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Noah Haidu Returns to Bop Stop with a New Trio and a New CD

To the jazz fans of northeast Ohio, pianist Noah Haidu‘s September 28, 2020 appearance at Bop Stop was as important for its symbolism as for its musical interest.  The concert, which premiered his “Doctone” CD, was the first in six months at the Hingetown club by touring national musicians. The message was, emphatically, music is back.

“That was really a great gig,” Haidu said Sunday from his home in New York. “That was actually the first time the three of us got on stage together, [drummer] Rudy Royston and  [bassist] Eric Wheeler. We had a chance to record it and listen back. Yeah, it was a beautiful set.”

Fifty-nine weeks later, Haidu is back with a new trio of legendary bassist Buster Williams and drummer Carl Allen touring behind a new recording, “Slowly: Song For Keith Jarrett” (Sunnyside Records). It’s a record that was in the works at the time of his last Cleveland visit, though not exactly in the form that it eventually took.

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Joey De Francesco, Guitarist Shubh Saran and Maria Schneider Headline a Busy Week for NEO Jazz Stans

On any given day on any of the jazz fanboy groups on social media (and it’s overwhelmingly boys) you’re likely to run into images like this one.

They’re usually accompanied by a complaint that moans, essentially, “Why can’t things be like that again?” To which I might answer: have you looked at what’s happening in Cleveland this week?

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Chris Coles “Nine Lives Project” Offers Grace Through Music, Dance and Visuals

Chris Coles

When Akron saxophonist and educator Chris Coles composed his “Nine Lives Project” as a response to the 2015 murders by a white supremacist of nine black parishioners at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, S.C., anger was not on his mind. Even after the tumultuous events of 2020, “Nine Lives”chooses light over heat.

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Aaron Parks Returns to the road with a tour beginning at Cleveland’s Bop Stop

Aaron Parks had no problem filling the last 19 months of time once occupied by touring, recording and doing musician things. “We got a puppy in February 2020. And then we found out that we were pregnant in March 2020. And then everything shut down like 10 days after we found that out,” Parks said by phone last week. New fatherhood brings new challenges. “He just turned one, and he just discovered how to climb up the stairs, which is a little bit terrifying. He doesn’t walk yet, but he knows how to climb the stairs.”

That’s a big step for the little guy, but Parks Senior is a little more cautious about stepping out. When he kicks off his tour Friday at Bop Stop at the Music Settlement, it will be the pianist’s first touring gig since the lockdown.

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Previewing Dixon’s Violin at Dafmark Dance Theater

Photo by Aaron Lingenfelter

Dixon Hammond is a seeker. The violinist will appear in concert at Dafmark Dance Theater on October 1 as Dixon’s Violin. Hammond, 51, plays what he calls “visionary violin,” but though Dixon’s Violin is just Hammond and his five-string electric violin, the music is multilayered and textural thanks to an array of pedals, electronic looping effects and music software that he wrote for his own use. It’s also completely live and in the moment; Hammond doesn’t use pre-recorded backing tracks or samples. He is fond of introducing musical numbers by telling audiences that they are about to hear “something that has not been created yet.”

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