Peter Westbrook

Peter Westbrook

This was a very interesting evening for a number of reasons. First of all, it was another example of a setting in which jazz and related genres of music can be presented in a way that makes economic sense. The organizers, Transparent Productions, to quote from their website, ( "is a non-profit, volunteer organization that produces creative improvised music concerts in the Washington DC area. Our goal is to bring this wonderful music to DC a

There is no doubt that the Cape May Jazz Festival is a success. Presented twice a year in the charming New Jersey seaside resort of Cape May, the event is entering its twelfth year. The secrets to its success? Great music and great organization; the festival seems to have struck an ideal balance between music and marketing.

Anyone attending this event would have to conclude that the reports of jazz' demise are grossly exaggerated. According to music industry sources, jazz represents

There are still those who hold that the flute does not belong in jazz, or that it is, at best, a marginal jazz instrument. There are, however, many artists working in the genre today who disprove that notion, and Flutology is at the top of the heap. This all-star sextet was formed at Birdland one night in 2002 when jazz flute pioneer Frank Wess heard two flutists in tandem--Holly Hoffman, who was working with Ray Brown's quartet, and Holly's long time friend and fellow young lioness Ali R
I hope James Moody enjoyed his 80th birthday party. He should have it lasted all year! There was a whole series of events, including a week-long celebration at The Blue Note in New York, in March, featuring Moody's group with a slew of guests, an inaugural fund raising concert for the James Moody Jazz Scholarship Endowment at SUNY Purchase in April, and another celebration at The Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles with MC Bill Cosby, The Dizzy Gillespie All-Star Big Band, Nanc
"Once the prevailing popular music of the land, [jazz] has shrunk to a mere 2 percent of the market. Yet this venerable art form refuses to grow old and fade away. And if, as author Gerald Early has said, America's three great contributions to the world are the Constitution, baseball and jazz, then it's time jazz was better known in the land where it was born." So writes Matt Schudel in November's Washington Post Book World. Under these circumstances, any way to successfully present thi
Since the demise of the One Step Down, Twins Jazz, along with its sister club Twins Lounge, remains one of the few active jazz clubs in the Washington DC area, and the main alternative to the considerably pricier Georgetown establishment Blues Alley. Founded in 1986 by Ethiopian twin sisters, the club is still run in the most hands-on style, with owner Kelley Tesfaye in the kitchen supervising the menu of American, Ethiopian and Carribean dishes (I am particularly fond of th
Since its dedication in January of 2004, the John Birks Gillespie Auditorium at the New York Bahá'í Center located at 53 East 11th Street (between University Place and Broadway)-- has featured a series of jazz performances every Tuesday evening. Organized by former Gillespie pianist Mike Longo himself a follower of the Bahá'í faith and dubbed "Jazz Tuesdays," these regular concerts offer high-quality performances in a pleasing space at very reasonable ticket prices $15 or $10 for student
Well, Ronnie Wells and her dedicated band of helpers have pulled it off again. For the 14th year in a row they have put together the East Coast Jazz Festival, a kaleidoscope of events including twenty-three ticketed performances on the main stage, eighty-six free, open to the public concerts, workshops and jam sessions, and forty high-quality exhibitors and vendors. Attendance exceeded expectations with an estimated three-thousand people participating in one way or another, including many comple
The Nyumburu Cultural Center has been a part of the University of Maryland College Park for 27 years, providing a program of "black social, cultural and intellectual interaction," including lectures, seminars, art exhibits, workshops in the dramatic arts, dance, music and creative writing. Academic courses in blues, jazz, gospel music performance and creative writing are also offered. Nyumburu, ("freedom house" in Swahili) produces the Black Explosion Newspaper and is also home to
Those who love big band jazz have slim pickins these days. Other than the excellent Dave Holland Big Band that had graced the Kennedy Center stage a couple of weeks earlier, since Toshiko Akiyoshi/Lew Tabackin called it quits last year, there is not much going on apart from the ghost orchestras (Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Lionel Hampton, Dizzy Gillespie), the retro experiments at Lincoln Center, occasional recordings by such as Gerald Wilson, and local groups such as Carol Sudhalter's Astor