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Marcela Breton

08 Dec 2017 1:21 PM | Marcela Breton

 I heard the best live jazz of 2017 in public libraries and universities. These institutions expand the jazz audience beyond the nightclub and concert hall, showcasing the music in an atmosphere conducive to relaxed inspiration, experimentation, and the discovery of new, often local, talent. These performances are frequently free to the public. I’m glad for the existence of independent cinemas, too, like the Avon in Providence, where I saw the documentary, “Chasin’ Trane.”  Lastly, I am encouraged by a welcome focus on women in jazz, and a corresponding exposure of the sexism that pervades the jazz world at all levels. In this regard, see, “For Women in Jazz, a Year of Reckoning & Recognition,” by Giovanni Russonello, The New York Times, Dec. 1, 2017.

Live Jazz:

Pianist Monty Alexander and his Harlem Kingston Express band, with Ran Blake on saxophone, at Brown University; Colombian accordionist/big band leader, Gregorio Uribe, jamming with student musicians, also at Brown; the Debra Mann Quartet, celebrating the work of Dave Frishberg, at the Warwick Library; the saxophonist Greg Abate, also at Warwick Library; and the local jazz group, Classics 5 Jazz Quintet, featuring vocalist, Carine Paul, at the William Hall Library in Cranston, Rhode Island.

A random list of choice recordings from 2017:

Champian Fulton & Scott Hamilton “The Things We Did Last Summer” (Blau)

Eddie Palmieri “Sabiduria” (Ropeadope)

Arturo O’Farrill & Chucho Valdes “Familia : Tribute to Bebo & Chico” (Motema)

Nestor Torres “Jazz Flute Traditions” (Alfi Records)

John Daversa, featuring Bob Mintzer,  "Wobbly Dance Flower" (BFM Jazz)

Camille Thurman “Inside the Moment” (Chesky)

Jaimie Branch “Fly or Die” (International Anthem)

Hiromi/Edmar Castaneda “Live in Montreal” (Telarc)

Nicole Mitchell “Mandorla Awakening II : Emerging Worlds” (FPE Records)

Anat Cohen & Marcello Goncalves “Outra Coisa” (Anzic)

Alice Coltrane “World Spirituality Classics : the Ecstatic Music of Turiya Alice Coltrane” (Luaka Bop)

Teddy Edwards “The Complete Recordings” (Enlightenment) (4 CDs)

WoodyShaw/Louis Hayes “The Tour : v. 2” (HighNote)


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