Sax on the Web Forum banner

1 - 6 of 6 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
610 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Kenny G, Kenny Garrett VS Trane??? ***???

Ok. I'm wondering how many people here go out to hear live music? Anything live! In years past, I have made the effort to go out on a regular basis to listen to music. This last year I have sunk all my money into my busines and it's been hard to go out, but some things I can see for free and some gigs I just have to ante up and get a ticket for.

Last night I saw Javon Jackson with Benny Green and Al Foster at Jimmy Mac's club. The bass player was badd. Couldn't catch his name. Young cat, Corneilius? I don't know, he burned. How could you not, standing next to living legend like Al Foster?

Benny Green... Benny is one sick puppy!!

Anyway, Javon has been on my short list of guys to check out for a long time and so I had to go. I wasn't alone. There were quite a local heavy players in the audience too. I used to be such a critic when I was younger that I just picked every thing apart and anylized it to death. It almost wasn't enjoyable for me to hear bands. I always had this little voice in the the back telling me that either I should be up there playing the gig, or dang that MF would blow me off the stand. If it was really good, I'd be trying to take mental notes, rather than just be there and enjoy. Maybe that was mostly when I was a working player. Now, it's just not how I tick.

I had such a great time. Javon is solidly out of the Coltrane School. For me that ain't a bad thing. There were times when he sounded just like a young Trane from the Blue Trane period. Yeah, he quoted some licks verbatim and maybe a little plegerism was going on, but he sounded so good. Then, in the next phrase he would be himself, his own distillation of all his listening, playing and study of the music. Even when he ripped ideas directly from solos (I had the feeling that he has done a ton of transcribing), his understanding of how to play the horn, jazz conception, composition, soloing, band leading, group listening, made it all his own. In reflection, I could make the argument that parts of his playing were better or cleaner than Trane's.

They played Good Bait, some Stevie Wonder, Paradox, Flack/Hathaway's Where is the Love, Mr PC and Randy Weston's Hi Fly. It's easy to be critical and tear someone or something down, but this was just FUN. This group held your attention like a vice and after the set was over I felt like the Soul Vaccination had hit.

Portland has a great music scene, but it is still a little off the beaten path of most of the world class touring artists for the most part. Last week I saw Sonny Rollins and I'm still buzzing from that. Couple weeks back I saw Larry Carlton/Robben Ford, Tower of Power, David Sanborn. Last month I got to see Plaz Johnson and a local tenor player named Renato Curanto that should be on the national scene but is just hangin', raising a family and playing his butt off. Earlier in the year, I saw Chick Corea/Gary Burton Duo... Whew!

Who have you seen? Who do you buy a ticket for and stand in line to see?
 

·
SOTW Administrator
Joined
·
26,208 Posts
This has been a pretty lean year for live jazz on the island so far. I have tickets to hear Joshua Redman's trio in February. Yeah, I buy that far in advance, the hall only has about 300 seats.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
610 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I really like Joshua's playing. I'm sure he will deliver. It's good for me to hear about "Live Jazz on the Island". I was kinda whining and moaning to my self about not being able to go see as much live music as I was used to when I lived in the San Francisco Bay Area.

The first time I saw Joshua was at a New Year's Eve gig at the Old Yoshi's in Oakland, 1995. It was part of the PBS live radio braodcast where they play gigs from all the different time zones. It was Benny Green, Christian McBride and Brian Blade. Man, I wish I has taped that one.

I saw him play at Herbst theater as part of the San Francisco Jazz Featival Art of the Trio Series. It was with BcBride and Blade. They burned. I ended up with great seats and sat next to the then mayor of San Francisco Willie Brown. The Mayor got up right at the end of what seemed like the last tune and scooted out. The audience was really diggin' it and got them to come out for two encores. Joshua had played Tenor and Soprano but grabbed his Alto and said something like, we are jazz musicians but we love to funk, so we are going to play some James Brown and this is dedicated to the Mayor Willie Brown. Willie was long gone. Too Funny.

I have seen him a bunch of other times. Once, at the New Yoshi's with McCoy Tyner and Christian McBride. I got tickets for a both week night and a week-end night soon as I hear about it. Needless to say, he pulled out all his Trane licks. It was great. Two weeks before the gig a friend tried to get tickets but all twelve performances were sold out.

About two years ago, I saw him play at a very cool venue here in Portland called the Alladin Theater. It's an old 600 seat Art Deco Movie house that has all different kinds of music four to six nights a week. He was touring behind the Elastic Band record and played with keyboardist Sam Yehel (SP?) and I can't remember the drummer. I was really impressed by how far has has come as a musician and a tenor player. It was an electric band and he used all kinds of effects. He did this acapella thing too where he really shined. I have seen Victor Wooton and Stanley Clarke do it to, where he played and lick and hit a stomp box. It played the lick back to him in a loop and he played over it, hitting the stomp box again from time to time to layer the track onto the loop. It was amazing not just a gimmick. For me that is the test. Can you stand up on stage flat footed all by yourself and make music?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
121 Posts
Last group my wife and I saw was Tower of Power at Emerald Queen in Tacoma! Soul vaccination was all over the place!

I also saw at Parnells in the 80's Sonny Stitt, Red Holloway, Zoot Sims, Al Cohn, Richie Cole, and our local hero Jay Thomas!:)Damn good stuff!
Also saw Archie Schepp, but they were all coked out
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
610 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Yeah, Tower is the baddest band in the land. The have their kinda corny little stage routines, but musically they always deliver. First time is saw them was 1969 while I was still in high school. I think the ticket was $1.50. I saw them many, many times in all kinds of crazy venues and many different incarnations of personel. The band that's out there now has been together more or less for five or so years and is one of the best.

The tenor player Tom Politzer went to highschool in Palo Alto near where I did, and although I have met him, never talked to him. We know and have played with some of the same people. I used to go to a little blues dive in San Mateo, Ca. on Thursday nights to listen to friends that had a gig there for seven years. Tom would sub regularly and I heard him play a lot. He has a lot of straight ahead and smooth jazz chops to. When I heard he got the Tower gig I was not surprised. He has improved the way he constructs his solos a lot in the couple of years he has been with them. They are road dogs... how could you not wan't to play your best standing in front of funksters like Dave Garibaldi, Rocco & Roger Smith? I dig his solos on the Oakland Zone CD.

In the spring I saw two San Francisco bands that I saw with Tower at the Fillmore West back in the day, Cold Blood and Bill Champlin's Sons. Hot stuff.

I have seen all the other guys you mentioned in the '70s. Don't know Jay Thomas.

I'm interested in who people have seen recently.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
121 Posts
Jay plays trumpet, flugelhorn, tenor, alto, soprano sax, flute and piccolo..all very well!
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top