Friday, June 22, 2007
So I pretty much always, these last few years, end up attending at least one jazz fest event per annum, basically due to the fact that several people I know from the jazz boards come into town for the Vision Fest and I enjoy hanging out with them. Though the vast majority of what tends to be presented there falls into a category I'll gently describe as "boring" (to me), and often worse, occasionally some jewels emerge that, of course, I wouldn't have encountered otherwise. Last year there were two (Bill Dixon/George Lewis & Joe Morris/Barre Phillips). Several years ago I saw a stunning duo performance by Fred Anderson and Harrison Bankhead. Even if I'm not very sanguine on the art form as such these days, it remained a joy to experience two musicians who did it so well, not incidentally laying waste to most everything else on the program, actually playing "free" jazz.
I'll be heading back tonight and tomorrow. This evening the above duo augmented by Hamid Drake will be playing, so I have some hopes for a good set. Otherwise a bunch of things that seem, on the face of it, eminently missable: 50 violins in tribute to Leroy Jenkins, Mat Shipp solo (potential, but not holding my breath), Roy Campbell's "Ahkenaten [sic] Suite" (avoidable on title grounds alone) and *shudder* a Patricia Nicholson dance/art project which should serve as a perfect time to run over to Katz' for a nosh. Another Jenkins homage with Myra Melford and Mark Taylor closes things out.
Tomorrow, Vyacheslav Ganelin plays with a trio which could be interesting for historical reasons. Maybe. Eddie Gale & Prince Lasha are with a larger group; again, historically curious, although Ms. Nicholson is threatening to dance during the set....a Rob Brown Quartet and a Whit Dickey trio will likely do nothing for me and I'll be certain to exit before the finale, Amiri Baraka's Blue Ark (although, who knows?, that could turn out to be the highlight....)
We shall see.