Donaldson Toussaint L'Ouverture Byrd II, known as Donald Byrd, passed away February 4, 2013 at the age of eighty. Byrd was a superb trumpet player whose music spanned a period of some five deacdes. After playing with Lionel Hampton before finishing high school and service in the United States Air Force, Byrd completed his bachelor's degree in music at Wayne State University in 1954 and moved to New York in 1955 to get his master's at the Manhattan School of Music.
Last Call presents an interview with saxophonist Donny McCaslin. The saxophonist received a 2004 Grammy® nomination for “Best Jazz Instrumental Solo” for his work with the Maria Schneider Orchestra. He has also worked extensively with trumpeter Dave Douglas and his band. Inspired by the full tenor sound of Sonny Rollins, McCaslin explores a trajectory through electronic jazz on his latest effort, Casting For Gravity.
Patricia Barber has long been an important voice on the progressive jazz scene. Barber, an internationally acclaimed pianist, vocalist and composer, was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2003, the only songwriter ever to be so awarded. Her ability to craft sophisticated lyrics has been documented on a series of fine recordings, which continued until some years ago.
Guitarist John Pizzarelli will return to Omaha in February. Two performances with the Omaha Symphony, Thomas Wilkins, conducting, will be presented on Saturday, February 9, 2013, at 8 p.m. & Sunday, February 10, 2013, at 2 p.m. at the Holland Performing Arts Center.
Omaha Performing Arts Presents BLUES AT THE CROSSROADS 2: Muddy & The Wolf on Wednesday, February 6, 2013 at 7:30 p.m. at the Holland Performing Arts Center. This performance is part of the Omaha Performing Arts 2012/2013 Season. Tickets for Blues at the Crossroads 2: Muddy & The Wolf start at $25 and can be purchased online at TicketOmaha.com, by phone at 402.345.0606, or at the Ticket Omaha office in the Holland Performing Arts Center, 13th and Douglas streets.
This month Last Call celebrates its 17th anniversary on the air with a consideration: What is the state of the guitar in progressive jazz? To answer that, it's helpful to review the arc of the instrument since the 1960s. Guitarists such as Wes Montgomery & Larry Coryell made very important contributions in that decade; also one must acknowledge the huge influence of rock guitarist Jimi Hendrix on jazz & the decision by many jazz artists to "plug in" during the late 1960s.
KIOS will once again air Toast of The Nation to ring in the New Year. The annual broadcast will begin New Year's Eve, December 31st at 8:00PM. An NPR tradition every New Year's since 1979, Toast of the Nation is perfect for the occasion. It's jazz you can party to, all night from coast to coast, with countdowns to midnight in all four continental time zones.Spirited, improvised, grooving, and swinging, each segment is a stop in a sequence of celebrations and contributing something new to the musical feast. WBGO's Rhonda Hamilton anchors the show.
ALBUMS OF THE MONTH – January, 2013 (and some related comment)
The November, 2012 issue of The Atlantic contained a pitifully myopic article entitled “The End of Jazz”. Essentially, its author argued that since the traditional songbook has become passe and with nothing new coming into the jazz repertoire since 1960 the music has exhausted its relevancy. What we have here is a severe case of ignoratio elenchi.
NPR Music brings you another great concert from the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Jazz Piano Christmas presents NEA Jazz Master Ellis Marsalis, Jason Marsalis, Geri Allen, and Taylor Eigsti and other artists who will perform their favorite holiday songs. Tune in for JAZZ PIANO CHRISTMAS XXIIIon Monday, December 24th at 8:00pm on KIOS,