Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Jeff Pittson - The Dietrich Variations (July 17, 2018)

Jeff Pittson represents a dynamic force in the world of jazz having performed with such important figures as Joe Henderson, Ruth Brown, Eddie Henderson, John Handy, Jack Walrath, Mike Clark, Maynard Ferguson, Larry Coryell, Kenny Garrett, and many more. A virtuoso performer on piano and Moog synthesizer, he is also fluent on a wide spectrum of keyboards including Hammond B-3.   As a composer, Mr. Pittson wrote and performed on the soundtrack for the documentary film Ann Calvello: Demon of the Derby, making it’s debut at the San Francisco Film Festival in 2000.  His classical piano work, The Dietrich Variations, made its debut under the auspices of the Redding Ballet in 2003. Such gifted artists as Billy Childs, Chris Potter, Harvie S and Paul Jackson have performed and recorded his jazz compositions and he has appeared on CD along side of such distinguished artists as Herbie Hancock, Alphonse Mouzon, and Bennie Maupin.

Mr. Pittson has appeared at the Newport Jazz Festivals in New York and Newport, Atlantic City Jazz Festival, Wolftrap, Meadow Brook Music Festival, Ravinia, Winnipeg Folk Festival, Cotati Jazz Festival, Vallejo Jazz Festival, For The Love of Jazz. Concerts in Reno Nevada, The Mike Douglas Show and many others. He has toured extensively throughout the United States, Canada, Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland, Hawaii, and the Caribbean.  Recordings with Maynard Ferguson on Columbia Records, “The Funk Stops Here!” with mike Clark and Paul Jackson on Enja/Tiptoe (4/12 stars in Downbeat, Sept’92), Jim Payne’s New York Funk, Volume 1 on Grammavision. Recent recordings include Paul Jackson’s “Black Octopus” Wally Schnalle’s “The Suit,” Jeff Massanari’s “Groovework,” “Carnival of Soul” by Mike Clark, and "Out of the Hub: The Music of Freddie Hubbard" by Suzanne Pittson.

Active as an educator and adjudicator for festivals, Mr. Pittson was Lecturer in Jazz Piano at Sonoma State University, Instructor in Piano at the Jazzschool (Berkeley, CA.), and also U.C. Berkeley as well as recent teaching at Rutgers University.  He is the leader on his own critically acclaimed CD’s Go Where It’s Dangerous, featuring Wally Schnalle and Invisible Love with drummer Brian Melvin and bassist Robb Fischer. Mr. Pittson lives in Dobbs Ferry, NY with his wife Suzanne and son Evan.

1. Theme: Falling in Love Again (Can't Help it)
2. Lonesome Love
3. Westworld
4. Exile Rhapsody
5. Hamburg
6. Mysterium
7. Night Intervals
8. Watercolors
9. Bodhi Tree Satti
10. Third Eye
11. Running Man
12. Eight Winds
13. Preludium
14. Inventio
15. Pianola Duo
16. Opus Posthuma
17. Love Lost Tango
18. Tears In The Rain
19. Les Six
20. Majorca
21. The View From Manhattan
22. Leningrad
23. Shiva
24. Etude In Fifths
25. Microdensities
26. Endlessly Rising
27. Fantasies
28. Flying Dutchman
29. The Starry Sky
30. Fanfare
31. Fin De Siecle
32. Reductio
33. Coda

All music composed by Jeff Pittson, November 2000–March 2001
(Jeff Pittson Publishing, BMI)
except "Falling in Love Again (Can't Help it"
composed by Frederick Hollander, English lyric by Sammy Lerner
(Pensive Music/Frederick Hollander Music, ASCAP)

Engineering: Dave Bell
Mastering: September 30, 2001, Bellboy Recording, Richmond, CA
Graphic Design: Evan Pittson
Piano Illustration: Jeff Pittson

Randy Brecker & Mats Holmquist - Together (with Umo Jazz Orchestra) MAMA RECORDS July 24, 2018

Randy Brecker has been shaping the sound of music for decades. His performances have graced hundreds of albums by a wide range of artists from James Taylor, Bruce Springsteen, Chaka Khan, George Benson and Parliament-Funkadelics to two Grammy winners on Summit & MAMA Records.

These arrangements all have little (and not so little) twists and turns that keep you on your toes at all times. There are 3 Chick Corea tunes, 'Crystal Silence', 'Humpty Dumpty' and 'Windows' masterfully re-worked by Mats, Two Mats 'impressions' or minimalistic versions of so-called "Standards' 'Stella By Starlight' (we both have daughter named Stella by the way), and 'All the Things you Are' which are re-imagined with delightful results, the beautiful Ray Evans- Jay Livingston ballad 'Never Let Me Go' and then three Mats original compositions: 'One Million Circumstances', 'Always Young' and 'Summer and Winter' each quite challenging in their own way.

I think you'll really enjoy this CD there are absolutely no dull moments, you are going to be taken on the ride of a lifetime, so enjoy it and let me know when you come back to Earth!

Randy Brecker

This CD features 3 compositions and one arrangement written in the late eighties; "One Million Circumstances", "Summer and Winter", "Always Young", "Never Let Me Go" - three arrangements of Chick Corea compositions; "Windows", "Crystal Silence", "Humpty Dumpty" -and 2 new re-compositions based on famous standards; "My Stella" (Stellla by Starlight") and "All My Things" ("All the Things You Are"). In other words three different periods are represented; late eighties, beginning of the 2000s (Chick Corea) and the present (re-composition of standards).

UMO Jazz Orchestra is the only professional orchestra in Finland specialised in jazz and new rhythm-oriented music. The big band of 16 musicians plays about 80 concerts every year in Finland and abroad. The orchestra plays a diverse range of modern music that is on the pulse of the times.

One Million Circumstances
Summer and Winter
Never Let Me Go
All My Things
Crystal Silence
Humpty Dumpty
My Stella
Always Young

272 State Route 94 South #1, Warwick, NY 10990-3363
Ph: 845-986-1677 •
“Specializing in Media Campaigns for the music community, artists, labels, venues and events.”

David Kollar - Improvisations under the roof (2018)

Improvisation under the roof. I have met my new friend Martin Sejk, who has got recording system and old amps. Then I have asked my friend Vlado Šipoš if he can record video of my improvisations. We have met one day and we did it. 

1. Nice 06:50
2. Fast 08:02
3. Slow 09:00

Martin Sejk - sound engineer
Vlado Šipoš - camera
Jakub Tirčo - photo

David Kollar / Arve Henriksen - Illusion of a Separate World (July 15, 2018)

Illusion of a Separate World is the meeting between innovative Slovakian guitarist, film music composer and sound designer David Kollar (Steven Wilson, Pat Mastelotto, Fennesz, Marco Minnemann, Eivind Aarset) and Norwegian trumpet maestro Arve Henriksen. Shimmering soundscapes and haunting melodies mixed with soundtrack music, ethnic influences, electronic explorations, jazz hybrids, and post-rock riffs are at the core of this meeting. 

David Kollar and Arve Henriksen started their collaboration after they met in 2017 and played just twice before the recording. “I played last year at the Spectaculare festival in Prague,” said David “I had a solo performance and after me there was Arve playing with Christian Fennesz. At the end of the festival, we shared our contact details. In few months, we met again on the stage at Hevhetia festival in Slovakia.” The performance was such a bonding experience that the two chose to record an album together. 

In December 2017, David spent a week in the city of Faenza, Italy as the guest of his fellow trumpeter and friend Paolo Ranieri. This was the perfect setting to start sketching out improvisations that would become part of Illusion of a Separate World. David drew inspiration from life’s trials and tribulations or from the environment around him. “I played them as musical diaries,” said David. Soundscapes, moody riffs and rhythmic works emerged. He recorded 17 tracks and then gave them to Arve, who layered trumpet, voice and electronics over them. 

Through this joining of two unique worlds, in both geographical and cultural senses, the duo has created an anthemic album which reveals an intimate connection. It spans from the moments of quietness that slowly turn into walls of orchestral sounds like in Night Navigator, to the tribal drumming rhythms that Henriksen enriches with his voice-like trumpet in Chimera. When the guitarist transforms a simple clacking on string into a weird rhythm like in Silk spinning, Henriksen then turns it into a pastoral melody. When the trumpeter switches to his trademark soft-speaking voice, like in Mirror Transformations, Kollar places himself in a more subtle context, camouflaging his guitar in synth-like drapings. The Slovakian guitarist then takes the stage and hints at his Americana influences with a delicate guitar and trumpet solo in Solarization, that eventually morphs in an ethnic-flavored electronic experience. Suspended over Kollar’s cloudy drone, Castles in the Air is Arve Henriksen at his best, playing one of his most iconic solos. But he can also turn in some of the most intricate and haunting melodies like in the unsettling Roving Observer, which Kollar initially took inspiration from movie director Tarkovsky. 

Intimate, intense, passionate and subtle, Illusion of a Separate World is two artists showing how easy is for them to create music that is immediate and tremendously complex, haunting and gorgeous at same time.

1. Night Navigator
2. Mirror Transformations
3. Silk Spinning
4. Chimera
5. The Spiral Turn
6. Solarization
7. Vision of Light
8. Castles In The Air
9. Bird Of Passage
10. Augmented Reality
11. Roving Observer
12. Beyond the iCloud

David Kollar, electric guitar, electronics
Arve Henriksen, trumpet, vocal, drums, keyboards and electronics

Recorded in Prešov, Faenza and Mölnlycke april-mai 2018
Mixed by David Kollar and Roman Šoltýs
Mastering by Roman Šoltýs
Produced by David Kollar and Arve Henriksen

Bastian Stein - Diegesis (2018)

“Was für ein Ton! Bastian Stein bläst Trompete und Flügelhorn so facettenreich… Vier Virtuosen berichten dem Hörer von einer Welt ohne Hektik und Stress.” (Werner Stiefele, Audio)

“Zeitlos schöner Jazz. So fein ziseliert und hoch konzentriert und präzise hier auch musiziert wird, kommt diese Abenteuerlust auf dem Album doch nicht zu kurz und entlädt sich in einer emotionalen Intensität, die kein ‘Höher’, ‘Schneller’ und ‘Lauter’ braucht.” (Beate Sampson, BR Klassik)

“Eine wunderschöne CD, die den Zuhörer selbst zum Meditieren anzuregen vermag.” (Teddy Doering, Jazzpodium)

New West
In Honor of a Friend
Gladiolus Tristis
Sung Fang Ching
Without Words
The Quest
Con Alma

Pablo Held, piano
Matthias Pichler, bass
Tobias Backhaus, drums

Playlist for Tom Ossana – The Thin Edge – July 11, 2018 MST 7:00 to 9:00p.m. ~ Use this link to access the show online.

Wrap-up of the 39th edition – Montréal Int'l Jazz Fest 2018

Wrap-up of the 39th edition

Once again, hundreds of thousands of people assembled at the doorstep of the Quartier des Spectacles to join in the 39th edition of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal presented by TD Bank Group in collaboration with Rio Tinto, which concludes today. Hundreds of thousands of people who braved the heatwave, and we are delighted to have once again offered them irreplaceable entertainment, and to have been able to present talented artists from all backgrounds and origins during our ten days and nights of festivities.

Obviously, we cannot deny that, for the first time in festival history, this edition did not unfold without a hitch. We must certainly return to the controversy surrounding the SLĀV show and the decision we made to cancel its performances during the Festival. A statement released today outlines in more detail the ins-and-outs that motivated this decision. This episode led us to reflect deeply and take into account all the constructive remarks directed our way, which can only be beneficial for future editions.

We remind everyone that the Festival is also and above all a program of 500 concerts, fully two-thirds of them free. Once again this year, we were treated to outstanding performances by many artists in indoor venues — with sold-out 21 concerts — and on our outdoor stages.

"Nouvelle édition pour le Festival International de Jazz à Montréal, qui une nouvelle fois décroche un line-up tout frais, de prestige et éclectique." – Rolling Stone France

Let’s highlight the TD Mid-Festival Event with Jessie Reyez, which thrilled an immense crowd, as well tonight’s Rio Tinto Grand Closing Event, starring The War On Drugs, which we’re sure will fold this edition into the history books in epic style.

In addition, the Festival presented its glittering array of prizes, including to a deeply moved Ben Harper, who received the Ella Fitzgerald Award. The Montreal Jazz Festival Spirit Award was presented to the legendary Ry Cooder, while young Montréal outfit SHPIK was selected as winner of the 2018 TD Grand Jazz Award.

"Depuis son premier passage au Festival International de Jazz de Montréal (FIJM) - c'était en juillet 1994, dans la salle du Spectrum -, Ben Harper est devenu un habitué de la manifestation, qu'il considère, à l'instar de nombreux observateurs, comme 'l’un de meilleurs festivals au monde.' Il sera difficile de le contredire." – Le Figaro

Another success involved the renewal of Opération Hirondelles, a project born of our desire to focus more attention on the well-being and security of festivalgoers, members of the LGBTQ community, and all those who may feel a sense of vulnerability during our events. Special measures to fight the excessive heat were also swiftly put in place all over the site.

The main objective of the Festival is to create entertainment through culture. Our goal is to increase the cultural, social, tourism and economic benefits generated by the Festival, such a wonderful showcase for Montréal and Québec all over the world. Because if there is one thing that is important to us, it is quite simply to get better year after year, and improve from every perspective.

“This was my first time at the festival and I was impressed with the organization, the venues, and the great sound mixing at a wide range of shows. I would strongly recommend the Montreal Jazz Festival to anyone who loves great music and the host city is a fantastic place to wander, eat in, and enjoy.” – Tim Leffel, Editor, Perceptive Travel

Media initiatives implemented throughout the year also bore fruit, with the presence of 300 accredited journalists from over 16 countries around the world.

“I’m always amazed by how many free high-quality concerts FIJM offers to the public. Montrealers should feel blessed. FIJM always takes my breath away. Its organization, breadth of curation, and its treatment of the artists. All jazz festivals should strive to be FIJM. Thank god for FIJM, one of the only festivals in the world advancing the sound of jazz into the new millennia and not afraid to do so.” – Simon Rentner, WBGO

Finally, if this Festival can experience this level of popularity and incite this kind of passion, it is thanks to the valuable partners who contribute to financing the event. Certainly, the Festival’s free programming provides benefits for everyone, but we must remember that the free program comes with a cost, and without that essential support, none of this would be possible. Thanks to our three levels of government, the Governments of Canada, Québec and the Ville de Montréal, Tourisme Montréal, all our valued sponsors, including presenter TD Bank Group and co-presenter Rio Tinto, who have been by our side for so many years, as well as all our partners and official suppliers.

Thanks also to all the Festival teams, who helped make this edition a success. Last but not least, we remember how impressive this event truly is for its capacity to unite people, attracting a fabulously diverse audience every year, gathering in the heart of a musical urban village that is more inclusive than ever.

Of course, thanks also to the artists and the festival fans who help bring this Festival to life and make it ever more beautiful.

We are already hard at work on our 40th, and cannot wait to deliver a memorable edition, especially featuring the ambitious “Hubs” project. Specifically, the Festival aims to be a vehicle for all, promoting the discovery of cultural and social wealth by anchoring itself in various neighbourhoods throughout the city. While continuing to occupy its central site in the Quartier des Spectacles with large musical gatherings, indoor shows and family activities, this global Festival will also get very local thanks to the launch of new festival centers called “Hubs”. These hubs will promote encounters between citizens and generate new spin-offs for the boroughs, in a spirit of inclusion and integration. They will be accessible free of charge and offer the same artistic quality the Festival is renowned for, while respecting the principles of sustainable development and eco-responsibility. We’ve already received over one hundred messages from citizens expressing their desire to welcome a hub to their neighbourhood, as well as numerous BDCs and boroughs. It goes without saying that the Festival is thrilled by this passionate response.

Thank you once again, and see you all next year!

The 40th edition of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal will be held from June 27 to July 7, 2019.