Monday, June 27, 2011


ENTER TO WIN 2 FREE TICKETS TO SEE THE 8:00pm or 10:30pm DOUBLE FEATURE AT THE HIGHLINE BALLROOM ON TUESDAY, JUNE 28 - RON CARTER TRIO ft. Mulgrew Miller & Russell Malone + TOM HARRELL GROUP: JAZZ MEETS CLASSICAL - DEBUSSY & RAVEL at the Highline Ballroom! The giveaway is first come first served so enter quickly and we'll get back to you by tomorrow afternoon if you are a winner!


1. Email your name and phone number to

2. In the Subject Line, please title your email "BN BLOG CONTEST - RON CARTER + TOM HARRELL"

3. Indicate which set you would like to attend (8:00pm or 10:30pm).


Sunday, June 12, 2011

Review: Brian Wilson at the Highline Ballroom,

By Jim Bessman

Brian Wilson played the Highline Ballroom last night as part of its sister club's month-long Blue Note Jazz Festival, and though the two-set show featured his entire current Brian Wilson Reimagines Gershwin album of Gershwin standards, it wasn't jazz, really, but no less demanding--and rewarding.

The Beach Boys' beloved creative genius brought a 12-piece band of multi-instrumentalists/vocalists--and a local female string section--and all lived up to his contention that it's one of his best bands ever.

The Gershwin album, which was conceived under the aegis of his hero George Gershwin's estate, led off the second set--the first being a breathtaking recreation of Beach Boys classics ranging from the ultra-romantic 1963 ballad "Surfer Girl," his first composition, to the symphonic "Heroes And Villains" of 1967. While Wilson's ability to sing his signature falsetto vocal leads and harmonies is long gone, guitarist Jeff Foskett was downright spooky in mimicking it on hits like "Don't Worry Baby" and "Wouldn't It Be Nice."

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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Vinicius Cantuaria & Bill Frisell at Highline Ballroom, NY Times Review

Enjoying the Quiet Pleasures of a Meeting of Minds
By Nate Chinen

Vinicius Cantuária and Bill Frisell sat facing the audience, but angled toward each other, throughout their calmly transfixing show at the Highline Ballroom on Monday night. Each cradled a guitar — nylon-string acoustic for Mr. Cantuária, electric for Mr. Frisell — and both often had slight smiles on their faces, the sort of expression you might wear while hearing an old friend tell a fondly half-remembered tale. The setting was sparse, but the performance, part of the Blue Note Jazz Festival, conveyed a sense of fullness.

It lasted about 90 minutes and drew mainly from “Lágrimas Mexicanas” (E1), the album that Mr. Cantuária and Mr. Frisell released early this year. Produced by Lee Townsend, it’s a casually refined collaboration that takes advantage of both musicians’ versatility. In addition to guitar and vocals, Mr. Cantuária plays overdubbed hand percussion; Mr. Frisell plays acoustic and electric guitars and tends to an array of sampled loops. At times it sounds as if they’re working with a band.

That wasn’t the case in the show, and it turned out to be a good thing. Mr. Cantuária played his guitar without a pickup, using an external microphone and no discernible effects. Mr. Frisell flirted with some looping and occasionally used an octave pedal, but in both cases he exercised a scrupulous subtlety. Their roles were consistent: Mr. Cantuária sang and finger-picked a rhythmic scaffolding, while Mr. Frisell improvised light filigree, elevating the songs with his economical phrasing and softly glowing tone.

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Blue Note Jazz Club Celebrates 30th Anniversary (

New York City - In honor of its 30th anniversary, the Blue Note Jazz Club is opening its doors throughout New York City during the month of June for the inaugural Blue Note Jazz Festival. More than 80 shows featuring many artists who have performed at the Blue Note for years will take the city by storm at this year's largest New York jazz festival. More than 60,000 tickets are available.

The festival will feature a diverse group of high-profile artists including Dave Brubeck, Chris Botti, Nancy Wilson, Bobby McFerrin, Brian Wilson, The Roots, Chaka Khan, Roberta Flack, El Gran Combo, Jon Hendricks, Kathleen Battle, McCoy Tyner, Youssou N'Dour, Bill Frisell, Meshell Ndegeocello, Madeleine Peyroux and many more. In addition to presenting a special series of shows at the Blue Note, the club has scheduled shows at the Beacon Theatre, Town Hall, BB King Blues Club & Grill, Highline Ballroom, Terminal 5, Joe's Pub, Mercury Lounge, Rose Hall at Lincoln Center, Le Poisson Rouge, The Lehman Center for Performing Arts, and the Katonah Museum of Art.

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Saturday, June 4, 2011

Q&A with Brian Wilson

By Justin Tedaldi

Last year, one of the greatest American composers of the second half of the twentieth century paid tribute to one from the first on the album Brian Wilson Reimagines Gershwin. This week, fabled Beach Boys founder Brian Wilson salutes George Gershwin in a three-night run at New York’s Highline Ballroom beginning June 11 as part of the Blue Note Jazz Festival. In this exclusive interview, the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer sounds off on his musical legacy, his next album, and “Kokomo.”

Examiner: You’ve said that “Rhapsody in Blue” is one of your all-time favorite pieces of music. What do you like most about it?

Brian Wilson: The violin section and pretty harmonies.

Examiner: What kind of an influence has Gershwin’s music and the jazz genre had on you as a songwriter throughout your career? What was the first song you wrote or recorded that was linked to these qualities?

Brian Wilson: He inspired me to write good music. “Heroes and Villains” was completely inspired by that.

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