When first considering the best music of this year, I posed the question to the facebook community. After all the music I had heard over the year, it was surprising how much of it I hadnâ€™t, and how much of that shows up as favorites to those who have heard it.
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.
Open the doors and they will come. Eastman Theater was near to capacity on Sunday, for a celebration a long time in coming. After producing 2,499 shows, John Nugent took the stage himself for his 2,500.
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»¿
In reviewing the music of 2009, I was struck by how good it actually was. My first thought was that no one recording knocked me out as the run away best of the year, but there were so many exceptional ones, it was hard to pick just ten.