Harry S. Pariser

Harry S. Pariser

Accomplished Pianist Vijay Iyer and His Trio Appear at Herbst Theater in San Francisco

Legendary Jazz Pianist Keith Jarrett performs live at Zellerbach Hall at the University of California Berkeley

Veteran Jazz Pianists Gives Another Virtuoso Performance

Many years ago, walking down the hall in a dormitory at Boston University, I heard the most amazing music coming from a turntable. The artist was John Coltrane, and the tune was "My Favorite Things."

 

A new CD from sonic voyager Matthew Shipp is always a treat. With this new venture, Elastic Aspects on Thirsty Ear, Matt takes us on a sonic journey — one which is reflected by the name of such tracks as Circular Temple and Gamma Ray.

Matt's music is meditative, reflective and lyrical yet also assertive, boisterous, celebratory, exploratory, sometimes cacophonous, often percussive and frequently orchestral.

 

Wow! This is a really great CD with which to set a mood. You might want to put it on as as background music for an intimate meal, when you are giving or receiving a massage, or when you've had a hard day and are soaking in a steaming tub.

When I first heard that Michelle Rosewoman would be playing in a piano shop, I expected her in a small, dusty showroom with pianos clustered around her.

What I found instead on San Pablo in Oakland was a shiny showroom with gleaming pianos of many varieties, many of which cost ten to over a hundred thousand dollars.

A great show by Angelique and Youssou at Oakland's Paramount Theater

How often do four talented African guitarists come together to play acoustic onstage? Putumayo Records, a unique company, not only brought together such a remarkable supergroup but put them on tour.  "Acoustic Africa's" three main guitarists were Afel Becoum and Habib Koité from Mali and Oliver "Tuku" Mtukudzi from Zimbabwe. They were backed by the estimable Mamadou Kelly, Becoum's highly-talented regular guitarist and other musicians.

Although he relates that his 17-year-old daughter, “who plays me like a violin,” maintains that he is “not that famous,” singer-songwriter Randy Newman needs no introduction to most music aficionados. Years ago, when I was a student in Boston, I hitchhiked over to Harvard and forked down $2 to hear him play at the college’s creaky wooden Sanders Theater. It was an unforgettable experience. Since then much has changed, including number of wars and invasions, massive inflation, and the near-death of newspapers — as well as a whole slew of Randy Newman songs, one of which “A Few Words in Defense of Our Country”, was a 2007 New York Times fea...
Randy Weston is one of the elder statesman in jazz. At 83, he has been at this before many of his listeners were born. He does not tour or record as much as he used to, so it was a very special occasion when Weston entered the stage at Yoshi’s in San Francisco on February 7, 2011 for a one-night, one-time special performance. He was there to promote his new book, his first book, African Rhythms. Befittingly, he was interviewed by Anthony Brown, a UC Berkeley jazz professor, drummer and popular bandleader who had once produced an interview with him for the BBC. At 6’ 7” Weston, clad in his customary African-derived garb, is an imposing...
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