JAZZ BASSIST AND POET DELIGHTS L.A. AUDIENCES IN DEBUT


posted by Kamaad Tauhid @blues2jazzguy  concert photos by jazz archivist Chuck Koton

“The Stage, (pun intended)” was set 9:pm on Feb 9th 2019 in Los Angeles, where the bass master, Juini Booth landed for his WORLD STAGE DEBUT. Booth a jazz icon starting when he sprung on his own for New York in mid-60s as a teenage bassist for Sun Ra and a host of other greats. later iconic performances and recordings with McCoy Tyner, Woody Shaw and Gary Bartz’s Ntu-Troop just to name a few.

Booth powered into the world stage as part of the World Stage Black History month loaded schedule of Jazz greats. featured on spoken word and dramatic performance in the select works and poetry of SUN RA , Mr. Robert J. Carmack-MFABLACK as 1000 Nights: The Artistry and Poems of SUN RA.” Carmack reflecting on his work with Booth over the last couple of years as poet, MC and journalist said, ” It has blown by so fast, I hardly noticed its been almost 3 years since I appeared with Booth and another McCoy Tyner alumnus, AZAR LAWRENCE in a fast and powerful group of musicians performing compositions of McCoy Tyner. (Roy McCurdy, Theo Sanders,Azar, Juini and Robert)

Last year we did another Sun RA project focusing on mostly all of his “Space is the Place” material and music. carmack added, This time as part 2. I went deep on his Berkeley sessions at the University’s Artist-in-Residence, 1971,period of writings. Black nationalist views on African-Americans, politics and culture.” Carmack, a jazz journalist, actor and writer that focuses on the legacy of this genre called, jazz or American Black Classic Music.  Along with Carmack and Booth, were L.A. based sidemen, Mahesh Balasooriya on Piano, and Guillermo E. Brown drums. Brown performed last year with Booth and Carmack at the Club Zebulon, along with improvisational group, L.A. FOG and Kathleen Kim.

The audience not only heard rare Sun Ra Poems to improvisational interlude phrases by the group, but heard the band play pieces that they all favored in performing, like Jackie McLean’s “Melody for Melanie” and “Angels and Demons” by Sun Ra. A very powerful, moving solo bass, plus Loop were performed by Juini Booth to a standing ovation.

journalist/actor and producer/writer,musician R.J. Carmack

Carmack was able to navigate and sail around the writings with the ease of a skilled actor performing Shakespeare’s greatest montages of prose and poetry.  There were certainly fireworks with Juini Booth eclectic playing and melodic approach to double bass. Balasooriya treated the surprised audience to a searing piano solo on an unnamed piece he interpreted.

Carmack is based in Southern California and Juini Booth in New York. Carmack is setting up plans now as everyone gets ready for Spring and Summer events in both thriving cities. We want to redo this show in New York and San Francisco bay area as well. There are current calls for more study at the academic level for the writings of Baba Sun RA, along with his music and lecture series too.” said a jubilant Carmack, as he spoke to more collaboration projects that involve Booth and other Jazz icon’s music and writings.

Robert J. Carmack is launching this summer, a new series of Art based cultural programming involving improvisational music, drama, poetry/spoken word and fine arts(painting,sculpting and assemblage) POCKET JAZZ 2019 presented by http://www.hipstersanctuary.com 

Many thanks to the World Stage and Executive /Artistic director Dwight Trible and staff for making the group feel at home.

painting by Sam Pace
Pianist Mahesh Balasooriya

 

Guillermo E. Brown
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BASSIST JUINI BOOTH & WRITER /ACTOR ROBERT J. CARMACK : BLACK AS 1000 NIGHTS~ARTISTRY & POEMS OF SUN RA


Robert J. Carmack @ World Stage 2017 original poetry & jazz

posted by Kamaad Tauhid  #@blues2jazzguy

BLACK AS 1000 NIGHTS: The Artistry and Poetry of SUN RA  a National Black History Event

WORLD STAGE PERFORMANCE GALLERY 

4321 Degnan Blvd
Los Angeles, California 90008
(323) 293-2451      www.theworldstage.org

ONE NIGHT ONLY!  Saturday February 9th 9:pm $25 at Door  for a rare west coast appearance by Bassist/Composer. Arthur”JUINI” BOOTH former bassist for the man himself Sun Ra and his Afro-Futurists Arkestra. featuring the Spoken Word voice of SUN RA by actor/writer/producer/musician, Robert J. Carmack-MFA. 

Robert J. Carmack fresh off his production of original play 2018 :Interview with the High Prietess:NINA! a Sold out performance at the WORLD STAGE. 2015’s two events at World Stage A Tribute to Composer & Blue Note producer DUKE PEARSON – Charlie Yardbird Parker “21 Toot Salute” on Birds 95th birthday.

 

The content from the selected poems of Sun Ra are curated from the highly touted works from his days and weeks spent as artist-in-residence at University of California Berkeley circa 1970s.

“His widely eclectic and avant-garde music echoed the entire history of jazz, from ragtime and early New Orleans hot jazz, to swing musicbebopfree jazz and fusion. His compositions ranged from keyboard solos to works for big bands of over 30 musicians, along with electronic excursions, songs, chants, percussion pieces, and anthems. From the mid-1950s until his death, Ra led the musical collective The Arkestra (which featured artists such as Marshall AllenJohn Gilmore and June Tyson throughout its various iterations). Its performances often included dancers and musicians dressed in elaborate, futuristic costumes inspired by ancient Egyptian attire and the Space Age.”  

“SUN RA is Music & Poetry is Theater at Its Best” The Hipster Sanctuary  

Sun Ra (born Herman Poole Blountlegal name Le Sony’r Ra.. May 22, 1914 – May 30, 1993) was a  jazz composer, bandleader, piano / synthesizer  and Poet. Renown for his experimental music, “cosmic” philosophy, prolific output, and theatrical performances. For much of his career, Ra led “The Arkestra”, an ensemble with an ever-changing name and flexible line-up. Later on new audiences found SUN RA Music & POETRY was not only hip but spoke to their lens of how they view today’s world and actions.

Born and raised in Alabama, Blount became involved in the Chicago jazz scene during the late 1940s. He soon abandoned his birth name, taking the name Le Sony’r Ra, shortened to Sun Ra (after Ra, the Egyptian God of the Sun). He developed a complex persona and an idiosyncratic, myth-based credo that would make him a pioneer of Afrofuturism. He claimed to be an alien from Saturn on a mission to preach peace, and throughout his life.  He publicly denied ties to his prior identity. 

The Players for the evening’s performances

Juini Booth 20014

Juini Booth-basses/keyboards – music director (formerly played & recorded with SUN RA, Tony Williams  Lifetime,Gary Bartz, Woody Shaw, and McCoy Tyner, to name only a few;

 

 

Robert J. Carmack – spoken word/actor/musician~ performed with Azar Lawrence, Juini Booth, Dale Fielder,producer/writer 2018’s successful work in progress Interview with the High Prietess: Nina!  original play by R.J. Carmack.. Encore coming 2019 for extended run. Creator of Pocket Jazz 2019! melding of jazz, poetry,and theater with painters and sculptors.

 

 

Guillermo E. Brown -Guillermo E. Brown pays his bills by playing drums with Reggie Watts’s band on The Late Late Show with James Corden, but he has a long history in the avant-garde. Brown has collaborated with jazz giants such as Matthew Shipp, David S. Ware, and Vijay Iyer; eclectic electronic musicians such as DJ Spooky, Jamie Lidell, and Spring Heel Jack; and boundary-pushing hiphop artists such as El-P and Antipop Consortium

 

Mahesh Balasooriya – former pianist/keyboards for Natalie Cole, Waberi Jordan, David S. Ware , also the great Aurturo Sandoval  and the late saxophonist Zane Musa..

 

 

JAZZ BASSIST JUINI BOOTH CONCERT AT ZEBULON CAFE:SMASHING SUCCESS!!


An excited L.A. audience at Zebulon Café in Los Angeles was treated to an evening of great music and poetry in Loving tribute to SUN RA, the Interplanetary One.

RA, who left earth decades ago, seems to be enjoying an even bigger audience these days.

Booth who once toured with the great Sun Ra, put together a great evening of FREE MUSIC local and east coast musicians. First of all collaborating with Violinist Kathleen Kim of LA FOG notoriety, created a concept group, ECLECTIC NATIVITY, 12 -15 musicians on stage creating, improvising ,composing on the spot. spawning great new melodies and rich harmonics of sound and rhythms, integrated with spoken word by Robert J. Carmack. spoken word excerpts and haikus from the selected writings of poetry by SUN RA.

This made for a potent mix of fun, spirituality and freedom of speech through music. Exactly what the great Sun Ra was about. “At times, states Carmack, the band seemed to be levitating above the stage allowing the full force of improvisation to take charge.” 

LA Fog is an experimental chamber/jazz/improv music ensemble composed of woodwinds and strings.  Kathleen Kim,(violinist) led her group with Giles Miller (baritone sax), Jonathan Silberman,Tenor sax, and Kelly Coats (flute)

Others  to grace the bandstand were Guillermo E. Brown, Wynne Bennett, Corey Fogel, Jon Leland, Mira Billotte, Helga Fassonaki and more. In addition to a packed audience, Juini Booth turned 70. Wow!

posted by Kamaad Tauhid  @blues2jazzguy

photos by Rob Hill
photos by Rob Hill

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

photo by Rob Hill

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ROBERT J. CARMACK RECITE POEMS OF JAZZ ICON SUN RA WITH GROUP ECLECTIC NATIVITY


Posted by Kamaad Tauhid  #@blues2jazzguy

It was announced early today by actor,journalist and playwright, Robert J. Carmack, he’s been tapped to recite highly-tauted select poems of iconic jazz legend, SUN RA. ” I’m going to love this gig, as I’m appearing on stage with some of the best musicians in “Free Music” on both coasts. East & West. Carmack is poised and ready to take on the task of blending great works by one of his jazz heroes with the colors and sounds of improvisations. All in the spirit of the inter-planetary one, SUN RA.

Fresh from writing his new hit play about Nina Simone, “Interview With the High Priestess: Nina!” It will be debuting in Los Angeles at the World Stage, founded by Jazz legend , Billy Higgins. Scheduled for March 3rd,the One Night Only performance is Sold Out. Carmack appears in the play starring  Jana Wilson as Nina.

Master bassist Juini Booth and Violinist Kathleen Kim are gracing the stage at Zebulon Cafe in Los Angeles with a plethora of unique and eclectic musicians.

Juini Booth and friends with  supporting performances by Guillermo E. Brown and L.A. Fog. and DJ  Xandão  bringing the Brazilian funk.

L.A. Fog

On this special celebration of Juini Booth’s 70th birthday, friends of both coasts converge for an improvisational performance of cosmic proportions. Reflecting the influence of Juini Booth’s dynamic musicianship, participating artists draw from shared inspirations from Improvisations, soul, R&B, Funk,World Music and Spoken Word.

FEBRUARY 21, 9PM -1AM @ ZEBULON CAFE Great Music Great Drinks and great Food too… come early & stay late!

Eclectic Nativity includes Guillermo E. Brown, Wynne Bennett, Corey Fogel, LA Fog, Jon Leland, Mira Billotte, Helga Fassonaki and more. Opening performance by Guillermo E. Brown (solo)and L.A. Fog. plus surprise guests appearing.

Zebulon Café Concert

(323) 662-0966

JAZZ MASTER BASSIST JUINI BOOTH RETURNS TO ZEBULON CAFE FEB 21 2018


 

The Booth / Kim Eclectic Nativity – a Free Music creative force featuring master bassist Juini Booth and violinist Kathleen Kim.

JUST ADDED: Robert J. Carmack – Echoes of SUN RA Poetry

R.J. Carmack

Juini Booth and friends w/ supporting performances by Guillermo E. Brown (solo) and L.A. Fog. and DJ  Xandão bringing the Brazilian funk.

L.A. Fog

On this special celebration of Juini Booth’s 70th birthday, friends of both coasts converge for an improvisational performance of cosmic proportions. Reflecting the influence of Juini Booth’s dynamic musicianship, participating artists draw from shared inspirations from Improv, Soul, R&B, Funk, Psych, and World Music and Spoken Word. Eclectic Nativity includes Guillermo E. Brown, Wynne Bennett, Corey Fogel, LA Fog, Jon Leland, Mira Billotte, Helga Fassonaki and more.

Opening performances by Guillermo E.Brown(solo)and L.A. Fog.

Jocelyn Soubiran

 

Feb. 21 Wed. 8pm @ Zebulon Café Concert 2478 Fletcher Dr, Los Angeles, California 90039

Home

L.A. CLUB PAYS TRIBUTE TO McCOY TYNER WITH EXPLOSIVE JAZZ CONCERT


posted by Kamaad Tauhid #@blues2jazzguy

McCoy Tyner Tribute Quartet photo RJ Carmack

 

Roy McCurdy Drums photo Chuck Loton

 

Theo Saunders Keyboards with Juini Booth in background photo C. Koton

 

Robert J. Carmack Emcee/Spoken Word Poet photo A. Scott Galloway

 

A. Scott Galloway Music journalist

 

Re-posted from Facebook Post July 6th ..

Had the pleasure of taking in some smokin’ live jazz with fireworks as a backdrop for my 4th of July at a new REAL Jazz spot in Glendale named Zebulon. The quartet on deck equally featured saxophonist Azar Lawrence, drummer Roy McCurdy, keyboardist Theo Saunders and bassist Juini Booth paying homage to McCoy Tyner, John Coltrane and Elvin Jones. The emcee for the evening was Robert J. Carmack who also got in two powerful spoken word pieces with these giants at his back.

Try to make it out to this fine new venue which has a bar/lounge in front and a nice sized room for live music in the back. Also has valet parking and limited adjacent free parking on the streets behind it…on Fletcher Drive just north of Riverside Drive. Consider yourself hip tipped!

 

 

 

KEYSTONE KLIPPINS’:JAZZ ICONS SPEAK ABOUT TODD BARKAN AND SAN FRANCISCO’S KEYSTONE KORNER


posted by Robert J. Carmack     #@blues2jazzguy

Jazz impresario Todd Barkan is returning to the scene of the Jazz Crime, San Francisco with two dates to remember. July 7 & 8.

The great pianist/composer Mary Lou Williams referred to Keystone Korner as “the Birdland of the Seventies.” Art Blakey, Miles Davis, and Stan Getz all agreed that Keystone Korner was “the best jazz club in the world.”

Band personnel: Azar Lawrence, Eddie Henderson, Mel Martin, Benito Gonzalez, Denny Zeitlin, Juini Booth,Roy McCurdy(just added) Akira Tana, Ray Drummond,Kenneth Nash, Charles McPherson, Gary Bartz & lots more!!

Friday, July 7, 7:00 pm

Kuumbwa Jazz Center
320 Cedar Street, Santa Cruz
831-427-2227
Tickets: $30/35

Saturday, July 8, 2:00 pm

Bach Dancing & Dynamite Society
311 Mirada Drive, Half Moon Bay
650-726-4143
Advance: Adults $45/35, Students $25 (25 & under with ID)
Door: Adults $50, Students $30

Saturday, July 8, 7:00-11:00 pm

Pier 23 Cafe
On the Embarcadero at the foot of Greenwich, San Francisco
415-362-5125
No advance tickets / $10 cover charge

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Barkan has assembled a “heavyweight contending” lineup for our listening pleasure. Also, its sure to offer tons of surprises from musicians & friends from over the years. Be There!!

In our series on Keystone Klippins’ – a snapshot into the thoughts and ideas of some of the “Cats” that played the “Korner” over the years and back to help celebrate the 45th anniversary with Todd and Friends. Coming Next!! Wednesday June 21, Saxophonist Mel Martin and Bassist, Juini Booth.

Charles Mcpherson – alto sax /composer/husband/dad

One of my most challenging conversations because of the time restraints. I wanted so many questions answered and so little time. I was able to find out some “nuggets for the real jazz fans. such as, I did not know he went to high school with Roy Brooks and they played in his first jazz band together. Also, Brooks was a star athlete, especially basketball. Living and growing up in Detroit, you are bound to bump into or come up against some of the “most superb” musicians in the world. Sure enough, he played with a guy known as the Charlie Parker of the bass in Detroit. Non-other than James Jamerson of Motown fame.. Yes! he was a jazz bassist too. I was a student of the saxophone at the time I learned about Charlie Parker in early 1960s, My guys on alto at the time was Bird, Jackie Mclean, Cannonball and Charles Mcpherson(I called him that guy with Mingus band not Dolphy). He always looked so cool playing with Mingus and the rest of the band.. He was built for Mingus…kind of like Charlie Rouse was built for Monk. He was his own man not a Bird clone.

Another jazz hero of mine was Barry Harris, (pianist with Lee Morgan on the Sidewinder) Lee Morgan’s record introduced me to the bop sound of Harris, which led me to the records by Harris including Charles McPherson on Saxophones.

I asked Charles about, what it was like playing the Keystone Korner in the day? Mcpherson:” Man it was a delight playing there. Todd was a REAL JAZZ FAN, not just an owner. We had fun there always over the years and I wound up the very last booked act at the Keystone in 1983″.  “my most memorable times was the Two- Biller Allstar bands with split sets. Man! Nobody was doing with jazz what Todd was doing to pack in the true jazz fans,added McPherson. Tony Williams – Barry Harris double bills!”

“I’m really looking forward to hooking up with cats I haven’t seen in a few and having that spirit of the old Keystone Korner days.”

A teenage friend of this writer who was studying saxophone also turned me on to this album in 1965.. a stellar lineup of great musicians . I still enjoy putting this one on.

Charles McPherson was born in Joplin, Missouri and moved to Detroit at age nine. After growing up in Detroit, he studied with the renowned pianist Barry Harris and started playing jazz professionally at age 19.  He moved from Detroit to New York in 1959 and performed with Charles Mingus from 1960 to 1972. While performing with Mingus, he collaborated frequently with Harris, Lonnie Hillyer (trumpet), and George Coleman (tenor sax).

Charles McPherson was recently featured at Lincoln Center showcasing his original compositions and arrangements with a seven-piece ensemble. He has toured the U.S., Europe, Japan, Africa and South America with his own groups, as well as with jazz greats Barry Harris, Billy Eckstine, Lionel Hampton, Nat Adderley, Jay McShann, Phil Woods, Wynton Marsalis, Tom Harrell, Randy Brecker, James Moody, Dizzy Gillespie, and many others.

Over the years Charles has travelled as special guest artist with Charlie Mingus, Barry Harris, Art Farmer, Kenny Drew, Toshiko Akiyoshi, the Carnegie Hall Jazz Orchestra, and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis. He has recorded as leader on Prestige, Fantasy, Mainstream, Discovery, Xanadu, and most recently Arabesque. His most recent recording is the highly acclaimed “Manhattan Nocturne.”

Charles was also the featured alto saxophonist in the Clint Eastwood film “Bird,” a biography about Charlie Parker.

McPherson remains a strong, viable force on the jazz scene today. He is at the height of his powers. His playing combines passionate feeling with intricate patterns of improvisation.

For more information and news of his collaboration with the San Diego Ballet featuring his daughter (see link below)

http://www.charlesmcpherson.com

Charles & Camille McPherson (daughter)