Monday, April 18, 2011

The Monday Morning Paradiddle

Well, a few things to report today...

-I've caught a few notable and exciting gigs over the last couple of weekends starting with the Ian MacDougall 12tet at the Cellar in Vancouver two weekends ago. The band was in fine form having had the opportunity to play Ian's music for three nights in a row. Featuring an all star cast including the likes of Brad Turner, PJ Perry, Phil Dwyer, Campbell Ryga, Jodi Proznick, Oliver Gannon and Craig Scott, the entire band sounded great. I really appreciated Ian's distinctive orchestrations and colorful ensemble voicings. There was some serious music in there ! The drum & bass combination of Craig Scott and Jodi Proznick did a fantastic job of supplying a nice, wide solid groove for everyone to play over. The tenor battle between PJ Perry (subbing for Ross Taggart) and Phil Dwyer was intense ! I think a nearby mountain moved after that...

-Back from Vancouver, I caught Toronto saxophonist Jeff King's group Catalyst at the Beatniq in Calgary over the weekend. Featuring King on tenor with Andy Ballantyne on alto, Dave Restivo on piano, Rich Brown on electric bass and Joel Haynes on drums the group played a unique and dynamic program of contemporary, acoustic groove based music with lots of creative twists and turns. Rich Brown's bass playing was a lesson in groove and rhythm. Drummer Joel Haynes navigated his way exceptionally giving the music exactly what it needed. Joel is also a fellow McGill Jazz drumming alumni so it was good to catch up and talk shop with him afterwards.

-My friend drummer Johnathan Blake has recorded a great new album and needs your help to get it out to the public:

Johnathan Blake Indiegogo Campaign from Johnathan Blake on Vimeo.

Click here for more information about how you can help:

-A few albums I've been digging lately:

Larry Young "Unity" - Elvin Jones, Drums

Omer Avital Quintet "Live at Smalls" - Johnathan Blake, Drums

Duke Ellington & Ray Brown "This One's For Blanton"

Billy Hart "Sixty-Eight" - Billy Hart, Drums; Michael Pinto - Vibraphone

Alex Dean, Barry Elmes, Steve Wallace "D.E.W. East" - Barry Elmes, Drums

Stan Getz "At Storyville, Vol.1 & 2" - Tiny Kahn, Drums

Count Basie "Chairman of the Board" - Sonny Payne, Drums

Bill Charlap "Bill Charlap Plays Gershwin" - Kenny Washington, Drums

Joe Lovano & US FIVE "Bird Songs" - Otis Brown III & Francisco Mela, Drums

Shelly Manne "My Fair Lady" - Shelly Manne, Drums

-Last January I toured Western Canada with a great band performing the music from the album "Art Pepper+11". CBC Radio was kind and thoughtful enough to record our performance at the University of Saskatchewan. Here it is:

-I never get tired of watching this! Gotta love those emerald green drums...

-Like the photo at the top of todays post? I took that with my iPhone during my all too brief trip to Vancouver at the corner of Davie and Bute. A fine tribute to Vancouver's Jazz drumming community, this drummer sort of has a striking resemblance to my fellow jazz drumming blogger Jesse Cahill don't you think?

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