Video: 15th London African Music Festival presents: LEKAN BABALOLA’S SACRED FUNK

15 September 2017 — Vortex Jazz Club

28 September 2017 – Book Online

Twice Grammy award winning Nigerian percussionist Lekan Babalola is well known for his innovative musical style, using his native Yoruba tongue infused with traditional music, Afrobeat and funky dance overtones. Awarded his first Grammy in 2006 for performances on the late Ali Farka Toure’s album ‘In the Heart of the Moon’, he was awarded a second at the 49th Grammy awards in 2009 for his work as Associate Producer on the American jazz diva Cassandra Wilson’s album. World press has given him rave reviews for his percussive ‘wizardry’ and infectious grooves.

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You ain’t gonna know me ‘cos you think you know me – Louis Moholo-Moholo

13 April 2017 — Youtube

I can’t get enough of this music, so here’s a very famous song, dedicated to former Blue Notes  trumpeter, Mongezi Feza and written in his memory. From the album Spirits Rejoice! 1978 (Ogun).

Louis Moholo – drums
Harry Miller – bass
Johnny Dyani – bass
Nick Evans – trombone
Radu Malfatti – trombone
Evan Parker – tenor sax
Keith Tippet – piano
Kenny Wheeler – trumpet

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An Interview with Louis Moholo-Moholo

13 April 2017 — Cafe Oto

My friend, the fabulous, and apparently immortal Bra Louis Moholo-Moholo is performing at Cafe Oto tomorrow, Friday 14 April. It’s been nine months since he was here, so all you London bods who are into SA music should try and make it. He will be joined by longtime music partners The Four Blokes (now upgraded to The Five Blokes), Jason Yarde and Shabaka Hutchings (saxophones), John Edwards (bass), and Alexander Hawkins (piano) and of course, Bra Louis on drums.

Here’s an interview with Bra Louis recorded, recorded I think, sometime ago. Enjoy Continue reading

Video: Interview with NC Heikin, director of “The Sound of Redemption: The Frank Morgan Story”

30 November 2015 — Jazz on the Tube

Interview with NC Heikin, director of “The Sound of Redemption: The Frank Morgan Story”

Download the mp3 here

NC called in from the set of “Boss” where Episode #8 was being filmed.

“The Sound of Redemption” was conceived and co-produced by novelist and jazz fan Michael Connelly

The film is openning in NYC on December 2, 2015 and in LA on December 18, 2015.

Click here for more information about “The Sound of Redemption” 

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Live: Lambert, Hendricks and Ross with the Count Basie Orchestra – Avenue C

17 June 2015 — Youtube

What can I say? I’ve dug them since I was a teenager. For a number of years, from the sixties, Jon Hendricks was living ‘in exile’ in London, and I used to bump into him into a small, and cheap Italian restaurant just off Charing X Road in Soho, and we’d talk jazz and politics over a scallopini and spag.

The fantastic trio of Dave Lambert, Jon Hendricks and Annie Ross perform ‘Avenue C’ in an extremely rare video clip, backed by a jammin Count Basie Orchestra. Jon Hendricks, who famously wrote and sang lyrics  written using  instrumental solos, note for note, by the likes of Coltrane, Miles and Cannonball. A totally underrated and innovative group who deserve greater recognition for their contributions to the music, but especially Jon Hendricks.

Written by Buck Clayton, Jon Hendricks, and Dave Lambert
Performed by Lambert, Hendricks and Ross with the Count Basie Orchestra
unknown program, circa 1959

Dexter Gordon Blows…

7 October 2014 — Mosaic Records

Dexter Gordon: Lady Bird

This is an unbelievable performance by Dexter Gordon, probably from Belgium in 1964. His solo is explosive and unendingly creative. These were the early years of his European residency and he was in the midst of making one classic Blue Note album after another. It looks like a very young George Gruntz and Daniel Humair on piano and drums respectively.

-Michael Cuscuna  Continue reading

Offering: Legendary John Coltrane Concert Recording

1 Octber 2014 — Mosaic Records

Here’s a documentary on the new release “Offering – John Coltrane Live At Temple University” from November 11, 1966. The original Temple University radio tapes of the concert were found and used. I remember this concert well because I did not attend. I’d just moved to Philly to go to college and I cannot for the life of me remember why I couldn’t go that night. I hadn’t seen Coltrane for 10 months at the point and would have been intensely curious about what he was up to. The next day, I bumped into my friend Steve Knoblauch, who lived in the next dormitory, and asked him how it was. He said, “Great and I sat in!!” It took him a year to convince me that he wasn’t full of it. Now he has the proof.

-Michael Cuscuna

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Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers on Club 625: 1965

1 March 2014 — Youtube

WBLAKA24At last, the full half-hour show of Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers on Club 625 in London in 1965 is available for viewing. What made this edition of the Jazz Messengers so special is that it featured tenor saxophonist John Gilmore, during his one year away from Sun Ra’s Solar Arkestra. It was anchored by returning genius Lee Morgan and introduced pianist John Hicks and bassist Victor Sproles. – Michael Cuscuna

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Andrew Hill: ‘East 19th Street’

1 July 2014 — Jazz on the Tube

Andrew Hill: 30 June 1931 – 20 April 2007

One of my favourite artists. His compositions are labyrinthine, rhythmically and harmonically complex tunes that exhibit a sophistication born of his mastery. As a pianist, Hill had a flowing melodicism and an elastic sense of time. Like his composing, Hill’s playing had an ever-present air of spontaneity and was almost completely devoid of cliché. More Andrew Hill on Youtube… Continue reading