Friday, February 24, 2017

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As was revealed by former Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra chief-of-staff Jesse Sharps at a PAFF screening last week, Mekala Session, son of Ark saxophonist Michael, had now taken over as concertmaster the Ark. He will lead the band (including dad, Roberto Miranda, Jesse Sharps, Bobby West, Vinny Golia, Steve Smith, Kamau Daaood, Dwight Trible, Maia and Isaac Smith) in a recital to be held Wednesday, March 1 at 8pm at CalArt's Roy O. Disney Concert Hall.

This Saturday from 5-8pm, the Mayme Clayton Library in Culver City will debut the last of three events surrounding their current exhibition entitled Rappin' Black History. The special guest will be Anthony "Father Amde" Hamilton of the Watts Prophets. Doors open at 4pm.

Also coming up at the Clayton on March 26th will be the latest installment of the Double M Jazz Salon. Azar Lawrence and his Quartet (pianist Theo Saunders; bassist Henry Franklin, drummer Tony Austin). The concert starts at 2pm, but make sure you make it an hour earlier for a special live interview with Lawrence courtesy of our friend, jazz historian Jeffrey Winston. Tix are $20.

On Sunday, March 5, at 7:00 p.m., Alex Cline and Will Salmon's Open Gate Theatre celebrates 20 years of its eclectic Sunday evening concerts with the fundraiser IMPROVIGANZA, described as "a select but still ultimately massive array of volunteer musical notables who have both played and listened to much of the music that has been presented at the concert series over its two decades, all of whom will be heard in a variety of contexts and combinations in the course of the evening. Artists other than Alex (drums, percussion) and Will (flute, voice) are planning to contribute to an explosion of spontaneous music-making" are: brass: Dan Clucas, Bobby Bradford, Daniel Rosenboom, Bruce Friedman, William Roper; woodwinds: Vinny Golia, Phillip Greenlief, Alexander Vogel, Eric Barber, Charles Sharp, Emily Hay, Peter Kuhn, Richard Wood, Gavin Templeton; voices: Dwight Trible, Bonnie Barnett, Kaoru Mansour; strings (guitars, basses, pipa): G.E. Stinson, Ross Hammond, Jie Ma, Scott Heustis, Steuart Liebig, Jeff Schwartz, Devin Hoff, Darryl Tewes; keyboards: Wayne Peet; drums/percussion: Garth Powell, Breeze Smith, Brad Dutz, Christopher Garcia, Jonathan Saxon. And there are still some musicians who are attempting to appear but have not been able to commit yet—could be more!" The concert will take place at the Center for the Arts, Eagle Rock,  2225 Colorado Blvd., Eagle Rock (one block west of Eagle Rock Blvd.). Admission is $10. Further information can be obtained by calling (626) 795-4989.

This Saturday at 2pm at the Far East Lounge (​353 E 1st St, Little Tokyo) there will be a concert to remember late composer and community activist Glenn Horiuchi (1955-2000). The brass ensemble Purple Gums, made up of Los Angeles musicians Bobby Bradford (cornet) and William Roper (tuba), and San Francisco-based Francis Wong (saxophone), and other SF guests Lenora Lee (dance) and Melody Takata (dance and taiko), will perform. Admission is free/donation.

Found this sobering but well-written 1993 Washington Post account of The Lonesome Death of a Jazzman. If that doesn't depress you enough, try this recent Salon article on The new, jazzless New York Times.

Superb new article by our blog bud Woody Haut about an obscure writer named
David Goodis and his travails on L.A.'s Central Avenue.

For a more updated take on how L.A. inspires its artists,
read this new piece on trumpeter Terrace Martin's Los Angeles.

Pianist/vocalist/provocateur Diamanda Galas will mount a rare U.S. tour, which will include L.A. 
Soul Amazing, an obscure but essential documentary about L.A.'s underground hip-hop scene has just resurfaced online.

Monday, February 6, 2017


Hi! Our brief preview of the new jazz documentary Horace Tapscott: Musical Griot (it premieres next weekend!) is now up over at the L.A. Weekly. Go here for the trailer. Go here for tickets and more info.