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Nik Bärtsch’s Ronin (PDX Jazz Fest)

26th Feb 11 (Sat) Leave a comment

Last night’s Nik Bärtsch’s Ronin show at the Alberta Rose Theatre as part of the 2011 Portland Jazz Festival last night was amazing… due to work and other commitments, I won’t be able to edit and post the photos until probably Monday or Tuesday.  UPDATE: the review is live now, sorry about the delay.

(more coming soon)

Check back sometime next week!

~Dan

Nik Bartsch’s Ronin @ PDX Jazz Fest (2/25)

22nd Feb 11 (Tue) Leave a comment

If you missed your chance to get tickets to see Grammy-winning ‘Best New Artist’ Esperanza Spalding on Friday, February 25th at the Portland Jazz Fest.  Well, you’re out of luck – unless you can win some or find a reasonable scalper.

My choice for PDX Jazz Fest’s Feb 25th offering was always Nik Bärtsch’s Ronin anyway!  That show is Friday, February 25th – 8:30pm, Alberta Rose Theater.

Nik Bärtsch is a Swiss pianist & composer.  His albums with his band Ronin are more on the rock/funk side of the jazz continuum, and on record, it is stunning.  I can’t wait to see him live.

Check out some Ronin sound samples on Amazon (click the album covers below):

And lucky for you, tickets are still available!!  Find out how to get tickets HERE.

~Dan – np: Nik Bärtsch’s RoninHolon

PDX Jazz Fest starts THIS WEEK

15th Feb 11 (Tue) Leave a comment

The Portland Jazz Festival (aka PDX Jazz Fest) kicks off this Friday, February 18th, 2011.  It boasts a great line-up of acts that brings attention to the theme Bridges & Boundaries – Jewish & African-American jazz playing together.  And now, it boasts new Grammy award winner – Esperanza Spalding!  Congrats!

PDX Jazz Fest 2011 – Headliners

  • Friday, February 18, 7:30pm, Winningstad Theater, Randy Weston
  • Saturday, February 19, 7:30pm, Winningstad Theater, Anat Fort
  • Sunday, February 20, 7:30pm, Winningstad Theater, Dave Frishberg
  • Thursday, February 24, 7:30pm, Newmark Theater, Don Byron
  • Friday, February 25, 7:30pm, Newmark Theater, Esperanza Spalding
  • Friday, February 25, 9:30pm, Crystal Ballroom, Poncho Sanchez
  • Friday, February 25, 9:30pm, Alberta Rose Theatre, Nik Bartsch’s Ronin
  • Saturday, February 26, 2:00pm, Crystal Ballroom, The 3 Cohens
  • Saturday, February 26, 7:30pm, Newmark Theater, SFJAZZ Collective
  • Saturday, February 26, 8:00pm, Tony Starlight’s, Gerald Clayton
  • Saturday, February 26, 9:30pm, Crystal Ballroom, Regina Carter
  • Sunday, February 27, 2:00pm, Newmark Theater, Joshua Redman
  • Sunday, February 27, 7:30pm, Crystal Ballroom, Maceo Parker
    FULL SCHEDULE (Feb 18-27)

I’m most excited about Nik Bartsch’s Ronin (above) set on Friday the 25th.  That and other shows still have available tickets.  If you’re in town, head on over to pdxjazz.com for the info.  If you’re out of town, head on over to Alaska Airlines and get your plane ticket along with your festival tickets.  This is not a fest to miss!

~Dan – np: Ozric TentaclesPungent Effulgent 

PDX Jazz 2011 schedule

14th Oct 10 (Thu) Leave a comment

About 3 weeks ago, the Portland Jazz Fest (aka PDX Jazz Fest) announced their 2011 line-up and theme (Bridges & Boundaries – Jewish & African-American jazz playing together), well, last night, they announced the actual schedule for the main line-up.  Many more side shows will fill-in, but here’s the schedule for the main shows:

  • Friday, February 18, 7:30pm, Winningstad Theater, Randy Weston
  • Saturday, February 19, 7:30pm, Winningstad Theater, Anat Fort
  • Sunday, February 20, 7:30pm, Winningstad Theater, Dave Frishberg
  • Thursday, February 24, 7:30pm, Newmark Theater, Don Byron
  • Friday, February 25, 7:30pm, Newmark Theater, Esperanza Spalding
  • Friday, February 25, 9:30pm, Crystal Ballroom, Poncho Sanchez
  • Friday, February 25, 9:30pm, Alberta Rose Theatre, Nik Bartsch’s Ronin
  • Saturday, February 26, 2:00pm, Crystal Ballroom, The 3 Cohens
  • Saturday, February 26, 7:30pm, Newmark Theater, SFJAZZ Collective
  • Saturday, February 26, 8:00pm, Tony Starlight’s, Gerald Clayton
  • Saturday, February 26, 9:30pm, Crystal Ballroom, Regina Carter
  • Sunday, February 27, 2:00pm, Newmark Theater, Joshua Redman
  • Sunday, February 27, 7:30pm, Crystal Ballroom, Maceo Parker

Nik Bartsch’s Ronin & SF Jazz Collective (featuring a Stevie Wonder catalogue) are my top two picks for the festival.  Tickets for PDX Jazz Members went on-sale yesterday (10/13/2010).  General public on-sale date is Saturday, October 23rdConsider joining and supporting this great jazz festival!

~Dan – np: Jacob Fred Jazz OdysseyStay Gold

PDX Jazz 2011 Theme

23rd Sep 10 (Thu) 3 comments

Portland Jazz Festival (aka PDX Jazz) has announced their 2011 theme:

BRIDGES AND BOUNDARIES:
JEWISH & AFRICAN AMERICANS PLAYING JAZZ TOGETHER

FESTIVAL HEADLINERS INCLUDE: ESPERANZA SPALDING, SFJAZZ COLLECTIVE featuring STEVIE WONDER’s catalog, REGINA CARTER, AND JOSHUA REDMAN

February 18 through 27

Past, present and future collaboration between African Americans and Jewish Americans is the message behind Bridges and Boundaries: Jewish & African Americans Playing Jazz Together, the theme of the 2011 Alaska Airlines/Horizon Air Portland Jazz Festival presented by US Bank. The festival, which annually selects a compelling musical and programming theme, will be held Friday, February 18 through Sunday, February 27 at venues throughout Portland. The complete festival lineup will be announced on October 13 when single show and special package tickets go on sale exclusively to PDX Jazz members. Tickets will become available to the general public on October 23.

A select few of this year’s culturally diverse headliners include Avishai Cohen, the Israeli trumpeter, one of the leading players in the new all-star SFJAZZ Collective, performing the work of African American pop icon Stevie Wonder. Cohen will also be joined by his siblings Anat Cohen and Yuval Cohen for a special performance of The 3 Cohens. Famed African American violinist Regina Carter will return to Portland, presenting her newest project, Reverse Threads, which traces the musical history of African cultures, including tribes of Ugandan Jews. And, Joshua Redman, son of African American saxophonist Dewey Redman and Jewish American dancer Renee Shedroff, leading his new James Farm Quartet that includes both African American and Jewish American musicians.

African and Jewish American community leaders, Portland Jazz Festival’s new Artistic & Community Ambassador Esperanza Spalding (who will lead her new Chamber Music Society in an exclusive Portland area engagement), and many other artists will participate and interact in panel discussions and “Jazz Conversations” focusing on artistic and social perspectives. National jazz journalists, writers, and critics-including Nat Hentoff-will also participate in these events.

For a complete schedule of events, please visit:

www.pdxjazz.com

I’m excited about the SF Jazz Collective and their 2011 Stevie Wonder theme (though it won’t have Dave Douglas and Joe Lovano this year), but I’m mainly excited about Nik Bärtsch’s Ronin.  Holy cow, they’re good.

~Dan – np: Andy McKeeOne World

PDX Jazz Photo Wrap-up

2nd Mar 10 (Tue) Leave a comment

As mentioned earlier, there is a Flickr stream for all official Portland Jazz Festival 2010 photos by Fran Kaufman.  Check them out, they capture various aspects of the fest from shows, jam sessions, interviews, et cetera…

http://www.flickr.com/photos/pdxjazz/
(click link for larger photos)

http://www.flickr.com/photos/pdxjazz/
(photos by Fran Kaufman)

And if you missed it, check out my reviews for Dave Holland Quintet (2/27), Pharoah Sanders (2/28), and Dave Douglas & Brass Ecstasy (2/28).  It was a truly fantastic weekend.  Also check out Oregon Music News’ complete coverage

Stay tuned to http://www.pdxjazz.com/.  Sign up for their mailing list and be there for next year’s fest!

~Dan – np: First Meeting (Satoko Fujii, Natsuki Tamura, etc) – Cut the Rope 

REVIEW: Dave Douglas @ PDX Jazz Fest (Portland, OR – 2/28/10)

1st Mar 10 (Mon) 5 comments

Right on the heels of Portland Jazz Fest‘s Dave Holland Quintet and Pharoah Sanders, was Dave Douglas and his Brass Ecstasy band – the capper to the festival.  I’d seen Dave Douglas four times before, twice with John Zorn‘s Masada quartet and twice with SF Jazz Collective (with Joe Lovano, Miguel Zenon and others).  I was looking forward to seeing my first show with Dave Douglas as primary bandleader.

This new band of his features Dave Douglas on trumpet, Vincent Chancey on french horn, Luis Bonilla on trombone, Marcus Rojas on tuba, and Nasheet Waits on drums.  Their debut album, Spirit Moves, came out last year, and it was in my Top 5 Instrumental Albums from 2009.  Go get it!

They hit the stage shortly after 7:30pm and went right into the title track from their record, “Spirit Moves.”  It’s a fun number and a great start to the set.  Right after that, they did a lengthy version of “Bowie,” which is dedicated to Lester Bowie.  It was fun to see that song breathe and take over the room.  I’m also impressed by Luis Bonilla’s soloing on it.  It has to be difficult to solo on a trombone…

The trombone, horn, and definitely tuba drive the sound of this band to a familiar New Orleans street band – which I’d imagine was what Dave Douglas was aiming his sights towards.  Marcus Rojas also did some “tuba beat boxing” to mix things up.

I knew all of the songs they played, but luckily Dave announced them from the stage (yay, I didn’t have to keep them all up in my head)…

Setlist: about 90 minutes

  • Spirit Moves
  • Bowie
  • I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry (Hank Williams)
  • Fats
  • Rava
  • Awake Nu (Don Cherry)
  • The Brass Ring (with drum solo)
  • Mr Pitiful (Otis Redding)
  • Encore: Twilight of the Dogs

All members got their fair share of solos.  The drum solo on “The Brass Ring” was fantastic, and Dave Douglas’s trumpet solos were colorful and vibrant, as usual.  Favorites of the night were the bebop of “Fats,” and the acrobatic trumpet on “Rava.”  Dave played a lot of that song off mic, yet his sound carried throughout the room.  Thank you Portland Jazz Fest!  It was a wonderful weekend of great music.  See you next year!

I took a few iPhone photos.  I wish I was able to bring in my regular camera, as I was right up front and the iPhone only takes marginal photos at best (::sigh::).  Anyway, check out my photos below, or check the link at the bottom for PDX Jazz’s Flickr photo stream.

DAVE DOUGLAS’ BRASS ECSTASY PHOTOS
these pictures are (cc) 2010 Daniel Temmesfeld,
you may use freely under a creative commons attribution

(click for larger)

For photos from this and other PDX Jazz shows, check out PDX Jazz’s flickr stream:



(photos by Fran Kaufman)

The Appropriate Linkage:

~Dan – np: Susie Ibarra & Roberto RodriguezElectric Kulintang

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