Starting back in 2000, or thereabouts, Universal Music France, the French cousin of the current guise of the long-running jazz record label known as Verve, inaugurated a wonderful series of reissued recordings: the "Jazz in Paris" series. These CDs were made available in the States as well as the Continent.
We've had some mighty nice feedback over the past few days regarding the show that we aired on Saturday the 8th; namely, we've received a handful of kind and/or appreciative emails referring specifically to the second hour of that show, when our theme was jazz renditions of tunes from "Porgy and Bess."
Long before he appeared on the cover of Time Magazine, in 1964, Thelonious Monk was a one-of-a-kind jazz pianist: a player and composer of startling originality, a musician of ample wit and heart, a bebopper of seemingly boundless genius. His body of work --- indeed, his approach to the piano itself --- was fresh and unique and cohesive. It was also, in the opinion of some, quite odd. Or else sloppy-sounding in its fingering, or else melodically lop-sided, or worse.
He was the tenor saxophonist and main composer for Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers --- and then for the Miles Davis Quintet --- in the Sixties. Later in that decade, he took up the soprano sax while participating in the landmark Davis recording sessions that would produce "Bitches Brew" (and he's now a master on both horns).
He co-led Weather Report, the internationally popular jazz-rock fusion supergroup, in the Seventies and Eighties.
Whether we're talking about, say, the historic accumulation of medals by swimmer Michael Phelps or Rowan Atkinson's keyboard "playing" during the Opening Ceremony a few days ago, there have been --- at the current Olympic Games, of course --- scores of outstanding performances in London lately.
Therefore, in a tip of the hat to Mr. Phelps, Mr. Atkinson, and so many others, the next installment of All This Jazz will present a host of great performances from London Town . . . performances, in our case, in a jazz vein.
In the theme-driven second hour of All This jazz the other night --- see playlist here; I refer to the 7/21/12 show --- I played a couple of tracks by the wonderful Eddie Palmieri, the Puerto Rican pianist, arranger, and composer (pictured herewith) who's long been deemed one of the brightest stars in the Latin Jazz firmament.
If I may, a quick recommendation, live-music-wise, for tomorrow night (Tuesday the 24th) here in Tulsa. In the final 2012 Starlight Concert performance of the summer, the Starlight Jazz Orchestra will present a "Frank Sinatra Tribute." The program begins at 8pm and is, as ever, free to the public.
Grab a friend or two, a blanket or some lawn chairs, and --- if nothing else --- a cooler loaded with cold drinks, and then head over to the River West Festival Park (on the west bank of the Arkansas River).