Saturday, June 09, 2012

Healdsburg Jazz Festival Closing Weekend

This evening or at this point, last night, Michele Rosewoman's Trio with Billy Hart on drums and Andy McKee on countrabass with special guest Julian Priester on trombone were phenomenal. I knew I was going to love Rosewoman, what's not to love with as name like that my favorite flower and favored gender (smile). Billy is also another favorite musician of mine--I remember hearing his with Geri Allen almost twenty years ago and had to meet the man his range and vocabulary so expansive. I got the opportunity to hang with him and his good friend Donald "Duck" Bailey who interviewed Billy on his Soul Beat Show. I don't know how I got so lucky, but I kept quiet, just in case the men realized I was there and stopped feeling so free to share and reminisce and just treat me like I'd known them as long as they'd known each other or long enough to not bear tales (smile).

I'm really happy Billy is coming back to San Francisco with the Cookers. I hear they are on album 3 and I don't have a 1. Billy just came out with a new CD on ECM --not a month out the oven and nope, I haven't seen that one either. In the twenty or so years I have known Billy, I don't seem to have any of his music. I think this year, I will have to fix this.

Mr. Priester --oh my goodness. I have never heard anyone play the trombone like him. It was as if the horn could talk, literally or rather sing--of course (smile). At times, he and Rosewoman were hitting the same notes in their unique ways. I hadn't realized he was so close--Seattle, Pacific Northwest. We have to get him to come back and bring his band.

I loved it when Rosewoman gave us a tiny taste of her folkloric palate, Afro-Latin flavor --she even sang a bit, and then there was another original, her last before the encore where the music was so dense one could hear the multiple layers as each discovered new places to dance.

And then there were his compositions--the man can write. Between the four of them, Priester, Rosewoman, McKee and Hart (I don't think they played any of his) --the super group were stellar. It's no wonder Rosewoman had a fist full of money when I asked her for a photo (smile). She might have sold out.

I am really looking forward to Billy hosting the panel later today at 2 p.m. with Roy Haynes and others. What do drummers talk about when they get together? We shall see (smile).

Andy McKee is new to me, but not for long--great composer and writer, I will look out for his name. Visit


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