piano

DeVotchka @ Boulder Theater | 10/29 & 30

DeVotchKa is a four piece multi-instrumental and vocal ensemble that fuses Romani, Greek, Slavic and Bolero music with American punk and folk roots.

The quartet is made up of Nick Urata, who sings and plays theremin, guitar, bouzouki, piano, and trumpet; Tom Hagerman, who plays violin, accordion, and piano; Jeanie Schroder, who sings and plays sousaphone and double bass; and Shawn King, who plays percussion and trumpet.

Numerous nationwide tours in support of self released records earned the band an underground following. Their song How It Ends was featured on the trailer for the film Everything Is Illuminated, introducing the band to a widening audience. Their performance at the 2006 Bonnaroo music festival was considered a breakout event. In between tours, the band was picked by first time film directors Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris to score Little Miss Sunshine, a 2006 film that would go on to garner four Academy Award nominations. DeVotchKa composed and performed the majority of the music for the film's soundtrack and were nominated for a 2006 Grammy Award for Best Compilation Soundtrack.

DeVotchKa's latest studio album, A Mad & Faithful Telling, was released on March 18, 2008. DeVotchKa is currently doing a worldwide tour in support of the album's release.

Since its debut performance on Valentine's Day 2009, the band has played numerous shows including sharing the stage with the likes of Amazing Baby, Pink Mountaintops, Wovenhand and The Entrance Band.

With songs as seductively venomous as its name suggests, Snake Rattle Rattle Snake began in October 2008 when veterans of the underground music scene in Denver decided to pursue a mutual interest in darkly atmospheric music with a grounding in dance rhythms. More Info / Buy Tickets

Furthur | Red Rocks | 9/24/2010

Two of the world's greatest road warriors, Phil Lesh & Bobby Weir, made their almost annual stop to the venue the epitomizes everything organic, granola, hippie and The Grateful Dead.  As many venues as both Lesh & Weir have played, every show at Red Rocks is just a little extra special.  Phil while doing his donar rap -- mentioned his love for the amphitheater and has said on at least a few occasions it is his favorite venue in the world.

Outside fans were arriving pretty early filling up the lower south lot and upper north lots first.  The weather couldn't have been any better, and those who live here in Colorado know late September at Red Rocks is precarious, at best.  There was some vending in the lots, though by and large it was fairly quiet.  Grateful Web, however, was hawking our "Make Love Not War" t-shirts in light of election season and America's never-ending political quagmire.  Give one as a gift to your political nemesis!  Email us if you'd like one or want more information. 

My friends went inside early to scope out some good seats.  I stayed back to guard the fort, which really means playing hacky sack with my new neighbor friends, drinking some beers, talking about which run at MSG was the best (I say 1990, hands-down -- another said '87, another said '88 - this continued through our hackin), and having a great time in the gorgeous Red Rocks parking lot.

The band came on around 8pm.  The sound where I was sitting was superb, but considering I was sitting literally over the heads of the soundboard folk, this would make sense.  Futhur is finishing their late summer/early fall tour here in Colorado.  You may wonder how in the world does a 70 year old another 62 year old just continue to tour -- but I must tell you I thought both Bobby and Phil both looked pretty well-rested and enthused on stage last night, which has not always seen the case with Weir during the past few years.  But Bobby seemed more engaged than I have seen him in a while, yet still giving John plenty of space to roam.  Furthur shows for me are pretty tame experiences, but I did find a few moments last night when John really opened things up and hit some pretty nice peaks, particularly in 'Fire on the Mountain,' which was more than apropos considering the recent fires in the near-bye foothills.    

I think Chimenti is a fine piano player, but personally I’d prefer more Hammond organ stuff and less piano. Furthur is mellow enough already, which is why I really think they would benefit more from a big Brent-esque organ sound more than all the piano playing.  Just my 2cents – with that said,  I would be a very happy camper if I could play piano as well as Jeff, so nothing at all personal toward him.  Joe Russo, on the other hand, is a groove machine.  This guy is really great and impresses me more each time.

Grateful Web is currently uploading videos, so check back through the next few hours for links to them. The videos really came out nice, especially set 1..

CORNELIA STREET CAFÉ OCTOBER MUSIC

Here is a list of all upcoming Cornelia Street Cafe upcoming shows for the month of October 2010.  The Cornelia Street Cafe is located between West 4th and Bleecker Sts, Greenwich Village
1 Subway to Sheridan Square; A, C, E, B, D, V, F to West 4th St.

OCTOBER Music Schedule:

Fri  Oct 01
9:00PM & 10:30PM     MIKE BAGGETTA QUARTET
(Mike Baggetta, guitar; Jason Rigby, tenor saxophone; Eivind Opsvik, bass; George Schuller, drums)
Cover $10   http://www.mikebaggetta.com

Sat  Oct 02
6:00PM     VINCE BELL
$15 "cover" includes a drink
http://www.vincebell.com/

Sat  Oct 02
9:00PM & 10:30PM  MICHAEL ADKINS QUINTET
(Michael Adkins, tenor saxophone; Russ Lossing, piano; Todd Neufeld, guitar; John Hébert, bass; Billy Mintz, drums)
Cover $10   http://www.myspace.com/infotation

Sun  Oct 03
8:30PM     BILL WARE'S VIBE QUARTET
(Bill Ware, electric vibraphone; Matt King, piano; Carlo De Rosa, bass; Jaime Aff, drums)
Cover $10

Mon  Oct 04
8:30PM     AMRAM & CO
(David Amram, piano, french horn, flutes, composition & surprises; Kevin Twigg, drums, glockenspiel; John de Witt, bass; Adam Amram, percussion; John Ventimiglia, actor)
Cover $10   http://www.davidamram.com

Tue  Oct 05
6:00PM     SHAKESPEARE HIP HOP
(Devon Glover)
The Sonnet Man Band is an exciting new New York City band fusing Shakespeare's Sonnet's to Hip Hop. You'll hear Shakespeare like you never heard him before as sensational young rap artist, Devon Glover, brings you to your feet. Not to be missed.
Robin Hirsch, Minister of Culture.  Cover $10

Tue  Oct 05
8:30PM     BLUE TUESDAYS:DOUG WAMBLE
(Doug Wamble, guitar, vocals)
Julie Hardy, Host.  Cover $10   http://www.dougwamble.com

Wed  Oct 06
8:30PM   ARUN RAMAMURTHY WITH AKSHAY ANANTAPADMANABHAN
(ARUN RAMAMURTHY, violin; AKSHAY ANANTAPADMANABHAN, mridangam; ROOPA MAHADEVAN, vocals; MITHUN RADHAKRISHNA, mandolin)
Cover $10   http://www.arunramamurthy.com

Thu  Oct 07
8:30PM     JESSE STACKEN TRIO
(Jesse Stacken, piano; Eivind Opsvik, bass; Jeff Davis, drums)
Cover $10   http://www.jessestacken.com

Fri  Oct 08
9:00PM & 10:30PM     REZ ABBASI ACOUSTIC QUARTET (RAAQ) CD RELEASE
(Rez Abbasi, acoustic guitar; Bill Ware, vibraphone; Stephan Crump, bass; Eric McPherson, drums)
Cover $10   http:// www.reztone.com

Sat  Oct 09
9:00PM & 10:30PM     REZ ABBASI ACOUSTIC QUARTET (RAAQ) CD RELEASE
(Rez Abbasi, acoustic guitar; Bill Ware, vibraphone; Stephan Crump, bass; Eric McPherson, drums)
Cover $10   http://www.reztone.com

Sun  Oct 10
8:30PM    ANDREW RATHBUN CD RELEASE EVENT FOR THE IDEA OF NORTH
(Andrew Rathbun, saxophones; Taylor Haskins, trumpet; Nate Radley, guitar; Frank Carlberg, piano, electric piano; Jay Anderson, bass; Ted Poor, drums)
Cover $10   http://www.andrewrathbun.com

Tue  Oct 12
8:30PM     LOREN STILLMAN AND BAD TOUCH
(Loren Stillman, alto saxophone, composition; Nate Radley, guitar; Gary Versace, organ; Ted Poor, drums)
Cover $10   http://www.lorenstillman.com

Wed  Oct 13
8:30PM     BECCA STEVENS PRESENTS:ALAN HAMPTON'S PARTS AND PIECES
(Alan Hampton, vocals; Jason Moran, piano; Gretchen Parlato, vocals; Dana Stephens, saxophone)
Cover $10   http://www.alanhampton.com

Thu  Oct 14
6:00PM     GHOSTS IN THE OCEAN
(Carol Lipnik; Matt Kanelos; Frank Tedesso, singer/ songwriter/ poet)
Songs To Celebrate The End Of The World
With special guest Frank Tedesso
Carol Lipnik (of Spookarama) and Matt Kanelos (of The Smooth Maria), each accomplished singer/ songwriters in their own right, have formed an exciting side project called Ghosts In The Ocean.
$10 charge includes a drink
Cover $10   http://www.myspace.com/ghostsintheocean

Thu  Oct 14
8:30PM     JOHN O'GALLAGHER TRIO FEATURING BEN MONDER AND DAN WEISS
(John O'Gallagher, alto saxophone, compositions; Ben Monder, guitar; Dan Weiss, drums)
Cover $10   http://www.johnogallagher.com

Fri  Oct 15
9:00PM & 10:30PM     JUERGEN FRIEDRICH, JOHN HÉBERT, TONY MORENO, WITH SPECIAL GUEST:BEN MONDER
(Juergen Friedrich, piano; John Hébert, bass; Tony Moreno, drums; Ben Monder, guitar)
Cover $10   http://www.pirouetrecords.com

Sat  Oct 16
9:00PM & 10:30PM     JUERGEN FRIEDRICH, JOHN HÉBERT, TONY MORENO, WITH SPECIAL GUEST:LOREN STILLMAN
(Juergen Friedrich, piano; John Hébert, bass; Tony Moreno, drums; Loren Stillman, alto saxophone)
Cover $10   http://www.pirouetrecords.com

Sun  Oct 17
8:30PM     JANE IRA BLOOM TRIO
(Jane Ira Bloom, soprano sax & live electronics; Mark Helias, bass; Bobby Previte, drums)
Cover $10   http://www.janeirabloom.com

Tue  Oct 19
8:30PM     BLUE TUESDAYS:AMANDA BAISINGER
(Amanda Baisinger, vocals; John Shannon, guitar; Pete Rende, piano, accordion; Garth Stevenson, bass; Dan Mintzer, drums)
Julie Hardy, Host.  Cover $10   http://www.myspace.com/amandabaisinger

Wed  Oct 20
8:30PM     RIBS AND BRISKET REVUE
(Paul Shapiro, sax, clarinet, vocals; Cilla Owens, vocals; Glenn Turner, vocals; Dan Rosengard, piano; Booker King, bass; Mo Roberts, drums)
Cover $10   http://www.paulshapiromusic.com

Thu  Oct 21
8:30PM     MARK HELIAS TRIO
(Mark Helias, bass; Ellery Eskelin, tenor saxophone; Ches Smith, drums)
Cover $10   http://www.markhelias.com

Fri  Oct 22
9:00PM & 10:30PM     BEN WALTZER QUINTET
(Ben Waltzer, piano; Bill McHenry, tenor saxophone; Robin Eubanks, trumpet; tba, bass; tba, drums)
Cover $10 http://benwaltzer.com/

Sat  Oct 23
9:00PM & 10:30PM     BEN WALTZER QUINTET
(Ben Waltzer, piano; Bill McHenry, tenor saxophone; Robin Eubanks, trumpet; tba, bass; tba, drums)
Cover $10 http://benwaltzer.com/

Sun  Oct 24
8:30PM     JACOB GARCHIK TRIO
(Jacob Garchik, trombone, compositions; Jacob Sacks, piano; Dan Weiss, drums)
Cover $10   http://www.jacobgarchik.com

Mon  Oct 25
8:30PM     21ST CENTURY SCHIZOID MUSIC PRESENTS:THE BATTERIES DUO
Gareth Flowers, trumpeter of the acclaimed International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE) presents two sets this evening. The first is for a trumpet and piano duo, featuring the pianist Steve Beck and the cornet solos of Herbert L. Clarke, a turn of the (20th) century composer, the second set is with The Batteries Duo, an electro-acoustic trumpet and laptop duo with Josh Frank.
Cover $10   http://www.thegflo.com

Tue  Oct 26
8:30PM     TRIO PBD
(Ratzo B. Harris, bass; Denman Maroney, piano; Bob Meyer, drums)
Cover $10   http://www.ratzobharris.com

Wed  Oct 27
8:30PM     MIKE + RUTHY'S FOLK CITY, (JAY UNGAR & MOLLY MASON FAMILY BAND)
(Jay Ungar, violin, mandolin; Molly Mason, guitar, piano; Ruthy Ungar, violin, guitar; Mike Merenda, banjo, percussion)
Cover $20   http://www.jayandmolly.com

Thu  Oct 28
8:30PM     BOB STEWART QUARTET
(Bob Stewart, tuba; Jerome Harris, guitar; Matt Wilson, drums; Curtis Stewart, violin)
Cover $10   http://www.bobstewartuba.com

Fri  Oct 29
9:00PM & 10:30PM     BOB STEWART QUARTET
(Bob Stewart, tuba; Jerome Harris, guitar; Matt Wilson, drums; Curtis Stewart, viola)
Cover $10   http://www.bobstewartuba.com

Sat  Oct 30
9:00PM & 10:30PM     BILL MCHENRY QUARTET
(Bill McHenry, tenor saxophone; Andrew D Angelo, alto saxophone; Ben Street, bass; RJ Miller, drums)
Cover $10 http://www.billmchenry.com/

Sun  Oct 31
8:30PM     SAM SADIGURSKY/JEREMY UDDEN
(Sam Sadigursky, saxophone; Jeremy Udden, saxophone; Linda Oh, bass; Jeff Hirshfield, drums)
Cover $10   http://www.samsadigursky.com

Matt White Releases "It's the Good Crazy"

On his sophomore record, singer/songwriter and piano phenom Matt White is bringing the “good crazy”—his second album is a combination of propulsive piano playing and sly lyrics that takes listeners on a wild romp through the Big Apple and beyond. It’s The Good Crazy is out now via Ryko Records.
The album is highlighted by tracks like the first single, “Falling in Love (With My Best Friend),” a pop fueled love letter showcasing Matt’s vocal range as he reaches infectious falsettos. During "She's On Fire," Matt's robust baritone takes over on the sensual and soulful slow down, while "Taking On Water" dives deep into meandering emotions with an epic melody. The resulting album is an eclectic and intoxicatingly addictive mix of sounds and passion.
Working with a dedicated team of producers, including David Baron and Henry Hirsch [Madonna, Lenny Kravitz, Mick Jagger], Matt took an old school approach to his new material.  For much of the album, Matt, Baron and Hirsch retreated to a church in Woodstock, NY to record on the same board that Led Zeppelin II was recorded on and tracking to what might be one of the last 3M tape machines left in existence.  Breaking away from modern trends, Matt recorded the entire album on analog tape, allowing any and all happy accidents to stay in the songs.
"All of the albums I love were done that way. With tape, there’s a depth in the sound wave that you can't capture digitally. There were no computers, no Pro Tools and no room for error. If I screwed up, it's on there," says Matt.
Since debuting in 2007, Matt's music has been featured in numerous films, TV shows and commercials including What Happens In Vegas, Shrek, The Third, McDonald's, The Hills, Brothers and Sisters and One Tree Hill.  The singer/songwriter has toured and performed alongside everyone from B.B. King and Sheryl Crow to John Mayer and Counting Crows.  In addition, his "Songs Of Freedom" became the theme for Gap's "Vote For" campaign, airing on a special electoral episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show.  His debut album Best Days also hit #4 on Billboard's New Artist chart and received acclaim from RollingStone and Details. Selling 400,000 digital downloads, he's cultivated a diehard fan base that has remained loyal since he first hit the music scene.

Marco Benevento | U.S./Canada Fall Tour

Marco Benevento will tour the U.S. and Canada this Fall in support of his latest release, Between The Needles & Nightfall. The run begins with four nights in Canada and five nights in New England. The stretch includes a stop at the Massachusetts Museum Of Contemporary Art where Benevento will reprise his new score to the '60s cult film House Of Usher that he debuted in August at Celebrate Brooklyn. He'll also play two rare solo piano shows in Asbury Park and New York City. Benevento rejoins his band in November, heading to North Carolina and Virginia for three shows, including his first headline appearance in Asheville at The Grey Eagle. The tour wraps with five nights on the West Coast, returning to Doug Fir Lounge in Portland for the second time this year, as well as a Saturday night at The Independent in San Francisco.

The Brooklyn-based pianist and "sound sculptor" is coming off a busy summer that found him on the road with his own trio in addition to touring as a full-time member of Garage A Trois and Surprise Me Mr. Davis. Highlights included a solo piano set at the Montreal International Jazz Festival, a co-bill with The Books at Rhode Island School of Design and a hometown album release show at Bowery Ballroom in New York City. He is also featured on the new Manimal Vinyl release We Were So Turned On: A Tribute To David Bowie with his interpretation of "Art Decade."

Upcoming Marco Benevento tour dates are:

October 14 | Divan Orange | Montreal, Quebec, Canada
October 15 | Elmdale House | Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
October 16 | Casbah | Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
October 17 | El Mocambo | Toronto, Ontario, Canada
October 20 | Stone Church | Newmarket, NH
October 21 | Middle East Upstairs | Cambridge, MA
October 22 | Mass Moca | North Adams, MA (House Of Usher)
October 23 | Black Eyed Sallies | Hartford, CT
October 24 | Fairfield Theatre | Fairfield, CT
October 26 | Chico's House Of Jazz | Asbury Park, NJ (Solo Piano)
November 1 | City Winery | New York, NY (Solo Piano)
November 4 | The Grey Eagle | Asheville, NC
November 5 | Double Door Inn | Charlotte, NC
November 6 | Capital Ale House | Richmond, VA
November 30 | Doug Fir Lounge | Portland, OR
December 1 | Axe & Fiddle | Cottage Grove, OR
December 2 | The Depot at HSU | Arcata, CA
December 3 | Don Quixote's | Felton, CA
December 4 | The Independent | San Francisco, CA
December 5 | The Mint | Los Angeles, CA

BILL EVANS TRIBUTE Tonight At Cornelia Street Café

We open our 2010/11 Serial Underground season with a unique evening to celebrate the great composer/pianist/jazz icon Bill Evans on the thirtieth anniversary of his death on September 15, 1980. Bill was an early mentor of mine. Although it took me a long to appreciate his influential lyrical side, the hard-swinging extroversion that characterized how he played in his last years grabbed me. I suspect our casual friendship arose from common musical interests; for instance, our mutual appreciation of great classical pianists. Bill set me up with a job fixing up and editing his transcribed solos for a book. and we painstakingly cross-checked details over the phone (this was before fax machines and computers, remember). I'd plunk out a chord on my piano, and he'd say yes or no or change this or keep that, and so forth.

Tonight's guest writers certainly bring us closer to the man behind the music. Bill Zavatsky's poems stay with you long after you read or hear them. Laurie Verchomin's upcoming memoir about her life with Bill Evans in the last year and a half of his life runs the full emotional gamut. Once I started reading it, I couldn't stop. Laurie and I decided to frame her words with piano music, and although I'm using Bill¹s compositions or, in some cases, songs associated with him, strangely enough, I'm not playing like him. Maybe a chord or two, or a favorite lick, but I just can't do my once letter-perfect Bill Evans imitation anymore. Perhaps that's a good thing. When I told Bill how much I had stolen from him, he said "Go right ahead. That's what I did when I was young. It only took me forty years to evolve my own style!"

--

CORNELIA STREET CAFÉ
29 Cornelia Street, NYC, New York -- 212-989-9319
between West 4th and Bleecker Sts, Greenwich Village
1 Subway to Sheridan Square; A, C, E, B, D, V, F to West 4th St.

Elizabeth & the Catapult return with a new album "The Other Side of Zero" & Fall Tour Dates

“If I had to compare our albums,” says Elizabeth Ziman, the singer/songwriter/keyboardist behind Elizabeth & the Catapult, “I’d say Taller Children has the sarcastic lightness of a Woody Allen film, and the new record’s more like Kubrick or Lynch—a little darker, a little more tongue-in-cheek.”
Not that any of these shifts are a surprise. After all, Elizabeth learned how to manipulate moods through music at an early age, whether that meant performing a wildly-expressive piano piece or belting out bizarre harmonies in New York’s world-renowned Young People’s Chorus.
And now this: The Other Side of Zero, an Elizabeth & the Catapult album that started with a Lincoln Center song cycle—performed last spring after a commission from NPR’s John Schaefer—and a cover-to-cover study of Leonard Cohen’s Book of Longing collection. As the latter’s pages sunk in, Elizabeth couldn’t help but draw parallels between Cohen’s failure to meet Buddhist goals in a monastery and her own coming-of-age struggles in the big city. (The New York native grew up in the heart of Greenwich Village.)
She also wrote Elizabeth & the Catapult’s rawest set of recordings yet, including the clanging chords and galloping groove of “The Horse and the Missing Cart,” the sputtering, string-grazed percussion of “You and Me,” “We All Fall Down, the Buddhist twist on a classic love song, “Julian Darling,” a wake up call to a friend and the hopeful but heartbroken contrasts of “Thank You For Nothing.” And then there’s the title track. Led by a lean, winding piano line, it builds to a spine-tingling crescendo alongside the honey-dipped harmonies of Gillian Welch and Dave Rawlings—a collaboration that was completely unplanned. Not that you’d notice, considering how seamless it sounds.
Unlike their thoroughly-demoed debut—an album that took two years to complete—the Zero sessions boiled down to a month of recording with producer Tony Berg (Peter Gabriel, Phantom Planet, Jesca Hoop) and such respected sidemen as guitarist Blake Mills and Tom Waits’ longtime touring keyboardist, Patrick Warren. The result was rough but refined, bruised but beautiful, as if Berg had placed a mic in a room and walked away, letting Elizabeth and drummer/multi-instrumentalist Danny Molad do their thing.
As Molad puts it, “The record is more blatantly honest, even rude at times..." Elizabeth continues, "Even the happiest sounding pop songs on this record have a tinge of regret and darkness to them…And thank goodness for that. Ultimately that’s the only way I’d feel comfortable singing them. I’m drawn to the ambiguity like a menacing smile.”
Elizabeth & the Catapult Fall Tour Dates
Sept 25 - Variety Playhouse - Atlanta, GA #
Oct 2 - Rusty Rudder - Dewey Beach, DE    
Oct 7 - Bates College - Benjamin Mays Center - Lewiston, ME    
Oct 11 - 7th Street Entry - Minneapolis, MN *
Oct 12 - Cactus Club - Milwaukee, WI *   
Oct 13 - Schubas - Chicago, IL *   
Oct 14 - Radio Radio - Indianapolis, IN *  
Oct 15 - The Brillobox - Pittsburgh, PA *   
Oct 16 - Black Cat - Washington, DC *
Oct 22 - Cornell University, Just About Music Residence Hall - Ithaca, NY    
Oct 23 - Rockwood Music Hall - NY, NY    CMJ
Oct 28 - The Red Room @ Cafe 939 - Boston, MA    
Nov 4 - NightCat - Easton, MD
# w/ Aimee Mann
* w/ Jukebox the Ghost

Lucky Peterson interprets Tom Waits, Lucinda Williams, Ray LaMontagne, Robert Johnson & Blind Willie McTell

Lucky Peterson was discovered by blues legend Willie Dixon when he was three years old, released his first record at five and soon after appeared on The Tonight Show. Trained by keyboardists Bill Doggett and Jimmy Smith, Peterson went on to play behind Little Milton, Bobby “Blue” Bland and Kenny Neal. On return from the “Young Blues Giants” tour of Europe, he signed first with Alligator, then Verve, Blue Thumb and Birdology/Dreyfus, where he recorded what Amazon.com called “his finest album,” Black Midnight Sun, in 2003. The New Yorker called him “a master of the guitar, organ and microphone.”

But Lucky’s journey was not a smooth one, and Peterson spent the next few years in transition, working to free himself of drug troubles that had affected his health, family life and professional life. He spent time in treatment, making one-off records for small European labels, but never a proper follow-up to Black Midnight Sun.

But you can always turn around. These words took on special meaning for the 45-year-old Peterson, which is why the first album since his rehabilitation is titled You Can Always Turn Around. It is an uplifting collection of songs that speak of struggles and salvation, using the gritty clarity of acoustic roots-blues (with modern touches) as its main musical vehicle.

The album, scheduled for September 28, 2010 release on Dreyfus Records, was made in the Catskills with master Woodstock musicians Larry Campbell, guitar (Bob Dylan, Levon Helm); Scott Petito, bass (The Fugs, Mercury Rev, Rick Danko Band); and Gary Burke, drums (Joe Jackson, Shania Twain). Peterson as usual plays a mix of instruments: duolian resonator, piano and acoustic and electric guitars. Also prevalent is the acoustic piano on which Lucky sounds like a bluesy Elton John. “He’s something of a genius — his piano playing reminds me of Aretha Franklin,” says drummer Burke, who has played behind Franklin on the road.

But it’s Peterson’s vocal instrument that some might find most arresting. Peterson wraps his voice around an eclectic selection of blues-based materials including songs by original Delta bluesmen Robert Johnson, Rev. Gary Davis and Blind Willie McTell up through the music of today’s top songwriters including Lucinda Williams, Tom Waits and Ray LaMontagne. The album closes with a version of Curtis Mayfield’s “Think.”

“This album is very different for me — it’s more from the heart,” says Peterson.  “The songs were picked by (co-producer) Doug Yoel, and he knew my heart. I feel like all these songs were for me.”  The album would be the last co-production of Francis Dreyfus, who passed away on June 24, before the album’s release.

One standout on the album is the civil-rights era anthem “I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free,” written by Billy Taylor and popularized by Nina Simone. The new recording introduces Tamara Peterson, Lucky’s wife, a worthy blues singer in her own right. The chemistry between Lucky and Tamara on that session was so exciting that Larry Campbell was prompted to invite the pair to appear with the Levon Helm Band at the Midnight Ramble concert the following night.

Peterson creates something brand new on “Trampled Rose,” turning a wordless hook into a seductive Arabian-flavored line. The band responded to and fed the creativity of the newly awakened Lucky Peterson, and the results are truly special.

Peterson continues to tour, doing dates big and small. This new album should increase awareness of and demand for this one-of-a-kind musician.

And when off the road, he’ll be at his church in Dallas, Texas with his family, holding on, and playing for one very lucky congregation.

TRACK LIST:

1. I Believe I’ll Dust My Broom (Robert Johnson)
2. I'm New Here (Bill Callahan)
3. Statesboro Blues (Blind Willie McTell)
4. Trouble (Ray LaMontagne)
5. Trampled Rose (Tom Waits / Kathleen Brennan)
6. Atonement (Lucinda Williams)
7. Why Are People Like That (Bobby Charles)
8. Four Little Boys (James Peterson / Judge Peterson)
9. Death Don't Have No Mercy (Rev. Gary Davis)
10. I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free (Billy Taylor and Dick Dallas)
11. Think (Curtis Mayfield)

Teddy Charles Quartet at KItano | NYC

Teddy Charles is considered to be one of the great jazz vibraphonists and composers of all time, playing with such jazz legends as Charles Mingus, Charlie Parker and Miles Davis. As a student at Julliard in the mid 40s, he haunted New York's jazz clubs, occasionally sitting in with the bands on vibes or piano. His break came unexpectedly one night when he was asked to sit in on piano with Coleman Hawkin's band for the overdue Thelonious Monk. Soon after, Charles began to appear regularly with the top jazz groups of the day, Artie Shaw, Benny Goodman, Buddy De Franco, playing alongside and writing for such jazz stars as Coltrane, Parker, Max Roach and Miles Davis. Recently appeared with Max Roach, David Amram, Lee Konitz. In the early 1950s he began leading his own groups, composing, producing and recording original works such as No More Nights, Blues Become Elektra and Word from Bird.

TEDDY CHARLES QUARTET

FRI. & SAT. APRIL 23 & 24 SETS 8:00 PM & 10:00 PM

THE KITANO | NEW YORK
66 Park Avenue @ 38th St.
RESERVATIONS - 212-885-7119
VISIT OUR TWEETS AT: http://twitter.com/kitanonewyork
http://kitano.com/ email: jazz@kitano.com

National Jazz Museum in Harlem April Schedule

Come pursue the varieties of jazz experience at the National Jazz Museum in Harlem! From conversations and live performances to educational sessions and panel discussions, you’re sure to have a ball and learn a lot too.

For Jazz for Curious Readers, scholar of jazz and saxophonist Salim Washington will discuss his co-authorship of a recent work delving into the Miles Davis/John Coltrane relationship and impact. Harlem Speaks features discussions with baritone sax master Joe Temperley, and critically-praised and provocative big band leader Darcy James Argue.

If live music performance is your bent, look no further than our three concert series:  Harlem in the Himalayas, which this month starts with a pairing of radically talented musicians Suphala, a tabla whiz, and jazz pianist Jason Lindner, to whom no style is foreign. The second featured artist for this series held at the Rubin Museum of Art is young trumpeter Dominick Farinacci, who has absorbed the jazz trumpet tradition and presents it with suave and vitality. Jazz at the Players has yet another young player making his mark, pianist Aaron Diehl, in a trio setting. And bring your dancing shoes, as trumpeter Etienne Charles, who recently (as did Diehl) graduated from Juilliard, inaugurates our newest series, right here in Harlem, with  an ensemble for Jazz at the Dwyer (where people come to dance and enjoy the music) that will embody the spirit of Trinidad within the frame of jazz.

This month the National Jazz Museum in Harlem puts special focus on the musical and cultural contributions of an important early jazz figure, Fats Waller. At Jazz for Curious Listeners (every Tuesday evening) we begin with his rich legacy as a composer of compositions key to the jazz dimensions of the American Song Book, and continue on with his place in American music as a pianist and organist. In the latter part of April we present a Saturday Panel on “Fat Waller’s Harlem: Reflections on the 1920s and 30s” and top it off with Fats on film for the last JFCL event of the month.

What are you waiting for? Mark your calendar!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Harlem in the Himalayas
Jason Lindner/Suphala
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 Jason Lindner grew up in Brooklyn, NY, started playing piano by ear at age 2 and was playing jazz proficiently at 15. He apprenticed with master bebopper Barry Harris and the mystic master Chris Anderson (Herbie Hancock's harmonic guru), and worked as a journeyman with Junior Mance, Tardo Hammer, Harold Danko, Frank Hewitt and Jaki Bayard before exploring a world of Latin and African rhythms, Funk, R&B, Hip Hop, Electronica, and even Rock. He's been a fixture in the New York jazz scene since the mid-90s when the well-respected Greenwich Village club, Smalls, became home for a new generation of forward-thinking jazz musicians. There he led smaller ensembles and then a big band; Lindner regularly drew sold out crowds on Monday nights at Smalls, earning him an Impulse records debut on Jazz Underground/Live At Smalls, which led to a full-length release on Chick Corea’s Stretch label, Premonition.

He frequently performs in New York and around the world with Claudia Acuña, Meshell Ndegeocello, Baba Isreal, Dafnis Prieto, Omer Avital, Anat Cohen, Luisito Quintero, Malika Zarra, Juancho Herrera, and with his own groups the Ab Aetero, Now vs. Now, Progress Report, the JL-ECTRIK, Big Pump and the Jason Lindner Big Band, now celebrating its 12th year. He has also recorded with (and served as Musical Director for) Lauryn Hill and Amel Larrieux, toured with Roy Haynes, performed with and arranged for Arturo O'Farrill's Grammy-winning Jazz at Lincoln Center Afro-Latin Orchestra, and shared both stage and studio with Chick Corea, Junior Cook, Elvin Jones, Wynton Marsalis, Paquito D’Rivera, Jon Hendricks, James Moody, Graciella (Machito Orchestra), Mark Turner, Lou Donaldson, Jimmy Cobb, Lou Donaldson, The Henry Mancini Orchestra, Mark Turner, Christian McBride, Vernel Fournier, and other artists. Jason Lindner also teaches internationally.

Suphala, one of the most versatile young tabla artists making music today, was raised in the U.S. by Indian parents, and began learning western classical music on the piano at age four, performing at age five, and as a teen transferred her passion to one of the world’s most complex percussion instruments: the tabla. She combines a prodigious technical command of her instrument with a playful sense of experimentation, switching effortlessly between composing, producing and performing

Suphala is a protégé of the great tabla masters Ustad Allarakha and Ustad Zakir Hussain, whose constant inspiration compels her to dedicate herself to the study of Indian classical music while extending the reach of the tabla into a mosaic of musical genres and cultural contexts. Her fluency in a range of musical traditions informs her unique compositions and her highly improvisational performances, as you’ll witness at the Rubin Museum. The three albums she has released to date – Instru Mental (2000), The Now (2005) and Blueprint (2007) – go beyond a particular genre style while referencing such diverse influences as Western classical, Indian classical, jazz, folk and soul.

This pairing will be extraordinary. Don’t miss it.

Monday, April 5, 2010

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

Clawing at the Limits of Cool

Born in Memphis, Tennessee, Salim Washington moved to Detroit, Michigan with his family at the age of eight. Early on he was drafted into the neighborhood gang; fortunately, the gang leader happened to play trumpet, which influenced Salim, ironically, to pursue music not gangs.  He began on trumpet, and then studied classical piano. By middle school, Salim was performing in school ensembles and student funk bands. His college years brought him to Harvard, after which he joined the Worlds Experience Orchestra under the leadership of Jamyl Jones, and then the Source of Life Arkestral Revelation (SOLAR) in Boston, touring with them extensively throughout the south. After returning to Detroit, he taught music in prisons and in public schools. He eventually returned to Boston to finish his degree. After completing his doctorate, he headed to New York to begin a professorship at the Brooklyn College Conservatory of Music. He has travelled extensively, playing music festivals throughout the US and Canada, Latin America, and Europe. He has also led music workshops for the Northern Ireland Arts Council in Belfast, the Bill Evans conservatory in Paris, and others. Salim Washington is a member of the Jazz Study Group at Columbia University and has participated on various committees and panels in service of jazz, including those convened by the Ford Foundation, the Boston Phoenix, the New England Foundation for the Arts.

In Salim’s collaboration with Farah Jasmine Griffin for the recently-published Clawing at the Limits of Cool, the two scholars chronicle the drama of the musical relationship between Miles Davis and John Coltrane, from their initial historic partnership to the interlude of their breakup, during which each man made tremendous progress toward his personal artistic goals. The book even continues with the last leg of their journey together, a time when the Miles Davis group, featuring John Coltrane, forever changed the landscape of jazz. Washington and Griffin also argue that Davis and Coltrane’s collaborations embodied important ideas about what it meant to be a black artist during the Civil Rights era. By insisting on the legitimate cultural value of their work, Coltrane and Davis challenged dominant images of black musicians as merely entertainers, earning the respect of blacks and whites alike for their accomplishments as artists.

From an idiomatic perspective, the authors also examine the profound implications that the Davis/Coltrane collaboration would have for jazz and African American culture, drawing parallels to the changing standards of African American identity with their public personas and private difficulties.

Find out more about the content and context of this important jazz work, and Salim Washington’s journey in jazz at Jazz for Curious Readers.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Jazz for Curious Listeners
The Joint is Jumpin': Fats Waller: The Composer
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

We focus on the composing genius of Fats Waller as we start a month-long series in his honor. In the American public memory, perhaps because of his filmic images, Fats Waller is known as a smiling, eyebrow raising entertainer who also played piano. Fact is that Waller was one of the best of the New York jazz pianists in the au courant styles of that day—from Stride to Swing. He was also a fabulous organist, having cut his teeth at the open air religious services led by his father, Edward Waller, a Baptist lay preacher. He played piano at his public school and at 15 became organist at the Lincoln Theatre on 135th Street.

His father hoped that Waller would follow a religious calling rather than a music career, but after his mother Adeline Waller died in 1920, he moved in with the family of the pianist Russell B. T. Brooks. Waller soon met James P. Johnson, under whose tutelage he developed as a pianist and through whose influence he came to make piano rolls—starting in 1922 with Got to Cool My Doggies Now. There’s even evidence to support Waller's claims that during his formative years as a pianist he studied with Leopold Godowsky and composition with Carl Bohm at the Juilliard School.

Waller wrote many pop hits – Ain’t Misbehavin’, Honeysuckle Rose, for example – but also explored extended compositions with this London Suite. We’ll look at the breadth of his compositions this evening.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

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

Scotland-born Joe Temperley first achieved prominence in the United Kingdom as a member of Humphrey Lyttelton's band from 1958 to 1965. He toured the United States with the band in 1959, and, in 1965, came to New York City, where he performed and/or recorded with Woody Herman, Buddy Rich, Joe Henderson, Duke Pearson, the Jazz Composers’ Orchestra, and the Thad Jones-Mel Lewis Orchestra and with Clark Terry, among many others. In October 1974 he toured and recorded with The Duke Ellington Orchestra as a replacement for Harry Carney.

Mr. Temperley played in the Broadway show Sophisticated Ladies in the 1980s, and his film soundtrack credits include The Cotton Club, Biloxi Blues, Brighton Beach Memoirs, When Harry Met Sally, and Tune In Tomorrow, composed by Wynton Marsalis. Mr. Temperley is a mentor and a cofounder of the FIFE Youth Jazz Orchestra program in Scotland, which now enrolls 70 young musicians ages 7 to 17 playing in three full-size bands. Mr. Temperley has released several albums as a leader, including Nightingale (1991), Sunbeam and Thundercloud with pianist Dave McKenna (1996), With Every Breath (1998), and Double Duke (1999). He released two new recordings in September 2001. He is an original member of the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra (now JALC Orchestra) and serves on the faculty of the Juilliard Institute for Jazz Studies, which opened in fall 2001. He has served on the Manhattan School of Music faculty since 1992.

Tonight Temperley, known too for his moving feature on Duke’s “A Single Petal of a Rose” with the JALC Orchestra, will discuss his tenure in this world-class jazz big band led by Wynton Marsalis as well as his previous decades of service in the vineyards of jazz.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Harlem in the Himalayas
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

For a soulful listen to the future of jazz now, you can’t miss with young trumpeter Dominick Farinacci, an exemplar of the brass tradition in jazz in full bloom. Last year, after having released six albums as a leader on a Japanese record label, Farinacci debuted with critical acclaim in the U.S., on the Koch label, with “Lovers, Tales, and Dances.”

He's won a variety of awards over the years in the States and in Japan—Farinacci received two Gold Disc awards (Record of the Month) from Swing Journal Magazine in Japan for his recordings of "Say It" and "Besame Mucho," for example. In 2003 he received the International New Star Award in Japan, an honor previously awarded to Diana Krall and Christian McBride, co-director of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem. In the United States, Dominick was the recipient of the ITG Carmine Caruso International Jazz Trumpet Competition in 2003.

At 15, he was "discovered" by Wynton Marsalis in Cleveland, Ohio, Farinacci’s place of birth. Wynton invited Dominick to appear as a featured soloist with the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra on a PBS broadcast, "Live from Lincoln Center." While studying with Warren Vache and Wynton Marsalis at the Juilliard School, Dominick was also featured at Lincoln Center on a tribute concert to Freddie Hubbard and Lee Morgan, "Night of the Cookers." Over the years he has performed and/or recorded with many high-profile jazz artists such as Joe Lovano, Wynton Marsalis, Ira Sullivan, Mulgrew Miller, Carl Allen, Jason Miles, and Joe Labarbera.

Prepare to be dazzled by virtuosity and moved by the emotional weight of this young trumpet lion as he claws at the limits of cool with an intense yet relaxed approach to the jazz trumpet tradition.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Jazz for Curious Listeners
The Joint is Jumpin': Fats Waller: The Pianist
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Over sixty years after his death, the consummate artistry and high-spirited zest for living make pianist/composer Fats Waller one of the most celebrated artists in jazz history. His best-known compositions, such as "Ain't Misbehavin'," "Honeysuckle Rose," "Black and Blue," and "Jitterbug Waltz," long ago entered the canon of American music, as discussed in last week’s Jazz for Curious Listeners class.

Moreover, his skills as a pianist place him in the top tier of those who played the instrument, but this fact has been obscured by his greatness as an entertainer with a widespread following in the United States and Europe.

Tonight we focus on the art of Fats Waller as a pianist: his playing (and his songs) reverberates to this day amongst jazz fans and musicians cognizant of his influence and depth. As a pianist, Waller was the outstanding exponent of the Harlem Stride style of jazz piano, drawing together the innovations of Willie "The Lion" Smith and James P. Johnson into a coherent style.

And taken alone, the fact that he was a major influence on the peerless Art Tatum speaks to the eternal place Fats Waller will maintain among the pantheon of jazz greats. Come hear his piano mastery in all of its splendor at the Visitor’s Center of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Jazz for Curious Listeners
The Joint is Jumpin': Fats Waller: The Organist
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

Jazz organ fans of what some call the “modern” age of jazz—from bebop and beyond—often gravitate to Jimmy Smith as the icon of the Hammond B3. But if we go back, through the careers of Wild Bill Davis and Sarah McLawler, preceding Smith, we'd end up at the start of jazz organ: Fats Waller.

The son of a Baptist minister, Waller played church organ even before playing piano. During the silent film era he was a theatre organist in New York. Fats also taught Count Basie how to play the organ and he probably had the first recording featuring an electric Hammond organ.

However, it’s on the pipe organ that Waller made several recordings lost to obscurity that will be resurrected and placed properly in the light of recognition tonight, as we’ll hear rare Waller gems heretofore only recognized by the jazz cognoscenti.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Jazz at the Players
Aaron Diehl Trio
7:00pm
Location: The Players
(16 Gramercy Park S. |  get directions)
$20 | Reservations or 212-475-6116

Hailed by the Chicago Tribune as "The most promising discovery that [Wynton] Marsalis has made since Eric Reed," Aaron Diehl's distinctive interpretations of the music of Scott Joplin, "Jelly Roll" Morton, Art Tatum, Duke Ellington, and other masters pay homage to the tradition while establishing his own original voice.

He has performed with the Wynton Marsalis Septet, the JALC Orchestra, The Boston Symphony Orchestra, Hank Jones, Wycliffe Gordon, Wessell Anderson, Benny Golson, NJMH executive director Loren Schoenberg, and has been featured on Marian McPartland’s NPR radio show “Piano Jazz.” His international touring includes major European jazz festivals as well as performances in South America and Asia. “Mozart Jazz,” his first CD as a leader, was released in 2006 on the Pony Canyon label (Japan). Recent performances include the Caramoor Festival and the Allen Room at Jazz at Lincoln Center's Frederick P. Rose Hall.

A native of Columbus, Ohio, Diehl is a 2007 graduate of the Juilliard School, where his teachers included recent Harlem Speaks guest and NEA Jazz Master Kenny Barron, Eric Reed, and Oxana Yablonskaya. His honors include Lincoln Center’s prestigious Martin E. Segal award in 2004, winner of the 2003 Jazz Arts Group Hank Marr Jazz Competition, and Outstanding Soloist at Jazz at Lincoln Center’s 2002 Essentially Ellington Competition. Immediately following graduation from high school he toured with the Wynton Marsalis Septet.

Aaron Diehl currently resides in Manhattan where he serves as music director of St. Joseph of the Holy Family Church in Harlem. Check out a master-in-the-making playing live at Jazz at the Players.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Harlem Speaks
Darcy James Argue, Bandleader
6:30 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMIH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

His debut recording, Infernal Machines, featuring his 18-piece big band, Secret Society, made Darcy James Argue one of 2009’s most talked-about jazz musicians. He was given a series of features in jazz and non-jazz publications alike, multiple nominations at the 2009 Jazz Journalists Association Awards, and a presence on more than 70 best-of-the year lists, including Best Debut honors in the prestigious Village Voice Jazz Critics Poll.

Formed in 2005, Secret Society evokes an alternate musical history in which the dance orchestras that ruled the Swing Era never went extinct, but remained a popular and vital part of the evolving musical landscape. Adopting a steampunk-inspired attitude towards the traditional big band, Argue refashions this well-worn instrumentation into a cutting-edge ensemble. The band’s first studio recording takes its name from a John Philip Sousa quote about the dangers of music technology.

Secret Society holds the honor of being the first group to be announced for George Wein’s 2010 Newport Jazz Festival.

A native of Vancouver, and former member of the Montreal jazz scene, Argue moved to Brooklyn in 2003 after earning a Master’s Degree in Boston while studying with legendary composer/arranger Bob Brookmeyer. He has also studied with Lee Hyla, Randall Woolf, Maria Schneider and John Hollenbeck. His awards include the BMI Jazz Composers’ Workshop Charlie Parker Composition Prize and the SOCAN/CAJE Phil Nimmons Emerging Composer Award.

Reward yourself by attending this conversation with one of the cutting-edge band leaders in the jazz idiom.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Jazz at the Dwyer
Trinidad meets Jazz with the Etienne Charles Band
7:00 – 11:00pm
Location: The Dwyer Cultural Center
(258 St. Nicholas Avenue at W. 123rd Street)
$20 | More information: info@DwyerCC.org

A new series dedicated to jazz and dancing commences with this Friday evening’s JAZZ AT THE DWYER, held at Harlem’s new and vital community center.

In 2009, Etienne Charles brought a large ensemble to the Riverside Theatre in a National Jazz Museum in Harlem program that featured jazzed up versions of classic Caribbean sounds.

The result was so infectious that audience members leapt from their seats to dance.

Expect more of the same, as Trinidadian Etienne Charles and his company of musicians trumpet this mélange of styles to the grooving satisfaction of your ears and feet.

Born on the island of Trinidad in 1983, Etienne Charles’ musical lineage runs at least four generations deep. Yet perhaps it was his father, Francis, who influenced him most. Francis was a member of Phase II Pan Groove, one of Trinidad’s most progressive steel bands and one that Etienne would later join. Immersed in his father’s vast record collection, and suffused with the sounds of calypso, steel pan, and African Shango drumming, Etienne imbibed many of the influences that make up the colors of his harmonic palette.  An alumnus of the prestigious Juilliard School, Charles has received critical acclaim for his exciting performances, thrilling compositions and a knack for connecting with audiences worldwide.
Saturday, April 24, 2010

Saturday Panels
Fats Waller's Harlem: Reflection on the 1920s and 30s
12:00 – 4:00pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

As was Fats Waller central to early jazz, Harlem was an epicenter of the music’s development as well as the stomping grounds for much of the growth of Waller’s aesthetic. Today we’ll examine the connection between Waller and Harlem, viewing Harlem from the vantage of Waller’s work, life and times.

Some historical backdrop of Waller’s career in the 20s and 30s will prepare you for this special afternoon, which continues our month-long investigation into the world of Fats Waller:

In October 1922, Waller made his recording debut as a soloist for Okeh with Muscle Shoals Blues and Binningham Blues, and began a series of recordings the same year as accompanist for several blues singers, including Sara Martin, Alberta Hunter, and Maude Mills. In 1923, a collaboration with Clarence Williams led to the publication of Waller's Wild Cat Blues, which Williams recorded with his Blue Five, including Sidney Bechet, that other great early jazz pioneer from New Orleans. Another composition, Squeeze Me, was published the same year; these began to establish Waller's reputation as a composer of material performed and recorded by other artists. 1923 also saw his broadcasting debut for a Newark local station, followed by regular appearances on WHN of New York. Waller continued to broadcast as a singer and soloist throughout his life, including the long-running Fats Waller's Rhythm Club and Moon River (on which he played organ). During the early 1920s, he continued as an organist at the Lincoln and Lafayette theaters in New York.

In 1927, Waller recorded his own composition Whiteman Stomp with Fletcher Henderson’s orchestra, one of the most significant large ensembles during the era of the dance bands. Henderson also made use of other works by Waller, including Crazy 'bout My Baby and Stealing Apples. Waller's other work as a composer with the lyricists Edgar Dowell, J. C. Johnson, Andy Razaf, and Spencer Williams produced such songs as Honeysuckle Rose and Black and Blue. With Razaf he worked on much of the music for the all-black Broadway musical Keep Shufflin' (1928). Their later collaborations for the stage included the shows Load of Coal and Hot Chocolates (which incorporated the song Ain't Misbehavin' as a vehicle first for Cab Calloway and later Louis Armstrong). Waller's Carnegie Hall debut took place on April 27, 1928, where he was a piano soloist in a version of his mentor James P. Johnson's fantasy Yamekraw, for piano and orchestra.

In 1926, Waller began his recording association with Victor, his principal record company for the rest of his life, with the organ solos St. Louis Blues and his own Lenox Avenue Blues. Although he recorded with various groups, his most important contribution to the Harlem stride piano tradition was a series of solo recordings of his own compositions: Handful of Keys, Smashing Thirds, Numb Fumblin', and Valentine Stomp (1929). After sessions with Ted Lewis (1930), Jack Teagarden (1931), and Billy Banks's Rhythmakers (1932), he began in May 1934 the voluminous series of recordings with a small band known as Fats Waller and his Rhythm.

In the mid-1930s, Waller worked on the West Coast with Les Hite's band at Frank Sebastian's New Cotton Club. He also appeared in two films while in Hollywood in 1935, Hooray for Love! and King of Burlesque. For tours and recordings, Waller often led his own big band. This began as an expanded version of the band led by his bass player (Charlie Turner's Arcadians), and in 1935, with most members of the Rhythm it made its first recording. The group's version of I Got Rhythm includes a cutting contest of alternating piano solos by Waller and Hank Duncan.

In 1938, Waller undertook a European tour, recording in London with his Continental Rhythm, as well as making solo pipe-organ recordings for HMV. His second European tour in 1939 was terminated by the outbreak of war, but while in Britain, he recorded his London Suite, an extended series of six related pieces for solo piano: Piccadilly, Chelsea, Soho, Bond Street, Limehouse, and White Chapel. It is Waller's longest composition and represents his aspiration to be a “serious” composer rather than only the author of a string of hit songs.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Jazz for Curious Listeners
The Joint is Jumpin': Fats Waller: Film night
7:00 – 8:30pm
Location: NJMH Visitors Center
(104 E. 126th Street, Suite 2C)
FREE | For more information: 212-348-8300

This month the National Jazz Museum in Harlem peered deeply into the artistry and legacy of Fats Waller, first as a composer, pianist, organist and then as one of the central figures of jazz in Harlem.

Tonight we’ll end where popular culture begins as regards Waller, with him on film playing music and mugging for the camera as a showman.

You’ll surely leave with a smile as we view clips from Waller’s Hollywood appearances in feature films and soundies, early versions of the music video. Soundies were three-minute musical films, produced in New York, Chicago, and Hollywood between 1940 and 1946, and often included short dance sequences.

Look out especially for the pairing of Waller and Bill “Bojangles” Robinson, which captures a moment in jazz history where dance, song and improvisation were joined at the hip.

Consider yourself hip? Then we’ll see you at the Visitor’s Center of the National Jazz Museum . . . with Fats Waller on screen, you’re guaranteed that the joint will be jumping!