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Volume 11 Issue 6 - March 2006

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Jazz Notes by Jim

Jazz Notes by Jim Galloway March In Tempo Plenty of good jazz in town this month and I' II mention just a few of the special happenings. The Toronto Downtown Jazz Society pre-Festival series continues with Cubanismo at The Opera House on March 9th, a 15-piece band and one of the most exciting groups to come out of Cuba in a long time. They are followed by Randy Weston on the 10th at Glenn Gould Studio. Mr. Weston has devoted his long career to bringing the music of Africa to the attention of his audiences and incorporating that heritage in his compositions. Two quite varied but musically rewarding presentations and a rare opportunity to hear these artists. Another rare opportunity presents itself on Saturday, March 18 when the Classic Jazz Society of Toronto and Sackville Records present Kenny Davern, Trevor Richards and David Boeddinghaus in a concert of classic New Orleans jazz at the Estonian House on Broadview Ave. On March 31st at the Glenn Gould Studio, CBC Radio presents a concert featuring Kenny Wheeler, trumpet & tlugelhorn; Phil Dwyer, saxophone; Don Thompson, piano/vibes and arranger/conductor Rick Wilkins, plus an orchestral ensemble and special guest Norma Winstone. A sold-out sign has already been posted, but the consolation is that there will be a broadcast of the event. ARTISTIC DIRECTOR SEARCH The Hart House Symphonic Band is searching for a new Artistic Director to lead our 60 person mixedlevel volunteer ensemble, beginning with the 2006-2007 season. For more information, please visit www.hhsb.ca Application Deadline is March 24, 2006. Time to party A few years back I wrote a piece about the phenomenon of jazz parties and their origins - how they were the the brainchild of Dick Gibson, a New Yorker who moved to the open spaces of Colorado in 1960. He missed the New York jazz scene, which was pretty healthy in those days, and decided to simply import several musicians to Aspen for a week-end. The concept was quite simple. Bring together a group of compatible players with a common musical vocabulary and mix them together for a few days in a series of informal jam sessions, then sit back and enjoy the results. The jazz party was born. There have been jazz parties in Toronto, but always in the somewhat unsympathetic setting of a hotel ballroom, which, no matter if you try to dress it up a bit, is still a hotel ballroom and somewhat lacking in atmosphere. Well, over at The Montreal Bistro, which has lots of warmth and atmosphere, there is a feast of jazz steeped in the swing tradition - in effect, a mini jazz party, for three very special nights in March from Thursday 16th to Saturday 18th, when ten of the best Canadian and American musical swingers take over the stage. Who's going to be there? From the United States there will be two veterans of the jazz life. Bucky Pizzarelli is one of the all ­ time great guitarists, famous for his "chording" solos which never fail to set the audience on fire, and he JAZZ atR.Y. THE DA VE YOUNG QUARTET DA VE YOUNG - Bass KEVIN TURCOTTE - Trumpet ROBI BOTOS - Piano FRANK BOTOS - Drums Sun. Mar. 26 - 2pm Royal York Road United Church, Etob. TICKETS: & Sr INFO: 416-231-1207 has a way of interpreting a ballad which turns it into an emotional experience. Incidentally, his son, also keeping the tradition alive, is John Pizzarelli Jr. On piano is Johnny Varro, whose career took off in the busy club scene of New York in the 50s . He started at the top because his first professional gig was with Bobby Hackett! A regular at Eddie Condon' s which was to traditional jazz what Birdland was to bebop, he established himself as one of the best in a rich array of New York piano players. From a younger generation of players come trombonist John Allred and, on clarinet, Allan Vache. Both are well -known to Toronto audiences from previous festival appearances and both are huge favourites on the jazz circuit. John, whose formidable technique is the talk of the trombone world , is a featured player in the Harry Connick Jr. big band when he isn't wowing festival audiences around the world. One of his behind-thescene party pieces is to play "One Note Samba" with every repeated one note in a different slide position, then take the bridge, which goes all over the place, in a fixed position! (Just ask any trombone player about that one.) Before embarking on his solo career, Allan Vache played in the Jim Cullum band, heard weekly on JAZZ.FM91. Since then he has carved out a niche in the clarinet fraternity as one of the most exciting players on the scene. Given the number of times they have proved themselves on the in- Rosemary Galloway ternational scene and have accompanied visiting "stars" to Toronto, it isn't surprising to find that the Toronto component of the Party features Don Vickery and Archie Alleyne on drums. You have heard of the Three Tenors? Well each night the party will present a different bass player, each of whom has played with the top names in the business. On Thursday Neil Swainson will help to make the evening swing, then Rosemary Galloway takes the stand on Friday night, followed on Saturday by Dave Young - a three bass hit. Rounding out the package and acting as genial host is some guy called Galloway, also well-known on the international stage. This is "in your face" swinging jazz, where having a good time is the name of the game. All ingredients are there, technique, a real knowledge of the tradition of jazz, a sense of fun and a desire to communicate with the audience. The Bistro is an ideal setting for this event and it would be a smart idea to be part of that audience. See you there. Featuring some of Toronto's best jazz musicians with a brief reflection by Jazz Vespers Clergy Sunday, March 19 • 4 :30 p.m. GENE DiNOVI - piano Christ Church Deer Park, 1570 Yonge Street (north of St. Clair at Heath St.) 416-920-5211 Admission is free. An offering is received to support the work of the church, including Jazz Vespers. 28 WWW. TH EWHOLENOTE.COM M ARCH 1 - APRIL 7 2006

Inside the Jazz Listings by Sophia Perlman It seems like only yesterday that we were asked to venture out into the cold and cast our votes. Perhaps the federal government could learn something from the organizers of the National Jazz Awards. Throughout the month of March, listeners are encouraged to visit their website - Hilario Duran www .nationaljazzawards.com and vote for their favourite jazz musicians, producers and personalities - all from the comfort of their own home. The ceremony will take place at the Old Mill Inn, on April 10th - just a few days after another set of high-profile music awards, the Junos, are announced in Halifax, on April 3rd. In March, there are several opportunities to see many of these nominees perform in Toronto - including four nominees for Best Contemporary Album of the Year at the Junos. Trumpet player David Buchbinder received critical acclaim for his most recent album Shurum Burum Jazz Circus. He has been nominated for best album at both awards, as well as SOCAN composer of the year. On March 12, you can catch him as a part of Persian Purim Cabaret at Lula Lounge. Hilario Duran is being acknowledged for his work as a pianist, arranger, and recording artist this year - in addition to the best contemporary jazz nomination, for his album Encuentro en la Habana, he has also received nominations for Best Acoustic Group, Big Band of the Year, Latin Artist of the Year, Best Arranger, and musician of the year. He appears with his trio at the Montreal Bistro, March 23-25 . Nominated in three of the same NJA categories, Roberto Occhipinti is also a Juno nominee, for best Latin Artist, Best Arranger, and the Best Contemporary Jazz Album, for his recording Yemaya. He will appear on March 18th with the Sicilian Jazz Project at the Rex, in the evening spot. Directly before him that night, is another latinjazz nominee, pianist David Virelles. In addition to a nomination for his work with Marc Rogers, Phil Dwyer and Terri Lyne Carrington on the album, pianist Robi Botos is also nominated as Best Keyboardist. He appears every Sunday at N'Awlins. These and several other nominees for the National Jazz Awards can be seen across the city all month, and of course, in WholeNote's jazz listings. Before you exercise your democratic right to vote, make sure you go out and hear some of the best music Canada has to offer! Jazz listings are on page 54. Venue spotlight: The Pilot Now in its 62nd year of business, the Pilot Tavern has been featuring Saturday jazz for the past 20 years. A Sunday afternoon show, which began with pianist Laila Biali a year and a half ago, has also found a faithful group of listeners who come to hear music from a wide range of artists including Kollage, Mike Murley, Norman Marshall Villeneuve and Richard Underhill , and to enjoy their full menu, or one of the 21 beers on tap. The Pilot Tavern 22 Cumberland 416-923-5716 www .thepilot.ca Wheelchair Accesibility: One small step to main door. Washrooms are in basement. Age restrictions: All ages welcome Musician Booking: generally 2-3 months in advance. Saturday Jazz: Randy Sorrell Sunday Jazz: Al Stuart. Other info: no cover charge! M ARCH 1 - A PRIL 7 2006 WWW,THEWHOLENOTE,COM

Volumes 21-25 (2015-2019)

Volume 24 Issue 8 - May 2019
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