Previews and Reviews

Previews and Reviews

Dr. Lonnie Smith with Mel Brown and Dan Faehnle at Jimmy Mak’s November 11, 2006

Review Just because you have muscle doesn’t mean you have to show it off, Dr. Lonnie Smith writes on his website. That restraint may be the key to Smith’s longevity and current star status: not the sheer power of his Hammond B-3 organ, one of the world’s mightiest instruments, but the dynamic contrasts of his […]

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Previews and Reviews

The Lions of Batucada Tenth Anniversary Show August, 2006

It wasn’t a performance to sit back and watch. With a roar of percussive power, the Lions of Batucada, Portland’s Afro-Brazilian style drum and dance ensemble, celebrated its tenth anniversary with two Saturday shows at the Wonder Ballroom. The group’s 32-member bateria, or drum section, propelled its 11 costumed dancers into perpetual motion, and the […]

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Previews and Reviews

Jessica Williams in April, 2000

Preview Listening to pianist Jessica Williams is a like riding a musical roller-coaster. We plunge into cascades of fluid ornamentation, soar above them on majestic leaps, then fall, breathe and dash headlong again into an agile stream shaped sleekly into a welcoming groove. From quiet to roaring, double time to achingly slow rubato, Williams always […]

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Previews and Reviews

Third Angle New Music Ensemble

Preview Riffs World Premieres by Three Portland Jazz Artists To segregate music is as ridiculous as racial segregation, says saxophonist and composer Rob Scheps about the division between classical music and jazz. There should be no ghettoization, there should be mutual respect. For composer and pianist Gordon Lee, breaking down those barriers goes beyond personal […]

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Previews and Reviews

Herbie Hancock and Wayne Shorter at the Elsinore Theater in Salem November, 2000

Review A mutually rewarding relationship between performer and audience depends on the delicate balance between art and entertainment. Artists must have the freedom to innovate, to challenge themselves and their audience in order to create fresh, vital work. But with that freedom comes the responsibility to bring audiences along with them, to make their new […]

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Previews and Reviews

Alan Jones and the Leroy Vinnegar Suite October 2001

Preview At first, it was personal for Alan Jones. His life and work had been so touched by Leroy Vinnegar, that he set out to make an album celebrating the late, legendary jazz bassist. “But as I was writing it, and people heard about the project,” recalls Jones, 38, a Portland-based drummer and composer, “everyone […]

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Previews and Reviews

Les McCann March, 2005

Preview “The thing about this business,” says Les McCann, “is it’s a reality show, and we’re live when you get it.” Singer and pianist McCann, who will play tonight and Saturday at The Blue Monk, is recalling his 1983 performance at the Mt. Hood Festival of Jazz, where a stolen car slammed into a transformer, […]

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Previews and Reviews

Red Holloway at DePriest Family Jazz Concert August, 2005

Preview   “We want this to be educational,” says drummer and bandleader Akbar DePriest about the Family Jazz Concerts he’s been leading in Portland since 1991. “We want to get the youngsters in and expose them to the music.” With an increase to three concerts a year and a bump in the age for free […]

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Previews and Reviews

Compay Segundo and Ladysmith Black Mambazo

Review   At the end, the audience was chanting his name in time with his most famous song. Compay, Compay, they called, as Cuban guitarist and singer Francisco Repilado, better known as Compay Segundo, shuffled in a dance step and another musician called out a list of his accomplishments. The song, Chan Chan, from the […]

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Previews and Reviews

Tango Explosion! — Fear No Music and Tango Pacifico with Alex Krebs

Review Like all great musical traditions of the Americas, the scope of tango is broad, its history rich. A sample of that tradition from a contemporary electro-acoustic tango to the early twentieth century’s Gallo Ciego — was on vivid display when the innovative chamber ensemble Fear No Music joined with Tango Pacifico for a concert […]

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