Dave Brubeck Celebrates 50th Anniversary of Time Out at The Blue Note in NYC

It’s been 50 years since Dave Brubeck released Time Out for Columbia Records. Now he intends to celebrate that milestone with three evening performances at The Blue Note in New York City, from Friday, November 27 to Sunday, November 29. Performing with Brubeck will be his long-time band featuring Bobby Militello on saxophones, clarinet and flute; Michael Moore on bass, and Randy Jones on drums.
A week later, on December 6, 2009, on his 89th birthday, Brubeck will be honoured at the Kennedy Centre as part of that institution’s prestigious Honours Gala.

Sonny Rollins Gives Concert for Hudson River Preservation

Tenor saxophone great Sonny Rollins and his band will take the stage this month to benefit the non-profit, Clearwater environmental organization which, over the course of 40 years, has helped bring health and beauty back to the Hudson River. The concert will be held at the Tarrytown Music Hall on Dec. 6 at 2 p.m., and is presented by Jazz Forum Arts.
The Grammy-winning jazz saxophonist, who turned 79 in September and still keeps up an active tour schedule, is a lifelong New Yorker and has resided in an old farmhouse in Columbia County, N. Y. since 1972. The area is within sight of the Hudson River, which is the main focus of Hudson River Sloop Clearwater Inc.

Manfred Eicher in Conversation with Gary Giddins: Nov. 19 at CUNY

On Thursday, Nov. 19, the Graduate Centre at the City University of New York (CUNY) will present a rare conversation with Manfred Eicher, the ECM Records founder and producer whose label has released some of the most important jazz, experimental, world and contemporary classical recordings of the last 40 years. Interviewing Eicher will be the award-winning critic and author Gary Giddins.
This is reportedly only the second time the label head has given a live interview with an audience in the U.S., and Giddins plans to lead a comprehensive chat covering Eicher's lengthy career. “We’re going to talk about the whole range, how he got started and how he continues when everybody else does not,” said Giddins, who also marvelled at Eicher’s reputation for overseeing the entire record-making process: “Apparently he’s the most hands-on guy in the [business].”
The CUNY event, part of the Jazz Legends & Legacies series, promises to be an engaging dialogue with the architect of one of jazz’s most enduring brands. "It's a pretty big deal," said Giddins. "People are curious about him."

Pat Metheny Recording with Musical Robots

As one of the most popular, creative and prolific jazz musicians of his generation, Pat Metheny has never rested on his laurels. He’s tasted incredible commercial success with his group, yet also experimented with all sorts of creative explorations – from Song X with Ornette Coleman to the aptly titled Zero Tolerance for Silence. And, over the course of his 30+ years as a recording artist and performer, Metheny has played with a wide range of his peers and mentors. And now, inspired both by his own explorations with technology and the player-piano of his childhood, he’s about to play with some machines.

Miles Davis In Your Ears

Miles Davis died in 1991, but left behind a legacy as one of the most influential musicians of the 20th Century. Since his death, the jazz world has seen all sorts of reissues and special products dedicated to that legacy. Given what great ears he had, it should be no surprise that among the products being manufactured in his name is a set of Miles Davis Tribute Headphones, produced by Monster Cable. The headphones are described as high performance, much like their inspiration. The headphones feature the iconic image of Miles, taken by the late David Gahr and most associated with the Jack Johnson recording for Columbia.
Created in conjunction with Miles Davis Properties, the headphones are being offered in individually numbered limited editions. And, according to a press release sent to JT, purchasers of the Miles Davis Tribute headphones will also be able to enjoy, free of charge, the official 50th Anniversary boxed set of the artist’s seminal album Kind of Blue, featuring two music CDs, a DVD and a 24-page booklet.

Legacy of Maynard Ferguson Celebrated in New Book

Print is most assuredly not dead; nor is oral history. If anything, the difficulties faced by bookstores have created a DIY submarket, in which projects heretofore viewed as commercial risks become unabashed labours of love, published by print-upon-demand or eBook or no-frills self-publishing. Case in point: the publishing of Maynard!, a collection of interviews about the colourful bandleader and trumpeter Maynard Ferguson, compiled and written by long-time jazz record producer Ralph Jungheim. The book really does have a no-frills look and feel to it, but the stories and testimony are hard to resist, whether you’re a fan of the pyrotechnic brassman or not.

Barbra Streisand to Perform at Village Vanguard Sept. 26

Not since Lorraine Gordon gave Julia Roberts the boot has the Village Vanguard hosted such a mega-celeb: On Saturday, Sept. 26, Barbra Streisand will appear at the famed Greenwich Village haunt to give an exclusive performance for contest winners. According to her official site, this free show marks Streisand’s first club appearance since 1961, when she visited the Vanguard to open for Miles Davis.
The gig coincides with Streisand’s new jazz- and cabaret-centrejd album, entitled Love Is the Answer and scheduled for release on Sept. 29. The disc features Streisand in collaboration with the Diana Krall quartet and Johnny Mandel. (Pre-ordering the disc or LP is one of four ways to enter to win tickets to the show. For all the options, visit barbrastreisand.com.)
Could this be the beginning of a trend? Bette Midler at the Blue Note perhaps? Or maybe Liza at Jazz Standard?

Herbie Hancock Named L.A. Philharmonic's Next Creative Chair of Jazz

Add another line to his resume, right underneath “Grammy Award for Album of the Year.”
Herbie Hancock has been named the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s next creative chair of jazz, and will inherit the two-year residency from bassist Christian McBride next year. Always interested in making the music more culturally and commercially accessible, Hancock told Associated Press: “I’m interested in [the] cross-pollination of music of various cultures. … And I would like to see more interaction between visuals and music. Ballet or some sort of pop-oriented dance interacting with jazz, visuals made with computer graphics or film segments with jazz, or a mixture of jazz and other genres.”

New England Conservatory Celebrates 40th Anniversary of Jazz Studies

The New England Conservatory celebrates the 40th anniversary of its first-in-the-nation Jazz Studies programme during the 2009-10 academic year. Spotlighting some of NEC’s alumni, faculty and students, the festivities will be centred on a week each of ticketed and free concerts in Boston and New York City, as well as clinics and community events complementing the concerts. The Boston centrepiece will be a performance by the Wayne Shorter Quartet with the NEC’s Philharmonia on October 24, in NEC’s Jordan Hall.
Shorter and his quartet will play the first set and then join forces with the NEC Philharmonia orchestra and Hugh Wolff, the Stanford and Norma Jean Calderwood Director of Orchestras. Shorter is writing brand new pieces especially for this collaboration with the orchestra.

Two Bill Frisell DVDs Out This Fall

Two new DVDs featuring music by guitarist Bill Frisell will be released on September 1. Songline/Tone Field Productions will simultaneously release three Buster Keaton films on DVD—Go West, One Week and High Sign—which feature original music by the Grammy-winning Frisell. The second DVD, Solos: The Jazz Sessions (Original Spin Media), captures an on-location solo recording session filmed at the Berkeley Church in Toronto, Canada by director Daniel Berman.