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October 2008 Archives

October 8, 2008

Yom Kippur/Columbus Day Stroganoff


One of my early introductions to jazz was through the smoky vapors of Van Morrison's 1967 Astral Weeks -- in Fall 1985. My first attempt at a professional interview with a musician was with Richard Davis, the bass player on that album, in the Fall of 1987. I failed; I was to interview him on a drive from Madison to, I think, Eau Claire, Wisconsin, but he canceled at the last minute, saying "I'd rather practice than be interviewed." I didn't think much of it -- what, I was going to argue with Richard Davis? I wore tie-dye and had a pony tail and no girlfriend -- Who was I? Later, another musican revealed that "he was probably just fuckin' with you because he could." No matter. He did the right thing. I didn't know enough yet.


I bring this up because of the announcement that Davis [pictured above] will back Van Morrison next month at the Hollywood Bowl, performing Astral Weeks in its entirety with some of the record's original musicians, including guitarist Jay Berliner. Crypto friend Peter Erskine will sit in for the late Connie Kay, drummer on the AW sessions and the timekeeper for the Modern Jazz Quartet. If this latest trend of musicians doing entire albums in their original sequence (Sebadoh, Built To Spill, Lucinda Williams, Public Enemy) has acheived anything, it's to bring Van the Man back to this strange and sublimely orgasmic song-cycle, about which so much great ink has already been spent describing its pleasures that I won't even bother. But oh lordy-loo...can't wait! And if you miss it, no matter; they're taping it for DVD release! (sounds of mouth-breathing and tongueless grunting here)


Our boss Jeff Gauthier's latest musical journey House of Return just got looked at by JazzTimes -- check it out here. . . .Nels Cline is now back in Chicago, recording material for a new album with Das Vilco. . . .pianist Myra Melford tore it up with Henry Threadgill at Roulette in NYC last week; check out Nate Chinen's live review in the New York Times here. Myra also appeared with her quartet of Harris Eisenstadt, Mary Halvorson and Mantana Roberts; check out pics from the show here....And finally, Mr. Bennie Maupin will be participating in a benefit at Catalina's for the Institute for Myeloma and Bone Cancer Research on Sunday, October 26, 2008. The benefit starts at 11:30am and should wrap up around 2pm. Tickets are $125 per person (includes champagne and brunch); to RSVP, contact Deanna Reynolds at (310) 623-1210 or at dreynolds@imbcr.org


ALSO: Speaking of performing albums in their entirety, sax man Azar Lawrence [pictured above] will do the same with his newest CD Speak The Word this Saturday, October 12 at Alva's Showroom in San Pedro...World Stage Stories, a series live oral history interviews conducted at Leimert Park's World Stage Performance Gallery, has announced its new Fall 2008 Schedule:
Oct. 3: conga player Taumbú
Oct. 17: saxophonist Rickey Woodard
Oct. 31: trumpeter Nolan Shaheed
Nov. 14: bassist John B. Williams
Dec. 5: percussionist Ramón Banda
Dec. 19: drummer Kharon Harrison
All the talks start at 8pm and are open to the public for a $10 (suggested donation). For more information, contact Clint Rosemond at (323) 290-6565.




Author/musician/critic Richard M. Sudhalter (Dec. 28, 1938-Sept, 19, 2008) -- REST IN TEMPO

October 15, 2008

El Confundido


This is without doubt the best -- or the worst -- review ever written about a Jeff Gauthier Goatette show. The fact that it might be both simultaneously shows you how confused even we were. It's certainly the most imaginative and graphic!

"LIT: A Psychedelic Neon Jazz Experience"

There is a serious new talent afoot...

October 20, 2008

Hey, Over Here...

For the next few weeks, The Downbeast will be moving its tent poles over to our friend Dave Douglas's Greenleaf Music site for a little guest blogging from our label artistes. Check out our fearless leader Jeff Gauthier's first blog post. More to follow!


October 30, 2008

The Twin Unavoidability Factor

Cryptogramophone's month-long guest blogging for Dave Douglas' Greenleaf Music continues with our label head Jeff Gauthier's latest post on his 30+ year relationship with twins extraordinare Alex and Nels Cline. Here's an except:

"One of the perks of owning a record label is from time to time I get to pretend to be a record producer. I say pretend, because most of the artists I work with don't really need to be produced. In many cases the musicians are my longtime colleagues and closest friends, and they often have mad production skills of their own. Usually my involvement is limited to booking the studio, hiring the engineer, and making sure everyone gets fed. I make myself available as a second pair of ears, and I keep extensive notes. But at least as far as the musicians I produce are concerned, the artist is almost always right.


"I've been working with guitarist Nels Cline and drummer/percussionist Alex Cline for about 30 years (and yes we did start out as small children). For about 15 of those years we co-led a new music ensemble called Quartet Music with bassist/composer Eric von Essen. After Eric's untimely death in 1996, Alex and I continued playing in each other's ensembles, and Nels has played and recorded in many of my groups as well.

"Not many people know that Nels and Alex are identical twins (mirror twins to be exact). Most people don't know because they don't advertise it. They don't advertise it because their musical paths don't cross quite as often as they used to, and besides, it's kind of old news to them. I think more than a few people in the world at large were surprised to discover that Nels and Alex shared the same birthday at their 50th birthday concert in LA a few years ago. Two musicians with same birthday, wow what a coincidence!


"On February 10th, 2009, Cryptogramophone will release two recordings: Coward by Nels Cline, and Continuation by Alex Cline. This is the first time in the history of the world that Alex and Nels will have CDs coming out at the same time on the same label. I'm afraid I must take partial credit for this, as it was important to me that these two artists, who have been so instrumental in my life, make definitive statements to cap Cryptogramophone's tenth anniversary year. This radical idea unleashed a wild set of coincidences (the "Twin Unavoidability Factor" as Alex calls it) which if examined closely extend far beyond the bounds of serendipity or genetic predisposition. And just for the record, until recently both artists had been working with absolutely no knowledge of what the other was doing."

Check out the full blog post here, which includes two unreleased tracks from each of the Cline Brothers newest Crypto releases. Also, Nels will be doing his part for the common republic with Das Viclo when he/they appear tonight on The Colbert Report.

This Sunday, November 2, Alex Cline will be hosting an amazing lineup of local muscians for the Memorial Concert for percussionist Dan Morris. Alex has many talented friends who are planning to show, including Larry Karush, Brad Dutz’s Obliteration Trio, rock band the Cheat, Eleni Mandell (accompanied by Jeremy Drake), Takako Uemura, Marie Morris, Matt Piper, and Alex Cline’s Band of the Moment (including Jeff Gauthier, Dan Clucas, G.E. Stinson, Wayne Peet, Steuart Liebig, Erin Barnes, Cline, and live painter Norton Wisdom). Look out for Alex's upcoming Greenleaf Music post on the concert and his late friend Morris who passed away way too young last December.

Tag cloud

Adam Rudolph Alex Cline's Band of the Moment Alex Cline; Nels Cline: Alex & Nels Cline; Downbeat; Continuation; Coward Alma Lisa Fernandez Angel City Jazz Festival 2009 Angel City Jazz Festival 2009 Live Review (Day 1) Angel City Jazz Festival 2009 Live Review (Day 2) Angel City Jazz Festival 2009 Photos Antonio Sanchez avant-garde Ben Goldberg Bennie Maupin Bennie Maupin & Dolphyana Bill Stewart Billy Childs Jazz-Chamber Ensemble Billy Corgan Billy Hart Bob Sheppard California Jazz Foundation Cameron Graves Captain Beefheart & The Magic Band Carol Robbins Charles Mingus; Son of Watts Musical Caravan Project; Azar Lawrence; Nate Morgan; Henry Franklin; Alphonse Mouzon; Prayer for My Ancestors Charles Owens Chops: The Movie Chris Barton Cryptogramophone Records Cryptonight Darek Oles Dave Douglas Brass Ecstasy David Anderson Pianos David Witham Denman Maroney Devin Hoff Double M Jazz Salon Downbeat 57th Annual Critics Poll Dwight Trible Eagle Rock Center for the Arts Eclipse Quartet Edward Vesala Electric Lodge Eric Dolphy Eric Von Essen First Friday Series at the Museum of Neon Art G.E. Stinson Global Village Monday with Maggie LePique Go: Organic Orchestra Gravitas Quartet Greater St. Louis Jazz Festival; Peter Erskine Greg Kot Gregg Bendian Hale Smith Hannah Rothschild Hans Fjellstad Harry Partch; L.A. Weekly; John Schneider; REDCAT Horace Tapscott; Horace Tapscott Tribute Concert; Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra; the Ark; Jazz Bakery; Ruth Price; Jesse Sharps; Austin Peralta; Isaac Smith Huffington Post Hugh Hopper Ikeda Kings Orchestra improvisation Initiate Ivan Cotton James Newton Jason Robinson Jay Bennett Jay Hoggard jazz Jazz at the Plgrimage Jazz Bakery Jazz Explosion III Jazz Journey with Eddie B. Jeff Gauthier Jeff Tweedy Jesse Sharps Jim Black Joe Zawinul John "Drumbo" French John Fumo Kamasi Washington Ken Coomer Ken Kawamura KJAZZ 88.1-FM KPFK 90.7-FM KXLU 88.9-FM Larry Goldings Larry Karush Larry Koonse Learning How To Die Leimert Park: The Roots and Branches of L.A. Jazz Les Paul Lester Bowie Lily Burk Memorial Live at the Atelier Los Angeles New Music Ensemble Los Angeles Times Luis Bonilla Maggie Parkins Marcus Rojas Mark Dresser Mark Zaleski Mel Morris Michael Davis Miguel Atwood-Ferguson Mimi Melnick Motoko Honda Museum of Neon Art Museum of Neon Art; MONA; Many Axes; Susan Rawcliffe; Scott Wilkinson; Brad Dutz music blog Myra Melford Nasheet Waits Natsuki Tamura Nels Cline Nels Cline Singers Nels Cline Singers with Jeff Parker Nestor Torres Nick Rosen OC Creative Music Collective Oguri Open Gate Theatre Sunday Concert Series Pannonica Rothschild Peggy Lee Peter Bernstein plays monk Rashied Ali ResBox at the Steve Allen Theater RISE with Mark Maxwell Roberto Miranda Rod Poole Ron MIles Royal/T Cafe Sara Parkins Sara Schoenbeck Sarah Thornblade SASSAS Satoko Fujii Scott Amendola Scott Colley Sky Saxon Tribute Sonship Theus Spirit Moves Spirits in the Sky Steuart Liebig Terry Riley The Gathering The Jazz Baroness The JazzCat with Leroy Downs Thelonious Monk Thomas Stones Tom McNalley Trilogy Van Morrison; Astral Weeks; Scott Foundas; Jan Steward; Music Cirle; SASSAS Vincent Chancey Wayne Horvitz Wayne Peet Wilco Wilco; Nels Cline Wilco; Wilco (The Album); Nels Cline Will Salmon