Jazz in DC, Saturday 2/9 and Sunday 2/10

12 Feb

Venturing out of New York City helps broaden one’s take on improvised music (or jazz) since after all, jazz is American, and America is enormous. Listening to jazz musicians – whether local or not – in other cities has its own unique flavor.

On Saturday night, in D.C., Jason Moran performed at the Kennedy Center, while drummer Ralph Peterson (http://jazztimes.com/articles/54706-the-duality-perspective-ralph-peterson), pianist Allyn Johnson, bassist Kris Funn (who performs with Christian Scott), trumpeter Josh Evans, tenor saxophonist Lyle Link and alto saxophonist Antonio Parker performed at Bohemian Caverns (http://www.bohemiancaverns.com/index.cfm), a really wonderful place to go and listen to jazz.


Peterson, the only drummer Art Blakey ever hired, reminded its audience that musicians need to keep appearing rather than disappearing. He also explained, with a more humorous tone, that when one sees him play, one can imagine how he fights (Peterson practices martial arts). Peterson teaches at the Berklee Jazz School.

The band played some most captivating pieces – it was difficult not to be enthralled by the complicity between the musicians, which created a powerful musical intelligence.

And the following day (on Sunday night), on the second floor of the French restaurant “Chez Billy,” CapitalBop (http://capitalbop.com) hosted d.c. jazz loft, its monthly jam session (every second Sunday of the month), from 7pm until about 11.30pm. The last set of d.c. jazz loft featured Federico Pena on piano, Kris Funn on bass and Quincy Phillips on drums, and the music was lovely. Several times the tunes the trio played sounded so good that they reminded me of originals. But after all good musicians borrow and brilliant musicians steal.


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