Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Happy Birthday, Han!

Legendary Dutch drummer Han Bennink turns 70 today, and there's a storm of celebration on the airwaves and in the jazz blogosphere:

Patrick Jarenwattananon marked the occasion over at NPR's A Blog Supreme;

Terry Gross interviewed Han today on Fresh Air; and

Columbia University's WKCR kicked off a five-day marathon of Bennink's music (you can stream the station online), which culminates with a Sunday evening concert by Bennink, joined by Richard Teitelbaum, Ray Anderson, Uri Caine, Mark Dresser, Mary Oliver, Thomas Heberer, and Humboldt County's own Michael Moore, a longtime collaborator.  (Bennink and Moore will also reunite with accordionist Will Holshouser for a separate trio concert Wednesday night on New York's Lower East Side, to mark the release of new album, Live in NYC, on Moore's "Ramboy" label.)

The Mad Scientist of the Skins has twice been a guest of the RJA, once during our inaugural 2006-07 season, with the ICP Orchestra, and again in 2009, with Holshouser & Moore.  As far as we can tell, he's showing no signs of slowing down, and we hope to see him back this way again. 

Many happy returns of the day, Han!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Up Next!

Another one (almost) gone! Our sixth season comes to a close at 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday, April 25th in HSU's Fulkerson Recital Hall with guitarist Rez Abbasi and his "Invocation" quintet.

Like his bandmates, friends, and fellow innovators, pianist Vijay Iyer (RJA 2010-11) and alto saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa, Abbasi is known as an emblematic figure in the globalization of jazz. (Born in Pakistan, Abbasi was raised in L.A. and has lived in New York for the past two decades.) His seamless welding of South Asian sounds and vanguard jazz put Invocation's debut album, the prophetic Things to Come (2009), among DownBeat's top discs of the last decade. Last year's Suno Suno, the group's latest and Abbasi's eighth, was an Editor's Pick. You can read more about Abbasi, listen to the group's music, and see them featured in a video at

Invocation's concert is part of the HSU Music Department's "New Horizons Festival of Music and Diversity," which also features concerts and workshops with composer-in-residence Chen Yi and the Kronos Quartet. (Abbasi himself will lead a pre-concert workshop at 4:00 p.m. on the afternoon of April 25th--campus location TBA.)

Tickets for the concert are $15 General Admission and $10 for students and seniors. They're available at the usual outlets--Wildberries, Wildwood Music, People's Records, and The Works--and at our website: http://www.redwoodjazzalliance.org/tickets.htm

Hope to see you there!