Randy Weston African Rhythms Sextet at Dizzy's Club "Coca-Cola"
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Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola
Randy Weston African Rhythms Sextet
Randy Weston, Piano
Lewis Nash, Special Guest, Drums
TK Blue, Alto Sax and Flute
Robert Trowers, Trombone
Alex Blake, Bass
Neil Clarke, Drums and Percussion
Frederick P. Rose Hall
Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola
Broadway at 60th Street
Todd Barkan, Programming Director
Scott Thompson, Press
Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
January 28, 2011
I was lucky to catch the last couple of songs of Randy
Weston's second and final set at Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola tonight. Thanks so
TK Blue, who gave me the set list, I was able to absorb the after-effect of Weston's
fusion of American jazz and African tonal rhythms, that had just wowed the sold-out
crowd. Randy's set had included Hi Fly, Tangier Bay, Little Niles, African Village/Bedford
Stuyvesant, St. Thomas (Fire Down There), Love, the Mystery Of. I came in, after
a Lincoln Center ballet, hoping to catch a bit of Weston's Sextet, and St. Thomas
(Fire Down There) was lighting up the Club.
There were tropical, Afro-Cuban elements, sometimes featuring TK Blue, who was on
alto sax and flute tonight, and sometimes showcasing Weston on effervescent piano.
For Love, the Mystery Of, the Sextet switched moods, back and forth, ethereal
to electric, with Lewis Nash, Guest Drummer, taking a wild, mesmerizing solo that
brought down the house. Neil Clarke, on Latin percussion, added clavé tempos that
enriched the moment. Robert Trowers and Alex Blake, on trombone and bass, filled
the music with deep exotic texture, and I really wanted to hear more. When the Sextet
turned on the heat, they evoked musical phrases from around the globe: Turkish,
African, Cuban, Brazilian, and of course American.
During the After-Hours Set, see a review of Alvester Garnett and his Artworks Ensemble,
Mrs. Weston and Todd Barkan came by to say hello and generously gave me his autobiography,
African Rhythms: The Autobiography of Randy Weston, and his CD, "The Storyteller",
recorded with his African Rhythms Sextet. This CD review will be posted soon. In
perusing Weston's autobiography, published by Duke University Press, which he kindly
inscribed to me, and which is "Composed" by Weston and "Arranged" by Willard Jenkins,
Weston begins his stories with tales about his family and growing up in Brooklyn.
When he writes "The Scene Shifts to the Pacific", the reader is drawn into his terrific
efforts to beat the World War II draft, and what happens when he doesn't. After
Okinawa, he returns to Brooklyn and "hangs out at Max Roach's house on Monroe Street".
He mentions Miles Davis, Freddie Webster, George Russell, Duke Jordan, and Tommy
Potter, forming Charlie Parker's rhythm section.
Later on in the book he writes about a tour of "The Motherland", with stops in Senegal,
Cameroon, Egypt, Morocco, and making a home in Africa. There are even photos of
his 1961 AMSAC (American Society of African Culture) tour, with Booker Ervin on
tenor sax and Lionel Hampton's band in Nigeria. Needless to say, Randy Weston's
autobiography is a treasure trove of tales about travel, music, friends, family,
and cultural inspiration. For updated listings of Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola, check
out Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola Website.
You buy Randy Weston's latest CD here, as well as his autobiography, African Rhythms:
The Autobiography of Randy Weston.
A gallery with more than 60 shots at New York Winter Jazz Fest 2011: Chico Hamilton, Don Byron, Geri Allen, JD Allen, Butch Morris, Steve Coleman Vernon Reid, Anat Cohen, Aaron Goldberg, Nasheet Waits, Abraham Burton, Eric McPherson...(Petra Cvelbar)
Love, Linda: The Life of Mr. Cole Porter: "If you love Cole Porter's music, rich, cognac vocals, sexy theatricality, classy, high society anecdotes, top of the line music and orchestrations, a glass of wine, and an intimate setting, then rush to The Triad, on West 72nd Street, for Stevie Holland's new Wednesday night show, "Love, Linda: The Life of Mrs. Cole Porter"." (Roberta Zlokower)
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Publishing Date: 07/05/2011