May 28, 2013 |
Although it's been almost four years since Terence Blanchard's last album, it's not as if the trumpeter hasn't kept busy. In addition to the Poncho Sanchez collaboration "Chano y Dizzy," he's remained a first-call film composer (with Spike Lee's "If God Is Willing and Da Creek Don't Rise" and George Lucas' "Red Tails" among his latest), and in his spare time wrote an opera, which debuts in St. Louis next month. Though Blanchard has no shortage of outlets, he still sounds overflowing with inspiration.
October 25, 2012
MUSIC As a roiling tide of diverse electronic music sweeps the U.S. - especially the madcap "beat music" that Flying Lotus and the Low End Theory club night in Lincoln Heights helped popularize - Steven Ellison's new album as FlyLo, "Until the Quiet Comes," is an attempt to reclaim his own focus. The album, Ellison's fourth full-length, comes two years after 2010's "Cosmogramma" and a sea change in the American electronica scene. "Cosmogramma" was indebted to the astral free-jazz legacy of his family (his aunt is Alice Coltrane and his cousin is saxophonist Ravi Coltrane)
October 1, 2012 |
About an hour before Steven Ellison's debut performance at the Hollywood Bowl as Flying Lotus last month, he got news that made his blood run cold. The elaborate audio-visual rig he'd prepared for his set was screwing up. He'd planned to debut an immersive array of projections on a mesh screen in front of him while he performed his ethereal and beat-chopped electronica. Thousands upon thousands of fans were outside waiting for him. But minutes before his set, they just couldn't make the thing work.
August 2, 2012
JAZZ The son of a jazz royalty in Alice and John Coltrane, Ravi Coltrane may never fully escape his parents' shadow, but on his latest album "Spirit Fiction" he sounds utterly at peace with that reality. A knotty and expressive release that nods toward his mother and father's restless creativity while at the same time encapsulating a logical extension of it, the quietly addictive album may be Coltrane's best yet. Here he performs in a quartet anchored by fiery young drummer E.J. Strickland.
February 9, 2012
MUSIC A powerful double bill of contemporary jazz heavyweights, saxophonist Ravi Coltrane follows in the footsteps of his legendary parents, John and Alice, with invigorating twists on modern post-bop, and the former chair for jazz at the L.A. Philharmonic, bassist Christian McBride, was recently honored with a Grammy nomination for his debut as a big band leader, but here he'll perform in a stripped-down piano trio. Royce Hall, UCLA, 340 Royce Drive, L.A. 8 p.m. Sat. $20-$65.
September 30, 2010 |
Thinking about the upcoming Angel City Jazz Festival feels like a logical paradox. Is it possible to grow both bigger and smaller at the same time? After stretching to two days at the John Anson Ford Amphitheater last year with a lineup offering nods to West Coast jazz past and present, the festival has this year scaled back its multi-act "festival" component to one night at the Ford. But in a move that points to the eclectic nature of L.A. jazz, the festival in its third year spans six nights that encompass a range of artists and merge boundary-pushing jazz with elements from the worlds of art, film, dance and even dining.