sun 21/04/2019

London Jazz Festival

Cassandra Wilson/Lionel Loueke, Royal Festival Hall

“I’m sorry I’m late,” said Cassandra Wilson to a half empty Royal Festival Hall, after a sulky rendition of “Don’t Explain”, the opening track from her Billie Holiday tribute album, Coming Forth By Day. It was an hour and fifteen minutes since the...

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Maria Schneider Orchestra, Cadogan Hall

Eloquent, transfixing, profoundly moving. Last night, in the beautiful setting of the Cadogan Hall, the Maria Schneider Orchestra gave one of those landmark performances that people will remember for years to come. We heard seven of the eight tracks...

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10 Questions for Musician Maria Schneider

Maria Schneider is one of the luminaries of contemporary jazz. The composer, arranger and bandleader, together with her 18-piece orchestra, first came to prominence in 1994 with the release of their debut recording, Evanescence. Blazing...

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A Day in the Life of Andy Warhol, BBC Four

It was suggested more than once during this adventure in Warhol-world that Andy Warhol himself was the artist’s greatest achievement. It’s a neat sentiment if not an original one, and while it may well be true, it didn’t bode well for a documentary...

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theartsdesk at Love Supreme: Van Morrison & Dianne Reeves

Love Supreme, now in its third year, feels like the best of both worlds. Set in the spectacularly rolling scenery of Glynde Place, outside Lewes, it’s only a champagne cork’s flight from Glyndebourne opera house, and if you’re not camping you can...

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Robert Mitchell's 'Invocation', Queen Elizabeth Hall

Imaginatively constructed and endlessly surprising, this world premiere of the complete version of pianist Robert Mitchell's choral work Invocation elicited one of the most moving performances I had the pleasure of hearing at this year's EFG London...

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Celebrating 75 years of Blue Note, Royal Festival Hall

Paying homage to the legendary imprint that brought us 'The Finest In Jazz Since 1939', this concert on the penultimate evening of the EFG London Jazz Festival really did have everything, including the unlikely sight of master pianist Robert Glasper...

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Snarky Puppy, The Roundhouse

It's day five of the EFG London Jazz Festival, and Snarky Puppy's show at the Roundhouse has sold out weeks in advance. And, as the crowd sings the gorgeous main theme of “Thing of Gold” in perfect unison, one of the reasons for the band's huge...

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Essentially Ellington, Queen Elizabeth Hall

Now in its eighteenth year, the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra (SNJO) demonstrated last night why it's considered one of Europe’s finest big bands. Brilliantly directed by tenor sax player Tommy Smith and featuring the great Brian Kellock on piano...

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John Etheridge & Philip Catherine/Igor Gehenot Trio, The Vortex, Dalston

Distinguished jazz guitarists Philip Catherine and John Etheridge made (a little bit of) history at The Vortex last night, playing together for the first time. In a perfect balance of youth and experience, the evening also saw the launch of a debut...

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Ian Shaw, The Elgar Room, RAH

Even Joni Mitchell wasn’t spared an affectionate ribbing, as jazz singer Ian Shaw continued his Joni at 70 Tour with a combination of sincerity and satire, both red-raw, in the Elgar Room last night. Stripping pretensions compulsively, Shaw gave an...

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Brad Mehldau and Mark Guiliana, Barbican

For someone who has built a reputation for limpid, introspective piano playing, last night was a new adventure both for Brad Mehldau and his (mainly) supportive audience. He has covered fellow introvert Nick Drake’s songs, and he is a master of...

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