Born in Paris, raised in the rich landscapes where Impressionists first painted, Stephane Wrembel blends many influences with his Django Reinhardt guitar stylings. The greatest influence seems to be his own dedication to the music.
The Meters meet Fela? Ethiopian soul? Staten Island funk? Words fall short when you try to describe The Budos Band, and as great as they sound on record, it's the kind of stuff that begs to be heard live.
Early on in his first performance at Harro East, Saturday in the Rochester Jazz Festival, multi-instrumentalist Lucky Peterson took to the keys, alternating between Hammond B-3, the Yamaha, vocal accents, actual vocals, and the art of facial expression. Sometimes doing a combination of them at the same time. A most captivating performance.
Mark Murphy took the stage at the Harro East Ballroom in a broad shouldered black suit, blazing red shirt and tie, and the 2011 Rochester International Jazz Fest officially began. It encapsulated the festival experience. Little voyages into cultures and musical neighborhoods as the unfamiliar becomes revealed. Scatting the forgotten word.ï»¿
Hooray for Google! By placing a virtual guitar at the fingertips of computer users, the powerful search engine inspired millions (billions?) of people to make music. Look below for three creative uploads from the two-day global music fest. If you miss it, the Google Guitar has a permanent home here. What can you play?
Bill Frisell first caught my attention when he included compositions by Aaron Copland, Bob Dylan, Muddy Waters, Sonny Rollins, John Philip Sousa, Stephen Foster and Madonna on his 1992 album Have A Little Faith. It doesn't seem like a mix like that could hang together.
In general, I think the people at NPR do a great job. From the days when I listened to Ray Suarez host Talk of the Nation every day, I recognized a standard of actually listening to what the guests say and responding appropriately.
In preparation for my show Mystery Train, I often head to the library and check out a couple dozen CDs at a time. Some I know, some I've heard of, some just have interesting covers. I spend an afternoon wading through, finger poised in case a track doesn't grab me.