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Randy Weston

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ENTERTAINMENT
December 28, 1993 | RICHARD GUILLIATT, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Pianist Randy Weston explores similar terrain on "Volcano Blues," a jazz album that begins with the unexpected sound of Texas bluesman Johnny Copeland wailing the old Jessie Mae Robinson tune "Blue Mood" in a keening tenor voice backed by acoustic guitar.
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ENTERTAINMENT
November 21, 2013 | By Chris Barton
Randy Weston & Billy Harper : A musical partnership that began in the early '70s, Randy Weston and Billy Harper come together again on the aptly titled "The Roots of the Blues," a magnetic duet between Weston's piano and Harper's lush and lingering saxophone. A mix of standards such as "Body and Soul" and "Take the A Train" with bracing originals like the zig-zagging contemplation of "The Healers" and the rumbling "Blues to Africa," the album should come alive in vivid new ways for this performance.
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NEWS
May 11, 2006 | Don Heckman, Special to The Times
PIANIST Randy Weston has spent a considerable amount of time in Africa, living in different areas and operating his own club for a few years in Morocco. Halfway through his opening set Tuesday at the Jazz Bakery, he took a few moments to describe the importance of music to African culture, underscoring his belief in its life-affirming qualities. By that time, his conviction had already been amply demonstrated by his appropriately named African Rhythm Trio.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 10, 2010 | By Claire Noland, Los Angeles Times
Benny Powell, a veteran jazz trombonist who played with Count Basie from the early 1950s to the early 1960s, taking a solo turn in the band's 1955 recording of "April in Paris," has died. He was 80. Powell died June 26 at Roosevelt Hospital in New York City after undergoing back surgery, said publicist Devra Hall Levy. The cause has not been determined. A native of New Orleans, Powell had a varied career that ranged from Lionel Hampton's big band in the late 1940s to modern jazz with pianist Randy Weston and his African Rhythms ensemble for the last quarter-century.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 9, 1995 | Bill Kohlhaase
RANDY WESTON "Marrakech in the Cool of the Evening" Verve * * * Weston's solo piano concerts earlier this year at the Jazz Bakery were amazingly rich affairs, with theme-and-variation exercises rising out of robust percussive riffs. This date, recorded live in 1992 at the La Mamounia hotel ballroom in Marrakech, Morocco, represents only a step in that direction, as Weston plays with less density, fewer rhythmic hooks and surprisingly little of the ethnic feel that usually graces his play.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 18, 1995 | DON HECKMAN
The piano is, simultaneously, a melodic, harmonic and percussive instrument, and Randy Weston makes extensive use of all those characteristics. Making a rare solo appearance at the Jazz Bakery, the veteran performer (he will be 69 next month) gave a no-distractions, no-nonsense demonstration of his mastery of the piano as a full-fledged orchestral instrument that is fully capable of sounding like an entire jazz ensemble.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 29, 1990 | Leonard Feather
Weston's grandeur is submerged as he wanders through an ocean of pseudo-Monkisms. On "Well, You Needn't," a bare-bones two-bar riff tune, he works it via a lengthy vamp; on another cut, he simply plays the blues for 13 1/2 minutes. Other pianists, notably Tommy Flanagan, have made successful Monk albums by combining some of his best tunes with their own pianistic idiosyncrasies, but Weston, a long-ago Monk student, here has an identity crisis.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 15, 1997 | Don Heckman
Every now and then--maybe when Jupiter aligns with Mars, or the moon is in the seventh house--a number of jazz players seem to spontaneously come up with similar ideas. This month is a good example. How else to explain the near-simultaneous release of albums featuring Dave Grusin, with orchestra, playing Henry Mancini; McCoy Tyner, with orchestra, playing Burt Bacharach; and Randy Weston, with orchestra, playing Randy Weston. OK, the Weston album is a bit different.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 10, 2010 | By Claire Noland, Los Angeles Times
Benny Powell, a veteran jazz trombonist who played with Count Basie from the early 1950s to the early 1960s, taking a solo turn in the band's 1955 recording of "April in Paris," has died. He was 80. Powell died June 26 at Roosevelt Hospital in New York City after undergoing back surgery, said publicist Devra Hall Levy. The cause has not been determined. A native of New Orleans, Powell had a varied career that ranged from Lionel Hampton's big band in the late 1940s to modern jazz with pianist Randy Weston and his African Rhythms ensemble for the last quarter-century.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 7, 1996 | Bill Kohlhaase
RANDY WESTON "Saga" *** Verve-Gitanes Jazz Pianist-composer Weston's latest septet album is more a group effort than his other recent releases for Verve. The dominating rhythms, spare keyboard and West African-influenced sax work from Talib Kibwe combine to give this disc an even stronger ethnic spirit than previous, African-inspired recordings from Weston, including "The Spirits of the Ancestors" and "Marrakech in the Cool of the Evening." But not everything here is so roots-minded.
NEWS
May 11, 2006 | Don Heckman, Special to The Times
PIANIST Randy Weston has spent a considerable amount of time in Africa, living in different areas and operating his own club for a few years in Morocco. Halfway through his opening set Tuesday at the Jazz Bakery, he took a few moments to describe the importance of music to African culture, underscoring his belief in its life-affirming qualities. By that time, his conviction had already been amply demonstrated by his appropriately named African Rhythm Trio.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 30, 2001 | DON HECKMAN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
The presence of Randy Weston and Yusef Lateef at Cal State L.A.'s Luckman Fine Arts Complex on Saturday night offered a rare occasion to hear two veteran jazz explorers on the same stage. Weston's solo set was a delight, the product of a musical imagination that roved freely through crusty dissonances and rhapsodic melodizing. More, it was music that had no difficulty embracing intellectual concepts, dancing rhythms and good-humored whimsy.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 15, 1997 | Don Heckman
Every now and then--maybe when Jupiter aligns with Mars, or the moon is in the seventh house--a number of jazz players seem to spontaneously come up with similar ideas. This month is a good example. How else to explain the near-simultaneous release of albums featuring Dave Grusin, with orchestra, playing Henry Mancini; McCoy Tyner, with orchestra, playing Burt Bacharach; and Randy Weston, with orchestra, playing Randy Weston. OK, the Weston album is a bit different.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 15, 1996 | BILL KOHLHAASE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Pianist Randy Weston and saxophonist John Handy hadn't played together for 17 years before their reunion Wednesday at the Jazz Bakery. But you wouldn't have known that from the performance. Teaming with percussionist Neil Clarke, the two came together as if there had never been a gap in their association.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 7, 1996 | Bill Kohlhaase
RANDY WESTON "Saga" *** Verve-Gitanes Jazz Pianist-composer Weston's latest septet album is more a group effort than his other recent releases for Verve. The dominating rhythms, spare keyboard and West African-influenced sax work from Talib Kibwe combine to give this disc an even stronger ethnic spirit than previous, African-inspired recordings from Weston, including "The Spirits of the Ancestors" and "Marrakech in the Cool of the Evening." But not everything here is so roots-minded.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 9, 1995 | Bill Kohlhaase
RANDY WESTON "Marrakech in the Cool of the Evening" Verve * * * Weston's solo piano concerts earlier this year at the Jazz Bakery were amazingly rich affairs, with theme-and-variation exercises rising out of robust percussive riffs. This date, recorded live in 1992 at the La Mamounia hotel ballroom in Marrakech, Morocco, represents only a step in that direction, as Weston plays with less density, fewer rhythmic hooks and surprisingly little of the ethnic feel that usually graces his play.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 24, 1995 | DON HECKMAN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
It doesn't take an ethnomusicologist to recognize that there are many connections between jazz and the pre-Industrial music of the world, from improvisation to the uses of rhythm and melody. Efforts to explore those connections on a creative level have often floundered on the shoals of superficiality. But two albums from artists who have, in effect, gone to the source to find a nexus, demonstrate the adaptability and interactivity of jazz.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 13, 1990 | LEONARD FEATHER
The pianist and composer Randy Weston says he cannot remember the last time he brought his trio to Los Angeles. At the Village Vanguard Sunday he offered stunning evidence of what the Southland has been missing. His perennial billing, "Randy Weston and His African Rhythms," is at once more and less than promised.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 18, 1995 | DON HECKMAN
The piano is, simultaneously, a melodic, harmonic and percussive instrument, and Randy Weston makes extensive use of all those characteristics. Making a rare solo appearance at the Jazz Bakery, the veteran performer (he will be 69 next month) gave a no-distractions, no-nonsense demonstration of his mastery of the piano as a full-fledged orchestral instrument that is fully capable of sounding like an entire jazz ensemble.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 24, 1995 | DON HECKMAN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
It doesn't take an ethnomusicologist to recognize that there are many connections between jazz and the pre-Industrial music of the world, from improvisation to the uses of rhythm and melody. Efforts to explore those connections on a creative level have often floundered on the shoals of superficiality. But two albums from artists who have, in effect, gone to the source to find a nexus, demonstrate the adaptability and interactivity of jazz.
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