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Concert Reviews (849)

Nothing beats experiencing live jazz music as its being created right in front of you.  Stop here for reviews of your favorite jazz artists live and in concert.


Undefined Ivory

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In her debut solo performance held at the Notorious Café (, Paula Shocron sat at the piano with confidence in the air and a bottle of water at her feet which she sipped from frequently. Her playing, like life was unpredictable. The style was at first without structure, like raw feelings being displayed through her instrument. Whether it was representing the mind of a rebellious youth, or the gritty, furious moods of a city on the edge, it seemed to be spontaneous ene
A full house at the University of New Orleans Performing Arts Center Recital Hall reveled in the performance of special holiday concert by the New Orleans Ladies of Jazz; Stephanie Jordan, Germaine Bazzle, and Leah Chase in collaboration with the Music Alive Ensemble String Octet and Jazz Quintet this past Sunday, November 28, 2010. Primarily sponsored by the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation and under the direction of violinist Rachel Jordan,

The Beat Root Blues Band

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People came in with great expectations and they were not disappointed by the band that's billed for one of the world's biggest blues festival slated for February 2011 in Mumbai. The Beat Root Blues Band featuring Pratish Motwane on harp and vocals, Dave Kelly on guitar, Colin D'Cruz on bass and Claude Abranches on drums took off from the word go. Goa Chitra's amazing amphitheatre was set ablaze by some smoking blues from four musicians all fired up for their first gig in India. Every track they
At last years Guelph Jazz Festival I did a lot of driving. Toronto to Guelph. It’s not a long drive but it's long enough to make a late night show discouraging. This year I decided to take advantage of Guelph's offer of a deal on a hotel close to the action. An accommodating room and allowing for a more relaxed festival experience. Late night shows, early morning shows and concerts on top of each other. A busy schedule entailed. The beauty of the Guelph jazz festival, other than the music, i
With her powerful voice, amazing feeling, beautiful smile and sense of humor Buika captivated the public in her first concert in Puerto Rico. Buika is a unique artist that blends in her music a diversity of influences. In her voice and music one might hear the voices of Africa, the phrasing of the Spanish Flamenco, Jazz, Soul and the rhythms and feelings of latin america and the caribbean. The concert setting was simple and intimate, a great artist like Buika doesn't need anymore, just her vo
It was an outstanding night of blues, R&B and soul at the Delta Chelsea Monarchs Pub in Toronto, Ontario, on Thursday night, September 23, 2010. Soul man #1, George Olliver, sang up a storm with blues harp player/vocalist Jerome Godboo and his band onstage -- rippin' it up for the huge crowd that attended! It was a great night of high-energy entertainment! Glen James Singleton-Wood was very impressive as usual on ten
Billed as the "greatest free jazz festival in America", the 32nd Annual Chicago Jazz Festival, produced by the Mayor’s Office of Special Events, is the centerpiece of the Chicago jazz community. There are three distinct reasons why this event can be declared a success. First is the programming. The second thing is the opportunity it gives to young jazz musicians coming up in the Chicago jazz scene. The third and most o
Friday the 13th is not generally looked upon as an auspicious day. However this particular Friday the 13th proved both felicitous and fortuitous for those salseros and salseras fortunate enough to attend the 70th anniversary performance by the legendary Cuban conjunto band Orquesta Aragon. For fans of this legendary ensemble, also known as La Madre de las Charangas Cubanas (The Mother of The Cuban Charangas) as well as La Charanga Eterna, this was a special evening, one those in attendance will
Salif Keita, 58, a 40-year veteran of the music scene, numbers among Africa's top musical stars. A man in motion, Salif is constantly touring and preaching his humanitarian message. Born into a royal family, Salif found himself barred by social custom from becoming a musician and as an albino, Salif was an outcast who found his means of expression through music. Fleeing a Malian dictatorship to take refuge in the Ivory Coast, he later moved to Paris but has since returned to Mali. Here, he has b
Toumani Diabate, the great Malian kora player, rarely makes it to these shores, so his recent performance at Yoshis in Oakland was a stellar occasion. Known for his virtuosity, Diabate is a living master of the kora, the 21-string West African harp made of wood,metal, and a large calabash gourd. The kora has a characteristic sound, one that is hard to categorize. As he illustrated during the portion of the show when he talked to the audience about his instrument, he plays it with his thumbs a
(West Bend, WI) The Kettle Moraine Jazz Festival is the brain-child of a handful of West Bend Sunrise Rotarians. On September 10th and 11th they held the thirteenth annual event to benefit this community in the Milwaukee area of Wisconsin. To date the event has raised over $300,000 in funds to benefit local and global charitable causes. West Bend is situated in one of Wisconsin’s most scenic areas, and located conveniently to Milwaukee. Lying in the heart of the Northern
The TD Toronto Jazz Festival and the Association of Improvising Musicians came together and formed a Next Wave Series. The concerts were performed at the Music Gallery in downtown Toronto, an intimate setting with spiritual overtones. The Music Gallery is a small church St. George The Martyr Church with seating for about 150 people. Artists performing as part of the series included Kyle Benders Quartet, Eric Boeren Quartet, Random Access Unplugged, The Swyves, Element Choir, Octopus, Fred Fri
The 13th annual Markham jazz festival featured the best in jazz. Some traditional, some contemporary and a mix of everything in between. The big draw for me at this summer’s festival had to be the opening night gala featuring Cameron Brown’s Hear & Now Quartet and John Pizzarelli with his regular working group. The two quartets represented a fine balance and a compliment to each others style. Cameron Brown’s sound, care of the Bebop goddess Sheila Jordan is immersed in the tradition of impro

Chris Botti

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Ever since 1995, when he first came to prominence with the CD ‘First Wish’, Chris Botti has gradually differentiated himself from other contemporary jazz trumpeters by ever increasing diversions down avenues of standards, classical music and opera. With a stage presence that is both articulate and magnetic, he has the ability to command an audience of any size and at Humphreys open air concert venue on the rim of the San Diego Bay he did just that. In the company of some of the fines

Lee Ritenour

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In the city it was just another sizzling summer night and, at the upscale Anthology, guitarist Lee Ritenour was playing his part in keeping the temperature high. His appearance at San Diego’s pre-eminent music hotspot was ostensibly in support of his latest CD ‘6 String Theory’ and although for the most part he majored on this interesting and eclectic collection he also found time for some old favorites along the way. Jazz Review caught the first of his two ‘back to back’ shows

Keiko Matsui

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As the rain of early afternoon subsided into the warming sunshine of evening it was the sparkling on stage presence of keyboard player Keiko Matsui that really brightened a Southern California day. She was in town to play her part in the latest chapter of the summer long Champagne Jazz Series and, with a glorious selection of her most memorable tunes, instantly confirmed her credentials as one of the most influential contemporary jazz musicians of the last twenty years. Despite her ex
The 2010 TD Toronto Jazz Festival came and went like a comet. It came with smoke and broken glass, riot police and anarchists. As the normally sedate streets of Toronto became a caged security zone. Some 10,000 protesters marched on the G20 summit of world leaders. Amid the chaos the main stage concerts at Nathan Phillips Square carried on. An oasis in a sea of troubled times. Maceo Parker played on Day 1 of the festival, coinciding with the start of the G8 and G20 summits. Herbie Hancock Im
The famous poet James Russell Lowell wrote in his most enduring poem: "What is so rare as a day in June, then if ever, come perfect days." Well some nights in June can also approach perfection. One such energized evening was the much anticipated Las Vegas return by R & R (Richard Elliot and Rick Braun), two of the most expressive and explosive stage presences that Contemporary Jazz can offer. The celebrated duo made a visit to The Access Showroom located inside the beaut
Dee Dee Bridgewater has been always unbounded in all things she does. Like the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, she has an imposing chronicle. The 15th annual Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Festival, celebrating the centenary of Mary Lou William’s Birth, hosted the All-Star Quintet composed by Dee Dee on vocal, Grace Kelly on saxophone, Geri Allen on piano, Esperanza Spalding on bass and Terri Lyne Carrington on drums. The addition of these musicians says a lot about the lead
As any regular reader of this site knows, there are many super-fine musicians that soar beneath the discerning radar of even the jazz world. Perhaps they don’t want to move to NYC, Los Angeles, London, or Paris; they’ve no feeling for the "business" side of the music biz, don’t tour much (or at all), or in some cases, a player has a parallel career. Take Denny Zeitlin-not only is he an aces-back-to-back jazz pianist but also a practicing psychiatrist. Zeitlin also did the electronics-l