saxophonist

Greg Osby & Daniel Bennett at the Triad (NYC)


On Saturday, June 25th, the acclaimed Triad Theatre in Manhattan presents a special double bill concert, featuring contemporary jazz saxophonist Greg Osby and experimental "Folk-Jazz" saxophonist Daniel Bennett. Legendary contemporary saxophonist Greg Osby and innovative "Folk Jazz" saxophonist Daniel Bennett team up for a double bill performance at the Triad Theatre!  The New York Times declares, "Greg Osby has a keen, focused tone on alto saxophone and a hummingbird's phrasing, an equilibrium of hover and flutter."  The Boston Globe raves,"the Daniel Bennett Group plays a mix of jazz, folk, and trance."

The Triad Theatre has hosted performances by entertainers like Slash, Joan Osborne, Lisa Loeb, Paula Cole, Susan Lucci, Buddy Miles, Ravi Coltrane, Debbie Gibson, David Crosby, George Benson, Max Weinberg, John Entwistle, Tracey Morgan, Kathie Lee Gifford, Matthew Broderick, Rachel Dratch, and Steve Gutenberg. The Triad was the original home for Off-Broadway hits like "Forever Plaid," "Forbidden Broadway," and "Secrets Every Smart Traveler Should Know."

The Triad is located at 158 West 72nd Street on Manhattan's upper west side. Visit www.triadnyc.com for more information.  All advance tickets must be purchased at www.brownpapertickets.com/event/177563


Dave Stryker CD Release @ Cecils | New Jersey

Whether you’ve heard guitarist Dave Stryker fronting his own group (with 20 CD’s as a leader to date), or as a featured sideman with Stanley Turrentine, Jack McDuff, and Kevin Mahogany, you know why Gary Giddins in the Village Voice calls him “one of the most distinctive guitarists to come along in recent years.”  He was voted one of the Top Ten Guitarists in the 2001 Critics and Readers Poll of Downbeat Magazine, and was recently elected again as a Rising Star for the 5th time in the 2008 Downbeat Critics Poll. His latest CD is called "Keystone" on SteepleChase Records.

Stryker grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, moved to New York City in 1980, and joined organist Jack McDuff’s group, traveling all over the U.S. for two years (1984-85).  From 1986 to 1995, Stryker played with tenor saxophonist Stanley Turrentine, performing at all the major festivals, concert halls, and clubs throughout the world.  He has also performed with Freddie Hubbard, James Moody, Dizzy Gillespie, Jimmy Smith, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Eliane Elias, Joe Lovano and many others.

Dave currently performs with The Stryker / Slagle Band (with saxophonist Steve Slagle), The Dave Stryker Organ Trio and his Blue to the Bone Band.  He has recorded and published over 130 of his compositions, recorded 20 CD’s under his own name and recorded as a sideman on over 50 others.  He has performed all over the world at all the great Jazz Festivals and concert halls including Carnegie Hall, The Monterey Jazz Festival, The Newport Jazz Festival, and The JVC Jazz Festival.

Dave is also involved in passing along his experience by teaching both privately and at the John J. Cali School of Music at Montclair State University, The Aebersold Summer Jazz Workshop, The Litchfield Jazz Camp, The Veneto/New School Jazz Workshop in Italy, and The Outreach Jazz Workshop in Austria.  His book Dave Stryker’s Jazz Guitar Improvisation Method, is available from Mel Bay Publishing.

Dave Stryker Organ Quartet CD Release gigs:

Dave Stryker-guitar
Jared Gold-drums
Stephen Riley-tenor sax
McClenty Hunter-drums
Freddie Hendrix-trumpet

Cecils Jazz Club

364 Valley Rd
West Orange, NJ 07052
973-736-4800

Sat. Dec. 18th 7 and 9 pm
Shanghai Jazz in Madison NJ

Sun. Dec. 26  8 & 10 pm
w/ Billy Hart-drums
Trumpets Jazz Club
6 Depot Square
Montclair NJ 07042
973-744-2600

THE BLACK BUTTERFLIES Tuesday, September 7th 9 PM at NUBLU

While this is just the debut release from The Black Butterflies, a group led by 27-year-old saxophonist Mercedes Figueras, veterans would do well to prick up their ears and take note. The Butterflies deftly blend the Latin rhythms of Figueras' native Argentina with free and post-bop noodling and tantalizing natural-world percussive elements, into full, invigorating music that sprouts, twines and flourishes over the 63-minute span of this entirely satisfying album.

The title track kicks off the record. It is a relaxed, comfortably humid piece that sways from a melodic opening into more forceful strains on the wind of Figueras' sax and swingingly persistent conga thumps. The piece never reaches--nor even strives for--the anthemic quality the title might suggest. Instead, the labor sweats happily, singingly under the sun. Appropriately, the tune--and, thus, the album--takes flight on the crystalline wings of Dan Tepfer's echoing, solo keyboard statement. It's appropriate not only for fashioning a sly musical equivalence to the band's moniker, but by spotlighting in Tepfer one of the group's, well, keys. Tepfer's polished electric tones lace the Latin rhythms and strings them up on a brightly modern line that still never smoothes the crisp, pulsing edges of the traditional beats. As mentioned, it's this facile navigation of divergent musical fields and the ability to rake loose from the passage a lively new hybrid that makes listening to The Black Butterflies so palpably intriguing. Ears laugh at their good fortune.

"Afro Blue," with its inevitable rekindling of saxophonist John Coltrane's spirit, also sparks the ghost of Albert Ayler, the twining sax statements of Figueras and her (even more?) experimental mate, Tony Larokko, rendering the Coltrane vehicle as a mighty, squealing, squawking, melodically impassioned conversation between the lost giants of the avant-garde. The saxophonists pause for a breather midway through, revealing front and center the rolling-thunder percussion the listener's body already knew was there. Tepfer contributes another light yet zinging solo over the drums before backing off to give conga man Bopa "King" Carre, percussionist Fred Berryhill and drummer Kenny Wollesen even more space to break loose and rumble.

The first of Figueras' two original pieces on the album, "Pipi's Blues," follows "Afro Blue" with the type of jumping cadence saxophonist Joe Henderson might have favored with the mid 1960s support of pianists McCoy Tyner or Andrew Hill. Only here Tepfer remains electric, adding the swirling bluesy punch of organist Jimmy Smith, while also not refusing to jut off on Larry Young-like angular departures.

Larokko contributes the next two numbers, "Spiritual Travels" and "Yah-Yah," the first a jolting, percussion-heavy piece full of strong repeated sax figures that again recall the journeys of Ayler. The latter, the album's most experimental piece, evolves from whistles and an array of percussion instruments that erupt into a cacophony of insect and animal noises--nature's nighttime rhythm section--that in turn give way to the African chants that supply the song's title and the singing of Figueras. Her voice is strong yet slightly coarse and splintered like the timbre of her sax, relating in insistent, desperate Spanish the tragic tale of "Los Ojos Azules," a Bolivian song popularized by the late Argentine singer Mercedes Sosa, while accompanied by an increasingly complex and urgent layering of rhythmic human voices and drums. The whole ultimately explodes into a screeching battle of horns--the saxophones' cries themselves sounding almost human at times--that burns out through extended, passionate playing, leaving only the snaps and twangs of nature and the soft, compelling "Yah-yah, Yah-yah" chants of dancers or workers.

Yet, lest it be thought the band has gone irrevocably, unrestrainably tribal, it closes on the infectious Figueras piece, "Music Heals All Wounds," a soulful "Auld Lang Syne" with Caribbean accents. (To belabor the Ayler connection--or to kill it, finally--this most certainly is not "Music Is the Healing Force of the Universe.") Figueras' tune delivers as advertised--a warming salve that demands multiple healing doses on the spot, then lingers, replaying itself for hours in the listener's brain to pleasant, calming effect.

Yes, this is the debut release from a new band whose young leader has issued only one other record under her name, Elefante (2007), a free-improv set from Figueras and drummer Martín Visconti. But make no mistake, 1 de Mayo also happens to be one of the best overall records of 2010.

--

THE BLACK BUTTERFLIES

when: Tuesday September 7th
Time: 9 PM
Where: NUBLU (62 Av C New York, NY 10009)
http://www.nublu.net/

RUE 57 RESTAURANT LAUNCHES JAZZ SERIES

Rue 57, New York’s only brasserie-sushi bar will begin offering live music on Thursday evenings in their downstairs Salon beginning June 17 from 8pm - 11:30pm. For reservations and info, call (212) 307-5656.

The weekly series will feature some of New York’s finest musicians many of international renown. Kicking off the series will be saxophonist Grant Stewart, a hard-swinging tenor saxophonist steeped in the jazz tradition, on June 17. Also featured in the series will be veteran players Frank Wess and George Garzone.

“Excellent food, drink and entertainment from great artists, at great value at one of New York City’s finest eateries - who could ask for more?" asked Charles Carlini, entertainment coordinator for the weekly music series.

Diners will find jazz a sweet addition to this bustling bistro serving superb versions of French classics as well as Sushi.

Music Calendar

June 17 - Grant Stewart Quartet
June 24 - George Garzone Quartet featuring Joe Cohn
July 1 - George Garzone Quartet featuring Joe Cohn
July 8 - Harry Allen/Joe Cohn Quartet
July 15 - Vanessa Trouble Quartet
July 22 - Sarah Hayes Quartet featuring Joe Colianni
July 29 - Jerry Weldon Quartet featuring Joe Cohn

Azar Lawrence Sextet @ Tribeca Performing Arts Center

When saxophonist Azar Lawrence first burst on to the jazz scene in the '70s he was hailed by many as the second coming of John Coltrane.  "Azar Lawrence burns like a bright, hot flame at the altar of his muse. Given the ever-present fire danger in the Southland, a fire truck should remain on call when Lawrence blows. " raves  AllAboutJazz.  BMCC Tribeca PAC’s Lost Jazz Shrines series is dedicated to bringing legendary New York City jazz clubs back into the consciousness of the world with a thorough remembrance and celebration.  Our opening night concert will be a tribute to the late Rashied Ali. Saxophonist Azar Lawrence performed there frequently, and Rashied Ali played the drums on his next release.

Azar Lawrence Sextet
Lost Jazz Shrines Series Part 1 Celebrating Ali’s Alley
May 7, 8:30PM, $25

BMCC TRIBECA PERFORMING ARTS CENTER
Borough of Manhattan Community College
199 Chambers Street
(212) 220 -1460 | www.TribecaPAC.org

GNU VOX: SARA SERPA Tonight At Cornelia Street Cafe

Sara Serpa is a vocalist wielding an instrument as favorably unadorned and pure as any in jazz. She's the freshest vocalist on the scene at the moment, not just because she's new to it at age 28. It's certainly not because of the way she delivers a lyric, since there usually aren't any. Being from Portugal is also irrelevant, for like much of the great jazz coming our way in the past few years from Lisbon, there is nothing overtly ethnic about the music; it's sensuous, transporting, sultry and warm.

A main reason is that with one recording in, she raises profound questions regarding the previous role of the vocalist in jazz. What's radical, is that it's not about the ridiculous chops or inhuman gymnastic training or trickery. She sings as an instrumentalist, as a member of an ensemble with a bold conception, moving seamlessly as would a saxophonist from melodist to soloist, or from a front line horn to an ensemble voice—not the star of some show. Serpa sounds as if she's talking right to you, even though she's singing, not just in terms of the intimacy quotient, but in terms of the actual sound of it—literally, she sounds as if she must sing whenever she speaks." (Phil DiPietro, All About Jazz)

Thu  Apr 22nd 8:30PM   
GNU VOX: SARA SERPA

CORNELIA STREET CAFÉ
29 Cornelia Street, NYC, New York| 212-989-9319
http://www.corneliastreetcafe.com