Waldron at our monthly Saturday Panel, spend an evening with the genius of Duke Ellington, and have a conversation with legendary jazz record producer Michael Cuscuna for the second of two monthly Harlem Speaks events.

Every single event this month is FREE, so since money is no object, take the time to join our swinging festivities!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Jazz for Curious Readers
An Evening With Duke Ellington
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Known as a composer/arranger/bandleader, duke Ellington was also a gifted author, and his autobiography, Music Is My Mistress, affords as much of an insight into his personality as his music does. Join us as we read and discuss Ellington the author.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Jazz for Curious Listeners

Jazz on Film: The Sound of Jazz
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Perhaps the most iconic jazz film ever made, The Sound of Jazz brought together 32 leading musicians from the swing era, including Count Basie, Lester Young, Ben Webster, Billie Holiday, Jo Jones, and Coleman Hawkins; the Chicago style players of the same era, such as Henry "Red" Allen, Vic Dickenson, and Pee Wee Russell; and younger "modernist" musicians such as Gerry Mulligan, Thelonious Monk, and Jimmy Giuffre. These players played separately with their compatriots, but also joined to combine various styles in one group, such as Red Allen's group and the group backing Billie Holiday on "Fine and Mellow," one of the most poignant moments of jazz ever caught on film. The song brought back together Lester Young and Holiday; Young's blues solo is transcendent in its painful beauty and sophisticated simplicity.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

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

Frank Stewart is a photographer whose image-making work rises to the level of fine art.

He was born in Nashville, Tennessee in 1949, and grew up in Memphis and Chicago. He attended the Art Institute of Chicago and received a BFA in photography from Cooper Union in New York. Stewart has had numerous solo and group shows at Cooper Union Gallery, Washington Project for the Arts, Studio Museum in Harlem, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, the International Center of Photography, Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, and Corcoran Gallery in Washington, D.C.

Stewart was a member of the first team of North American journalists invited by the government of Cuba to photograph the Island in 1977; he was also invited by the Los Angeles Committee to photograph the 1984 Olympics. He has been granted two photographic fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, a New York Creative Artist Public Service Award, and a 2002 NFFA fellowship. He was honored as Artist-in-Residence at the Studio Museum in Harlem in 1975, at Kenkeleba House in 1987, and at the Light Work Gallery at Syracuse University in 1989. His photographs were published in Sweet Swing Blues on the Road (text by Wynton Marsalis; published by WW Norton) and Smokestack Lightning: Adventures in Barbecue Country. Most recently, his work was featured in Romare Bearden: Photographs by Frank Stewart (published by Pomegranate) and The Sweet Breath of Life: A Poetic Narrative of the African-American Family (Frank Stewart, ed., with text by Ntozake Shange and photographs by Kamoinge Inc.; published by Simon & Schuster).

Stewart currently serves as Senior Staff Photographer for Jazz at Lincoln Center. He is a member of Kamoinge, a New York-based collective of African-American photographers. In addition to showing examples of his excellent jazz photography, Stewart will share anecdotes about his world travels with Wynton Marsalis, as well as accounts of times spent with Romare Bearden and Albert Murray as a driver.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Jazz for Curious Listeners

Jazz on Film: The Last of the Blue Devils
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Kansas City in the 1930s was a wild, wide-open place. Under political boss Tom Pendergast, the booze flowed freely, prostitution and gambling flourished, and the Depression pretty much passed the city by, making it an ideal spawning ground for some great music. Pianist-bandleader Count Basie, saxophone immortals Lester Young and Charlie Parker, and blues belters Big Joe Turner and Jimmy Rushing were all working there, along with a host of lesser-known but nonetheless formidable musicians, and they all played the blues, Kansas City style.


Director Bruce Ricker's 90-minute The Last of the Blue Devils chronicles the 1979 reunion of many of these legendary players, combining interviews, vintage film footage, photos, and some inimitably swinging performances by Basie, Turner, pianist Jay McShann, and many others to create an intimate, good-natured portrait of what one old-timer calls the "cool, relaxed sound" of the city. The camaraderie among these men, all of whom are colorful raconteurs, is palpable. But it's the music, surely, that's the main attraction; performances include some familiar tunes, like Turner's "Shake, Rattle & Roll" and a Basie big band version of "Night Train" (featuring tenor saxophonist Jimmy Forrest, the tune's composer) that's as greasy as the local barbecue. The Last of the Blue Devils is an absolute delight not to be missed!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Special Event
Film: Nina Simone Great Performances: College Concerts and Interviews
(Andy Stroud, USA, 60 mins.)
Music: The National Jazz Museum All-Stars
7:30-9:30pm
Location: Marcus Garvey Park (Lawn A located on the Madison Avenue side of the park between 122nd and 124th Streets)

A rare film of a radical artist in performance and in interviews, where she shares her views on race relations, and the role artists play in culture and society.
Eunice Kathleen Waymon (February 21, 1933 – April 21, 2003), better known by her stage name Nina Simone, was an American singer, songwriter, pianist, arranger, and civil rights activist. Although she disliked being categorized, Simone is arguably most associated with her performance of jazz music. Simone originally aspired to become a classical pianist, but her work covers an eclectic variety of musical styles that include classical music, jazz, the blues, soul, folk, R&B, gospel, and pop music. Her vocal style is characterized by intense passion, a loose vibrato, and a slightly androgynous timbre, in part due to her unusually low vocal range which veered between the alto and tenor ranges (occasionally even reaching baritone lows). Also known as The High Priestess of Soul, she paid great attention to the musical expression of emotions. Within one album or concert she could fluctuate between exuberant happiness and tragic melancholy.

Nina Simone recorded over 40 live and studio albums, the greatest body of her work being released between 1958 (when she made her debut with Little Girl Blue and 1974. Songs she is best known for include "My Baby Just Cares for Me", "I Put a Spell on You", "Four Women", "I Loves You Porgy", "Feeling Good", "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood", "Sinnerman", "To Be Young, Gifted and Black", "Mississippi Goddam", "Ain't Got No, I Got Life" and "I Want a Little Sugar in My Bowl". Many of her songs are featured on motion picture soundtracks, as well as in video games, commercials and TV series.

This event is brought to you by the Maysles Cinema, Target ® and The National Jazz Museum of Harlem
Sunday, July 18, 2010

Jazz at The Studio
BLUE: A Shade of Difference
2:00 – 4:00pm
Location: The Studio Museum in Harlem
(144 West 125th Street)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Season Opener/Target Arts & Wonder Weekend Celebration

In this the kick-off performance of a new series, The NJMH All-Stars contemplate the color, the mood and art works that deal with the concept of blue and the blues. Blues, of course, are fundamental to jazz. But blues is way more than a simple, folk musical form. Many think the blues symbolize sadness and melancholy only; but blues music encompasses a full range of human emotion as a counter to what writer Albert Murray called “the blues as such.” Experiencing the variety of feelings evoked by Miles Davis’s recording, Kind of Blue, the best-selling jazz recording of all time, demonstrates this effect . . . as will today’s concert at the Studio Museum in Harlem.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Jazz for Curious Listeners
Jazz on Film: Sound—John Cage and Rahsaan Roland Kirk PLUS!
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: The Maysles Institute
(343 Malcolm X Blvd / Lenox Ave (Between 127th and 128th Streets))
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300
Tuesday, July 27, 2010

*Note tonight's special location.

If you have never seen Dick Fontaine’s groundbreaking film paring John Cage and Rahsaan Roland Kirk, run, don’t walk, to this screening. In addtionl, we’ll be showing examples of experimental film and experimental jazz including shorts by Shirley Clark and Rudy Burckhardt and a reception with Manny Kircheimer's Stations of the Elevated playing.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Jazz for Curious Listeners
Jazz on Film—Thelonious Monk: Straight No Chaser
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: The Maysles Institute
(343 Malcolm X Blvd / Lenox Ave [between 127th and 128th Streets])
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

*Note tonight's special location.

Filmmaker Bruce Ricker couldn't believe his luck: Michael and Christian Blackwood's extensive 1968 footage of the groundbreaking modern jazz pianist and composer Thelonious Monk, including the only footage of the very private Monk off stage, turned out to be in excellent condition. The reels were, in Ricker's words, "just sitting there like the Dead Sea Scrolls of jazz." Ricker, as co-producer, joins director and fellow producer Charlotte Zwerin, executive producer Clint Eastwood and others to bring these scrolls to astonishing life. Their Thelonious Monk: Straight No Chaser combines the Blackwood's rare footage of Monk in studio on tour and behind the scenes with new interviews, archival photos and more to create a landmark aural and visual treat released 20 years after the original footage was shot.

Here are the tunes you’ll hear tonight, in order of appearance: Evidence; Rhythm-a-ning; On the Bean; Round Midnight; Well, You Needn't; Bright Mississippi; Blue Monk; Trinkle, Tinkle; Rhythm-a-ning; Ugly Beauty; Ask Me Now; Just a Gigolo; Crepuscule with Nellie; I Should Care; We See; Osaka T.; Evidence; Epistrophy, Don't Blame Me; Ruby, My Dear; I Mean You; Lulu's Back in Town; Off Minor; Pannonica; Boo Boo's Birthday; Misterioso; Monk's Mood; Sweetheart of All My Dreams; and Round Midnight.

Need we say more? See you at the Maysles Institute!


Thursday, July 29, 2010

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

Michael Cuscuna is a discographer, writer and record producer par excellence.
He played drums, saxophone and flute during his teenage years, but wasn’t professional material. So, instead, he turned his attention to radio and recordings. He had a jazz show on WXPN and worked for ESP-Disk in the late 1960s, while also writing for Jazz & Pop Magazine, Rolling Stone and Down Beat. After stints at WMMR in Philadelphia and WABC-FM (now WPLJ) in New York as a progressive rock DJ, he took a position as a producer with Atlantic Records in the 1970s, recording Buddy Guy, Dave Brubeck and the Art Ensemble of Chicago. He also produced albums by Bonnie Raitt (Give It Up), Martin Mull, Luther Allison and Chris Smither. He also produced for ABC (doing reissues of Impulse! albums), Arista, Muse, Freedom, Elektra and Novus. From 1975 to 1981 he went through the Blue Note archives and recovered many unissued sessions which are now prized.

Along with Charlie Lourie, he founded Mosaic Records in 1983 specializing in jazz reissue box sets, with almost 200 releases as of 2009. Artists surveyed include highly visible masters like Thelonious Monk, Miles Davis, and Nat “King” Cole, and lesser known artists such as Tina Brooks and Ike Quebec. Cuscuna has won three Grammy Awards for his releases. Since 1984, Cuscuna has been a special consultant, producer, and reissue director of Blue Note Records.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Saturday Panels The World of Mal Waldron 12:00 – 4:00pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

A pianist with a brooding, rhythmic, introverted style, Mal Waldron's playing was flexible enough to fit into both hard bop and freer settings. Influenced by Thelonious Monk's use of space, Waldron had his own distinctive chord voicings nearly from the start. Early on, Waldron played jazz on alto and classical music on piano, but he switched permanently to jazz piano while at Queens College. He freelanced around New York in the early '50s with Ike Quebec (for whom he made his recording debut), Big Nick Nicholas, and a variety of R&B-ish groups. Waldron frequently worked with Charles Mingus from 1954-1956 and was Billie Holiday's regular accompanist during her last two years (1957-1959). Often hired by Prestige to supervise recording sessions, Waldron contributed many originals (including "Soul Eyes," which became a standard) and basic arrangements that prevented spontaneous dates from becoming overly loose jam sessions.

He mostly led his own groups after Holiday's death, although he was part of the Eric Dolphy-Booker Little Quintet that was recorded extensively at the Five Spot in 1961, and also worked with Abbey Lincoln for a short stint. He wrote three film scores before moving permanently to Europe in 1965, settling in Munich in 1967. Waldron, who occasionally returned to the U.S. for visits, was a major force in the European jazz world. His album Free at Last was the first released by ECM, and his Black Glory was the fourth Enja album. Waldron, who frequently teamed up with Steve Lacy (often as a duet), kept quite busy up through the '90s, featuring a style that evolved but was certainly traceable to his earliest record dates. Among the many labels that have documented his music have been Prestige, New Jazz, Bethlehem, Impulse, Musica, Affinity, ECM, Futura, Nippon Phonogram, Enja, Freedom, Black Lion, Horo, Teichiku, Hat Art, Palo Alto, Eastwind, Baybridge, Paddle Wheel, Muse, Free Lance, Soul Note, Plainisphere, and Timeless. In September of 2002, Waldron was diagnosed with cancer. Remaining optimistic, he continued to tour until he passed away on December 2 in Brussels, Belgium at the age of 76.