by Giovanni Russonello
The title, A Speck in Time: Is it a consideration of our cosmic smallness? An argument about how the jazz tradition rolls along, each innovation just a grain of sand? Just some cryptic statement about the fleeting power of rhythm?
All would work fine for the D.C.-area pianist Bobby Jasinski’s solid debut album, which spotlights 11 lilting original compositions and an expert trio. Jasinksi has a playful rapport with the bassist Kris Funn and the drummer Lydia Lewis; if A Speck in Time never puts the energy level in overdrive, then feeling this band toy with a gentle, urbane formula that works is reward enough.
Selected as one of five discs on “CapitalBop’s Best Albums of 2012: Honorable Mention.” Click to see the full list.
With a steady touch and versatility with groove, Jasinski pulls together a host of influences: Herbie Hancock’s warm angularity; the pelting of Chick Corea; dreamlike, trebly echo à la Robert Glasper. In some of his best moments, there’s a deep, washing flow of rhythm that comes from Ahmad Jamal. His right hand, mostly devoted to making vamps fall onward and over themselves, lives in the high register – full fists of bright harmony. Continue reading
Posted in Album reviews
Tagged Ahmad Jamal, Bobby Jasinski, Chick Corea, DC, DC jazz, Herbie Hancock, jazz, Kris Funn, Lydia Lewis, Robert Glasper, Washington
Kenneth Whalum brings his feverish saxophone sound to D.C. this weekend. Courtesy web.me.com/kennethwhalum
by Giovanni Russonello
Never judge a book by its lack of coverage. If you’ve never heard of Kenneth Whalum III, the young firebrand whose unbridled saxophone will be visited upon us this Friday and Saturday at Bohemian Caverns, you’ve been missing out. Here’s your chance to get in on the action. Then on Sunday, there are three worthy shows, all starting at 7 p.m.: CapitalBop’s D.C. Jazz Loft, featuring a wide swath of talent; Herbie Hancock at the Kennedy Center; and the Rodney Richardson Trio with gifted vocalist Lena Seikaly. Find details on these performances and many more in this week’s edition of “Weekend in Jazz,” a listing of every D.C. jazz show on our radar. Our favorites have a label, and as always, you can read CapitalBop’s full listings directly at our D.C. jazz calendar, if you’d rather. Happy hunting!
FRIDAY, MARCH 9
- Kenneth Whalum III, Bohemian Caverns, 8:30 & 10:30 p.m.
- Donvonte McCoy, 18th Street Lounge, 10:30 p.m.
Clynt Hyson, Westminster Presbyterian Church, 6 p.m. | At this week’s installation of Jazz Night, soulful vocalist Clynt Hyson fronts a band featuring Lyle Link on saxophone, Williams Knowles on piano, Mark Saltman on bass and Ernest “EC3″ Coleman on drums. $5 cover for adults, no cover for attendees under 16, no minimum. View event on calendar | Westminster Presbyterian Church website
Click for a hi-res version of the flyer
by Giovanni Russonello
This Saturday, a duo of local hip-hop heads presents a celebration of the nexus between boom-bap and bebop. They couldn’t have picked a better time to do it.
In the jazz world, folks are finally starting to recognize the influence of hip hop on jazz. It took a while for the jazz cognoscenti to get on board (we’re more than 15 years past the end of hip hop’s Golden Age), but finally there seems to be a consensus forming around the idea that rap music exerts at least as great an influence on modern jazz as, say, Bach.
But what’s been around for much longer is jazz-inflected hip hop. The music that grew up in the Bronx, with DJs cutting and splicing old soul records at block parties and dance halls, quickly moved across the country and incorporated other genres. Check out Ahmad Jamal on Nas’ “The World Is Yours,” or Lucky Thompson on “Jazz (We’ve Got)” by A Tribe Called Quest, or Herbie Hancock on Eric B. and Rakim’s “Untouchables.” You get the point.
Well, this weekend you’ll have the opportunity to hear a mixtape featuring the music of one of rap’s most influential groups, re-imagined entirely with jazz samples. The group is Wu-Tang Clan, and the freshly minted reworking is called SHAOLIN JAZZ – The 37th Chamber, a play on the band’s 1994 debut, Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers). The mixtape release party is at 9 p.m. on Saturday at Palace 5ive, a skateboard and sneaker boutique in Shaw. And there will be free Heineken. Yes indeedy. Continue reading
Posted in News
Tagged A Tribe Called Quest, Ahmad Jamal, boom bap, DC, Eric B. & Rakim, Herbie Hancock, hip-hop, jazz, jazz rap, Nas, Washington, Wu Tang Clan