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No. 14, February 2001
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Jazz at Lincoln Center on Tour
Concert in Lucerne, February 17, 2001
Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, LCJO
Wynton Marsalis, Music Director, tpt
Ryan Kisor, tpt
Marcus Printup, tpt
Ron Westray, trombone
Andre Hayward, trombone
Vincent Gardner, trombone
Wess Anderson, as, ss
Ted Nash, as, ss, cl
Walter Blanding, Jr., ts, cl
Victor Goines, ts, cl
Joe Temperley, bs, bass cl, cl
Farid Barron, p
Rodney Whitaker, b
Herlin Riley, dr

 
Article added on February 20, 2001
 
Concert review
 
On February 17 & 18, 2001, in the context of "LucerneConcerts meet Jazz", Wynton Marsalis' Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra (LCJO) played two concerts in Switzerland, accompanied by a jazz workshop and a jam session, held together with teachers and students of "Jazzschule Luzern".
 
Marsalis and his followers are dedicated to the "real jazz", from New Orleans and Swing to Bebop. One can argue that jazz is by definition an open form of music which naturally tends to develop in various directions, but it remains a fact that someone has to maintain the tradition. We still play and listen to Mozart despite the fact that we now have Boulez.
 
On February 17, 2001, the LCJO with its 14 musicians (Seneca Black, tpt, was not present) offered at the sold out KKL concert hall in Lucerne an overview over their musical possibilities, ranging from compositions by Duke Ellinton through Sonny Rollins to Wynton Marsalis. The concert was not, as some may have expected, part of the Jazz at Lincoln Center 100 Years of Armstrong celebration.
 
An essential part in the LCJO's success is its steady personnel, several present musicians can be found in the lineups of the 1990-94 recordings of the CD-box set
Live at the Village Vanguard. If you add the virtue of hard work and perfectionism, which Marsalis professes, the orchestra's performance can be fully appreciated. These are people who have learned the basics before they went on to find their individual voices.
 
By the way, Jazz at Lincoln Center is the world’s largest non-profit arts organization dedicated to jazz. Among its activities are national and international tours, residencies, a weekly national radio program, television broadcasts, recordings, publications, an annual high school jazz band competition and festival, a band director academy, a jazz appreciation curriculum for children, advanced training through the Juilliard Institute for Jazz Studies, music publishing, children’s concerts, lectures, film programs, and student and educator workshops.
 
At Lucerne, Wynton Marsalis, the Centers Artistic Director, acted more as a master of ceremonies than an integral part of the orchestra, performing only in the first tune as well as at the very end of the concert. He announced different groups of musicians to play, in order to give all the members of his band a chance to shine.
 
The LCJO began with a sextet, including Wynton Marsalis and Ted Nash on trumpet,
Farid Barron on piano, Rodney Whitaker on bass, Herlin Riley on drums and a weaker trombone player. It was a rather timid performance of Staple Cats, the musicians seemed impressed, even intimidated by the crowd in the sold out concert hall designed by French star architect Jean Nouvel.
 
By the second tune, Dizzy Gillespie's A Night in Tunisia, the rhythm section had warmed up. In a quintet without Marsalis, with new Andre Hayward on trombone and Wess Anderson on saxophone, they demonstrated their qualities.
 
Clifford Brown's Sand Dune, played by the same quintet, was the first highlight of the evening. Anderson on saxophone, with his pure and strong tone, offered an outstanding performance. In the trio section in the middle of the tune, the rhythm section convinced with its subdued manner.
 
In The Olive Tree, the man of the evening, trumpeter Marcus Printup, with his clear, strong, warm sound and the ability to climb heights with astonishing ease, enchanted the public.
 
The Inquiry was a cheerful and fast paced tune, again with trumpeter Marcus Printup as the man of the moment. In the quintet, he was successfully seconded by saxophone player Walter Blanding junior. The rhythm section, especially the pianist Farid Barron, had improved as well.
 
Then, a quartet played the ballad Can't Get Started, with the trombone player expressing feelings, talking to the audience through his instrument. The next tune, with Joe Temperley on saxophone, was another highlight. His swinging rhythm as well as his musical exchange with drummer Herlin Riley was astonishing.
 
The Single Petal Flower from Duke Ellington's Queen Suite was next. The romantic and blue feeling of the classical sound was marvelous, with Joe Temperley on saxophone once more as the shining light. His timing and color were excellent.
 
After the break, the white trumpeter Ryan Kisor excelled in an original composition, accompanied by the rhythm section. The standard tune The End Of A Love Affair saw the same lineup again, this time playing an elegant and timeless composition. Farid Barron's floating piano sound was remarkable.
 
A hot tune by Sonny Rollins was next. Victor Goines and Ted Nash, both on saxophone, were accompanied by Rodney Whitaker on bass and Herlin Riley on drums. It was the first and only "avant-garde" tune of the evening.
 
An entertaining duo competition with bass and drums cheered up the audience. Riley and Whitaker, normally in the shadow of the horn players, excelled in a subtle duel with no winner. They proved they know more than the jazz basics.
 
A quartet, including the rhythm section and Ron Westray on trombone, offered Body and Soul, before Wynton Marsalis announced the last tune of the evening, his composition Sunflowers, from The Marciac Suite. A septet, including Marsalis, played the joyful tune which included the handclapping rhythm of the public. In between, the pianist rose to higher spheres. In the end, the wind section blew their horns to the maximum.
 
After a standing ovation, the 14 musicians offered a New Orleans version of Happy Birthday to their sound technician as well as the audience. The evening in Lucerne was no firework of imagination, a somewhat sterile performance, but a solid and entertaining one with a traditional sound. Trumpeter Marcus Printup convinced most. He is a honorable heir to Satchmo's throne. Wynton Marsalis has stiff competition within his group and, in Lucerne at least, his fellow musician Printup kept the upper hand. (paragraph updated on February 25; names of Kisor and Printup mixed up before; Kisor, of course, convinced in Lucerne too).
 
The LCJO not only offered two concerts in Lucerne, with another one the following day dedicated to the music of Louis Armstrong, but also a jazz workshop on Saturday morning. Students of the local faculty played in front of Ted Nash, Rodney Whitaker and Ron Westray. The three jazz stars not only commented, but also demonstrated how to play and improve their sound. The essence of their lesson: to rely on timing and melody.
 
After Saturday's concert, a jam session took off at 10 pm at the "Luzerner Saal". The members of the LCJO were joined by teachers and students from the MHS Fakultät III (Jazzschule Luzern). This time, Wynton Marsalis played a more prominent role, even blowing his horn from time to time in the audience, reacting to what was going on on stage.

  

My favorite collection remains the sensational CD-box set Live at the Village Vanguard. Sony/Columbia, 1999/2000. Recorded live by Wynton Marsalis with three different septet lineups at Village Vanguard from 1990 to 1994. Wynton Marsalis on trumpet, Herlin Riley on drums, Todd Williams, Victor Goines and Wessel Anderson on sopranino and alto saxophones, trombonist Wycliffe Gordon, Marcus Roberts and Eric Reed alternate on piano, Ben Wolfe and Reginald Veal on bass. Get it from Amazon.com, Amazon.fr. Get Selections From The Village Vangurad from Amazon.com, Amazon.fr
 

Check our article on Wynton Marsalis' CD The Marciac Suite and the book Sweet Swing Blues on the Road
 

Wynton Marsalis and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra: Big Train. Sony/Columbia, 1999. Recorded together with trumpeters Marcus Printup and Ryan Kisor, saxophonists Wess Anderson, Victor Goines, Walter Blanding Jr. and Joe Temperley. Get it from Amazon.com or Amazon.de.

 
U
ntil today, eight recordings featuring the LCJO have been released by Columbia Jazz: Big Train (1999), Sweet Release & Ghost Story (1999), Live in Swing City (1999), Sweet Release and Ghost Story (1999), Jump Start and Jazz (1997), the 1997 Pulitzer Prize winning Blood on the Fields (1997), They Came to Swing (1994), The Fire of the Fundamentals (1993) and Portraits by Ellington (1992). -
Sheet music by Wynton Marsalis.


The Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra.
 
Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra - biographies
Sheet music by Wynton Marsalis.
 
Wynton Marsalis is the Artistic Director of Jazz at Lincoln Center. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana in 1961, Marsalis began his classical training on trumpet at 12 and soon began playing in local bands of diverse genres.  He entered The Juilliard School at 17 and joined Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers.Marsalis made his recording debut as a leader in 1982 and over the past 17 years has recorded more than 30 jazz and classical recordings, which have won him eight Grammy Awards.In 1983, he became the first and only artist to win both classical and jazz Grammies in the same year and repeated this feat in 1984. In 1997, Marsalis became the first jazz artist to be awarded the prestigious Pulitzer Prize in music, for his oratorio Blood on the Fields, which was commissioned by J@LC. In 1999, he released 8 new recordings in his unprecedented Swinging into the 21st series, and premiered several new compositions, including the ballet Them Twos, for a June 1999 collaboration with the New York City Ballet, and the monumental work All Rise, commissioned and performed by the New York Philharmonic along with the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra and the Morgan State University Choir in December 1999.Marsalis is an internationally respected teacher and spokesman for music education and has received honorary doctorates from dozens of universities and colleges throughout the U.S.He regularly conducts master classes for students of all ages and hosts the popular Jazz for Young People concerts produced by J@LC. Marsalis has also been featured in the video series Marsalis on Music and the radio series Making the Music and, in 1994, he wrote the book Sweet Swing Blues on the Road in collaboration with photographer Frank Stewart.
 
Wess “Warmdaddy” Anderson (Alto and Sopranino Saxophones) began playing the saxophone at 14. He attended Jazzmobile workshops in Harlem, studied with Frank Wess, Frank Foster, and Charles Davis and frequented jam sessions led by saxophonist Sonny Stitt at the Blue Coronet.Before entering Southern University, where he studied with clarinetist Alvin Batiste, Anderson met Wynton and Branford Marsalis.In 1988, he became a member of Wynton Marsalis’s Septet, with which he toured and recorded for seven years, and has been a member of the LCJO since it began touring in 1992.As a leader, Anderson has recorded and released three solo albums entitled Warmdaddy in the Garden of Swing (1994), The Ways of Warmdaddy (1996) and Live at the Village Vanguard (1998).An accomplished educator, Anderson is a frequent participant in J@LC educational events and is on the faculty of the new Juilliard Institute for Jazz Studies.
 
Farid Barron (Piano) was born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.He has performed with Ralph Peterson, Johnny Coles, Mickey Roker, Bobby Durham, Wynton Marsalis and many others.From 1993 to 1997, Barron served in the U.S. Air Force, based in San Antonio, Texas.He has performed with the LCJO since 1999 and frequently participates in J@LC productions.
 
Seneca Black (Trumpet) was born on April 15, 1978 and was inspired to pursue jazz after being introduced, at age 14, to the music of Duke Ellington by Wynton Marsalis.After studying trumpet at the New World School of the Arts in Miami, Florida, Mr. Black moved to New York City to study with master trumpeter Lew Soloff at the Manhattan School of Music.Black has performed with Chico O’Farrill’s Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra, the Mingus Big Band, the New York State of the Art Jazz Orchestra and the Manhattan Jazz Orchestra, and has been a member of the LCJO since 1997. Seneca Black was not part of the lineup in Lucerne, were "only" 14 musicians performed.
 
Walter Blanding, Jr. (Tenor and Soprano Saxophones, Clarinet) was born on August 14, 1971 in Cleveland, Ohio to a musical family and began playing the saxophone at 6.In 1981, he moved with his family to New York City and, by 16, he was performing regularly with his parents at the Village Gate.Blanding attended LaGuardia High School for Music & Art and the Performing Arts and continued his studies at the New School for Social Research.Blanding lived in Israel for 4 years, where he had a major impact on the music scene, importing great artists such as Louis Hayes and Eric Reed, among others.He also taught in several Israeli schools and toured the country with his ensemble. His first album, Tough Young Tenors, was acclaimed as one of the best jazz albums of 1991.Since then, he has performed or recorded with many artists, including including Cab Calloway, Wynton Marsalis, Marcus Roberts, Illinois Jacquet, Eric Reed, and Roy Hargrove, among others. His latest release, The Olive Tree, features fellow members of the LCJO.
 
Vincent R. Gardner (Trombone) was born in Chicago in 1972 and raised in Virginia. His family had a strong musical background, including his mother, his brother and his father, Burgess Gardner, a trumpeter and music educator who has been very active on the Chicago music scene since the 1960s. Singing in church from an early age, he began playing piano when he was six, and soon switched to the violin, saxophone, and French horn before finally deciding on the trombone at age 12. Mr. Gardner became interested in jazz while attending high school and upon graduating went on to Florida A&M University in Tallahassee, Florida and the University of North Florida in Jacksonville.In college, he took a summer job performing with a jazz band at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, where he caught the ear of Mercer Ellington, who hired him on his first professional job. After graduating in 1996, he moved to New York to pursue his professional career. Gardner has performed, toured, and/or recorded with The Duke Ellington Orchestra, Bobby McFerrin, The Count Basie Orchestra, Frank Foster, The Glenn Miller Orchestra, Chaka Kahn, A Tribe Called Quest, Nancy Wilson, McCoy Tyner, Nicholas Payton, Illinois Jacquet, Wynton Marsalis, Tommy Flanagan, Marcus Roberts, Matchbox 20, Jimmy Heath, Lauryn Hill, and others.He has previously toured with the LCJO in 2000.
 
Victor Goines (Tenor Saxophone, Clarinet) was born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana. Goines began studying clarinet at age eight, and continued his studies through high school. He received a Bachelor of Music Education in 1984 from Loyola University and a Master’s Degree at Virginia University in 1990.Goines toured internationally with Ellis Marsalis’s quartet before joining the orchestra of the Broadway musical Black and Blue. In 1993, he joined Wynton Marsalis’s Septet and toured with the band until 1994, at which time he joined the LCJO.Goines has recorded or worked with Lionel Hampton, Terence Blanchard, James Moody, Dianne Reeves, and Dizzy Gillespie, among many others.He has released three acclaimed albums as a leader: Genesis (1991), Joe’s Blues (1998), and To Those We Love So Dearly (1999).He has been performing with the LCJO since 1993, currently serves as Education Consultant to Jazz at Lincoln Center, and serves as the Director of the Juilliard Institute for Jazz Studies - a collaboration between The Juilliard School and Jazz at Lincoln Center.
 
Andre Hayward (Trombone) was born in Houston, Texas in 1973.He started playing trombone and tuba at 11, performing in his junior high school jazz band and studying with local trombonist Steve Baxter.Hayward attended Texas Southern University and landed his first engagement with Roy Hargrove, touring with the trumpeter to Europe.Summers spent performing at Walt Disney World gave him the opportunity to perform with many noted singers, including Joe Williams, Diane Schuur, Eartha Kitt, Rosemary Clooney and others. Hayward performed with the late singer/bandleader Betty Carter for five years and has performed and/or recorded with Illinois Jacquet, Russell Gunn and the Ellington Orchestra under Mercer Ellington.
 
Ryan Kisor (Trumpet) was born on April 12, 1973, in Sioux City, Iowa and began playing trumpet at 4.In 1990, he won first prize at the Thelonious Monk Institute’s first annual Louis Armstrong Trumpet Competition.Kisor enrolled in the Manhattan School of Music in 1991, where he studied with trumpeter Lew Soloff. He has performed and/or recorded with the Mingus Big Band, the Gil Evans Orchestra, Horace Silver, Gerry Mulligan, Jim Hall, Charlie Haden’s Liberation Music Orchestra, the Carnegie Hall Jazz Band, the Philip Morris Jazz All-Stars, and many others. As well as being an active sideman, Kisor has recorded several albums as a leader, including Battle Cry (1997), The Usual Suspects (1998), and Point of Arrival (2000).  He has been a member of the LCJO since 1994.
 
Ted Nash (Alto and Soprano Saxophones, Clarinet)the son of Dick Nash and nephew of Ted Nash, both well-known jazz and studio musicians, first came to New York at 18. Soon after, he released his first album as a leader, Conception.Within a couple of years he joined the Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra, an association that lasted for more than ten years.It was in this fertile environment that Nash began to write his first arrangements, which have been featured on two of the band’s recordings.In 1994, Nash was commissioned by the Davos Musik Festival (Switzerland) to compose for a string quartet in a jazz setting, works that were premiered at a Jazz Composers Collective Concert.This commission was the inspiration for Rhyme and Reason, his most recent release, which was voted one of the top five CDs of 1999 by Jazz Times Magazine.Besides being a regular member of the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, Mr. Nash has recently toured Europe with the Carnegie Hall Big Band, and toured and recorded with Marcus Roberts and with Joe Lovano. He also can be heard on several critically acclaimed CDs produced by the Jazz Composers Collective, including the Herbie Nichols Project’s Love is Proximity and Dr. Cyclops' Dream and Ben Allison’s Medicine Wheel and Third Eye as well as recordings by Wynton Marsalis.
 
Marcus Printup (Trumpet) was born on January 24, 1967 and raised in Conyers, Georgia, where his first musical influences were the spirituals and gospel music he heard in church.He discovered jazz as a senior in high school and while attending the University of North Florida, he won the International Trumpet Guild Competition.In 1991, Printup met and began touring with pianist Marcus Roberts, who introduced him to Wynton Marsalis.Printup has performed and/or recorded with Betty Carter, Carl Allen, Dianne Reeves and Mr. Roberts, among others.Currently, Printup tours and performs regularly with the LCJO and his own band.He has recorded four solo albums, Songs for the Beautiful Woman, Unveiled, Hub Songs with trumpeter Tim Hagans and, most recently, Nocturnal Traces.Printup made his screen debut in the movie Playing by Heart and recorded on its soundtrack.
 
Herlin Riley (Drums) was born into a musical family in New Orleans, Louisiana and began playing the drums at age three.Riley was a member of Ahmad Jamal's band from 1984 through 1987 and has performed and/or recorded with Dianne Reeves, Marcus Roberts, Dr. John, Harry Connick, Jr., George Benson, Steve Turre and The Clayton Brothers, among others.His theater experience includes playing in One Mo' Time and Satchmo: America's Musical Legend. In the spring of 1988, he joined Wynton Marsalis’s Septet, with which he toured and recorded for six years.He appeared on the cover of the April 1995 issue of Modern Drummer and is featured in an instructional video, “New Orleans Drumming Ragtime and Beyond - Evolution of a Style.” Riley has performed regularly with the LCJO since it began touring in 1992. He has recently released a recording as a leader, Watch What You’re Doing, which features fellow LCJO members.
 
Joe Temperley (Baritone Saxophone, Bass Clarinet, Clarinet) was born in Scotland and first achieved prominence in the United Kingdom as a member of Humphrey Lyttelton’s band from 1958 to 1965, which toured the U.S. in 1959.In 1965, he came to New York City, where he performed and/or recorded with Woody Herman, Buddy Rich, Joe Henderson, Duke Pearson, the Jazz Composer’s Orchestra, Thad Jones-Mel Lewis Orchestra and Clark Terry, among many others. In October 1974, he toured and recorded with The Duke Ellington Orchestra as a replacement for Harry Carney. Temperley played in the Broadway show Sophisticated Ladies in the 1980s and his film soundtrack credits include the Cotton Club, Biloxi Blues, Brighton Beach Memoirs, When Harry Met Sally and Tune In Tomorrow, composed by Wynton Marsalis. Temperley is a mentor and a co-founder of the FIFE Youth Jazz Orchestra program in Scotland, which now enrolls 70 young musicians ages 7 to 17 playing in three full-size bands. Temperley has released several albums as a leader, including Nightingale (1991), Sunbeam and Thundercloud with pianist Dave McKenna (1996), With Every Breath (1998) and most recently Double Duke (1999) with several fellow LCJO members. He is an original member of the LCJO and serves as a member of the faculty for the Juilliard Institute for Jazz Studies.
 
Ron Westray (Trombone) was born on June 13, 1970 in Columbia, South Carolina. He began studying piano at 5 and was introduced to the trombone at 11. In 1991, while studying at South Carolina State University, Westray met Wynton Marsalis and Marcus Roberts in a Columbia jazz club and soon joined the Marcus Roberts Septet for several recordings and national tours. Westray received his B.A. in Trombone Perfomance from South Carolina State University and his M.A. from Eastern Illinois University. Westray toured Europe as a member of the group Jazz Futures II in the summer of 1992. In addition to leading his own ensembles and working as a sideman, Westray recorded a widely acclaimed album with fellow LCJO trombonist Wycliffe Gordon entitled Bone Structure. He first performed with the LCJO in 1993. Currently, Ron Westray serves as lead trombonist and frequently contributes new compositions and arrangements to the LCJO.
 
Rodney Whitaker (Bass) was born on February 22, 1968, in Detroit, Michigan. He began playing violin at 8 and later began studying bass. Whitaker has performed with Branford Marsalis, Johnny Griffin, Joe Henderson, Joshua Redman, Stanley Turrentine, Kenny Garrett and Donald Harrison, among others. Whitaker has also appeared with Branford Marsalis on Jay Leno’s “Tonight Show” and performed on Spike Lee’s film soundtracks for Jungle Fever and Malcolm X. His compositions have been included on Roy Hargrove’s Kindred Souls album and Junko Onishi’s Crusin’ and Piano Quintet Suite albums.Whitaker has appeared on over 70 recordings, including several acclaimed albums as a leader: Children of the Light, Hidden Kingdom, Brooklyn Sessions (Blues & Ballads), and Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow.He is the Director of the Jazz Studies program at Michigan State University and serves on the faculty of the Julliard Institute for Jazz Studies. Whitaker has toured extensively with the LCJO and has led many workshops and master classes produced by Jazz at Lincoln Center. -
Sheet music by Wynton Marsalis.