new york jazz festival

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“I haven’t met many Romani people in New York yet. In Paris, the scene was rich and flourishing. The audience was captivated by this culture and you could see it inspired the way they dressed and the music they listened to. There is a bohemian quality to Paris that invites the people there to take interest in such things, but New York is very modern and business oriented. Most people don’t even know about the Romani culture. It’s funny though how jazz and Romani culture always seem to intertwine in my life: one important Romani figure I have met here and who has helped a lot with my career is patron of the arts Michael Katsobashvili, originally from Georgia, who launched the very first New York Hot Jazz Festival in a now legendary club called Mehanata. He also introduced me to a fabulous place called Drom, where I recorded part of “Music Explorer” and where many famous Romani bands from around the world have come to perform.” - Source

Scott LaFaro (April 3, 1936 – July 6, 1961) was an influential American jazz double bassist, best known for his seminal work with the Bill Evans Trio.

LaFaro died in an auto-mobile accident in the summer of 1961 in Flint, New York, four days after accompanying Stan Getz at the Newport Jazz Festival. His death came just ten days after recording two live albums with the Bill Evans Trio, Sunday at the Village Vanguard and Waltz for Debby, albums considered among the finest live jazz recordings.

LaFaro’s death took an enormous emotional toll on Bill Evans, who was, according to drummer Paul Motian, “numb with grief,” “in a state of shock,” and “like a ghost” after LaFaro’s death. Evans, according to Motian, would play “I Loves You Porgy”, a song with which he and LaFaro became synonymous, almost obsessively, but always as a solo piece. Evans also went on hiatus after LaFaro’s death for a period of several months. Many believe that Evans never fully recovered from the loss.


Jazz on Film


Lee Morgan Documentary Nears Release

These two reviews of the Lee Morgan documentary I Called Him Morgan by Kasper Collin make this film sound like essential viewing. Collin, who made the amazing My Name Is Albert Ayler documentary nine years ago, is a tireless researcher and an excellent film maker. The documentary will be show at the New York Film Festival on October 2 and hopefully will get decent distribution.

-Michael Cuscuna


Read the Variety review…
Readthe Guardian review…

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