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The crowds at the Chicago Jazz Festival are always the best. The central location at the beautiful Millennium Park and free admission make for a wonderfully diverse crowd coming from all racial backgrounds, age groups, and neighborhoods, all sorts of Chicagoans (and others just visiting for the festival) spending Labor Day weekend together for almost four decades.
This week I feel three particular moods in three particular sets-- I wanted to dabble in small guitar groups, journey into the weird, and the third set somehow got heavy into organs. Everything here embraces the new, as usual, and I think this hour has an interesting mix.
The Line-Up for 22 August 2014
Gilad Hekselman played the Django Reinhardt Festival this past June 29 with Reuben Rogers on bass and Ferenc Nemeth on drums. They played a couple of new tunes from Gilad ("Verona", the opener in this set, as well as "Cosmic Patience") in addition to a Brazilian samba and some tunes from Hekselman’s most recent album, This Just In. In introducing "Cosmic Patience", Gilad mentions that the tune will be included on a new album to be released later this year. Although the album was originally slated for a November 2014 release, it now seems likely that it won’t be out until early 2015. Get ready for it, though - everything has been recorded, mixed, and mastered. In addition to the trio of Gilad Hekselman on guitar, Joe Martin on bass, and Marcus Gilmore on drums, the new album will also feature Jeff Ballard on a couple of tracks (one with both Ballard and Gilmore on two drumsets and the other a duet between Ballard and Hekselman). In the meantime, check out some of the new tunes getting a workout in a live concert, after the jump.
Pianist Jason Moran and bassist Meshell Ndegeocello have for the last few years been working on one of Moran's big ideas-- the changing of the performance aspect of jazz. In that endeavor, the two have been reworking the music of Fats Waller, itself already inherently lending itself to dance, and performing it as a dance party. The various shows Moran has put on have been uproariously fun affairs, and now he's bringing the whole shindig to your earlobes in his upcoming Blue Note release, All Rise: A Joyful Elegy for Fats Waller, out September 16th.
He just released the video and stream (with download available for purchase at iTunes. Check it out after the jump.
Your favorite Tulsa-based trio is back at it. Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey (Brian Haas on keys, Chris Combs on guitar, lap steel, and synths, and Josh Raymer on drums) just announced that their new album Worker will be released on October 14, 2014. Based on the sound of "Betamax" (check it out below, after the jump), Worker will contain more electronic textures than this version of JFJO have explored in the past, with Haas' Moog keyboard and Combs' synths being pretty prominent here.