By Cynthia Mullis
CHICK COREA AT JAZZ ALLEY
November 27-December 2, 2007
$32.50 – $35.50
Fri. 11/30 and Sun 12/02 – 7:30 pm shows are currently FULL . A non- reservation line will be available.
Sat. December 1st, 7:30pm and 9:30pm shows are currently full.
As a teenager beginning to explore the world of jazz around 1980, I was hungry for any little bit of music or jazz ephemera I could find. This was no easy feat growing up in New Mexico during that time. In my quest for anything jazz related, I often would wake up to Navajo music on the local Indian affairs program that lead into the early morning jazz show, stay up late to catch whatever jazz was on KUNM, and beg my mom to chaperone me and a few friends on expeditions to any jazz concert that came into town. The other part of this equation were the few dusty bins of jazz records in the back of the small local record stores—no iTunes or Amazon.com here. (Did I mention I had to walk three miles through the snow to get to these stores?)
While my teenage peers had posters of Styx and Led Zeppelin on their walls, my treasure was a large poster of Chick Corea’s Tap Step given to me by a sympathetic record store clerk. Rounding out this collection was a cassette tape of Light as a Feather and an eight-track of Corea’s Friends. This was followed over the years by explorations of more Return to Forever, duets with Gary Burton and Herbie Hancock, Bitches Brew, recordings with Dave Holland, the Three Quartets recordings, an Elektric Band concert at NYC’s Blue Note, and endless jam session versions of Sea Journey, Windows and Armando’s Rhumba.
The course of listening I set out on as a teenager with Chick Corea has been paralleled and interwoven with a similar exploration of Miles Davis—eventually all modern paths lead back to Miles and Chick Corea is no exception. From the wellspring of late-sixties Miles, most notably Bitches Brew, came Corea’s group Return to Forever, which produced a number of great recordings through the 1970’s and early ‘80s. Included in the various permutations of Corea’s RTF-related groups are percussionist Airto Moreira, bassist Eddie Gomez and Hubert Laws on flute. Since his recording debut as a leader with Tones for Joan’s Bones in 1966, Corea has enjoyed a prolific career of over 40 years. He is still going strong and continues to create and produce adventurous award-winning music, including two Grammys for the excellent 2006 release The Ultimate Adventure. For a full biography and discography of Chick Corea, visit www.chickcorea.com.
Chick Corea will be at Jazz Alley this week from Tuesday through Sunday and a number of shows are already sold out. This super-band will include Airto, Eddie Gomez and Hubert Laws who were mainstays in his groups up to the mid-eighties formation of the Elektric Band. In addition to being an all-star group, this will be a chance to hear an excellent confluence of musicians that produced some of the best music in the seventies (not to mention the eighties to the present!). To avoid looking too far back though, according to the Jazz Alley website, this group will be performing music from the CD The Ultimate Adventure which is “an exotic blend of passionate flamenco melodies, North African and Middle Eastern grooves and adventurous improvisation.” Don’t miss this opportunity to hear the legendary Chick Corea performing with the equally legendary Airto, Gomez and Laws.