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Tag: Cleveland

Check Out Jazz at the Library with Céline Iris and Dan Bruce

A good measure of the health of a scene is the different kinds of venues that present the music.  You expect to find jazz at outdoor festivals, college music departments, concert halls and, of course, in jazz clubs. And yes, all music scenes have taken hits over the last 23 months, but the appearance of a jazz concert on a Sunday afternoon at a public library has to be taken as a hopeful sign.

When that concert, Sunday, 2 p.m. at Wadsworth Public Library, involves artists as eminent as guitarist Dan Bruce and vocalist Céline Iris, it’s a very positive development indeed.

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Soul Message Band Returns to Cleveland With Timeless Organ Trio Grooves

Soul Message Band Bop Stop 2020-02-01

Even if I hadn’t moved to Cleveland in 2019 I am probably a bit too young to have visited the many  jazz venues that once thrived in the city’s so-called second downtown on Euclid Avenue. On any Saturday night 60 years ago, the district would have been alive with working-class revelers going out to a club for a few beers, and an unpretentious good time. The soundtrack for this custom often involved a small combo (quaint word, that!) of Hammond B-3 organ, guitar and drums that offered bluesy music with a big beat. Capable of shaking the room at a volume level that could rival a big band’s, the B-3 can also issue bedroom confidences in a whisper that could hush a crowded room. No wonder an archipelago of organ trio bars sprang up from Newark and Philadelphia on the eastern seaboard to the industrial Midwest.

Soul Message Band Bop Stop 2020-02-01Those places are gone now, but the organ trio hangs on as a vital formation in creative music in the Black American tradition, and one of the best is about to roll into town to rock the Bop Stop tomorrow night.

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Chris Hovan’s Quartet Brings Generations Together at Bop Stop Gig

Jazz has so many dialectics, you’d think it was invented by Socrates or Hegel. Inside/outside, written/improvised, traditional/avant-garde: all are ways of arriving at the truth about jazz.

As a journalist as well as a player, Cleveland’s Chris Hovan is surely familiar with these admittedly reductive categories and more–like this one: young/old. It’s implied in the name of his Generations Quartet, which will appear Thursday night at Bop Stop at the Music Settlement.

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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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