October-15th-2010, 01:16 AM
Earshot Jazz Festival
Earshot Jazz Festival features a wide range of first-rate performers
By Andrew Gilbert
Special to The Seattle Times
The 22nd edition of the Earshot Jazz Festival once again lives up to its reputation for curatorial discernment, showcasing veteran legends, rising stars and midcareer masters, including a generous helping of local artists. The festival runs from Friday through Nov. 7 at venues in and around Seattle.
This year's lineup is rife with gifted female artists, from adventurous Toronto trumpeter Lina Allemano (Tuesday, Chapel Performance Space) and inventive Seattle pianist/vocalist Nelda Swiggett (Thursday, Tula's) to the fire-and-water double bill of torrid saxophonist Tia Fuller and ethereal vocalist Gretchen Parlato (Oct. 24, Triple Door).
The festival opens Friday at the Triple Door with the award-winning Garfield High School Jazz Band, featuring band alumnus and special guest, saxophonist Roxy Coss, a confident, hard-swinging player who's already landed a precious weekly gig in Manhattan. She also celebrates the release of her self-titled debut CD with her quartet Sunday at Tula's.
Here are several other acts not to be missed.
Toshi Reagon and Meklit Hadero
Featuring two singular singer-songwriters who have each cultivated a stylistically expansive book of original tunes, this program offers a double dose of soul. With her commanding contralto, Brooklyn's Toshi Reagon evokes moss, moonlight and damp red earth. Ethiopian-born, San Francisco-based Meklit Hadero summons soft breezes and crystalline waters with her deceptively delicate, shimmering vocals.
7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Triple Door
Darius Jones Trio
Daring lightning to strike twice, Earshot presents protean New York alto saxophonist Darius Jones at the same venue where the late great Chicago tenor saxophonist Fred Anderson played a memorable gig in 2002. Backed by zealous bassist Adam Lane and rocking drummer Ryan Sawyer, Jones possesses a bright, steely tone, fierce rhythmic attack and the willingness to make audacious improvisational leaps.
8 p.m. Oct. 23, Rainier Valley Cultural Center
Tattooed by Passion
Drummer Matt Jorgensen presents the world premiere of "Tattooed by Passion," an ambitious body of compositions inspired by the bold brush strokes and luminous color fields of his late father-in-law, Colorado painter Dale Chisman. The concert features mostly the same impressive cast as on his new Origin album of these new works, with trumpeter Thomas Marriott, saxophonist Mark Taylor, guitarist Corey Christiansen, bassist Dave Captein, and a string quartet.
7:30 p.m. Oct. 26, Triple Door
Steve Lehman Octet
A major force on New York's progressive improvisational scene, alto saxophonist Steve Lehman writes hard-driving, rigorously constructed music that bristles with ideas while never forgetting to groove (in the broadest sense of the term). With its unusual instrumentation, his brass-laden band is a menagerie of wild and woolly voices, including trumpeter Jonathan Finlayson, tenor saxophonist Mark Shim, trombonist Jacob Garchik, vibraphonist Chris Dingman, tuba player Jose Davila, bassist Drew Gress and drummer Cody Brown.
8 p.m. Oct. 29, Seattle Art Museum
Rufus Reid Trio
After an early, formative stint in Seattle studying with James Harnett in the late 1960s, Rufus Reid emerged as one of jazz's premiere bassists, an irresistibly swinging accompanist sought out by giants such as Dexter Gordon, Sonny Stitt, Don Byas, Thad Jones, Bill Evans and Stan Getz. He performs with his lithe trio, documented on his recent album "Out Front" (Motema), featuring superlative Brazilian drummer Duduka Da Fonseca and fluent, well-traveled pianist Steve Allee.
7:30 p.m. Oct. 31-Nov. 2, Tula's
Brian Blade & the Fellowship Band
The capaciously musical drummer Brian Blade is best known for his volatile trap work with saxophone legend Wayne Shorter, but as the leader of the Fellowship Band, he reveals his finely honed lyricism, tapping into his love of gospel, folk and confessional singer-songwriters. A screening of "In the Spirit of Family," an episode of the documentary series "Icons Among Us: Jazz in the Present Tense," precedes the concert.
8:30 p.m. Nov. 5, EMP Theater
October-16th-2010, 03:25 PM