Provizer's Jazz Notes
Jazz Notes, 3-21-13
Lee Konitz, appearing at Dazzle Jazz this Saturday and Sunday
Since its founding in 2004, the SFJAZZ Collective, the repertory group connected to the Bay area’s SFJAZZ program, has presented the music of Ornette Coleman, John Coltrane, Herbie Hancock, Thelonious Monk, Wayne Shorter, McCoy Tyner, Horace Silver and Stevie Wonder. This time around, the all-star octet is presenting the music of Chick Corea – and those sounds are on display Sunday night at the Vilar Performing Arts Center in Beaver Creek and on Tuesday evening at the Lone Tree Arts Center in Lone Tree.
Over the years, the makeup of the Collective has changed and the band’s current members are, to say the least, an impressive lot. There’s tenor saxophonist David Sanchez, alto saxophonist Miguel Zenon (both of whom are originally from Puerto Rico), pianist Edward Simon (from Venezuela), vibraphonist Stefon Harris, trumpeter Avishai Cohen (from Israel), trombonist Robin Eubanks, bassist Matt Penman (from New Zealand) and drummer Obed Calvaire (who just joined the group this spring which may account for the fact that Jeff Ballard is still listed as the drummer for the Lone Tree date).
That roster contains the names of so many players you would go to hear on their own that you’re really getting a week’s worth of sounds in a single night. Sanchez, Zenon and Harris, for example, were in Boulder not all that long ago with their collective group Ninety Miles.
The band plays first in Beaver Creek at the Vilar Center, Avondale Lane in Beaver Creek, at 7:30 p.m. ($58, 970-845-8497) and then follows up with a performance on Tuesday at the Lone Tree Arts Center, 10075 Commons St., also at 7:30 p.m. ($36-$48, 720-509-1000).
Speaking of SFJAZZ in general, Denver-based trumpeter Ron Miles will be part of the ensemble performing guitarist Bill Frisell’s music for the Hal Willner production of poet Allen Ginsberg’s “Kaddish” that moves into the SFJAZZ Center for a show on April 18. So, while San Francisco is sending an all-star band here, we’re sending an all-star musician over there.
Before the SFJAZZ Collective moves through the state, one of the major players in the music brings a trio to Dazzle, 930 Lincoln. That player is alto saxophonist Lee Konitz who is at Dazzle on Saturday and Sunday with a trio that features Jeremy Stratton on bass and George Schuller on drums.
Born in Chicago in October 1927, Konitz was one of the few alto players who avoided Charlie Parker’s almost irresistible attraction and developed his own sound, frequently in the company of pianist Lennie Tristano. Konitz, of course, was part of Miles Davis’ Birth of the Cool band during the late 1940s into the start of the 1950s. For a few days, a major piece of jazz history will find a home on Lincoln. The sets on Saturday are at 7 and 9 p.m. On Sunday, Konitz’s trio is on stage at 6 and 8 p.m. ($25, 303-839-5100).
Earlier on Saturday, from 11:30 a.m. until 2 p.m., Dazzle is also hosting a tribute to late Colin Gieg. Bassist Gieg was a familiar face on the scene and will be missed. Celebrating his life is something jazz fans will want to do.
Like saxophonist Konitz, trumpeter Brad Goode was also born in Chicago in the month of October, though it was 36 years after Konitz. In the Windy City, the trumpeter established his a well-deserved reputation as one of the finest musicians in a city that had no shortage of strong players. And for a number of years, he led the house group at the famed Green Mill. When he moved to Colorado to teach at CU Boulder, Chicago’s loss was our gain. Goode is a player who can cover any number of musical bases – a fact well displayed on his new release on Origin Records, Chicago Red.
On Friday, Goode celebrates the release of that CD at Dazzle with the group that appears on the disc: pianist Jeff Jenkins, guitarist Bill Kopper, bassist Bijoux Barbosa, drummer Paa Kow and Rony Barrak on several not-ordinary instruments. The party is at 7 and 9 p.m. ($15).
On Thursday, there are free sounds at McNichols Civic Center Building, W. Colfax at Bannock, from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. that provide a preview of the Five Points Jazz Festival that takes place on May 18. Singer Linda Theus-Lee hits the stage at 11 a.m. followed by pianist Adam Bodine’ s trio at 12:15 p.m.
Additionally, pianist Purnell Steen does a regular duo thing every Saturday at Havana Street Station, 1911 S. Havana, from 6 until 9 p.m. (303-752-0553), while the Colorado Jazz Workshop is at Dazzle on Tuesday at 7 p.m. ($10) followed by the Wyoming Jazz Workshop at Dazzle on Wednesday at 7 p.m. ($15).