MUST SEE JAZZ EVENT~ AZAR LAWRENCE EXPERIENCE HOTTEST TICKET IN L.A.!!


“ZAR” is celebrating his release on Concord Records, ”Bridge into the New Age” Sunday November 12 8pm-10pm Only!  Zebulon Café Concert in Los Angeles ~ 2478 Fletcher Drive L.A. 90039. Buy tickets:$25  https://www.ticketfly.com/event/1582784-azar-lawrence-experience-los-angeles/    

Saxophones ~ Leader – Azar Lawrence

Special Guest vocalist – Windy Barnes-Farrell

Bass-Henry Franklin

Trumpet-Michael Hunter

Roy McCurdy – Drums

Munyungo Jackson-Percussion

Theo Saunders-Piano

 

 

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MOVING WEST ~AZAR LAWRENCE EXPERIENCE 2017


 Saxophonist Azar Lawrence makes his way back to the Zebulon Café Sunday night Nov.12 at 8pm.with him are some of Jazz’s most holistic and stellar musicians and vocalist. 

The Azar Lawrence Experience featuring Theo Saunders piano, Henry Franklin bass, Munyungo Jackson Percussion & Roy McCurdy drums..Special guest vocalist Ms. Windy Barnes-Farrell.

“ZAR” is celebrating his release on Concord Records, Bridge into the New Age. Zebulon Café Concert in Los Angeles. 2478 Fletcher Drive L.A. 90039.  Buy tickets:$25  https://www.ticketfly.com/event/1582784-azar-lawrence-experience-los-angeles/

 

LADY KRISTINA AT LARGE IN NEW YORK: JAZZ AND GENTRIFICATION


 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by Kristina McBride ~Int’l Jazz Editor at Large   I recently ventured to NYC to go see the legendary Pharaoh Sanders in Brooklyn. I hadn’t been to New York in around 13 years, so I wanted to take my time and see the city and experience it all over again, taking in the old with the new. It felt wonderful to walk the streets again, block after block. I considered the fact that I had never been to Harlem and wanted to get off the beaten trail, so I got on the A-Train and got off at 125th and Malcom X Blvd. I was overcome with a sense of peace and excitement simultaneously.

I had arrived in the cultural mecca of Black Americans. Legends had walked these streets: Langston Hughes, Malcom X, Zora Neale Hurston, Amiri Baraka, Duke Ellington, Billy Holiday, Miles Davis…I can go on and on. I was hearing Gregory Porter’s “On My Way to Harlem” on a loop in the musical soundtrack of my mind.  I gazed at the buildings surrounding me.  All the goings-on was a sensory wonderland, displaying mothers pushing their babies around the corner while on their cellphones.. a young man rushing toward the subway, perhaps he won’t be late to his shift.

Wow..the Nigerian grandmothers sitting at their stalls with their wares for sale, fanning themselves from the impossible heat of a New York Summer.  And, of course I walked past the Apollo Theater, snapped a few pictures of myself, Then I sauntered in the vibes and wisdom from the vendors selling their body oils, shea butter,black seed soap and Dashikis.

I finally met up with a long-time friend, both of us were hungry,  we decided to stop by a café for some grub. On the way, he pointed to the left and said, “There it is…that was the Lenox Lounge.” I paused abruptly on the sidewalk, taking in the sight in front of me. It was a massive, hollowed space flanked by two buildings with awnings.  I stood in front of the empty lot where the Lenox Lounge once stood, now filled with bulldozers that will go back to work demolishing what remained that following Monday. Including a massive, blue metal removal bin, I wonder what was in it. Could it be any of the chairs or light fixtures, or maybe pieces of the beautiful, honeycomb tile floor? Not even the marquee was there. One would never know that the place ever existed.

Rumors are a Sephora is being constructed in its place. Another frivolous, over-priced store in a rapidly gentrifying neighborhood. Or at least they’re trying to. Only just a few weeks before my visit there, was a vote to stop the renaming of a section of Harlem to “SoHa” (short for South Harlem). Harlemites wouldn’t stand for that nonsense.

I wish this could have been the case in D.C. where this is happening all over as the “brown folks” are being moved out to attract younger, richer, and incidentally more white people into the city. “The sight of a Whole Foods at the Corner of Malcolm X Blvd and 125th befuddled me as I came out of the subway station.” Such an odd place for a store like that for that neighborhood, but it’s a sign of things to come.

So many of our cultural landmarks and venues that was home to Black America’s music and its artists over generations are rapidly disappearing: Bohemian Caverns and HR-57 in Washington, D.C.; in Philadelphia, although they have been long-gone are Pep’s and The Showboat, and it’s even worse nowadays according to some long-time Philadelphians.

Older Philly Jazz fans into their 80’s now, feel the new spots  aren’t hosting any jazz whatsoever. In  Los Angeles, the home of Leimert Park’s World Stage, they too have been bullied by the threat of gentrification. Presently preparing to put up a staunch fight for culture and legacy . We now have to hear jazz in these sterile environments, where the band has to fight with the noise of people chatting-away as musicians create Living Art right in front of them.

Absolute worst..annoying people practically standing on the bandstand just to capture video and pictures to post to FB, and insta-gram, trying to prove how hip they are .

Most aren’t really into the music anyway.  Even worse than all that , if you do love the music and want to go out to hear a good gig, it’s a small fortune sometimes, $15 and up covers plus $20 food/drink minimum is not uncommon. Good luck if the gig is in a city that requires pay to park! The venues aren’t paying anything decent for the band to play, so musicians aren’t working.

Kristina on Sax

The artistry and music are suffering because of it all, Hopefully, there is an urgency to remedy this situation.

I contemplated this as I walked away from the empty, hollow shell where the Lenox Lounge once stood, looking back several times,searching deeply for a sense of hope. ### by Kristina McBride

Next Up Nov.1:They Called Him Morgan:My Spin on the Movie

 

 

 

 

COMING 2018 INTERVIEW WITH THE HIGH PRIESTESS:NINA SIMONE ~ ORIGINAL PLAY


an Original Play by Robert J. Carmack – Black History Month

COMING  to the Los Angeles area  February 2018

The Actors

Ms. Jana Wilson as

High Priestess Nina Simone

~in Loving Tribute~

 

 

 

 

 

Robert J. Carmack as    the Reporter~Karl Lee

written,produced and directed ~R.J.Carmack

Music-Poetry-Drama

9 YEAR OLD ATLANTA DRUMMING SENSATION ADDED TO LONDON BASED TV SHOW


 

 

 

 

 

 

posted by Robert J. Carmack    #@blues2jazzguy                    At a recent interview with a Chief Executive at London 5 Studios in England, It was announced that 9 year old Joshua Grant has been selected to the cast of ” Little Melanie” a new TV show still in pre-production development. The show is based on a book conceived and developed by Ms.Melanie Greene, that’s centered around a little girl who is a piano prodigy. “Little Melanie” has a strong commitment to excellence and a dream to one day be as great as her idol, jazz pianist Hazel Scott. the young girl’s character is debuting with a launching of the first book, followed by another 149 + books within the massive children series.

In the TV series, Joshua Grant will portray a character, Aden that plays drums in the TV show Little Melanie Live!  This new show promises to dominate children’s television and spawn several movies and merchandise items. Grant has made many appearances on his drums and is very popular among his school mates in Atlanta . Among the most recent shows are the Harry Connick Jr Show where he and other youngsters are jamming with Harry’s TV Band on-air.

Rumors has it, He’s being wooed for another TV appearance by a famous daytime television show host  in Hollywood very soon.

 

SPIRITS OF CENTRAL AVENUE PAST: CENTRAL AVE. JAZZ FESTIVAL 2017


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The 22nd Annual Central Avenue Jazz Festival, hosted by L.A. Council member Curren D. Price, Jr., is upon us, and we hope you can join the party as we celebrate South L.A.’s rich cultural past, present and future!

The FREE event on Saturday, July 29 and Sunday, July 30 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., includes performances by dozens of highly talented and recognized Jazz musicians.

The two-day festival will feature prominent performers on three stages with live music, pavilions focused on arts, health, youth, business and employment resources along with food and merchandise available to purchase. For more information, including a complete schedule of performances,

please visit http://www.centralavejazz.org/

Robert J.Carmack Plight Jazz Ensemble leader ***  publisher hipster sanctuary.com

 

PROFOUND SIMPLICITY: A GLIMPSE OF DWIGHT TRIBLE


posted by  #@blues2 jazz guy

“Profound Simplicity”- A Glimpse of Dwight Trible” by Kristina McBride

I’ve been spinning quite a bit of music lately, listening to the inner urge of Joe Henderson’s tenor sax, Lee Morgan’s blistering trumpet solo telling it like it is, Black Arthur breaking down Lenox Ave on my new Rega RP3 with a fantastic vintage Scott 382-B amplifier and speaker combination. The music and sound combination that comes at me is sensational, bringing me closer to the music more than ever. I’ve begun to listen to and feel music more deeply over time. Through music I travel freely through time and space, exploring my inner-most emotions and dreams. In the spellbinding voice of Dwight Trible, I embark on a musical voyage, exploring new depths of musical consciousness.

He is a vocalist-songwriter, poet and musical healer. That he is so shamefully under-acknowledged in the music world is especially contemptible considering how badly the world needs his music. He successfully fuses jazz, blues, and gospel while also being known to reference opera and Gregorian chants during his presentation. He’s collaborated with contemporaries such as J-Dilla, Kamasi Washington, and John Beasley.  I stumbled upon his music on a balmy Florida afternoon while I listened to WPFW in Washington, D.C. I heard Trible’s sonorous voice laced on top of the lush, romantic piano, string and percussion ensemble of Quasimode as he sang “Midnight Flower”.  I was captivated straight away, my body becoming warm and I became aware of the sensual arousal I felt as I listened. His voice beckoned me, touching my soul with the immediate force evoked by the supernatural allure of his voice.

Trible is a full-bodied baritone that can ascend to a soul-stirring falsetto that is unwavering at any tempo or volume. His profound connection to music is present in each song he approaches. Trible’s masterful interpretation of Andy Bey’s “Celestial Blues” is the epitome of spiritual jazz singing, where he showcases his masterful, soul-stirring vibrato and vocal range. Trible’s singing is evocative of vibrant colors and textures, of romance, peace, and happiness. It has healing power, a unifier, a beacon of hope and light.       

 

 

 

 

Trible grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio with three siblings and both his parents. He began singing as a young child, inspired by his mother. “I remember sitting on the couch when she cleaned up, and I couldn’t have been more than two or three years-old. But I would just sit there and listen to my mother sing, mesmerized, almost in a trance. So, I guess she was probably my first inspiration for singing. Judging from my personality and my makeup perhaps I really didn’t have a choice in the matter, because when I look back on what else I could have done had I not been involved in that…for the most part I cannot think of anything else that it would be,” he remembered.

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“From my perspective, I try to get to the core of what it is…I look at it as profound simplicity. For something to be profound it doesn’t have to be complicated. It doesn’t have to be something that nobody understands what it is. Be who you are. And you be the most Dwight Trible you can be. And that’s all it is.”

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when I asked him how he began singing, and what he aspired to be when he grew up.  His mother would send them to the local theater after church every Sunday, and to keep from growing bored while watching the film, he began improvising to the music.

“I wonder what your siblings thought of you doing that,” I asked him, laughing as I imagined him with his then short legs dangling from the chair as he crooned to the music.

“Oh, they would be so angry with me. I remember once, my brother coming home and telling my mother, ‘Dwight was in-there singing again! He was in-there singing again!’” he recalled with a boisterous laugh. “’Cause God knows how loud I was singing. I guess I did it so much and it probably used to get on their nerves, but it was my nature to do it.” Surely these early singing experiments brought him a long way to becoming a master of his craft.

Trible was saturated with music throughout his childhood, drawing inspiration from Mahalia Jackson, Aretha Franklin, Donny Hathaway, and Linda Jones, who had the 1967 hit “Hypnotized, tune that had a major influence on his singing style.  “I was a Linda Jones freak! She was somebody that really resonated with me, and I would say that I was influenced by her more than anyone else, “ he remembered. He later sang with local R & B and gospel groups before outgrowing the Cincinnati music scene. He deeply felt he had to go abroad in order to grow as an artist, and was encouraged by his peers and fellow musicians.

He set his sights on Los Angeles, California, arriving at an extremely fertile time, and was quickly ushered into the L.A. music community by the late legends pianist Horace Tapscott (whom he later dedicated a whole album to) and drummer Billy Higgins. When I asked him what it was like being mentored by Tapscott, he was full of enthusiasm in his response and gave a funny anecdote: “Everything that I thought I knew about music, when I heard this guy play for the first time, it just blew my mind in such a way that, everything I knew, had to go, because I’d seen the light! And, it was strange because when I first saw him, he would come to the club where I was performing, and I’d be on stage and he’d be at the door watching. I would close my eyes and sing a few bars, and by the time I’d open my eyes, he’d be gone! He always did this. It was something else, man… and then one day, he told me to come to his house. I showed up and he had all these plans laid out for me to join The Ark (the nickname for the Pan Afrikan People’s Arkestra). And I was stunned because I didn’t think I was ready for all of that. I guess he felt I was.”

Tapscott appointed Trible to vocal director of the Pan-Afrikan People’s Arkestra shortly after, a move that would boost his confidence as a musician and would expand his profile throughout the music scene.

He later had the fortune of meeting the great Billy Higgins, who thrusted him out of his shyness and exposed his immense, unique talents to several giants of the jazz world: Pharaoh Sanders, Bobby Hutcherson, Charles Lloyd, and Mulgrew Miller. Although he and Pharaoh were familiar with each other, their musical collaboration didn’t come until after Higgins passed away. “Higgins was a guy who made everybody that he played with sound better. He had this way of sizing you up really, really quickly. He had this sort of telepathy  where he knew, when you first started playing with you, he could get inside you, find out who you were, and what you needed.  Then he would give you that “thing” to take you over the top. He just had that magic.

That’s why everybody, from Herbie Hancock on down, loved playing with Billy Higgins,” he reflected with nostalgia and deep affection in his voice. He later met the late vocalist Betty Carter, and was impressed by her artistry and professionalism, and would go on to incorporate a great deal of her style in his own singing. “And I would say that’s really it for me. And all the rest is me and the spirit working together, “he says optimistically. This writer could feel the peace he had within himself in his words, brimming with optimism. 

The Leimert Park arts scene in L.A. is a significant part of Trible’s identity and purpose as an artist and community advocate. He has served as the musical director of the World Stage for the past five years and has worked with the numerous grassroots organizations to fight against the threat of gentrification that targets the historic black cultural epicenter of the West Coast. He can often be found performing at the Blue Whale or The World Stage with a stellar lineup of musicians.

When he’s not singing in L.A. he can be found on a trans-Atlantic flight to London, as he recently did to cut a record with Matthew Halsall titled “Inspirations” (Gondwana label), released in June. He travelled across the pond to London to record with Halsall, as well as touring several cities throughout Europe.“Everywhere we went, you know…the people really, really loved it. Every house was completely packed, and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house every time we finished,” he told me when I asked him about the tour.  I can see how that could totally be the case. His voice stirs something inside you when he sings. No matter what language you speak, where you’re from, your age, it reaches you.  Sadly, he’s not well-known here in the U.S. where he has been singing for nearly 50 years.

It is beyond comprehension that he could have sung and collaborated with heavy-hitters such as Kenny Burrell, Harry Belafonte, Harold Land, Patrice Rushen, and Kenny Garrett, yet still be low-profile.  When I asked him his thoughts about this low-profile in the music world, he replied, “Yeah, it’s kinda interesting how I can go over there and probably work as much as I want to, whereas here, in this country, it is probably more difficult for me to get work here than it is over there.”

“It’s kinda sad,” I replied to him solemnly. “A hard time to be an artist. Too many musicians are struggling to find work here and there’s nowhere for them to play anymore. All the venues are drying up because of rising rents for venues and the cost of living for the artists, and widespread gentrification in the places where the music is popular. And the musicians hardly get paid anything on a gig most of the time. It’s a travesty and a great disservice to the music.”

His optimism and beautiful spirit radiated in his reply:

“Well, you know, I don’t look at it as sad really. I just think that it’s just the way things went, and the beautiful thing is, again, every day I get the opportunity to wake up and do what I love to do. And that’s the main thing. So as long as that can happen, I don’t think of any of it as sad. It’s all good, as far as I’m concerned.”

The album title came from the feeling that the world needs inspiration to carry on in these dark times, in the era of Donald Trump and uncertainty, hopelessness, and anxiety felt amongst many people right now. He delivers a spellbinding version of “What the World Needs Now”, a swinging waltz much like the feeling and style of Coltrane’s signature tune “My Favorite Things”. This writer wondered, if he got inspiration from Coltrane to record this song in this manner, with him as a being a major influence on Trible. The addition of a harpist (Rachel Gladwin channeling a bit of Alice Coltrane in this tune) gives the song an ethereal, jubilant feeling that propels your spirit forth into an ocean of good vibes. Trumpeter Matthew Halsall executes a soulful, yet melancholy solo calling for hope and love for humanity through his horn. Trible finishes out the song and takes us to church, getting down and gritty with his gospel-styled ad-libs. He puts his trademark on several standards throughout the album such as “Feeling Good” and “Ooh, Child”, but you will not get bored hearing them again. Dwight put his signature style on each and everyone of them.

There are many vocalists out here singing, yet Dwight Trible stands-out on an island of his own. He’s truly an artist with such versatility that has something for everyone, and plenty to give. He has an ingenuity that is clearly present in his singing… and that radiates from his spirit. He’s not in this for the fame or fortune (if only!!), but in my mind, be a messenger of love and peace, which are common themes of many of the songs he sings.

He broke down his philosophy for me and outlook on life: “From my perspective, I try to get to the core of what it is…I look at it as profound simplicity. For something to be profound, it doesn’t have to be complicated. It doesn’t have to be something that nobody understands what it is. Be who you are. And being the most Dwight Trible I can be. And that’s all it is.”    ###          (follow Kristina Mcbride on this blog)

Recommended Listening:

Cosmic- (2011, Katalyst Entertainment)

Living Water- (2004, Ninja Tune)

Inspirations- (2017, Gondwana Records)

Quasimode Sounds of Peace- (2008, Geneon)

http://www.dwighttriblemusic.com

please send into this blog your comments or appreciation for this fine article…Thank you – Publisher

 

GEOFFREY’S INNER CIRCLE PRESENTS HAPPY BIRTHDAY GLEN PEARSON:DR JAZZ


posted by Robert J. Carmack  #blues2jazzguy

COME ON OAKTOWN AND ALL OF THE EASTBAY

“LET’S MAKE THIS NIGHT FOR THE BAY AREA’s MOST HUMBLE JAZZ MUSICIAN AND EDUCATOR VERY SPECIAL…

Oakland’s best and brightest stars musicians, singers and actors

Lets make some noise for the “Fiery Fingers” of Glen Pearson Dr.Jazz

Friday, July 21st
Doors open 7:00 pm – Program starts 8:00 pm
Geoffrey’s Inner Circle

Special Guest Stars:

Faye Carol
Janice Maxie Reid
Nikita Germaine
Frankye Kelly
Kenny Washington

Special Presentation By:Yancy Taylor

At Geoffrey’s You Never know who might show up to play or watch you perform..even old friends that have moved away..lol!

l-r: Glen Pearson, Charles McNeal, Yancy Taylor & Robert J. Carmack July 9 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BUSTER WILLIAMS BUSTED LOOSE AT 75th BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION CONCERT


Buster Williams & Jazz Journalist Robert J. Carmack photo by Robert Hill

posted by Robert J. Carmack

You know anytime you have a name like Buster , the bar is already set high! No need to worry as the 75 year old bassist did not disappoint the crowd attending the concert at Nate Holden Performing Arts Center in Los Angeles last weekend(June 24). Buster Williams led an all-star team of jazz veterans into los Angeles anchored by the iconic drummer, Lenny White.

Lenny White drums

One of the surprises of the evening was the youngest member of the band in pianist,George Colligan. George is a jazz pianist, organist, drummer, trumpet player, educator, composer and bandleader based in Portland, Oregon. Colligan was born in New Jersey, and raised in Columbia, Maryland. He attended the Peabody Institute, majoring in classical trumpet and music education. In high school he learned to play the drums and later switched to piano. His playing is influenced by Chick Corea, Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Thelonious Monk, Wayne Shorter, and McCoy Tyner. The influences showed in many ways as he blistered solo after solo , which at times he seemed to levitate up from the piano stool, especially on a time honored classic as “I Didn’t Know What Time It Was”

George Colligan

 

 

 

 

 

 

Steve Wilson has attained ubiquitous status in the studio and on the stage 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 150 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, and Mulgrew Miller among many others. He has eight recordings as a leader.

Steve Wilson.

 

 

 

 

 

Charles Anthony “Buster” Williams is THE “consummate”  jazz bassist. Williams is known for his membership in pianist Herbie Hancock’s early 1970s group, working with guitarist Larry Coryell in the 1980s.  Mid-1960s Buster recorded a plethora of sessions with Jazz Crusaders. He also worked in the Thelonious Monk Repertory Band, Mary Lou Williams Collective, Harold Land Quintet, Sphere and as the accompanist of choice for many singers, notably Ms. Nancy Wilson.

Buster soloing is as sublime as a “brand new Rolls Royce’s interior…his lines are impeccable, as he directs the band through his dynamics in the compositions. He gets the absolute maximum out of a quartet. with a drummer like White who paints as well as keeping time, but more importantly , the unit engages the audience into the story by the composer. Colligan’s experience with Buster, goes all the way back to the mid 90s, which gives him an edge to lead the band with his melodic solos into uncharted waters. Steve Wilson on Sax tends to provide at times, hummingbird-like precision playing of the melody. Followed by his own sub-themed compositions inside the original piece.. which acts like a butterfly leaving a cocoon. All in tow of placing the listener on the edge of their seats. He certainly made it a glorious occasion on last Saturday night performances. Salud!! Salud!! Master Buster. Thank You JAZZ BAKERY and RUTH PRICE!

“You Don’t Just Hear the Music,You Experience the Music”

Herbie Hancock