museum

Guster Unveil EP Cover, Tracklisting + Release Free Download

Guster unveil the cover art and tracklisting for their previously announced EP On The Ocean, out August 2nd, as well as a taste of the title track. Download/stream "On The Ocean" at the band's facebook! The band's upcoming summer tour with Jack's Mannequin begins on the EP's release day and wraps in September (full list of dates are below).
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On The Ocean Tracklisting:
1. On The Ocean (Radio Edit)
2. Big White Bed
3. Every Moment
4. Satellite (Live At The Met Museum of Art)
5. That’s No Way To Get To Heaven (Live At The Met Museum of Art)
6. This Is How It Feels To Have A Broken Heart (Mitchell Spinach Remix)
Be sure you find your way to the show when they're in your town, and experience for yourself
the effect "feeling more energized about our music and playing together than ever" has had
on the band's already legendary live performance.
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Tour Dates
08/02/11 - Hyannis, MA @ Cape Cod Melody Tent
08/03/11 - Danbury, CT @ Ives Concert Park
08/04/11 - Newport, RI @ Newport Yacht Club
08/06/11 - Portland, ME @ Concerts on the Waterfront at Ocean Gateway
08/07/11 - Baltimore, MD @ Pier Six
08/09/11 - Asbury Park, NJ @ Stone Pony
08/11/11 - Philadelphia, PA @ Festival Pier
08/12/11 - Boston, MA @ Bank of America Pavillion
08/13/11 - Canandaigua, NY @CMAC
08/15/11 - Vienna, VA @Wolf Trap
08/16/11 - Portsmouth, VA @ nTELOS Pavillion
08/17/11 - Myrtle Beach, SC @ House of Blues
08/19/11 - Charlotte, NC @ Uptown Amphitheatre at The Music Factory
08/20/11 - Mt Pleasant, SC @ Patriots Point
08/21/11 - Pompano Beach, FL @ Pompano Beach Amphitheatre
08/23/11 - Tampa, FL @ Ritz Ybor
08/24/11 - Atlanta, GA @ Chastain Park
08/29/11 - Indianapolis, IN @ The Lawn at White River
08/30/11 - Detroit, MI @ The Fillmore
08/31/11 - Grand Rapids, MI @ Meijer Gardens
09/02/11 - Interlochen, MI @ Kresge Auditorium
09/03/11 - Highland Park, IL @ Ravinia Festival09/04/11 - Columbus, OH @ LC Pavilion

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!

THE NATIONAL JAZZ MUSEUM IN HARLEM SUMMER GLOBALORIA WORKSHOP

The National Jazz Museum in Harlem is teaming up with the World Wide Workshop to create an innovative VIDEO GAME using Globaloria technology! We are looking for 6 special young people between the ages of 13-19 who we'll select and appoint as our official game designers. NO PRIOR EXPERIENCE NECESSARY!

This team of 6 prospective candidates must have the facility to present strong ideas, yet create and incorporate the ideas of the team as a whole. An emphasis is placed on the candidate's ability to use JAZZ music, innovation, and a compelling video game objective to efficiently create a product that will attract both young people and adults alike. Prospective candidates should have the facility to adopt World Wide Workshop and the National Museum of Harlem's existing visual identity. No previous experience necessary. Only requirement: captivating, original ideas.

The workshop will take place for 3 weeks from July 6 - July 27 (Mon-Fri only) at the National Jazz Museum in Harlem. In the afternoons the 6 game designers will collaborate on creating this new game. The experience will be interactive, including live performances, masterclasses, and trips to many exciting and historic NYC jazz locations.

The host for the entire summer workshop is rising star pianist Jonathan Batiste and his band. Each day he will have something unique to offer, and allowing the 6 game designers to truly immerse themselves in this music we call JAZZ!

Call 212-348-8300 or email office@jmih.org for more info.

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.

Keller Williams Hosts Three-Show Benefit

One-man-band Keller Williams heads to the Fredericksburg Field House on Saturday, May 7 to headline the special family concert: Keller Williams Plays for Kids: A Benefit for the Cobblestone Children's Museum of Fredericksburg. During this unique event full of humor and surprises, parents and children will deepen their bond by playing music together and dancing to Keller’s infectious sing-along songs. Joining Keller will be local artist and drummer Ken Crampton of Everybody Drum and local painter/illustrator Bill Harris who collaborated with Keller last fall on Keller’s first children’s book Because I Said So (Fun Read Publishing, $20, for ages 2-8, 33 pages). Both Williams and Harris will be available following the show for a meet-and-greet and book signing.

This special family concert marks the first-ever fundraising event for the emerging Cobblestone Children's Museum. Cobblestone believes that the Fredericksburg area, with a combined population of more than 300,000, can support a children's museum and that the area’s children and families deserve the educational and enrichment opportunities that such a facility would provide. Cobblestone Children’s Museum of Fredericksburg’s mission is to inspire interactive learning and creativity in children and adults through moments of shared discovery. The museum’s vision is to provide a safe, challenging and stimulating environment where children can direct their own learning experiences. www.cobblestonechildrensmuseum.org.

That same weekend, Keller will also perform two shows for adults; both will benefit the Cobblestone Children’s Museum. On May 6, Keller performs aboard “The City of Fredericksburg Riverboat” for a lucky few people. Always a favorite for Keller fans, this boat trip finds Keller backed by Keith Moseley, Gibb Droll and Jeff Sipe (WMDS). Then, on the evening of May 7 at the Fredericksburg Field House, Keller will perform with Moseley, Droll & Sipe and will host a Late Night Dance Party featuring DJ Logic. Tickets and information on all three shows available at www.kellerwilliams.net.

Keller Williams released his first-ever kids album, appropriately titled Kids, last October, and this benefit show on May 7 marks the first time he’s bringing his live family show to his hometown. Kids has already been warmly embraced by kids and music tastemakers.

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Keller Williams Plays for Kids: A Benefit for the Cobblestone Children's Museum of Fredericksburg
Saturday May 7, 2011
Fredericksburg Field House, Fredericksburg, VA
Doors/Drum Circle 2:30pm / Show 3:30pm
Tickets are $20 & Family 4-Pack $70.00
Tickets available through www.kellerwilliams.net
or locally at Jabberwocky Children's Books and Toys 540-371-5684

ALSO
May 6th – Evening cruise aboard “The City of Fredericksburg Riverboat featuring Keller with Moseley, Droll and Sipe (WMDS). Departs at 6:00 pm.

May 7th – Keller with Moseley, Droll & Sipe and Late Night Dance Party featuring DJ Logic at the Fredericksburg Field House. Doors 7:00pm, WMDS 8:00 PM, DJ Logic will follow the WMDS and will spin ‘til 2PM. Tickets $25.

Tickets to all shows go on sale on Thursday, March 10 at 10:00 am EST at www.kellerwilliams.net.

Al Bell gets Grammy Trustees Award

The Memphis Music Foundation and the Stax Museum of American Soul Music, located at the original site of Stax Records, proudly congratulate Al Bell on receiving the highest honor the music industry offers, the 2011 Grammy Trustees Award, given by the Board of Trustees of the Recording Academy. Bell now joins the pantheon of musical icons who have received the prestigious honor, including the Beatles, Walt Disney, George and Ira Gershwin, Berry Gordy, Duke Ellington, and Stax Records’ co-founder Estelle Axton.

For Bell, the honor represents a milestone in his lifetime love of music and work in the industry.

“The phone call I received from Neil Portnow, president of NARAS’ Grammy Foundation, letting me know that I was going to be a recipient of the Trustees Lifetime Achievement Award,” says Bell, “was both humbling and honoring. This is the most meaningful recognition I could have ever hoped to achieve from my industry. I sincerely thank NARAS and the Grammy Foundation for honoring me with their highest award.”

In 1965, a young radio disc jockey from Brinkley, Arkansas named Alvertis Isbell joined a fledging record company in Memphis, Tennessee to help promote the music it was churning out in an old converted movie theater. That small label was Stax Records and Al Bell became known to be one of the driving forces who helped change music history. Decades later, in 2009, he became the chairman of the board of directors of the Memphis Music Foundation (MMF), the main organization charged with promoting the city’s musical legacy, current artists, and future plans.

“This is great news for Al Bell and Memphis Music,” said Dean Deyo, president of the Memphis Music Foundation. “Al started developing young artists during his Stax days over 40 years ago and continues to nurture artist development as chairman of the Memphis Music Foundation.  Memphis music is something very special and one of the main reasons for its success has been Al Bell.  It just may be a bit early to give him a Lifetime Achievement Award, because he is not done yet.  Al Bell is just getting started.”

Kirk Whalum, internationally renowned musician and 12-time Grammy nominee, now CEO for the Soulsville Foundation in Memphis, which includes the Stax Museum, Stax Music Academy and The Soulsville Charter School, explains, “There's a very good reason that the name Al Bell is mentioned, the voice of Al Bell is heard, and the handsome and distinguished face of Al Bell is seen more than any other name, voice, and face in the Stax Museum of American Soul Music. It's because of his body of work. Yes he remains a creative, viable, and avant-garde force in the industry. But who wouldn't give a limb to have all his ‘firsts’ and accomplishments in one’s rearview mirror?”

From 1965 until the company was forced into involuntary bankruptcy in 1975, Bell helped build Stax Records into one of the most influential labels in the world, working with artists such as Otis Redding, Isaac Hayes, the Staple Singers, Johnnie Taylor, Sam & Dave, Booker T. & the MGs, the Bar Kays, Richard Pryor, and a host of others. He also produced and wrote such hits as the Staple Singers’ “I’ll Take You There.”  When Bell owned Stax in the 1970s, it was the second-largest African-American owned business in the United States. After the company’s demise, he went on to serve as president of Motown Records Group, and later started his own Bellmark Records label, releasing Prince’s top-selling song ever, “The Most Beautiful Girl in the World,” and Tag Team’s multi-platinum hit “Whoomp! (There It is),” one of the best-selling rap singles in history. Bell now operates his own web-based music channel, AlBellPresents.com.

For Isbell, given the name Al Bell in 1957 as radio announcer in Little Rock, Arkansas,  whose famous radio sign-on was “This is your 6-feet-4 bundle of joy, 212 pounds of Mrs. Bell’s baby boy, soft as medicated cotton, rich as double-X cream, the women’s pet, the men’s threat, the play boys pride and joy, the baby boy Al Bell,” — the Grammy Award not only marks his lifetime of work in the music industry, but also gives more fuel to what he plans to do now and in the future.

“When Mr. Portnow said ‘Lifetime Achievement Award,” Bell continues, “I didn’t think about my past. It sounded prophetic. Because what has happened to me is that I’ve begun to pursue that which I have learned in life and I’m about the business of achieving it. It’s a beginning for me. With this award and through my role with the Memphis Music Foundation, I am beginning my lifetime evolvement and development in the recorded music industry.”

Jazz Museum in Harlem Featured on BBC

A feature piece on the NJMH’s acquisition of and programming around the BILL SAVORY collection with be broadcast Wednesday, September 29th on the  7 p.m. broadcast (most local times) on both BBC AMERICA and BBC WORLD.

The National Jazz Museum in Harlem, a Smithsonian Affiliate, is dedicated to preserving and perpetuating jazz as a living entity that stretches as far into the future as it does into the past. NJMH programs currently attract several thousand visitors a year. This event is the Museum’s largest and most important annual fundraising effort. Proceeds from the gala will support the Museum’s mission.

As you may have seen in the August 17th New York Times cover story, the National Jazz Museum in Harlem made a acquisition of a historic collection of never-before-heard recordings, including live performances of great American jazz icons from 1935-1941.  The collection of 975 aluminum and vinyl discs, encompassing over 100 hours of material, was created by William Savory, a recording engineer and Harvard-educated physicist who worked at a radio transcription service in New York and used the equipment his job afforded him to record hundreds of hours of material directly off the radio. The collection includes performances by jazz icons such as Count Basie, Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, Lester Young, Lionel Hampton, Fats Waller, Artie Shaw, Benny Goodman, and more, as well as classical broadcasts including Toscanini, Ormandy, and Kirsten Flagstad. The quality of the discs is extraordinary for the time, as most jazz enthusiasts in the 1930s did not have the access to the professional equipment that Savory enjoyed. You can sample some these newly discovered treasures at the Museum’s website.

The search for, and cultivation of, this collection is an exemplary example of the Museum’s commitment to preserve the history of jazz, while nurturing its evolution for future generations.  It also comes at a fortuitous time in the Museum’s development as we are currently preparing to build a permanent home at Mart 125 – a historic landmark in Upper Manhattan which stands directly across from the famed Apollo Theatre on Harlem’s 125th Street.

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.

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!