Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Bits 'N' Bobs [UPDATED]

Stan Gilbert & Carl Burnett
Los Angeles, 2008
[photo by Warren Berman]
ITEM! With a career that has spanned from the Latin Jazz renaissance of the late 1950s to the Hip Hop renaissance of the late 1990s, drummer Carl Burnett (a.k.a. Karim Saleh) is an indelible part of Los Angeles music royalty. (In the late-1980s, Burnett opened the performance space ARTWORKS 4, which joined musicians from Leimert Park's jazz and hip-hop communities and was the inspiration for Billy Higgins and Kamau Daaood opening The World Stage.) Friday, Mr. Burnett will reunite with bassist Stan Gilbert, his partner in crime from the days of working the rhythm section with Cal Tjader and Gene Harris' The Three Sounds, for "Reviving An American Art Form," a monthlong residency at Leimert Park's Barbara Morrison Performing Arts Center. Together with their frequent collaborator, pianist Karen Hernandez, they will play three dates -- March 7, 14 & 28 -- as the Jazz West Trio. All shows are at 8:00 PM and opening night cover is $10. The emcee will be scholar/poet Dr. Derrick Gilbert (a.k.a., "D-Knowledge") and each show will feature vocalists from the World Stage Vocal Workshop, overseen by pianist Howlett Smith.

ITEM! On March 17 at 7:30pm, Mr. Burnett will also take part in a tribute to the late saxophonist George Harper, who recently passed away at age 71. Also at the Barbara Morrison PAC, the concert's all-star line-up will include Jacques Lesure, James LearyRickey Woodard, Nolan Shaheed, George Bohannon, John Beasley, Dwight Trible, Justo Almario, Karen Evans, Roy McCurdy, Theo Saunders, Phil RanelinDee Dee McNeil, Cornel Fauler, Richard Grant, Charles Owens, Donald Dean and many more. The suggested donation is $20, which given the talent present is quite the bargain.

ITEM! Starting March 13, the L.A. Philharmonic is bringing back its mammoth Minimalist Jukebox festival, a citywide, multivenue effort that will last until early May. An oh, the goodies that will be available! Try the much-ballyhooed Kraftwerk 3D Concerts, the Philip Glass Ensemble performing Music in Twelve Parts, and Maximum Minimalism, with L.A. Phil Creative Chair John Adams conducting the Calder Quartet in selections from Steve Reich, Missy Mazzoli and Julius Eastman, among others.

ITEM! Two days before the Minimalist Jukebox, SXSW will premiere Adam Kahan's new documentary about Rahsaan Roland Kirk, entitled The Case of the Three-Sided Dream. Coming down the pike, according to the Beast's confidential sources, is The Sound of Redemption, a documentary about troubled L.A. postbop saxophonist Frank Morgan. Interviews are currently being filmed.

ITEM! On Saturday, March 8th, the jazz/improvised music scene in Long Beach will get its own mini-showcase. Titled Excursions: A Sight & Sound Festival, the daylong event is curated by guitarist Scott Heustis and trumpeter Dave Williams. The lineup includes some of the Beast's old Cryptogramophone pals, including The Mentones (led by contrabassist Steuart Liebig) and guitarist G.E. Stinson and keyboardist David Witham squaring off with live painter Norton Wisdom.

ITEM! On March 14, modern chamber ensemble The Kronos Quartet will celebrate is 40th Anniversary at UCLA's Royce Hall. The program will include two premieres: Philip Glass' Orion: China, with special guest, pipa virtuoso Wu Man; and Views from Here to the Heavens (for Scott Fraser), an original composition by our pal Nels Cline, who will be in attendance with his '59 Fender Jazzmaster.

ITEM! Oh yes! How could we forget? The Beast just wrote an article for the L.A. Weekly about plans to transport the art of 35 African-American artists from Southern California to the vaunted international stage of the 2015 Venice Biennalle. The multmedia program, curated by former California African American Museum head curator jill moniz, will including films, poetry and performances from three generations of L.A. jazz musicians that ranging from veterans of Horace Tapscott's Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra to high schoolers currently under the tutoring wand of Leimert Park community organizer Fernando Pullum.

ITEM! We also have Part 2 of our series The United Sounds of L.A. over at Los Angeles magazine.

[photo by Nanette Gonzales]

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