Summer Vacation

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(Millau, France)

DTM, my twitter, FB, etc. is gonna go dark for a month, will return mid-August when the Billy Hart Quartet plays the Village Vanguard.

My fans and friends really like the interview led by Matthew Kassel for DownBeat.com. Thanks Matt!

Next week, after TBP plays Ronnie Scott’s for four nights, I’m going to join my old pal Martin Speake at the Vortex. (Old DTM: Martin’s guest post about John Taylor.) After that, Sarah and I will unplug completely and be grateful audience members at the St Endellion Music Festival in Cornwall. The goal is not to check phones or email for the duration….we’ll see if we succeed….From there I will move to the Vallekilde summer jazz workshop where my fellow faculty includes Ambrose Akinmusire, Mark Turner, Jen Shyu, Linda May Han Oh, and John Hollenbeck.

Looking further ahead, I’m somehow leading a trio with Ron Carter and Billy Hart at the Jazz Standard September 12. (Any requests?) Also on the way is the premiere of my own Concerto to Scale with the American Composers Orchestra on April 6, 2018. For more details about these and other future projects, sign up for Floyd Camembert Reports.

Doctor Who is in the news. When I was in fifth grade I took third prize in a convention costume contest dressed as Jon Pertwee (the judges included Mary Tamm). Like some other grumpy dinosaurs I don’t always like the reboot much (it’s too overblown and sentimental, plus the music is a drag, bring back Dudley Simpson’s atonal mystery!) but nonetheless I keep watching. Part of what keeps me interested is the overt identity politics. This seems to be the topic of our times, and basic entertainment like comic books and children’s sci-fi is where the rubber is meeting the road. In the end, the reboot of Doctor Who will be a fairly precise record of advances towards equality. At times this means there’s something of a hyper-banal “focus group” aspect to this progression. Still, that advance does need to happen, so: Bravo. Very much looking forward to the first female Doctor, Jodie Whittaker!

For light summer reading I have a very strong recommendation, Conclave by Robert Harris. I stayed up all night, it’s the most ruthlessly compelling thriller I’ve read in years. A good comparison might be The Queen’s Gambit by Walter Tevis. Both use a byzantine closed system (papal politics or chess tournaments) to non-violent but incredibly exciting ends. In their way, both these books also mark political advances as well.

DTM this year so far:

Monk @ 100

The Breakthrough of Geri Allen

Interview with James Newton

Interview with Miranda Cuckson

“There is no ‘jazz harmony,’ only ‘harmony'”

Don’t forget the blues!

One man’s opinion about how to play for dance class

Lou Harrison at 100

Pop Musicology

Emahoy Tsegué-Maryam Guèbrou

A quick visit and video with Charles McPherson

Mary Ruefle and Claudia Rankine

David Sanborn on Phillip Wilson

Interview with Geoffrey Keezer

Interview with Robert Glasper (some great stuff in this one even though it was widely criticized)

A visit to Louis Armstrong’s house

Jazz mags from the 50s

RIP Colin Dexter

RIP Buck Hill

RIP Arthur Blythe

RIP Misha Mengelberg

RIP Nat Hentoff

The intersection of jazz and capitalism was of incredible value to the music in its heyday. No jazz cat got a grant until at least the ’70s. The players made music to be sold, and people bought the music because they had to have it.

Not that jazz and capitalism has always been a perfect match, either. Hyland Harris has sent along three items “featuring” Dewey Redman, John Coltrane, and Milt Buckner. Presented without further comment:

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