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Herbie Hancock Signs Up All-Star Jazz Band For Jam At L.A.’s Walt Disney Concert Hall

first_imgIn jazz, the “what” (i.e. what’s being played) doesn’t matter nearly as much as the “who” (who’s playing it) and the “how” (how it’s being played). Herbie Hancock drove that point home loud and clear while jamming on classics like “Chameleon”, “Cantaloupe Island”, and “Watermelon Man” at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in downtown Los Angeles.Hancock is already a force in the jazz realm. Outside of his unreal talents on the piano, keyboard, keytar, vocoder, and whatever other instruments he decides to try out on any given night, with more than half a century in the music world and a resume that includes working with everyone from Miles Davis to Pharrell Williams, he more than merited being the sole headliner. Perhaps the greatest talent of a dean like Hancock, though, is his ability to bring great musicians together and create a jazz ensemble wherein any piece is capable of taking the lead.To that end, Herbie didn’t disappoint. On drums, he had Vinnie Colaiuta, who spent much of the 1990s backing Sting after stints with Frank Zappa and Joni Mitchell. On bass guitar, he trotted out James Genus, a towering giant who counts sitting in with the Saturday Night Live studio band as his day job. On keys, synthesizers, and saxophone, Hancock featured Terrace Martin, best known for helping to produce Kendrick Lamar’s album To Pimp a Butterfly—and, soon enough, Herbie’s next LP.The band only expanded outward from there. Over the course of the evening, Robert “Sput” Searight added another percussive presence, and 20-year-old Elena Pinderhughes enriched the soundscape with her vocals and woodwind work on the flute. Legendary L.A. sax man Kamasi Washington rounded out the crew with his massive stature and even bigger sound.They all worked wonderfully as a unit, fluttering in and out of solos, sharing the spotlight and always arriving back at base camp at the exact right moment. As much as Hancock did to combine them, his ability to hand off the proverbial baton—and let it make the rounds in its own time—set the stage for some truly spectacular jazz.It’s in that egalitarianism that jazz both converges with and diverges from jam music. Surely, bands like Phish, Lettuce, Umphrey’s McGee, moe., and, of course, the Grateful Dead follow many of the same precepts as Hancock. Allow every piece of the band to shine. Provide both a theme and the requisite room for variation. Trust your players to find synergy in the farthest-flung corners, and bring each other around to the shared space of a song.Still, in a jam band, there is (almost) always a focal point around which and whom the group and its music revolve. In the Dead, that was Jerry Garcia on guitar and vocals. The same for Phish with Trey Anastasio. Joe Russo’s Almost Dead switches up that formula by organizing around the drums, but the point is the same: find a driving force and let it ride.In a jazz band like Hancock’s, there is no need for leadership like that—at least from a sonic perspective. Truth be told, none of those exquisite musicians would have gathered in that way had Herbie not been the catalyst. But his approach, it seems, was the stuff of Deistic dreams. He only played God insofar as he decided who would partake. The rest he left up to the fates to decide, all the while affording each of his players the chance to express their talents and explore the possibilities therein, as individuals and as a unique lineup.[Photo: Jake Sudek]last_img read more

Brandy Norwood Starts Performances in Chicago on Broadway

first_imgThe name on everybody’s lips is gonna be…Brandy! Grammy Award winner Brandy Norwood will step into the Broadway revival of Chicago as Roxie Hart on April 28. The pop/R&B star will play an eight-week engagement through June 21 at the Ambassador Theatre, taking over for Paige Davis.Norwood has sold more than 40 million albums worldwide, and her hit record “The Boy Is Mine” is the longest running number-one song and best-selling duet of all time. Screen credits include Moesha, Cinderella and The Game.The cast also includes Amra-Faye Wright as Velma, John Dossett as Billy Flynn, Raymond Bokhour as Amos Hart, NaTasha Yvette Williams as Matron “Mama” Morton and R. Lowe as Mary Sunshine.Check out Broadway.com’s interview with Norwood about raking in the chips for her Great White Way debut below! from $49.50 Related Shows View Comments Chicagolast_img read more

Report: Trump looking to roll back offshore drilling safety rules?

first_imgThe U.S. President Trump administration is reportedly looking to roll back a number of safety regulations related to offshore drilling activities put in place after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday that this rollback in safety measures would reduce the government’s role in offshore oil production and return more responsibility to private companies.The U.S. offshore oil and gas regulator, the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE), estimated that the proposed changes could save the oil industry about $900 million over the next ten years, the Wall Street Journal reported.The newspaper also stated that the safety bureau had proposed rolling back a requirement that government regulators review real-time production data from oil companies, as well as a requirement that the regulators approve critical drilling equipment – like the blowout preventer that failed in the Deepwater Horizon case – from third-party vendors.The BSEE has also ordered the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to suspend all work on a study to review and update the bureau’s offshore oil and gas operations inspection program to enhance safety.The order, dated December 7, said that within 90 days the stop-work order would either be lifted and work on the study could resume, or the contract to perform the study would be terminated.The committee conducting the study held its first and only meeting in Washington, D.C. on Oct. 26-27. Future meetings planned to be held in the Gulf of Mexico region have been put on hold.The National Academies expressed its disappointed that the study had been stopped.Offshore Energy Today Stafflast_img read more

FIBA World Cup: Celtics excited for new season, extra time with new teammate Kemba Walker

first_img“I’m just excited,” Jayson Tatum said here Thursday at Team USA’s practice session at the Mendenhall Center on the UNLV campus. “We’ve got a good team, it’s a new season, everybody’s kind of ready to just get going. Last year didn’t finish how we wanted, so it makes guys hungry and excited for next season.”[email protected] goes glass at the buzzer. #USABMNT pic.twitter.com/XGGlfJYIlS— USA Basketball (@usabasketball) August 8, 2019Walker joined the Celtics this offseason as a part of a sign-and-trade with the Hornets in which Boston sent Terry Rozier to Charlotte and Walker made his way to Boston. He promptly signed a four-year, $140 million deal with the Celtics and will be taking over the point guard spot left vacant by Kyrie Irving, who went to the Nets in free agency. Related News FIBA World Cup 2019: Khris Middleton, Brook Lopez wish Giannis Antetokounmpo the best, just not against U.S. FIBA World Cup 2019: Hawks’ Trae Young leaves Team USA camp with ‘minor injury’ FIBA World Cup 2019: Heat’s Kelly Olynyk suffers leg injury during exhibition game No Celtics player would say a bad word about Irving, but they are eager to turn over a new leaf going into next season.“We’re going to be positive,” Jaylen Brown said. “Last year, I can’t say it can be any worse than that, so coming out and being positive is everybody’s mindset.”The Celtics were picked to win the Eastern Conference one season after going 55-27, finishing second in the East and losing in seven games in the conference finals to LeBron James and the Cavaliers. Things didn’t work out the way they planned though in 2018-19 as Boston slid to 49-33, fourth in the East and lost in the second round to the Bucks, narrowly averting a sweep.“I think on the outside — because there’s not much to talk about for two months in the summer — that’s kind of been a consistent story, and, you know, on the inside we moved on past it a long time ago,” coach Brad Stevens told NBC Sports Boston on Wednesday. “And so it’s been a great vibe in our building, we have a great group of workers.“Jaylen and Jayson are here (in Las Vegas), but they were in Boston last week working all the way up until this point. Obviously we’ve had a ton of our young guys through, we turned that page a long time ago and that’s what you should do after a season. I mean, I think whether you had success or it wasn’t as good as you want, you learn from it and move on.”Brad Stevens on last season: ‘We’ve moved on past it a long time ago, and so it’s been a great vibe in our building’ pic.twitter.com/aVLDnLQmPh— Celtics on NBC Sports Boston (@NBCSCeltics) August 8, 2019Walker didn’t have to deal with the disappointment in Boston’s locker room last season. His disappointment has been Charlotte missing the playoffs in six of his eight seasons on the roster. Despite that, Walker made the Hornets his priority in free agency but simply couldn’t get a deal done with the team that drafted him. He has always stated his love for the city of Charlotte and Hornets fans and for his teammates and the organization, but it ultimately turned out it was time for him to move on.But loyalty like that —and a more talkative manner than new Celtics teammate Marcus Smart expected — already has endeared Walker to his new running mates. And while the four Celtics teammates have only had so much time to develop relationships, it sounds like it’s off to a good start.“We talked a little bit about basketball, but mostly just getting to know each other,” Smart said. “Knowing things that we probably didn’t know about one another and just laughing and joking and building that camaraderie up.”The #USABMNT Blue Team starts out 8-0 on the @usabasketball Select Team. pic.twitter.com/ueRpRd2z7j— NBA (@NBA) August 6, 2019Walker echoed Smart’s sentiments, but he made it clear he still has a way to go before he’ll be guaranteeing any titles in Boston’s future.“I’m the new guy, they already know each other, so it’s just kind of really me and getting acclimated to them and how things go,” Walker said.The Celtics will once again be one of the favorites for a high playoff seed in the East this season and the addition of Walker — and, the Celtics hope, the continued improvement of Gordon Hayward — will go a long way in making that happen.Boston’s success though could start here in Las Vegas and further on in September in China at the FIBA World Cup. Every second these four men spend on the court together can only help going forward even if they are in a different system than the one Stevens runs with the Celtics. LAS VEGAS — There is a consensus among the four Celtics players on Team USA’s FIBA World Cup roster — they can’t wait for next season to start.But the three players on the FIBA roster who are returning from the 2018-19 Celtics share another sentiment — they are looking forward to playing with Kemba Walker. But as Smart will tell you, these teammates will take every moment they can get with each other.“It’s tremendous for us because not a lot of guys get to do this,” Smart said. “Not a lot of guys, not a lot of teams have more than two or three guys out and just working with each other even before the season started.”I think that gives us a little step up on other guys.”last_img read more