My First Album

Meet The Beatles!
Image via Wikipedia

Meet The Beatles, Capitol Records, Purchased at Sears in Norwalk, Ct., January 20, 1964 $2.99

 

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The Radiators – Last Roundup Tour

We attended The Radiators Last Roundup Tour at Stage One in Fairfield, Ct. last night. The Radiators, from New Orleans, LA are hanging it up after 33 years of making great music together. When I read about The Radiators retiring from the road, I was moved by their commitment to their fans. So we went to honor them and the music that they make. We arrived unfamiliar with their music and left immersed in the love and the classic sounds The Radiators produce live.

We were taken by the energy of their fans, many of whom were devout Radiators “fish-heads”. It was evident that the majority of fans in attendance were ticketed for all three nights, Friday, 2/25, Saturday 2/26 and Sunday 2/27. They were fervent. They stood from the first song to the last, riffing off of every note, hanging on to The Radiators for dear life.  I couldn’t blame them, after all this is their favorite band who is playing one last time for them. I saw tears and lots of hugging going on. The “fish-heads” are a tight nucleus of fans, who celebrate each other and the music of The Radiators with a great deal of heart. We were up dancing with them by the third song of the second set and we too stood until the evening was over.

Stage One 2/26/11

The Radiators are all about classic, straight ahead, rock and roll, rhythm and blues and the blues music. They mix their originals with dedicated cover editions with equal passion. My highlight of the evening was their rendition of Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On”. I will be trolling Live Downloads for this live recording. I saw the tape machine in the lobby and patted it on the back as I went to my seat. We had excellent seats, third row center.

The Radiators are all the original members from 1978, which is way cool when you think about it 😉

7 Walkers – Bill Kreutzmann and Friends

Papa Mali w/ Bill Kreutzmann
Image by City On Fire via Flickr

I was reading the March 2011 issue of Relix Magazine last night when I noticed that the 7 Walkers, Bill Kreutzmann‘s new band had placed at #1 on the Jambands.com Radio Chart. This took me pleasantly by surprise so I investigated the band and the situation further. Sure enough they sound rhythmically righteous. 7 Walkers has held the top spot on Jambands.com’s Radio Chart for three solid months now.

I think you’ll find their music infectious 😉 and I hope you’ll do as I did, buy their music 🙂

Jay Blakesberg 2010

7 Walkers consists of the following collaborators:

Bill Kreutzmann, Drums

Papa Mali, Guitar & Vocals

George Porter Jr., Bass

Matt Hubbard, Keyboards, Horns, Harmonica & Vocals

Lyrics by Robert Hunter😉

Henry Threadgill

My musical interests are guiding me deeper in the discovery visualizations of avant-garde jazz composition and expression. The three avant-garde jazz composers who are captivating my attention are Anthony Braxton, Muhal Richard Abrams and Henry Threadgill.

I believe Anthony Braxton is poised for a major renaissance and I will be writing more about his resurgence on this blog going forward.

Today’s daily blog post focuses on Henry Threadgill. Henry is a founding member of AACM (Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians).

I have several music reference books I keep close at hand for further study. One title I refer to often is A Power Stronger Than Itself, The AACM and American Experimental Music by George E. Lewis. It’s a fantastic book that is laden with knowledge of AACM Chicago and New York musicians who have been true to the pursuit and accomplishments of experimental music. Henry Threadgill is extensively mentioned in this title, which helps me to fathom what he has given us through his creative muse.

JazzTimes March 2011 cover

The latest Jazz Times issue has a cover story about the enigmatic Henry Threadgill, “Be Ever Out” by David R. Adler a jazz writer I respect greatly. I am savoring David’s article now as  I sip my morning coffee and get ready for my day.

Henry Threadill is a roster artist on the Pi Recordings label. I love the leadership role Pi Recordings is achieving for music that shouts to be heard. They have several artists at the label I have grown to appreciate such as  Marc Ribot,  Rudresh Mahanthappa, Steve Lehman, along with Anthony Braxton and Muhal Richard Abrams 😉

So join me on my journey through avant-garde jazz and let’s get educated together in this richly rewarding American experimental experience.

Guitar Heroes, Legendary Craftsmen from Italy to New York – Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Metropolitan Museum of Art has a breathtaking exhibit on display for those who love guitars. Guitar Heroes,  Legendary Craftsmen from Italy to New York is viewable from February 9th – July 4th, 2011. Read the NY Times review to learn more.

I think its time we get that museum membership and get down to the Museum Mile to experience this well crafted and curated exhibit.

Guitar Heroes New Yorker Model Poster

Don “Sugarcane” Harris’s Vintage Era

Cover of "Usa Union"
Cover of Usa Union

I was listening to John Mayall‘s USA Union (1970) recording this afternoon. What really caught my ear was the stellar performance of Don “Sugarcane” Harris on electric violin.  USA Union was a continuation of  John Mayall’s  musical jazz/blues period which featured “no drums” that began with The Turning Point (Live -1969) and Empty Rooms (Studio – 1970).

John Mayall’s USA Union band consisted of:

John Mayall – Electric guitar, keyboards, harmonica and vocals

Harvey Mandel – Electric guitar

Larry “The Mole” Taylor –  Acoustic and electric bass

and Don “Sugarcane” Harris – Electric violin

Sugarcane Harris was in high demand from 1969 – 1971, his vintage years. Frank Zappa was a major fan of the American rock duo Don and Dewey so he recruited Sugarcane for his jazz avant-garde recording, Hot Rats. Frank Zappa continued to use Sugarcane on Burnt Weenie Sandwich, Weasels Ripped My Flesh, and Chunga’s Revenge.