The SFJAZZ 2011 Fall Season is well underway, and there are still plenty of exciting shows to look forward to. While presenting the best living jazz on the planet, SFJAZZ has become well known for new and innovative artists as well as top-notch international artists.
These are the shows I am most excited about:
Saturday, October 16 India.Arie and Idan Raichel, Paramount Theater
This fascinating combination of bohemian soul and Israeli world-fusion-pop peaks my curiosity. Both Arie and Raichel create music expressing love for the self and humanitarian love and I’m hoping that in their new collaboration of the album, Open Door, they continue the trend. They’ll be playing at the Paramount Theater in Oakland, which is always a treat to visit.
Saturday, October 22 Joshua Redman and Brad Meldau, Herbst Theater, 7pm and 9pm
The pairing of Redman and Meldau is a little bit more of a no-brainer as the jazz greats have been touring together for a decade. Both artists stand at the cutting edge of modern jazz, cultivating wildly creative sounds from infusing grunge, rock and orchestral elements. Redman and Meldau will double up at the Herbst Theater, playing an early show and a late one for maximum listening pleasure.
Saturday, October 29 Pomplamoose, Yerba Buena Center
I’ve worked with the YouTube famous duo Pomplamoose so I might be a little biased, but fans have been pleasantly surprised to discover that Jack Conte and Nataly Dawn are not just a nice internet friendly experience, but also kick ass live. Their chemistry, charm and silliness translate seamlessly to the live setting.
Sunday October 30 Bassekou Kouyate and Ngoni Ba, Yerba Buena Center
Music is built into Malian culture and society, which is why the Bay Area sees dozens of Malian artists passing though every year. As a griot, Kouyate plays the ngoni, a small four-string lute. The effect of the virtuosity needed to play the ngoni, along with the slow, yet driving rhythm and soulful vocals is one unlike anything found on this continent. Kouyate has collaborated with pop luminaries U2 and Carlos Santana.
Friday November 18, Anonymous 4, Grace Cathedral
Any show in Grace Cathedral is a special one. When SFJAZZ programs a show for this space, the artist will always incorporate the reverberation in to the performance. However, the four-member vocal a Capella Anonymous 4 traditionally sings music created by the Catholic Church especially for a space much like Grace Cathedral. So while their set will most likely span a thousands years (at least), this performance celebrating 25years of the Anonymous 4 is one to look forward to, as voices and harmonic space dance to create beautiful sound.
For more information visit sfjazz.org