Jazz Notes: Goings on in the jazz world

By KEN FRANCKLING, United Press International  |  April 21, 2003 at 2:00 AM
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Today is April 21.

Guitarist Mundell Lowe was born this day in 1922 in Laurel, Miss. He grew up playing traditional music around New Orleans and country music in Nashville in the late 1930s.

He then shifted to the swing bands of Jan Savitt and Ray McKinley, and the small group jazz bands of Mary Lou Williams, Red Norvo and Ellis Larkins. In 1983, Lowe became musical director of the Monterey, Calif., Jazz Festival.

Trombonist Slide Hampton was born this day in 1932 in Jeannette, Pa. In addition to touring with his band and others, he is busy as a clinician and jazz educator.

Looking at today's hip happenings...

Jazz singer Dianne Reeves and Aerosmith's Steven Tyler will receive honorary doctor of music degrees at Berklee College of Music's 2003 Commencement on May 10. Reeves and Tyler will address the more than 600 graduates and approximately 3,000 invited guests at the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center in Boston. On commencement eve, Berklee students will present a tribute concert, performing tunes associated with the honorees' careers.

On the New York jazz scene... the Yoron Israel Connection is at the Blue Note tonight. The Vanguard Jazz Orchestra is at the Village Vanguard. Les Paul is at Iridium tonight. Drummer Ali Jackson's quintet is at the Jazz Standard tonight and Tuesday with trumpeter "E. Dankworth," better known as Wynton Marsalis. Steve Coleman and Five Elements are at The Jazz Gallery tonight and Tuesday. New School University's Jazz Orchestra with conductor Charles Tolliver and special guest Roy Ayers are at Tishman Auditorium tonight.

The late Tito Puente will be honored tonight at "Viva Puente, A Tribute to the Real Mambo King." The two-hour gala is at Lincoln Center's Avery Fisher Hall. The show will be hosted by actor Jimmy Smits and Latin star Roselyn Sanchez. Ruben Blades is scheduled to headline the esteemed list of musicians and artists who will perform Puente songs or offer the audience anecdotes about Puente. Those scheduled to appear include Celia Cruz, Dave Valentin, Giovanni Hidalgo and Tito Puente Jr.

In Philadelphia... the Tony Williams quartet with drummer Mickey Roker is at the Sedgwick Cultural Center tonight. The Brian Woesterhoff trio is at Chris's Jazz Cafe tonight. Fortune Vinson Cruse holds a record release party for his new CD, "Sunny Nights," at Zanzibar Blue tonight.

In the Chicago area... the William Garcia quartet is at Cafe Bolera tonight. The Patricia Barber quintet is at the Green Mill. Yoko Noge's Jazz Me Blues is at HotHouse. There's an avant-garde jam session with David Boykin, Karl E. H. Seigfried, and Mike Reed tonight at the Hotti Biscotti Cafe.

Kelly Brand is at Joe's BeBop Cafe and Jazz Emporium tonight. The Long Count Quartet is at Joy Blue. The Marc Pompe trio is at the 100 South Chop House in Elmhurst tonight and Tuesday. The Mike Kocur trio is at Pete Miller's Steakhouse in Evanston. Sami Scott is at Philander's in Oak Park. Typhanie Monique and Dale Prasco are at Pops for Champagne.

In New Orleans... Michael Pellera is at the Blue Nile. Earl Brown is at Cafe Sbisa. Bob French and Friends are at Donna's. Warren Battiste and Friends are at El Matador. Jeesok Kim is at the Funky Butt.

Reginald Koeller leads tonight's band at Preservation Hall. The Dixie Trio is at the Seaport Cafe. Charmaine Neville is at Snug Harbor. The New Orleans Jazz Vipers are at the Spotted Cat. The Rob Wagner trio is at d.b.a.

On the California jazz scene... Bob Florence's Limited Edition is at the Jazz Bakery in Los Angeles tonight. The Mike Fahn quartet is at Charlie O's in Valley Glen tonight. The Arlene and The Guys big band with special guest Jennifer Hart is at Steamers Jazz Cafe in Fullerton tonight. The Joyce Marie Partise Brazilian jazz quintet is at Spazio in Sherman Oaks. The Michael Bluestein trio is at Yoshi's in Oakland tonight.

The Cuban jazz singer Mayra Caridad Valdes performs with her brother Chucho Valdes' band tonight at Benaroya Hall in Seattle.

On the recording front...

"The Marsalis Family: A Jazz Celebration" was released this month in DVD format, a follow-up to February's CD release. It features all of the music-making Marsalises -- father Ellis on piano and sons Branford (tenor and soprano saxophones), Delfeayo (trombone) Jason (drums), and Wynton (trumpet) -- along with bassist Roland Guerin and a special guest appearance by Harry Connick Jr.

It captures the family¹s historic Aug. 4, 2001, New Orleans concert, with bonus performance and interview footage added, including "Caravan," "Limehouse Blues" and "The Party's Over." Incidentally, Ellis, Branford, Delfeayo and Jason will make a special Father's Day performance on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" on NBC Monday, June 9.

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