Picks of the Week: Dec. 2 – 6 (Wed. – Sun.) in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Oakland, Seattle, Chicago and New York City

By Don Heckman Los Angeles   – Dec. 3 – 5. (Thurs. – Sat.) The Los Angeles Philharmonic, conducted by Gustavo Dudamel, presents a program of Bach and Mendelssohn. Violinist Gil Shaham is featured in a pair of Bach Concertos. The Philharmonic takes the spotlight with Mendelsohn’s Symphony No 1 and Overture for Harmoniemusik. An… Read More Picks of the Week: Dec. 2 – 6 (Wed. – Sun.) in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Oakland, Seattle, Chicago and New York City

Live Jazz: Bill Mays and Marvin Stamm in a Siskiyou Music Project

By Don Heckman Medford, Oregon. Jazz in its purest form illuminated the stage in the performance by pianist Bill Mays and trumpeter Marvin Stamm at the Artistic Piano Gallery Sunday night. No drum set, no swinging big band horns, no funky fusion guitars. Only two gifted jazz veterans, applying their remarkable improvisational skills to an… Read More Live Jazz: Bill Mays and Marvin Stamm in a Siskiyou Music Project

Live Music: Musette Explosion, A Parisian Musette Trio at Ashland’s Old Siskiyou Barn

By Don Heckman Ashland, Oregon. The Siskiyou Music Project performance at the Old Siskiyou Barn Wednesday night was an unlikely combination of elements on several counts – all of them musically fascinating. Start with the group: Musette Explosion, – which included Matt Munisteri on guitar, Will Holshouser on accordion and Marcus Rojas on tuba. An… Read More Live Music: Musette Explosion, A Parisian Musette Trio at Ashland’s Old Siskiyou Barn

Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Hard-Bop: Jackie McLean — “Jackie’s Bag” (Blue Note)

By Devon Wendell When I think of Jackie McLean; the word modern comes to mind. Jackie was always beyond hip. His slightly pitchy alto sax tone, daring compositions, and that unrelenting energy (quite often driven by the blues) made him one of the most original artists to stem from the bebop era. His earliest recordings… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Hard-Bop: Jackie McLean — “Jackie’s Bag” (Blue Note)

Live Music: Celebrating Frank Sinatra with Leslie Kendall & Friends at the Paschal Winery

  By Don Heckman The music of Frank Sinatra was in the air Saturday night in the amiable environs of the Paschal Winery. The music, that is, which Ol’ Blue Eyes vividly brought to life in his long career as an entertainment world icon. The music of the Great American Songbook. The performers celebrating the… Read More Live Music: Celebrating Frank Sinatra with Leslie Kendall & Friends at the Paschal Winery

HIGHLIGHT OF THE NEW YORK WEEKEND: SINGER/SONGWRITER/PIANIST ELLA LEYA PERFORMS SUNDAY NIGHT AT JOE’S PUB

By Don Heckman Singer/songwriter and pianist Ella Leya makes her New York debut at Joe’s Pub on Sunday night.  It’s a rare performance by a gifted artist who should not be missed. “It’s the voice of Ella Leya that first grabs you,” wrote the Los Angeles Times in reviewing her first album releases. “Simmering with… Read More HIGHLIGHT OF THE NEW YORK WEEKEND: SINGER/SONGWRITER/PIANIST ELLA LEYA PERFORMS SUNDAY NIGHT AT JOE’S PUB

Vocal Jazz Highlight of the Week In Los Angeles: Eliane Elias in a Jazz Bakery Movable Feast Tonight

By Don Heckman Eliane Elias is back in L.A. tonight, performing at the Moss Theatre in Santa Monica.  And that’s great news for lovers of fine jazz vocalizing. And lovers of fine jazz piano. And lovers of both talents in the same artist. Which is what audiences experience at an Eliane Elias performance. Wish we… Read More Vocal Jazz Highlight of the Week In Los Angeles: Eliane Elias in a Jazz Bakery Movable Feast Tonight

Live Jazz: Occidental Gypsy at Paschal Winery in Talent, Oregon

By Don Heckman The Siskiyou Music Project is offering a continuing flow of high level talent in the final weeks of its Summer schedule. On SMP’s Sunday night event at the Paschal Winery in Talent, Oregon, a packed house enthusiastically greeted the oddly titled but musically memorable jazz quintet Occidental Gypsy. In fact, the title… Read More Live Jazz: Occidental Gypsy at Paschal Winery in Talent, Oregon