Lee Prosser

Lee Prosser

The name Toots Thielemans is synonymous with jazz harmonica. This is true partly because there are so few practitioners but mostly because of the degree to which he has mastered the instrument. If you have never heard Toots before you may wonder how he does it. It is difficult to imagine jazz harmonica, the instrument not seeming to lend itself to jazz. Until you hear Toots, that is. When he puts the harmonica to his lips, it's magic. He has a deep respect for the music that comes across in his
Last Thursday night at Flywheel in Easthampton, MA. performed a trio including Marco Eneidi on alto, Spirit on percussion and drums, and Jessica Loos doing vocals. This group is creative, well appointed, conceptually rich. And excellent.

Once, in a conversation Morton Feldman was having with another composer about a piece that Feldman was writing for voice and orchestra, I interjected the question to Feldman : "Well, Morty, when does the voice become an instrument?" His reply was: "That is a

After the band vamp (as if for a stripper's entrance) and Birdland's announcement, "The Prince of Hi-De-Ho, Calloway Brooks", a tall lean gent jumped on stage to front the mostly hatted variously attired twelve member ensemble wearing a long white coat to his knees, white high draped pants over black & whites, a pheasant feathered white wide-brimmed hat and matching red deco clipped tie. He's a sight and when he extends his long arms and opens his mustachioed mouth flashes of his Grandfathers' v
29.01.2011

The Phoenix Rises

Published in Concert Reviews
Part of the Impulse Response Series at the iEAR studio at RPI in Troy, New York, a performance with Joe McPhee, Philip Gelb, dancer, Eri Majima, and the group, Nyquist, brought a studio space, heavily laden with black velvet curtains and every other sort of absorptive material, to life.

Both Gelb and McPhee played by themselves to begin the concert and then joined to accompany dancer Majima. Nyquist, which includes Seth Cluett, Scott Smallwood, and Joel Taylor, were also joined by Gelb and M

It's a ritual. Each and every year we await a most longed-for event: Spring, and only secondarily, we wait for it to roll over into Summer in all its temperature-raising glory. And each and every year since I've lived in Vancouver I go through a personal ritual directly related to the weather. I forget what June can be like. That June can be cruelly, unseasonably chilly and even rainy. I think it's a mental block and there's only one thing that could make a jazz fan forget the unpredictability o
29.01.2011

Together Again

Published in Concert Reviews
The Art Ensemble of Chicago was one of those rare bands that would have come together regardless of the musical climate that necessitated its formation, so powerful was the attraction between the musicians. But they did form primarily due to the jazz scene depleting in 1960's Chicago, the advent of rock and roll, and then fostered by the encouragement of the then-fledgling musical collective, the Association for the Advancement of Creative Artists (AACM).

Depending on whom one might talk to

The 21st Annual Mellon Jazz Festival produced by the Central Pennsylvania Friends of Jazz got off to a flying start the weekend of June 15 in capital city, Harrisburg, PA. The 3-day event centered at the Hilton Hotel drew hundreds of jazz enthusiasts where headliners and local jazz musicians satisfied every jazz appetite. While the Hilton was central to the weekend festivities, the whole city supported this year's tribute to Louis Armstrong with a Jazz Walk-a-thon at 15 sites, all within walking
Now in its 16th year, the Vancouver International Jazz Festival is well established as one of the West's premium music forums and one of the finest international music showcases in the world. For ten days, the VIJF offers the sights and sounds of the music's edge pushers, mainstayers and international ambassadors in a panoramic city sweep that keeps the focus on the music amid the vitality of Canada's West Coast urban cultural Mecca.

That's as it should be. Yet in a city as stunning as Vanco

The term "super group" may be overused, but a true all-star quartet hit the stage in Milwaukee this past Thursday night. On the third date of their inaugural fourteen date midwest-eastcoast tour, the quartet known as CAB (drummer Dennis Chambers, guitarist Tony McAlpine, bassist Bunny Brunel, and keyboardist Brian Auger) laid down two sets of intense instrumental fusion. With a sound that harked back to the glory days of fusion in the seventies, they thrilled the packed house with their instrume
Now in its 24th year of existence the Atlanta Jazz Festival signals the beginning of the summer jazz festival season for this writer. The AJF always features a variety of local and international performers from most genres of jazz. Even though the free admission Memorial Day weekend concert series is the major part of the festival, there were several other free and paid performances held over a 9-day period throughout the Atlanta area.

This year a second stage, reserved for emerging artists,