Kay Bourne Arts Report – Issue #85

Contents

COLTRANE CONCERT SURE TO DELIGHT

McWHORTER BACK ON STAGE AT THE BCA

EXCITEMENT ABOUNDS FOR ANNUAL SPELLING BEE

ONE WOMAN COMEDY AT M.I.T.

AFFLECK’S “THE TOWN”

UP-COMING EVENTS & COMMUNITY INFO


COLTRANE CONCERT SURE TO DELIGHT

2f3f0c56da0b1c3246d4db58cb788dcb.124.87 Kay Bourne Arts Report   Issue #85 (pictured: Anthony Brown)

The ANNUAL JOHN COLTRANE MEMORIAL CONCERT is, for the 33rd edition, refreshed from the apparently bottomless well of this tenor saxophonist, band leader, and composer’s musical outpouring.

California drummer ANTHONY BROWN’s Asian American Orchestra will perform “India & Africa: A Tribute to John Coltrane” at Northeastern University’s Blackman Auditorium, Saturday evening, SEPTEMBER 18, at 7:30 pm.

The Grammy nominated contingent was founded in 1998 with monies resulting from reparations paid to survivors of the Japanese-American interment program in California during World War II and seeks to educate the public nationally about that experience. The group’s recordings include the Duke Ellington-Billy Strayhorn’s “Far East Suite” and “Monk’s Moods” with saxophonist Steve Lacy. Among the Asian instruments to be heard in the JCMC concert will be the sheng (Chinese mouth organ), the shakuhachi (Japanese bamboo flute), the sarod (North Indian flue), and the tabla (North Indian drums).

In recent years the JCMC has divined Coltrane’s legacy by presenting variously his son, post bop jazz saxophonist Ravi Coltrane; the rap artist Guru of Jazzamatazz fame and his musical reflections on ‘Trane; pianist McCoy Tyner who is the last living part of Coltrane’s greatest quartet; the traditional African dance of DeAma Battle’s Art of Black Dance And Music which focused on ‘Trane’s “Kulu Se Mama” recording, and Pharoah Saunders, whose multi phonic technique was developed while playing with Coltrane.

These artists were integrated into the traditional casting of Boston musicians who have participated in the JCMC since its beginnings in 1977 in a loft in Boston’s leather district. Percussionist Syd Smart, who staged that initial tribute in the Friends of Great Black Music Loft, has continued with the concert all these years and will be recognized for his musical leadership with a special lifetime achievement award at the Saturday night concert.

India and Africa figure largely as themes in Coltrane’s work in his later years. The recording “Live At The Village Vanguard” (1961), features India recognizing Coltrane’s spiritual quest and enlarged artistic vision. From Nigerian drummer, Babtunde Olatunji, Coltrane learned about musical traditions from West Africa, his ancestral homeland. Coltrane’s initial “Impulse” lp introduces “Africa,” a work featuring his extended improvisations. John Coltrane (1926-1967) had as his bedrock influences the music of his childhood community in segregated rural North Carolina and later the urban sounds of Philadelphia: African American gospel, spirituals, work songs, blues, jazz, and R&B.

“The concert goes forward as bigger and broader than the soundscape of Boston regulars because we are trying to be the interpreter for the different ways of looking at Coltrane’s influence,” says Emmett G. Price, III, one of the leaders of the team staging the concert and its allied events. Price is the chair of the African American Studies program at Northeastern University and an associate professor in the school’s music department. With Price at the helm is saxophonist Leonard L. Brown, an associate professor in the College of Arts at Northeastern who brought the JCMC to Northeastern 25 years ago when Brown began teaching at the school.

Page 1 of 7 | Next page