Posts Tagged ‘Wadada Leo Smith’

“A Complete Journey to Another World”: A Conversation with Wadada Leo Smith

Though it means "work of largest scale," the term "magnum opus" is often taken to mean "work of greatest quality." But that distinction is irrelevant in the case of "Ten Freedom Summers," the massive work that represents four decades of trumpeter-composer Wadada Leo Smith's musical career and has been acclaimed by critics, audiences, and Smith [...]

ToDo ToDay: “Ten Freedom Summers,” Latino Art, Carl Craig, and Sparks

Setting Lyndon Johnson’s ambitious social policies to music seems equal parts brainy and boring. But Wadada Leo Smith’s jazz piece about the “Great Society” programs comes from a place more personal than political; it’s a portion of Ten Freedom Summers, his magnum opus dedicated to moments in the Civil Rights movement. Read more >>> Wadada Leo Smith [...]

Jazz Setlist, October 24-30: Freedom Summer in the Fall

Thursday, Oct. 24
The most common—inevitable, really—point of comparison you'll hear for vocalist Madeleine Peyroux is the great Billie Holiday. It's an obvious frame of reference; Peyroux shares Lady Day's easy, sliding phraseology and the husky edge to her instrument. Sometimes you could easily confuse one for the other. Still, don't go looking for a modern-day [...]

“What I’m Interested in Is Sound”: A Conversation With Wadada Leo Smith

This image is a section of a musical score by Wadada Leo Smith, the avant-garde trumpeter. Obviously, he doesn't use notation as you and I recognize it; Smith has a musical system he calls "Ankhrasmation," which merges the ideas of composition, improvisation, and performance into a single construction.
Currently a faculty member at the California Institute [...]

Jazz Setlist, Nov. 18-24: Tain, Wadada, and Other Nontraditional Names

Thursday, Nov. 18
In the neo-traditionalist jazz boom of the '80s, there was one dominant drummer: Jeff "Tain" Watts. He had (and has) all the virtuosity of your Marsalises, Millers, and Roneys—and anyone who claims there were no real innovators during that period would do well to listen to him play. The man can smear beats [...]