THE JAZZ CHILL CORNER George Wein to Receive Honorary Doctorate from Boston University on Sunday‏ | Musique Non Stop


Thursday, May 14, 2015

THE JAZZ CHILL CORNER George Wein to Receive Honorary Doctorate from Boston University on Sunday‏

THE JAZZ CHILL CORNER George Wein to Receive Honorary Doctorate from Boston University on Sunday‏


  1. George Wein to Receive Honorary Doctorate from Boston University on Sunday‏
Posted: 13 May 2015 01:04 PM PDT
George Wein, music impresario, NEA Jazz Master and Grammy Award winner, will receive an Honorary Doctorate at Boston University's (BU) 142nd Commencement on Sunday, May 17. The founder of the Newport Jazz Festival® (1954), Newport Folk Festival® (1959), New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival™ (1970) and countless other events around the world, Wein forever changed how music is presented and, at 89, continues to build new audiences for emerging and established artists at the iconic Rhode Island events. 

Journalist and TV personality Meredith Viera will deliver Boston University's Commencement  Address and Cornell William Brooks, president of the NAACP, will deliver the Baccalaureate Address. Both will receive honorary degrees along with Wein and Allen and Kelli Questrom, entrepreneurs, philanthropists and University benefactors. The graduation ceremony, including the commencement address and awarding of honorary degrees, can be watched via live webcast at www.bu.edu or listened to on Boston radio station WBUR 90.9FM/www.wbur.org at 1:00 pm on Sunday. 

Wein enrolled in premed courses at BU to please his father, Barnet Wein, who graduated from the university with a medical degree in 1920. However, the younger Wein, whose heart was in jazz and performing, soon realized that it was "a mistake" and graduated in 1950 with a degree in history.  Shortly after graduation, he opened a jazz club, Storyville, in Boston's Copley Square Hotel. Already an accomplished pianist, Wein performed in his club, and quickly turned it into a music Mecca for some of the world's greatest musicians.

George Wein's years at BU ended up playing a major role in his life in music.

Joel Brown wrote in today's edition of BU Today (www.bu.edu/today/2015/george-wein-honorary-degree-bu):

Jazz fan Donald Born, a College of Arts & Sciences professor of English, was a Storyville regular, and although Wein hadn't taken a course with him, they became great friends. Wein's career as a music-festival organizer had its origins at the club one night in 1953, when Born brought wealthy Newport socialite Elaine Lorillard there. Lorillard, who had been auditing one of Born's classes, was looking for ways to liven up Newport's boring summers with some jazz. Born thought Wein might be able to help. The rest is music history.

Wein also told Brown:

"I had a course in the theory of aesthetics that has helped me all my life," he says. "It just caused me to think about what the standards are for beauty and for love, on a very aesthetic level, and as I've traveled around the world, looking at museums, looking at architecture, that course gave me more enjoyment of life."

In addition to his life in jazz and folk music, Wein has a long history of involvement with philanthropy and the arts, including the establishment of the Joyce and George Wein Chair of African American Studies at Boston University, the Alexander Family Endowed Scholarship Fund at Simmons College and an annual artist prize given through the Studio Museum in Harlem in honor of his late wife, Joyce Alexander Wein.

George Wein founded the Newport Festivals Foundation™ in 2010 to enhance and continue the legacies of the famed Newport Jazz Festival and Newport Folk Festival. Under the auspices of the Foundation, the Festivals present performers who respect and honor jazz and folk music traditions, and at the same time reflect the changes in today's musical trends. Through the establishment of partnerships with local high schools, colleges/universities and community organizations, the Foundation offers programs to educate young people about jazz and folk music as presented at the annual festivals.

This year's Newport Folk Festival (www.newportfolk.org) is set for July 24-26 and the Newport Jazz Festival (www.newportjazzfest.org) takes place the following weekend, July 31-August 2.  The Foundation also will present a free Family Concert at Fort Adams State Park on July 29.  

Photo credit: Ayano Hisa

Posted: 13 May 2015 06:47 AM PDT

The cultured piano style of Kenny Barron has graced many albums in the last half century. He is an easy swinger, deeply admired for his nonpareil musicianship and innate sensitivity to the needs of his musical companions of the moment. Born in 1943 he was gigging with Philly Joe Jones at sixteen and soon playing in a band with his tenor saxophonist brother Bill. In 1962 he was hired by Dizzy Gillespie and the five year stint he had with Dizzy established him firmly on the jazz scene throughout the world. This celebration of Kenny's fifty years on that scene is marked by this program of highlights from his Candid recordings in a variety of settings. Amongst his companions are vibes star Steve Hobbs, saxophonists Bud Shank, Gary Bartz, Donald Harrison, Paquito d'Rivera and Ricky Ford as well as trumpeters Claudio Roditi, Mark Morganelli and others. Together with several of Kenny's fine original compositions, the piano duets with Barry Harris and John Hicks on show here add spice to this truly tasty offering. ~ Amazon


A working unit since 2002, The Rodriguez Brothers - trumpeter Michael Rodriguez (Reverence - CRC 1356) and pianist Robert Rodriguez - present their kinetic, masterfully rendered concept of 'Jazz Latin, 'incorporating traditional and modern Afro-Cuban, Brazilian, bolero and hardcore jazz flavors. The brothers, each in their mid-thirties, are virtuoso storytellers on their respective instruments, as are their generational peer group bandmates Carlos Henriquez (the bassist with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra since the early '00s after several years with Gonzalo Rubalcaba), Cuban traps drummer Ludwig Afonso, and the eminent Columbian-born percussionist Samuel Torres. ~ Amazon


Time Flies . . . is the twelfth release by Pearl Django in a little over 20 years of performing. For the period of the past four CDs the group has moved away for Django style covers and has exploited the composing skills of the band members. On this CD you will find nine PD originals and a beautiful cover version of Black Orpheus by Luiz Bonfa. While there is still strong evidence o for the influence of Django Reinhardt, with titles, Django Bop, Djangolatry and Something Borrowed, there are a few compositions which, push the boundaries of what may be considered Gypsy jazz or Hot Club Swing. The compositions are quite good, quite good indeed. ~ Amazon

Posted: 13 May 2015 06:41 AM PDT

From his many Criss Cross dates as a leader to his extraordinary sideman work with Chris Potter, the late Michael Brecker and many more, Adam Rogers continues to blaze a path as one of jazz's most compelling guitarists. His longtime associate David Binney, alto saxophone great and an influential composer and producer, has also distinguished himself with numerous innovative sessions for Criss Cross and others. On R & B, Rogers and Binney unite to co-lead a lean and hard-swinging quartet with bassist Reuben Rogers (no relation) and drummer Gerald Cleaver. In a departure from their usual focus on original material, Rogers and Binney aim straight for bebop, ballads and classics by Thelonious Monk, Freddie Hubbard and Wayne Shorter, among others. ~ Amazon 


Gibbs' relationship with the NDR Bigband stretches back for 40 years and IN MY VIEW represents a 'typical' pairing of these two huge talents, with the track list evenly divided between Gibbs originals and wildly creative recastings of other composer's works.Since his debut release in 1970, and throughout a number of significant releases under his name and collaborations with major artists such as Joni Mitchell, Peter Gabriel, Jaco Pastorious and John McLaughlin, Gibbs has honed a subtle and highly personal approach to arranging that often avoids layering sections.Favoring sinuous lines and lapidary textures, his pieces often draw a listener in with a shapely melodic phrase before revealing unexpected implications with a rhythmic motif or counter melody. ~ Amazon


Italian born Marco Marconi is just simply one of the most amazing pianists in Europe. Classically trained he has developed into a sensational jazz pianist and has appeared at festivals ranging from Umbria to Cheltenham. This album was recorded by ECM stalwart Stfano Amerio at the Artesuono Studio in Italy. The trio features bassist Andrea di Biase and the drummer, well known to UK audiences, Enzo Zirilli. Includes: Too High Don't Try, Nordik, I Mean You, U.K. Journey, Blizzard, Take Five, Photos In Regent's Park,'sunside, I Got It Bad, Pecan Girl, Better With You, and Maple Leaf Rag. ~ Amazon

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