Archive for April, 2011
Template: Spring 2011 MIO Final Blog Compliation
Compilation will be due by noon on Tuesday, May 10th (email to firstname.lastname@example.org).
Below please write “what this class means to me,” which will be included in your blog compilation.
We will not have class 4/20.
Instead, please blog about a video of a class from last semester.
GLEN DAVID ANDREWS hopped down from an outdoor stage at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival in May, leaving his trombone behind. He sang in a powerful raspy voice, inflected with just a hint of Louis Armstrong. Segueing from one song to another – the controversial 1920s classic “Black and Blue” to the more recent brass-band tune “Cell Block Nine,” for example – he sprinkled each with improvised lyrics. “It’s my time,” he shouted between numbers.
Andrews, 30, has a lanky 6-foot-4-inch body and a mercurial personality. The brass-band music and traditional jazz he was raised on are still his greatest loves. “The musicians that played in my neighborhood, they brought me out of the womb,” he says, not by way of metaphor. According to his mother, Vana Acker, when she was pregnant, Anthony “Tuba Fats” Lacen, a traditional-music icon and mentor to many musicians, came by and blew his horn outside the house. He said the sound of the tuba would induce labor. Glen David was born the next day.
As a young boy, whenever a second-line parade passed by, Andrews tagged along with his older brother, Derrick Tabb, who is now the snare drummer with the Rebirth Brass Band. Back then, Andrews played bass drum. At 12, he picked up the trombone. Rather than studying formally, he absorbed musical skills from neighbors such as “Frogman” Joseph, Harry Nance, Harold DeJean and other local heroes - “the cream of the crop,” Andrews says. Soon he was playing for money alongside Tuba Fats in Jackson Square, in the middle of the French Quarter.
He was recruited into a brass band led by his younger cousin, Troy Andrews, and played in both the New Birth, Lil Rascals, and Tremé brass bands, among others, lending equal measures of musicianship and showmanship to each. Now he fronts his own high-powered ensemble that veers from traditional jazz to gospel, rock, blues and funk, all in the same show.
“Aside from being a great musician, Glen David has absorbed a fading tradition,” says Ben Jaffe, who runs Preservation Hall, where Andrews performs every month . “He’s a link for his generation to something important., but he also has a rare enthusiasm and energy that makes it all special and exciting for even casual listeners.” Though most contemporary brass-band musicians have embraced the more funk and pop-oriented sound of say, the Rebirth band, a shift that began some 30 years ago, Andrews always includes some of the old hymns, spirituals and trad-jazz tunes in his performances.
He released a live gospel CD, “Walking Through Heaven’s Gate”, on Threadhead Records in 2009, probably the first CD to have captured on record the entrancing quality of Andrews’ performances at venues like Jazzfest, Lincoln Center, Preservation Hall, Tipitina’s, and most powerfully of all, on the streets, where it all began.
He’s appeared in season one of HBO’s Treme, playing himself and performing one of his original tunes, Knock Wit Me, and has already filmed 2 episodes for season two. He has appeared in numerous documentaries, including Faubourg Tremé: The Untold Story of Black New Orleans, by Lolis Eric Elie, Swiss filmmaker Peter Entell’s chronicle of the controversial, post-Katrina proposed closing of St. Augustine Church, Shake the Devil Off, and Spike Lee’s two epics about Katrina, When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts, and If Da Creek Don’t Rise.
IRVIN MAYFIELD AND NOJO BUILD ON THE LEGACY OF ELLIS MARSALIS, HAROLD BATTISTE AND JAMES BLACK DURING MASTERS MONTH
Month-long series combines performances and educational seminars by UNO professors Steve Masakowski, Victor Atkins, Ed Petersen, and the launch of a modern jazz masters archive at UNO.
(March 9, 2011) – New Orleans, LA: Irvin Mayfield and the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra (NOJO) in partnership with the University of New Orleans (UNO) announced today the launch of Masters Month, a celebration of the modern jazz masters of New Orleans, including pianist and Marsalis family patriarch Ellis Marsalis, producer, composer and arranger Harold Battiste, and the late drummer James Black. The musical canon of these Jazz masters will be explored at weekly performances at Irvin Mayfield’s Jazz Playhouse, at special master classes for UNO students and at workshops for school-age students at the New Orleans Jazz Institute’s Saturday Music School. Also, the complete work of Ellis Marsalis, Harold Battiste and James Black will be collected and archived at the University of New Orleans. Each of the performances will also be recorded at UNO.
“By performing, teaching and archiving the work of Ellis Marsalis, Harold Battiste and James Black, we are fortifying their legacy, so that musicians and audiences can experience their masterful music today as well as in the future.” states Irvin Mayfield, Grammy award-winning trumpeter and director of the New Orleans Jazz Institute at UNO. “One of NOJO’s missions is to highlight the origins of Jazz, and Masters Month allows us to explore and capture the music of some of the most prolific musicians of the modern jazz era of New Orleans.” adds Ronald Markham, CEO and President of the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra.
Led by UNO professors Steve Masakowski, the Coca-Cola Endowed Chair and Director of Jazz Studies; and NOJO members, Victor Atkins, the Graduate Coordinator of the Department of Music; and Ed Petersen, Associate Chair of the Department of Music and Coordinator of Jazz Studies, March Masters Month includes the following:
Irvin Mayfield’s Jazz Playhouse at the Royal Sonesta Hotel
- Tuesday, March 15, 8pm – The Music of Ellis Marsalis featuring Victor Atkins
- Tuesday, March 22, 8pm – The Music of Harold Battiste featuring Ed Petersen
- Tuesday, March 29, 8pm – The Music of James Black featuring Steve Masakowski
- Friday, April 8, 2:30-4:30 pm – A Celebration of the Masters featuring Steve Masakowski, Victor Atkins and Ed Petersen during French Quarter Festival
UNO Campus: Irvin Mayfield’s “Music Inside Out” class, 6pm
- Wednesday, March 16 – The Music of Ellis Marsalis by Victor Atkins
- Wednesday, March, 23 – The Music of Harold Battiste by Ed Petersen
- Wednesday, March 30 – The Music of James Black by Steve Masakowski
UNO Jazz Studies Master Class: Friday, April 1, 2:30-4:30 pm – Combined Master Class with live performances, UNO PAC 103
Saturday Music School, New Orleans Jazz Institute at UNO
School-age students will learn the compositions of Ellis Marsalis, Harold Battiste and James Black.
- March 19, 9am-11am: Workshop with Ed Petersen
- March 26, 9am-11am: Workshop with Victor Atkins
- April 2, 9am-11am: Workshop with Steve Masakowski
- Saturday, April 9th, 4-5pm: Professors to perform one song each with Saturday Music School students at FQF
Archive & Recording
UNO professors are collecting the works of Ellis Marsalis, Harold Battiste and James Black. Also the following commissions will be recorded at UNO:
- The Music of Ellis Marsalis, Victor Atkins
- The Music of Harold Battiste, Ed Petersen
- The Music of James Black, Steve Masakowski
The New Orleans Jazz Orchestra (NOJO) is a performing-arts organization whose goal is to strengthen the business of jazz through performances, touring, recordings, education and media platforms. Founded in 2002 by trumpeter, composer, arranger and bandleader Irvin Mayfield, NOJO’s mission is to inspire freedom and culture in the individual and the global community by creating authentic, engaging jazz experiences, while celebrating the origins and transforming the future of jazz. A non-profit organization, NOJO is engaged in innovative partnerships with Tulane University and the University of New Orleans, where it established the New Orleans Jazz Institute and its Saturday Music School for children. In 2010, NOJO won a Grammy Award for the Best Large Jazz Ensemble for its debut CD Book One. To learn more about NOJO visit, www.thenojo.com
The New Orleans Jazz Institute serves to promote education, collaboration, and leadership in the jazz community. Founded in partnership with University of New Orleans and the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra in 2008, the mission of the New Orleans Jazz Institute (NOJI) is to link UNO’s strengths in jazz education with the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra’s strengths in professional practice and performance. NOJI serves to promote creative excellence and best practices in Jazz composition, performance, scholarship, importation, exportation, and education.
NEW ORLEANS MODERN JAZZ MASTERS BIOGRAPHIES
Ellis Marsalis is regarded as the premier modern jazz pianist in New Orleans. Born on November 14, 1934, he began formal music studies at the Xavier University junior school of music at age eleven. After high school Marsalis enrolled in Dillard University as a clarinet major. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in music education in 1955. Marsalis spent the next year working as an assistant manager in his father’s motel business. The following year Marsalis then joined the U.S. Marine Corps and while stationed in southern California began honing his skills as a pianist on a television show entitled Dress Blues and a radio show called Leatherneck Songbook. After completing a stint in the Marine Corps Marsalis returned to New Orleans and married Dolores Ferdinand, a New Orleanian, who bore him six sons; Branford, Wynton, Ellis III, Delfeayo, Miboya and Jason.
In 1964 Marsalis moved his wife and family of, at the time, four sons to the small rural Louisiana town of Breux Bridge where he became a school band and choral director at Carver High School. After two years, Marsalis returning to New Orleans and began freelancing on the local music scene. Between 1966 and 1974 Marsalis would perform at the Playboy Club, the Al Hirt nightclub, and Lu and Charles. He entered the teaching profession again as an adjunct professor at Xavier University.
In 1974, Marsalis returned to school and worked on a Masters Degree at Loyola University. In the same year, Marsalis also secured a teaching position at the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, a new Magnet school for the arts. He would spend the next twelve years at NOCCA as an instrumental music teacher with a Jazz studies emphasis.
In 1986 Marsalis accepted the position of Commonwealth Professor at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia. He would spend two of the three years as coordinator of Jazz Studies before returning to New Orleans and the University of New Orleans to become the Director of the Coca-Cola endowed Chair of Jazz Studies Department.
Marsalis received Honorary Doctorate degrees from his alma mater Dillard University in 1989 and Ball State University in 1997. Marsalis enjoys national recognition and has been a guest on several network television shows. He continues to be active as a performing pianist leading his own group and has several recordings on the CBS-SONY label. He is currently developing his own recording label, ELM RECORDS, with his wife Dolores and son Jason.
On August 10, 2001 Marsalis officially retired from the University of New Orleans after twelve years as the first occupant of the Coca Cola Jazz Chair and the Director of the Jazz Studies Division.
Though he’s little known outside of New Orleans and never recorded an album under his own name, drummer James Black was a Crescent City legend capable of performing everything from complex modernist jazz to gritty funk. An accomplished composer as well, Black had a reputation for being an irascible bandleader, intimidating with his personality just as much as his skill.
Born in New Orleans on February 1, 1940, Black soaked up the city’s trademark “second line” rhythms from a young age, and by the early ’60s was already doing session work for the likes of Fats Domino. His main interest was jazz and he played in a group with the young Ellis Marsalis on piano and Nat Perrilliat on sax. Nat Adderley (along with brother Cannonball) used all three on his 1962 session In the Bag, to which Black contributed two compositions. The following year, Marsalis cut an underrated album of modern jazz called Monkey Puzzle; this time out Black handled four of the seven compositions, including the intricate 5/4 piece Magnolia Triangle, which ranks as perhaps his greatest work. Black went on to play with Yusef Lateef and Lionel Hampton in the mid-’60s, although his career was interrupted by a stint in the Angola State Penitentiary (during which time he actually played in a prison band with blues pianist James Booker and saxophonist Charles Neville).
In the late ’60s, Black paid the bills with R&B gigs around New Orleans, and in 1968 caught on at the Scram label as a house drummer. He played on Eddie Bo’s Hook and Sling, helping to make it one of the great New Orleans funk singles, and soon took his place alongside Smokey Johnson and the Meters’ Ziggy Modeliste as one of the city’s top funky drummers. Meanwhile, he continued to play jazz on the side as part of Ellis Marsalis’ band ELM Music Company; they took up residency at Lu and Charlie’s beginning in 1972 and became local favorites. During the ’70s, Black also led his own group, the James Black Ensemble, which often featured his longtime girlfriend “Sister Mary” Bonette on vocals. He attempted several times to record a full-length album, including once for the Sound of New Orleans label and another time at Allen Toussaint’s studio, but the sessions never progressed beyond a few tracks. Black continued performing in New Orleans into the ’80s, still playing with Ellis Marsalis (as well as Marsalis’ then-teenage pupil, Harry Connick Jr.); he also served as the drummer for the 1982 Marsalis Family album Fathers and Sons. Black died of a drug overdose on August 30, 1988.
In 2002, the Night Train label assembled a compilation of mostly unreleased tracks, many from Black’s aborted LP sessions; I Need Altitude: Rare and Unreleased New Orleans Jazz and Funk, 1968-1978 ran the gamut from heavy funk and psychedelic soul to soul-jazz, and featured several of the drummer’s own vocals. In the spring of 2003, Ellis and Wynton Marsalis presented a program of Black compositions as part of the Jazz at Lincoln Center series.
-Biography by Steve Huey
A native of New Orleans, Harrold Battiste is a professional composer, arranger, performer and teacher. A graduate of Dillard University, Battiste is a critically acclaimed publisher, producer, conductor and musical director for studio, stage, motion pictures and television with credits in jazz, classical, blues and pop.
He co-produced and arranged the career-launching recordings You Send Me by Sam Cooke, I Got You Babe by Sonny and Cher, You Talk Too Much by Joe Jones, I Know by Barbara George YaYa by Lee Dorsey. Battiste produced the first albums Gris Gris, Babylon and Gumbo introducing New Orleans artist Mac Rebennack as Dr. John.
From 1976 to 1977, Battiste served as Musical Director to the Sonny & Cher Show and as Touring Musical Director for Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis in 1977.
He initiated the first African-American musician-owned record label All For One and publishing company At Last Pub. Co. On this label, Battiste recorded the first contemporary jazz artist in New Orleans including clarinetist Alvin Batiste, drummers Ed Blackwell and James Black, saxophonists Nat Perrilliat and Alvin “Red” Tyler, and pianist Ellis Marsalis.
Battiste joined Ellis Marsalis in 1989 on the Jazz Studies faculty at the University of New Orleans after 30 years in Los Angeles.
Harold Battiste has served on the:
- Louisiana State Music Commission
- New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation School of Music (Founding Board)
- Louisiana Jazz Federation (past President)
- Black Music Hall of Fame (Executive Board)
- African Cultural Endowment (President)
- Congo Square Cultural Collective
- The Department of the Interior’s National Park Service appointed him to the New Orleans Jazz Park Commission.
- WWOZ Community Advisory Board