Bobby McFerrin: Don’t worry, just sing

Vocalist extraordinaire Bobby McFerrin, composer-conductor Roger Treece and 40 voices including the Danish "rhythm choir" Vocal Line performed pieces from the album VOCAbuLarieS at Jazz at Lincoln Center Friday and Saturday night, establishing a high standard for contemporary vernacular choral music and breaking down the 4th wall between artists and audiences. It was a deeply satisfying, beautiful and joyous show. … [Read more...]

jazz in italy

In Italy jazz is an object of serious study and practice, aspiration and envy, emulation and celebration, creativity and commercial draw. So I found last week at the Siena Jazz Summer Workshop and Tuscia in Jazz fest in Soriano nel Cimino. At both sites there were top-notch players of several generations from the US teaching young acolytes, offering life lessons a step or two beyond the fundamental mastery of instruments. Specially convened ensembles mixing players of diverse experience from multiple countries caught the attentions of … [Read more...]

Piano love, NYC edition

Under-sung, mid-career jazz pianists of innovative distinction in New York City -- the topic of my new column in City Arts - New York's Review of Culture -- considerations prompted by David Hajdu's NYT magazine feature on Fred Hersch. Who'd I leave out? … [Read more...]