All the Things… New York Jazz and More

Exploring New York City and Brooklyn jazz scene

Archive for January 4th, 2012

Music feast ahead: Winter Jazzfest 2012

with 5 comments

2012 NYC Winter Jazz Fest

The eighth New York Winter Jazzfest coming up, to deliver over 60 mouthwatering performances in a compact spread of 5 different venues in the West Village. This Friday and Saturday (January 6th and 7th) – all music lovers in the city are going (me too)!

The sheer amount of music will be quite overwhelming, I expect. Imagining that if one would go see a concert once a week every single week of the year, it would still add up to only 52, compared to the 60 on just the two nights… What a way to take a bite out of this thriving music scene here.

I’ve been going through the program for a while (and it’s even kind of educating to do some pre-listening on some of the artists): it looks like it’s quite difficult to construct the absolute best itinerary for the nights – practically all of it has the potential to sound pretty mind blowing.

But as I’ve actually heard quite a many of this year’s performers before at some point, this time time I’m particularly excited about:

Julian Lage Group – (haven’t heard him live yet, but he seems to be a great guitar player and musician) Friday, 7:45pm @ Sullivan Hall

The 5 venues: the Bitter End, Le Poisson Rouge, Kenny's Castaway's, Sullivan Hall, Zinc Bar

Ben Williams and the Sound Effect – Jaleel Shaw, Matt Stevens, Gerald Clayton, Etienne Charles, Justin Brown. Sounds like a promising bunch Saturday, 12:45 AM @ Sullivan Hall

Justin Brown Group –  curious to see his own group (seen him doing a great job as a sideman on several occasions) Saturday 10:15 pm @ Sullivan Hall

Taylor Eigsti – one of the best young pianists now? Must be a great concert (with Eric Harland and Harish Rhaghavan) Saturday 12:30 AM @ the Bitter End

Tyshawn Sorey Oblique : interesting music! Saturday 01:45 AM @ the Bitter End

Yeah, and then I’m going to try to squeeze in Lionel Loueke (with Mark Guiliana on drums!), Marc Ribot’s Ceramic Dog, Wallace Roney (a little bit different generation than most of the Jazzfest, but sounding hip…), Chris Morrissey (with Aaron Parks, Mark Guiliana, Ben Wendel, Nir Felder = such a promising lineup!), Steven Bernstein’s MTO plays Sly (everybody’s raving about them), Ben Allison trio, Joel Harrison String Orchestra…

But most of all, I expect some of the fun to lie in playing it by the ear…

Tuesday at The Fifth Estate

with one comment

Kyle Nasser Group @ the Fifth Estate

The Fifth Estate’s jazz Tuesdays seem to be quite a worthy tradition in the Brooklyn jazz scene. For a couple of months now they’ve also had the early set from 7-9:30, by Kyle Nasser Group. I did some pre-listening in their Myspace and thought they’d be worth checking out as well.

So I heard the second set, consisting of: Speak Low, a fresh sounding original tune (by the guitar player in the group, unfortunately I didn’t catch his name), then a tune that I didn’t recognize, a version of Nefertiti with some really beautiful moments, and I Remember You. 

Some of the tunes had a nice fresh energy in them, which I really enjoyed. The guitar player in the group seemed also interesting, played with a lot of energy (which I think is actually quite rare…) although he was relying on Kurt Rosenwinkel’s influence quite a bit which I think is not such an original thing to copy nowadays. I wish I’d find someone successfully copying Grant Green from somewhere…

Donny McCaslin, Diego Voglino, Linda Oh and John Chin

Afterwards we heard the set by Diego Voglino (drums) with Donny McCaslin (tenor) , Linda Oh (bass), John Chin (keyboard). They played Milestones (the older one by Miles Davis), Billy Strayhorn’s Isfahan, John Coltrane’s Crescent and Like Sonny and two compositions by John Chin. I really enjoyed Donny McCaslin’s top quality saxophone playing 🙂 Pretty amazing, on this crispy cold New York Tuesday night, in a bar in Brooklyn, to hear such people… It was actually also my first time hearing Linda Oh: I thought she is great, very nice musician, and actually still rather underrated, in my opinion.

Besides the consistently good jazz at Fifth Estate, they  also have Southampton beer on tap! I like! 🙂

Written by Ines

January 4, 2012 at 3:21 am