Larry Harlow’s “A Salsa Suite” success

"La Raza Latina," composer-pianist Larry Harlow's hour-plus Latin big band extravaganza, drew thousands to Lincoln Center Out-of-Doors' penultimate concert last week, proving that driving, multi-layered live music has staying power decades after its creation. "A Salsa Suite" featured vocalists Ruben Blades and Adonis Puentes, choreographed couples and a 40 piece band with strings and extraordinary soloists on trumpets, congas, flute, saxes and violins. Harlow conducted the music he'd recorded in 1978 but never performed … [Read more...]

In lieu of JVC Jazz festivals

Did you miss the "festivity" of June jazz concerts in major Manhattan venues -- or did you find ways of coping without them? There's so much fine music -- jazz and beyond -- in nearby festive settings, many of them out-of-doors, that the absence of a 38-year-old institution doesn't seem to have made much stir. Perhaps you didn't even notice? Here's my most recent City Arts - NYC report on how George Wein responded to his perennial presence in New York City's jazz summer being suspended, upcoming classic jazz alternatives in Kent, CT, Katonah NY … [Read more...]

Jazz fests of August

Free jazz fests across the U.S. mark summer's glorious end. Manhattan's Charlie Parker festival (held Saturday Aug. 23 and Sunday 24 in Marcus Garvey park uptown and Tompkins Square Park downtown), the Chicago Jazz Festival (which formally starts Thursday Aug 28 with Sonny Rollins at downtown Grant Park's Petrillo bandshell) and the Detroit International Jazz Festival (celebrating Detroit-Philadelphia music connections, Aug 29 - Sept. 1 on multiple stages along the river at Hart Plaza and down the street at Campus Martius Park) and smaller … [Read more...]