International Jazz Day will be celebrated as far away as Antarctica. The continent that contains 90 percent of all the ice on the planet and is the coldest. No fear. We hear the penguins have put together a dynamic bebop band for the occasion.
When Greg Lewis (aka Organ Monk) plays the Hammond B-3 electric organ, it takes on the lively colors of soul, R&B and jazz with the accompaniment of electric guitar and drums. He has been swinging with this hip hypnotic style for more than half a century.
Bob Cunningham, the consummate bassist and composer whose deep rhythmic sound became sought after by such bandleaders as Gary Bartz, Dizzy Gillespie and Frank Foster, died in New York April 1.
When I learned that this humble man of fortitude who was an integral force within the long battle to end apartheid in South Africa died March 28, in Johannesburg, it was a very sad moment for me. He was 87.
The Wilbur Ware Institute will celebrate the trombonist, composer and arranger Slide Hampton’s 85 birthday April 1, at the Bogardus Mansion, 75 Murray St., in the Tribeca section of Manhattan.
Although most jazz festivals have a difficult time just trying to keep jazz as their focal points, the Panama Jazz Festival, founded by the pianist and composer Danilo Pérez, has the perfect formula that brings music education to students, Panama’s colorful music history and great jazz performances for people of all ages from around the world.
Chuck Berry, the dynamic guitarist and songwriter, whose unique singing style crossed all genres and put the R in rock and roll with such hits as “Sweet Little Sixteen,” “Maybellene” and “Johnny B. Goode,” died March 18 at his home in St. Charles County, Missouri. He was 90.
Rudy Lawless, the consummate drummer whose definitive style earned him chairs in the bands of such notables as Andy Kirk, Blue Mitchell, Hank Jones and Roy Eldridge, died Feb. 21 in Manhattan at the Bellevue Hospice.
Dave Valentin, whose undeniable versatility as a flutist ignited Latin music and the movement of Latin jazz, died March 8 at a rehabilitation and care facility in the Bronx
Only a few days remain to see the dramatic tour de force one-man show “Adam,” performed by Timothy Simonson.
Great bands are known for their perfected sound and a swinging style that is so undeniable.
Feb. 25, The Apollo Theater presents “AFROPUNK Unapologetically Black: The African American Songbook Remixed, A Celebration of Black Protest Music” at 7:30 p.m.
Al Jarreau, the only vocalist to win Grammys in pop, R&B and jazz through his deep sea of versatility, died Feb. 12 in Los Angeles.
As part of Black History Month, the National Jazz Museum in Harlem will present Desert Island Discs with the trumpeter/composer Nicholas Payton (tonight) Thursday at 7 p.m.
Chuck Stewart, whose portraits and improvisational photographs are recognized at a glance similar to identifying a Coltrane tune after a few notes, died Jan. 20, in Teaneck, N.J.
Like his fellow native Brooklynites (Cecil Payne, Max Roach and Randy Weston), the pianist Ed Stoute wears his Brooklyn badge of honor with distinction as he celebrates the jazz tradition with spirited inspiration.
The annual International Jazz Plaza de la Habana attracts musicians from around the world.
The Jazz Gallery, known for introducing its audiences to exciting young guns and those musicians who refuse to follow the Merriam-Webster definition of a “conformist”, will present its Inaugural Jazz on Film Festival Jan. 6 and Jan. 7.
This New Year of 2017 behooves every citizen to be active, stay vocal and remain vigilant. For such a diligent task, mandatory indulgence in some serious partying until the stars rattle in the sky and that cow refuses to jump over the moon.
Bob Cranshaw, the versatile bassist whose great sound led him beyond the regions of jazz and his long musical relationship with Sonny Rollins to “Sesame Street” and to being a regular pit member in Broadway shows, died Nov. 2, at his home in Manhattan. He was 83.
The holidays are in bloom with joyous events taking shape like a dashing Harlem reindeer.
Jimi Hendrix, the most influential guitarist in rock music history, who distinctly added to the genre’s then speeding comet with his electrifying brand of blues and funk, will be celebrated at the Apollo Theater Nov. 26, one-night only, with two dynamic performances at 7 p.m. and 11 p.m.
The influential Cuban musicians who introduced Latin sounds and Afro-Cuban rhythms to New York City began in the late 1930s, with the trumpeter and bandleader Mario Bauza, Machito’s foster sister and vocalist Graciela in the 1940s and Chano Pozo.
No one swings harder than Lou Donaldson on the alto saxophone, as he demonstrated last week celebrating his 90th birthday at Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola. As usual, his smooth performance required multiple standing ovations, including one as he took the stage.
As the Black Panther Party celebrates its 50th anniversary throughout the United States, Bobby Seale recently stopped at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. He mesmerized an enthusiastic audience with corrected untruths and future goals for the people.
Trio 3 is a collaborative of iconic explorers and renowned bandleaders that include the bassist, composer Reggie Workman, the saxophonist, composer and arranger Oliver Lake and the drummer Andrew Cyrille, who over the past six decades have defined the music on their own terms.
The bold tone of tenor saxophonist Chico Freeman and his compositions keep his music glowing on the jazz rainbow.
While waiting for my Monterey flight in the Los Angeles Airport, I noticed a familiar person sitting quietly to my left.
Craig Harris, the trombonist, composer and arranger, is an innovative musician constantly exploring the realm of this music, which is easily experienced through his two diverse groups, The Tailgaters Tails and Nation of Imagination.
Stage presence has always been a questionable affair when it comes to jazz musicians.
With “Counting Descent,” writer, teacher, Harvard Ph.D. candidate and award-winning poet Clint Smith explores the cognitive dissonance that results from belonging to a community that unapologetically celebrates Black humanity while living in a world that often renders Blackness a caricature.
The seventh annual Coca-Cola Generations in Jazz Festival brings together legendary jazz masters and emerging artists from Sept. 1 to Oct. 2 at Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola (60th Street and Broadway).
Bobby Hutcherson, who changed the vernacular of jazz vibraphone and influenced generations of aspiring musicians in the process died Aug. 15 at his home in Montrara, Ca. He was 75.
The vocalist Tulivu-Donna Cumberbatch, whose singing ability offers her the inventiveness to journey through the windows of blues, soul and jazz, has caught the attention of audiences from Brooklyn to Europe.
The tenor saxophonist, composer, arranger and big band leader Jimmy Heath will celebrate his 90th birthday in October, but on Aug. 13, he will start his major birthday celebration early at “Great Jazz on the Great Hill” in Central Park (106th Street and Central Park West).
Established jazz clubs such as Dizzy’s very seldom venture past the traditional gates of jazz.
Blazing sun rays are in full force, radiating this summer’s first heatwave as jazz fans lie peacefully in wait for early evening to make their way to Jazzmobile.
Vaughn Harper, the man who lent his velvet voice to the airways of WBLS-FM while inspiring and helping so many, died peacefully July 9 after a long, courageous battle with type 2 diabetes.
Suddenly, the television flashes a video of a young Black man, Alton Sterling, shot by a white police officer in Baton Rouge, La., Monday.
As a tourist in Cuba when President Obama made the announcement that America was ready to reestablish positive relations with Cuba after 57 years, Dec. 17, 2014, was a memorable moment for me.
There was a time when innovative jazz, Latin jazz musicians and the Salsa kings called the Bronx their home.
Dr. Lonnie Smith, the ever swinging organist and composer, brings his Hammond B-3 to the Jazz Standard (116 E. 27 St.) June 28 to July 3. Smith’s audience prescription for his engagement will be plenty of national hip rhythms from blues to soul and straight jazz, no chaser.
It’s not the norm, a jazz gig held at 4 p.m. in the afternoon June 18 at the Blue Note jazz club (131 W. 3rd St.), featuring the renowned poet Sonia Sanchez, accompanied by her friend, the brilliant alto saxophonist/composer Gary Bartz.
If you make one commitment for this early summer season, make it to see Joe Morton in “Turn Me Loose,” the greatest role of his acting career to date, as he portrays the comedian and activist Dick Gregory.
Last week, while visiting Atlanta, I was introduced to a nice little jazz club on that scene called Kat’s Cafe.
In today’s cluttered world of flying plastic bags, where the paparazzi are idolized for stalking celebrities, photographers such as Coreen Simpson and Chuck Stewart take their world-renowned photographs the old fashioned way—with permission and creativity.
Prince, the prolific artist who elevated the genres of funk, R&B, rock, blues and pop to greater explosive heights while implementing salacious sexual lyrics, love desire and political awareness died April 21, at his Paisley Park estate in Chanhassen, Minn.
On April 14 the Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce, celebrating its 120th anniversary and New Heritage Theatre Group, celebrating its 52nd anniversary join forces with the Eastern Mediterranean Business Cultural Alliance to present a first-time gathering of Eastern Mediterranean musicians and blues singers from Harlem.
There is a 10-feet high bust of Charlie “Yardbird” Parker, the legendary alto saxophone player in his hometown of Kansas City, Kan. On March 30 Parker’s spirited presence became a mainstay in Harlem as he was inducted into the Apollo Theater’s Apollo Walk of Fame.
“Dare to Be Black: The Jack Johnson Story,” now playing at the Theater for the New City (155 First Ave. between Ninth and 10th streets), is one of the most important plays of 2016.