Conrad Herwig and The Latin Side All-Stars at The Django brought forth classic, expressive jazz. Herwig enriched it with the syncopation, excitement, and complexity of Latin rhythm, the pathos of Coltrane, and a dash of the rhythmic drive of Bebop. After the band played the head, solos didn’t just follow the tune’s melody, a technique common with jazz players. Solos inhabited the structure of bar lines, chords, and powerful rhythms in personal contexts. The complex relationships between improvised melodies, structures, and rhythm resulted in rich, abstract, and contextual meanings for listeners. It was fantastic!
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Tonight at Smoke Jazz Club featuring vocalist Mary Stallings with Emmet Cohen – piano, Peter Washington – bass, and Joe Farnsworth – drums, was a true jazz event with ample chance to hear each artist solo and improvise. Unified interactions between Stallings, piano, bass, and drums were superbly executed and characterized by focused listening, rhythmic unity, improvisational interchanges, refinement, and a collective sense of musical accord. Along with the vocal sophistication and inspiration of Stallings’s lead, the instrumental trio created a vibrant and harmonious musical tapestry showcasing the exquisite refinement of the music and their respective profound artistry. It was a great night of jazz!
The incredibly personable Baker, currently living in New York City, was accompanied by an all-star band from the local jazz scene, including Grammy-nominated vocalist Nicole Zuraitis, 3rd generation jazz musician trumpeter and vocalist Benny Benack III, guitarist Max Light, Kevin Hailey on double bass and Curtis Nowosad on the drums.
Lovers of live jazz didn’t have to drive to a New York City venue last week, thanks to the Mayo Performing Arts Center (MPAC) hosting the world-renown Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra (JLCO) with Wynton Marsalis.
Trombonist/composer Conrad Herwig and the Latin side all-stars ascended the stage to deliver their first musical offering. Splendid charts, extended improvisation, artistic interaction, virtuoso performances, a tight horn section, and a solid rhythm section immediately lit the room. A powerhouse of Latin rhythmic fire by drummer Robby Ameen and percussionist Mauricio Herrera on congas ignited an astounding sojourn.