Thursday, September 27, 2007

Babies of Wackiness

Time for a post on recent goings-on.

Caught the inaugural night of the Columbia Harlem Festival of Global Jazz a week ago. An ambitious and multifarious festival... kudos to George Lewis and all involved for putting this excellent 10 days or so together.

Joelle Leandre's octet and Globe Unity Orchestra opened the festival at the stately Malcolm X and Betty Shabazz Information Center.

It was an engaging and varied evening of music. I had mixed feelings overall about the music's success and the acoustics in the space were detrimental for Globe Unity, but am so glad that these groups were presented in New York. Very long overdue!

Steve Smith’s review at Night After Night is here.

Globe Unity trombonist, musical compatriot and all-around good bloke Jeb Bishop’s comments at Night After Night are here.

Hank Shteamer’s wonderfully-titled review of the evening is here.

The next night I went down to Cornelia St Cafe to hear Adam Lane's Full Throttle Orchestra. Good fun, great compositions and inspired ensemble/individual performances all around.

That was Friday. My ears took a day off Saturday from concertizing and then I made it out to a Sunday afternoon concert of two gorgeous pieces for brass ensembles by Anthony Braxton as part of the FONT festival. What a treat to hear two pieces of Braxton's from the early/mid 80s performed by crack ensembles that included two of my favorite musical compatriots, FONT co-curator Taylor Ho Bynum and Nate Wooley. And what a pleasure to watch Mr. Braxton conduct. So clear and with such intention!

I'll be heading down to the Abrons Art Center this Sunday September 30 to hear Nate's FONT-commissioned piece with Paul Lytton and David Grubbs. Should be a great night. Bravo to Dave Douglas, Taylor, and all the other FONT organizers for presenting another diverse, challenging, killing festival.

Creative Music Tuesdays completed its inaugural month at Spike Hill September 25. Tomas Fujiwara brought a wonderful trio with Keith Witty and Shoko Hikage. Sara Schoenbeck's and my duo Saris played after them.

Here's the complete listings for October, which I'll also include as a separate blog at the beginning of the month. Come on down if you're in the NYC area.

Creative Music Tuesdays at Spike Hill

184 Bedford Avenue (@ N7)
Brooklyn , NY 11211
(718) 218-9737

October curated by Harris Eisenstadt
$10 cover per set

Located on the corner of Bedford and North 7th, with
delectable pub food, gold-standard Guinness, pristine sound and two full bars, Spike Hill has flourished into a staple among the area’s clubs while still maintaining its intimate atmosphere.

8pm Wayne Horvitz/Briggan Krauss/Brandon Seabrook Trio
10pm Radio I-Ching: Dee Pop/Don Fiorino/Andy Haas

8pm Eyal Maoz's Edom with Shanir Blumenkranz, Brian Marsella, Yuval Lion
10pm Michael Sarin Trio with Brad Shepik and Brad Jones

8pm Steve Swell Slammin the Infinite w/ Sabir Mateen, Matt Heyner, Michael Wimberly, with John Blum (tentative)
10pm Angelica Sanchez Trio with Lisle Ellis and Michael Sarin

8pm Jason Mears Trio with Kato Hideki and Harris Eisenstadt
10pm Mary Halvorson and Jessica Pavone

8pm Barry Altschul Trio with Hayes Greenfield and Ed Schuller
10pm Harris Eisenstadt Canada Day Quintet with Matt Bauder, Chris Dingman, Eivind Opsvik, Nate Wooley

On the visual front, Sara and I watched a crazy movie that Jason Mears lent us: Mail Order Bride. Check it out. Its out.

Been struggling through Thomas Pynchon’s Vineland for a couple months. Was glad to find this link to help me on my way. Perhaps my most simultaneously engaging and difficult reading since Nabokov's Pale Fire and Joyce's Ulysses as an undergrad. The title of this post is one of Pynchon's hilarious turns of phrase.

Final word for now. I patiently but vigilantly await the fifth and final (HBO, you're really bumming out) season of The Wire.

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