The end of the month brings a great lineup of artists to U of L. The concerts take place Thursday, February 27-Saturday, March 1 at Comstock Hall at the School of Music, beginning 8:00 p.m. each night. Brazilian guitarist Bruno Mangueira opens on Thursday, the great bassist Christian McBride brings his trio Friday, and trumpeter Sean Jones, an alumnus of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra closes it out Saturday. More details at: http://louisville.edu/music/academics/areas-of-study/jazz/2014-jazz-fest.10
The 2014 edition of Jazzfest includes pop headliners Bruce Springsteen and Phish, and many more, but the jazz side is amply represented by many New Orleans artists such as Ellis Marsalis, Branford Marsalis, Astral Project and many more, plus guests Pharoah Sanders, Gregory Porter, Chick Corea and the list goes on. The official site, with daily schedules, ticket information, etc., is http://www.nojazzfest.com.http://www.nojazzfest.com
Olmsted Parks Conservancy presents the thirteenth annual Big Rock Jazz and Blues Festival on Sunday, October 6, 2013 from 2-7 PM in the Big Rock area of Cherokee Park.
The headliner for 2013 will be Unit West: Tim Whalen – tenor sax, Kris Eans – trumpet, Steve Snyder – Hammond B-3 organ, and Mike Hyman – drums. Also on the bill is Everett Greene , a fine singer from Indianapolis will sing, accompanied by Todd Hildreth, Tyrone Wheeler and Jonathan Higgins . The blues segment of the concert will come from Lexington’s Tee Dee Young . Big Rock is a gorgeous area, and this event is always fun for both serious music fans as well as picnickers and families.
WorldFest 2013, held Labor Day Weekend on Louisville’s waterfront Belvedere, featured music, food, crafts and more from around the world. I was able to catch some of the jazz and jazz-related presentations, beginning with Red Baraat on Friday, August 30. The Indian-infused dance rhythms coupled with the New Orleans brass got much of the audience up and moving. Next for me was Ut Gret on Saturday, August 31. The sun was high and the audience a bit sparse for their set; nonetheless, the band played well, with its trademark blend of jazz, prog, and world music, with a particularly engaging take on Frank Zappa’s “Peaches en Regalia.” The Afrophysicists , with some personnel from Ut Gret, played a hot set with an emphasis on songs from the great Fela Kuti, including his “Zombie.” On Sunday, Squeeze Bot did a rollicking set, with repertoire ranging from the Rolling Stones’ “Mother’s Little Helper” to Chick Corea’s “Armando’s Rhumba.” The world’s best accordion-tuba-banjo-tiny drums band did it again, with leader Todd Hildreth demonstrating more rock star moves than any other squeezebox player around. Vibraphonist (and talking drummer) Dick Sisto brought bassist Jeremy Allen and drummer Kenny Phelps down from Bloomington and Indianapolis, respectively, for a set of originals and classics. Boobby Hutcherson’s “Little B’s Poem” was dedicated to Sisto’s grandchildren, and he later performed Ornette Coleman’s blues “Turnaround” as well as a Latin-style “Giant Steps,” the Coltrane classic. Liberation Prophecy was up next, with a blistering set of originals from their recently released album, Invisible House. All these artists deserve more coverage than I can provide, and I urge you to support them.