Originally published on Sat April 28, 2012 10:15 am
After falling off the podium last night in the middle of a performance with the Orchestre National de France, 84-year-old Kurt Masur has been hospitalized in Paris. A spokesperson for the orchestra says that he is expected to be released "very soon," adding that "he fell upside down onto his back because his left foot was too near the edge of the podium. It's not linked to health problems.
Keyboardist, composer, arranger and bandleader Clare Fischer was known for his versatile and deft touch with everything from classical to jazz to Latin and Brazilian music. He began his career after earning his Master's degree in composition from Michigan State University, where he worked as a pianist and conductor for the vocal group The Hi-Lo's. After working with The Hi-Lo's for five years, he went on to work with Dizzy Gillespie and Donald Byrd.
The Asian-American singer Jen Shyu speaks several languages, among them English, Spanish, Portuguese and various East Asian tongues from China, Taiwan and East Timor. But then she started performing with saxophonist Steve Coleman. None of her native tongues would serve for his knotty tunes; "doo-bop-a-da" scat singing wasn't going to cut it, either. So she had to devise her own sound and fury — perhaps signifying nothing formally, but full of intense personal feeling.
Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 5:03 pm
Note: This video could be considered slightly NSFW, for scantily-clad people and very brief partial nudity.
It's often pointed out that long ago, jazz was once dance music. It's usually a way of lamenting its current reputation as a cerebral art for seated contemplation. But nothing says music can't be for both hips and head.
Originally published on Sun April 29, 2012 6:40 pm
A meditation on quietude amidst unceasing movement, a thick-walled cell of solitary contentment in the churn of daily life: That's the premise of this new video featuring the gifted pianist Michael Mizrahi.
Originally published on Thu April 26, 2012 11:12 am
The term "string band" tends to conjure up images of rustic simplicity, but Punch Brothers' music is anything but simple. Challenging to play, it offers many subtle pleasures, from strange musical structures to opaque lyrics. (I wouldn't have known that "Movement and Location," from the band's new album Who's Feeling Young Now?, had anything to do with baseball if Chris Thile hadn't explained it to me himself.)
Originally published on Thu August 1, 2013 10:39 am
More than 90 years ago, on April 29, 1922, Jean-Baptiste "Toots" Thielemans was born in Brussels. An organization formed to celebrate his landmark birthday, TOOTS90 is presenting a series of eight concerts, featuring Thielemans' quartet and special guests Kenny Werner on piano and Oscar Castro-Neves and Philip Catherine on guitar. All take place in Belgium, tracing a route from Antwerp to Gent, Brussels, Hasselt, Brugge, Liège and Dinant.