Friday Five: Vincent York, Declination, Seaholm, Fantishow, Visual Purple

MUSIC FRIDAY FIVE

Friday Five: Vincent York, Declination, Seaholm, Fantishow, Visual Purple

Friday Five highlights music by Washtenaw County-associated artists and labels.

This week features straightahead jazz by Vincent York, thrash metal by Declination, emo by Seaholm, classic-style techno by Fantishow, and garage rock by Visual Purple.

 

Singer-songwriter Allison Russell brought her "Outside Child" and open book to The Ark

MUSIC REVIEW

Allison Russell by Marc Baptiste

Photo by Marc Baptiste

Singer-songwriter Allison Russell seeks out what she calls the “hidden canon” of the oral tradition: the songs, stories, lore passed on through time, primarily from and for women. Ann Arbor's The Ark is one of those places where the hidden canon has been voiced frequently for a very long time, and Russell’s concert there on February 25 felt like the perfect place to carry on that tradition.

Friday Five: Lily Talmers, Cashmere Washington, KUZbeats, Eastside Jazz Collective, Oren Levin

MUSIC FRIDAY FIVE

Friday Five album covers for February 25, 2022

Friday Five highlights music by Washtenaw County-associated artists and labels.

This week features atmospheric folk from Lily Talmers, soulful shoegaze by Cashmere Washington, electronica via KUZbeats, swinging sounds from the Eastside Jazz Collective, pop courtesy of Oren Levin.

As part of its Black History Month celebration, musical theater met Kahil El’Zabar & Co.'s jazz in perfect harmony at Encore

MUSIC REVIEW

Kahil El‘Zabar and the Ethnic Heritage Ensemble on stage with singers from the Encore Musical Theatre, February 18, 2022

Kahil El‘Zabar and the Ethnic Heritage Ensemble on stage with singers from the Encore Musical Theatre, February 18, 2022. Photo courtesy of Encore.

The “great American songbook” and jazz have always had a strong relationship. Popular songs have been an important source for jazz improvisation from the very beginning and jazz has influenced popular music composers to adapt dynamic rhythms, blue notes, and the uptempo style of the emerging jazz players of the 1920s.

The Encore Theater is celebrating Black heritage with an exciting pair of musical reviews this month. On February 18, a program called Modern Jazz Meets Musical Theater made a strong case that the popular music of the golden age from the 1920s to the 1950s was a collaboration of a diverse group of performers and composers that is still rich and vibrant today. Many of those who created the American Songbook were first-generation immigrants from Europe and Black Americans who found a common voice.

The man making that case is, as the Encore program says, the legendary Kahil El’Zabar, an inspired percussionist, driving band leader, and wise teacher. El‘Zabar and his Ethnic Heritage Ensemble joined forces with four superb singers to give us a sampling of show tunes, blues, and pop standards in a smokey setting on the Encore stage. Each song segued from vocalist and band to rich, lively, thought-provoking jazz improvisations on the music and then rounded back to the singers.

Friday Five: Colin Stetson, MSD, Bulb Records, Thunderbuck Ram, MEMCO mixes

MUSIC FRIDAY FIVE

Friday Five album covers for February 18, 2022

Friday Five highlights music by Washtenaw County-associated artists and labels.

This week features a horror-movie soundtrack by Colin Stetson, an upbeat electronic album by MSD (Mike Dykehouse), a Bulb Records noise-rock compilation, wah-wah rock by Thunderbuck Ram, and a whole slew of techno and dance mixes by the MEMCO crew.

Friday Five: Idle Ray, Adam Shead Quintet, KUZbeats, Corrupt Immortal, Paralyzer

MUSIC FRIDAY FIVE

Five album/EP/singles covers from this week's Friday Five artists: Idle Ray, Adam Shead Quintet, KUZbeats, Corrupt Immortal, Paralyzer

Friday Five highlights music by Washtenaw County-associated artists and labels.

This week features indie-pop by Idle Ray, experimental jazz by Adam Shead, cinematic electronica by KUZbeats, weirdtronica by Corrupt Immortal, and instrumental thrash metal by Paralyzer.

The One Love Symposium aims to bring together public service professionals and the people they serve through conversation, music, and art

MUSIC PREVIEW

One Love Symposium 2022

The One Love Symposium (February 17-19) offers the community a chance to engage with public service professionals and help design a certification program to foster more effective communication between people in need or crisis and those who are called upon to help.

The symposium begins on Thursday, Feb. 17 at Ypsilanti District Library, Whittaker Road Branch. Local high school students will be presenting original musical and theatrical performances, as well as participating in a panel discussion with law enforcement, education, and healthcare professionals including Washtenaw County Sheriff Jerry Clayton, EMU Police Chief Matt Lige, Ann Arbor Pioneer High School Principal Tracey Lowder, and others.

The Symposium continues on Friday, Feb. 18 with a special virtual edition of Jazz Chat Live, hosted by Detroit Jazz Festival director Chris Collins and featuring a discussion with renowned jazz performers Marion Hayden, Sean Dobbins, Keyon Harrrold, and Marcus Elliot. Following the discussion will be a live performance by trumpeter Allen Denard at the Andy Theatre in Detroit.

Saturday, Feb. 19, the Symposium wraps up with a virtual panel discussion on alternative methods of gauging public opinion.

Friday Five: Chirp, Telesonic 9000, zagc, Evan Starr & Naxxar, Nadim Azzam

MUSIC FRIDAY FIVE

Album and single covers collage. Artists featured: Chirp, Telesonic 9000, zagc, Evan Starr and Naxxar, and Nadim Azzam

Friday Five highlights music by Washtenaw County-associated artists and labels.

This week features a soulful jammer by Chirp, Kraftwerk-ian electronica by Telesonic 9000, a MEMCO mix by zagc, hip-hop-pop by Evan Starr and Naxxar, and a new video by Nadim Azzam.

 

Friday Five: Lily Talmers, Daring Detour, Meg Brennan, Joshua Orange, Samn Johnson

MUSIC FRIDAY FIVE

Friday Five album covers for January 28, 2022.

Friday Five highlights music by Washtenaw County-associated artists and labels.

This week features electric solo folk from Lily Talmers, acoustic folk by Daring Detour, jazz by Meg Brennan, a techno/house mix by Joshua Orange, and experimental ambient and pop by Samn Johnson and friends.

 

UPDATED: Soul Message Band's "Live at Blue LLama" launches the club's new record label; album release concert announced

MUSIC

Soul Message Band, Live at Blue LLama CD back cover

This story was originally published on June 2, 2021. An album release concert is happening Saturday, January 29, 2022 at Blue LLama.

When you walk into Ann Arbor's Blue LLama Jazz Club, the first thing you notice isn't the sound booth. It's the curved long bar that starts near the front door, the ceiling's circle lights, or perhaps the textured sound-absorbing panels that line the back wall of the club. But the sound booth is outfitted with oodles of high-end audio and video gear, and Blue LLama is able to document every performance it chooses to with relative ease. Since the venue often books local artists, recording these shows will provide an invaluable resource covering the recent history of the Ann Arbor and Michigan jazz scenes.

But touring artists are also taking advantage of Blue LLama's high-tech capabilities.

The first live album recorded at the club came out last September on Denmark's venerable Storyville RecordsAdonis Rose Piece of Mind-Live at Blue LLama. The New Orleans drummer and Blue LLama artistic director Dave Sharp discussed making this record while the club was still being designed, and the results are an excellent mix of electric and acoustic jazz.

The club has now taken the next step and formed a label, Live at Blue LLama Records.