Album Review: Scenes- Variable Clouds: Live at the Earshot Jazz Festival

Scenes’ first album dates back to 2001, but the origins of the band dates back to the early 1990s, when saxophonist Rick Mandyck, bassist Jeff Johnson and drummer John Bishop initiated a trio gig. On occasion guitarist John Stowell would drop in if he was off the road and in Seattle. The band that began as a trio reverted back to that format after that inaugural recording, this time Stowell in tow as Mandyck slipped into a decade-long hiatus from the saxophone due to injury.

The listener may wonder that after thirty years, what more could this post-bop gathering of four actually have to say that would be enlightening and fresh to listeners? What could an eighth release on the Origin Records label possibly add to the band’s already impressive legacy? The simple answer to that is, “Plenty. To continue reading, click on this link https://www.allaboutjazz.com/variable-clouds-live-at-the-earshot-jazz-festival-scenes-origin-records__17805?fbclid=IwAR1ckH69nkoUSVfVH5oi3wcX10KfzgNow0jRbpHtjm3FW25GzFGNm2XV-ck

Seattle Times: Acclaimed jazz journeymen Lovano and Douglas grace Earshot jazz fest

from The Seattle Times:

Only a handful of journeymen jazz players consistently win magazine polls of both critics and readers. Saxophonist Joe Lovano and trumpeter Dave Douglas are longtime members of that club.

Both are coming to the Earshot Jazz Festival in the rarely-seen collaborative group Sound Prints, on Saturday, Oct. 18. It should the highlight of the four-week annual spree.

Lovano and Douglas have carved out a territory that could arguably be called a new mainstream — between roots revivalism and head-exploding experimentalism. No matter how far out they go — into dissonance, free-improvisation, tangential forms or extended instrumental techniques — their music is still blues-drenched, swinging jazz.

In a phone interview last month from his home in upstate New York, the Cleveland-raised Lovano said he owed his openness to both traditional and avant-garde sounds to his father, tenor saxophonist Tony “Big T” Lovano.

Continue reading at The Seattle Times

See the complete schedule for the Earshot Jazz Festival.

Photos: Trumpet Madness at Tula’s

from Daniel Sheehan’s EyeShotJazz.com

Friday night at Tula’s saw a return of Jay Thomas this time with his Trumpet Madness.  Jay Thomas brought Willie Thomas (trumpet), young Seattle trumpeters, John Hansen (piano), Chuck Kistler (bass) and Adam Kessler (drums) to Tula’s.

A versatile multi-instrumentalist, Thomas began to develop his lyrical and bluesy tone as a teen on scholarship to Berklee. He then worked and studied for several years in New York, then, the Bay Area. Later, in Seattle, Thomas became a frequent member of the house band at Parnell’s Jazz Club, working with artists George Cables, Charles McPherson, Bill Mays, Ralph Penland, Harold Land, Diane Schuur, Slim Gaillard and many jazz greats as they traveled through Seattle. Today, he is a member of one of Japan’s leading big bands, where he records and performs several times a year. Often, he shares those star players with audiences in the States.

For more photos from the Earshot Jazz Festival, check out EyeShotJazz.com

Photos: Jon Hamar Quintet at Tula’s

Photos by Daniel Sheehan, EyeShotJazz.com

My final set of the evening on Sunday I ended up at Tula’s and got to enjoy the Jon Hamar Quintet.the top-flight Seattle bassist Jon Hamar explored new music with tenor-sax titan Rich Perry, virtuoso multi-reedist Todd DelGiudice , pianist John Hansen and drummer Julian MacDonough.

Photos: Human Spirit and Bettye LaVette

Last night at the Earshot Jazz Festival.
Photos by Daniel Sheehan, EyeShotJazz.com


Trumpeter Thomas Marriott, saxophonist Mark Taylor and drummer Matt Jorgensen joined pianist Orrin Evans (Bobby Watson’s former pianist) and bassist Essiet Essiet (Art Blakey’s last bassist) under the Human Spirit banner for two nights of sold-out performances at the 2011 Earshot Jazz Festival.


Another evening of wonderful performances. Bettye LaVette at the Triple Door put on a very amazing show. Her voice has to be experienced.

Photos: Danilo Perez Trio at Earshot Jazz Festival

Photos by Daniel Sheehan, EyeShotJazz.com

On Saturday the 2012 Earshot Jazz Festival continued with the wonderful Panama-born piano virtuoso Danilo Perez who has established himself as one of the preeminent jazz musicians of his generation. Writing in the New York Times, music critic Ben Ratliff praised him as “a bold example of the musicological rethinking of jazz.”

Third Tier tickets are now available for Keith Jarrett, starting at $25

Benaroya Hall has opened up Third Tier tickets for tomorrow’s Keith Jarrett/Gary Peacock/Jack DeJohnette performance. Tickets start at $25 ($23 for Earshot members and senior citizens, $12 for students) and can be purchased directed through Benaroya Hall by calling (206) 215-4747 or online.

Tuesday, November 1
Keith Jarrett, Gary Peacock, Jack DeJohnette
Benaroya Hall S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium,
8pm

The superb jazz trio, the most revered of modern times, with three consummate masters of their instruments and the trio format: pianist Keith Jarrett returns with bassist Gary Peacock and drummer Jack DeJohnette. As transporting as it gets. Book early. $25-$88.50 (Welcomed by KPLU 88.5FM NPR)

Preview: Brad Mehldau at the Earshot Jazz Festival

by SJS Staff

Friday, October 21
Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall at Benaroya Hall
, 8pm
$32 general, $30 members/seniors, $16 students
(Welcomed by KPLU 88.5FM NPR)

This Friday, October 21, 2011, Brad Mehldau returns to Seattle to play a solo set as part of the 2011 Earshot Jazz Festival. The 41-year-old performer, arranger, and composer has performed in Seattle many times before — most recently this past April with his trio — but this concert presents a rare opportunity to hear one of the world’s preeminent jazz pianists perform alone in a recital setting. The evening of live piano will be held at the Nordstrom Recital Hall at Benaroya Hall, which is a perfect setting for the event. In this intimate performance hall, Mehldau is sure to astound the audience with his subtly, technical abilities, and artistry. Mehldau often uses solo performances as a testing ground for new compositions, so even the most ardent fan is sure to hear something new.??

Some of Mehldau’s most inspiring performances come from his collaborations with other musicians; however, something special happens in a live solo setting when a musician’s sole focus is on the sounds coming from his own instrument. With Mehldau, improvisations based on old standards, and even recent rock tunes, seem to flow freely from the piano without a single note sounding forced or out of place, as if they are part of the original tune. At the same time, the inherent simplicity of some of the tunes Mehldau chooses to play offers him an extreme amount of freedom to experiment, taking the songs to seemingly unimaginable places. You can hear a bit of this on Mehldau’s first solo album “Elegiac Cycle,” but his live solo album, “Live in Tokyo,” and his latest work, “Live in Marciac,” offer the best chance to get a glimpse of what audiences may be in for this Friday night.

This weekend’s performance will be his penultimate gig before leaving on a two-month tour of Europe. Tickets for this night of solo piano with Brad Mehldau are $32 ($30 for Earshot members and seniors, $16 for students) and are available at the Benaroya Hall box office.

Shout Out: Jazz Now! Seattle

By Katy Bourne

It is with great enthusiasm that I send a virtual high five and a holler out to Seattle jazz musicians Jason Parker and Dave Marriott for their spanking new podcast Jazz Now! Seattle. Jazz Now! Seattle is a weekly podcast that features music from local artists in the Seattle community. The mission of the podcast is twofold: (1) To put the spotlight on Seattle musicians and their projects and to help publicize their performances. (2) To present the thriving Seattle jazz scene to the rest of the world. Now in its fifth week, Jazz Now! Seattle has already been downloaded 1000 times

Jason and Dave are working jazz musicians and both have backgrounds in broadcasting. Jason is a trumpeter, blogger, bandleader and one half of the production and booking company J & J Music. Jason worked in radio for several years and is the former musical director for KMTT radio in Seattle. He is an occasional guest host on KPLU. Dave is an award-winning trombonist and plays with a variety of groups including the Seattle Repertory Jazz Orchestra, the Emerald City Jazz Orchestra and his own band Septology. Dave was also the force behind the “original” Seattle jazz podcast “Seattle JazzScene.” Jason and Dave combine their experience and knowledge with sheer enthusiasm to create podcasts that offer a unique view of Seattle jazz. They highlight music from “every corner of the jazz spectrum in Seattle.”  So far, the podcasts have included a wide-range of music from artists such as Richard Cole, Wayne Horvitz, Matt Jorgenson, McTuff, Zubatto Syndicate, Gail Pettis, Nelda Swiggett and many, many more. The podcasts are presently focused on artists that are appearing in the Earshot Jazz Festival, which runs until November 7th. In Dave’s words, “We’re both fans of the scene that we’re a part of.”

Jason and Dave record new episodes every Monday and spend the rest of the week editing and also going through music for future podcasts. For two musicians who already have their hands in numerous other ventures, their efforts on behalf of the local scene are amazing. While it would be easier to stay focused solely on their own pursuits, Jason and Dave choose to cheer on other artists and help them get attention for their music. Jason and Dave are true ambassadors for Seattle jazz, and our community is all the better for it. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend checking out Jazz Now! Seattle. While you’re at it, maybe send a message of thanks to Jason and Dave for their time, work and generosity. They deserve it.

“We’ve figured out a way to make something that’s going to be a good contribution.”
– Dave Marriott

For more information, visit: http://jazznowseattle.com/

Review: Wayne Horvitz and NY Composers Orchestra West at The Triple Door

I didn’t think I’d be able to attend much of the 2009 Earshot Jazz Festival as I’ve been completely tied up with The Drowsy Chaperone at The 5th Avenue, but with my Monday night free, and my brother in the band, I decided to check out Wayne Horvitz and NY Composers Orchestra West at The Triple Door. While I did bring my camera, I sadly didn’t bring anything for note taking, so I missed getting the titles, but to be honest, it’s not important. What was important about this concert was the music of composer and keyboardist Wayne Horvitz. I used to go see his band Zony Mash at the OK Hotel and revelled in the groove, but always remembered seeing a similar incarnation of tonight’s band around ten years ago. My tastes have certainly broadened since then, and with a focus on Wayne’s writing this time, I was even more taken with it.

Read the entire review by David Marriott and view a slideshow here

Earshot Film Festival starts today

One of the highlights of the Earshot Jazz Festival every year their partnership with the NW Film Forum and the screening of legendary and newer jazz films.

This year is no exception and the Earshot Film Festival kicks off tonight with almost two weeks of great films.

The lineup of films include the classic documentary Mingus (1968), the rarely seen feature film A Man Called Adam (1966), and animated jazz shorts by John and Faith Hubley (1957-75).

Here at SJS our interest was peaked by a new film about guitarist Pat Martino, Martino Unstrung, which was released last year.

In 1980, the legendary jazz guitarist Pat Martino was brutally silenced by memory stripping brain surgery. Filmed over the past two years, Martino Unstrung is a fascinating tale of music and memory. The film chronicles Martino’s ascent from the depths of amnesia to the peak of artistry once more. Directed by award winning filmmaker Ian Knox, it is narrated by neuropsychologist and author Paul Broks. The film explores the nature of memory, creativity and the brain systems underlying personal identity as it tracks the struggles of this great jazz artist. Interviews with musicians Delmar Brown, Red Holloway, John Patitucci, Les Paul, Carlos Santana, Pete Townshend and others shed light on the impact of Martino’s music.

For more information about the Earshot Film Festival, visit the NW Film Forum website for showtimes and schedule.

Thursday Jazz

EARSHOT JAZZ FESTIVAL

TOM VARNER
Seattle City Hall, Noon

Critically acclaimed Jazz French horn pioneer Tom Varner premiers new works for his forward-looking quintet. Mark Taylor and Eric Barber on saxophones, Phil Sparks on bass, and Byron Vannoy on drums. The performance is part of Seattle Presents, a year-round series of free performances at City Hall presented by the Mayor’s Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs.

AARON PARKS
Triple Door, 7pm & 9:30pm

CALL 206-838-4333 FOR TICKETS
Seattle’s maturing prodigy returns from New York with drummer Eric Harland and bassist Matt Penman on the heels of their acclaimed Blue Note release, Invisible Cinema.

all the other events …

JAZZ ALLEY: Amel Larrieux

LO-FI: The Teaching

NEW ORLEANS: The Ham Carson Quintet

EGAN’S BALLARD JAM HOUSE:
7pm – Kristin Korb with Pamela York
9pm – Eric Elven and Dust Free High, with Eric Elven (guitar, vocals), Scott Becker (guitar) and Thane Mitchell (drums)

MARTIN’S ON MADISON: Karin Kajita

MAY: Hans Teuber Trio

Seattle PI: Earshot’s closing act goes to extremes

By ROSS SIMONINI
SPECIAL TO THE P-I

John Zorn and his Moonchild band needed no warm-up act Sunday night, the closing show of the Earshot Jazz Festival. Zorn is an underground legend, known for his prolific output and subversive experiments in rock, classical, klezmer and, most notably, jazz.

Consisting of cult icon Mike Patton (former singer of Faith No More), metal bassist Trevor Dunn and the virtuosic drummer Joey Baron — who played what appeared to be a hundred-piece drum set — Moonchild is Zorn’s newest, most riotous project. Instead of performing in the group, Zorn acts as composer and musical director, masterminding the show from his mixing board. The Earshot spokesman introduced the group by saying, “If you have a cell phone, turn it up, cause this band is LOUD.”

{Read the entire review at The Seattle PI}