Updated: Sep 25, 2020
Judd Roth, Ruth Cooper and Jeff Hersch started something. To the small town of Flemington, New Jersey, (officially a borough, population about 4600) they brought a jazz series. With the help of local grants from Flemington Community Partnership and Hunterdon County, they've presented an increasingly popular run of jazz events. The Borough donates the use of a former bank building at 90 Main Street - complete with impressive steel-door vault. Roth invited some jazz legends and up-and-comers to perform on Saturday evenings. For five seasons (2016 – 2018) Roth has opened the doors of the now DIY Community Art Space that he shares with other local groups, to great names and superb jazz. Most recently, in the 2018 once-a-month series he welcomed the Mike Yamanaka Trio to open. Young new vibraphonist Sasha Berliner followed, and then Pedro Giraudo Tango Quartet with bandoneòn player Rodolfo Zanetti. The bandoneòn, BTW, is an instrument resembling a small accordion, originating in Germany but now identified with Argentina, and totally captivating. The last performance of the season, guitarists Olli Soikkeli from Finland and Brazilian Cesare Garabini, sold out. For those in the audience – the smallish room holds about 60 - it was well worth the $15 price of admission. The duo played Brazilian jazz with its deserved intensity, explaining the “choro” form beforehand, Gypsy jazz a la Django, and Henry Mancini’s theme from the movie Two for the Road. Truly versatile guitarists. You can check out the series' truly international array of musical talent on YouTube. Then sign up for the 2019 series which begins Saturday, January 26, 2019 and features pianist Tomoko Ohno, leading a trio including Marcus McLaurine (bass) and Samuel Martinelli (drums). They will be playing music from the album, “Crossing Paths.”
Updated: Apr 17, 2021
World-Class Vibraphonists Come to Arts Center
Jazz Vibes Showcase & Workshops
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: The World Vibes Congress is a gathering of professional players, college percussion teachers, and students whose mission is to promote the vibraphone through improvisation and composition, encouraging students to play and working with teachers to develop curriculum for the instrument. For the last six years, they have met annually in New Jersey each January.
In cooperation with the World Vibes Congress, in January, Hilton Head Island, South Carolina will host four of the best vibraphone players on the music scene today. Tony Miceli, Joe Locke, David Friedman and Warren Wolf will perform on Sunday, January 6 at 2pm on the Arts Center of Coastal Carolina’s mainstage.
As part of the Jazz Vibes Showcase on Sunday, January 6, the four will play individually with a rhythm section of professional musicians including Martin Lesch on piano, Chris Russell on drums, both local Island jazz celebrities, and Ron Brendle on bass, hailing from NC.
For the finale, these four incredible vibraphonists will perform together in a dynamic musical extravaganza. The mainstage performance is dedicated to the memory of Lowcountry jazz legend and owner of The Jazz Club, Bob Masteller. The event is co-sponsored by the Arts Center of Coastal Carolina and Junior Jazz Foundation.
As part of the Jazz Vibes Showcase, each of the four vibraphonists will present a 4-session Workshop Experience on Saturday, January 5, 2019 from 10am-3pm. A fifth player,
West Coast native Anthony Smith, will give a fith seminar at 3pm.
The two sessions before lunch are Tony Miceli's workshop "How to Study and Work with Chords and Harmony,” and Joe Locke’s session “Inspiration and Transformation - Creating New Lines for Improvisation.” Following lunch, Warren Wolf presents “Bebop and More,” and the final session will be David Friedman’s “Vocal Phrasing on a Hunk of Metal.” Smith's presentation is to be determined. Out of town guests can take advantage of special group rates at both Sonesta Hotel (130 Shipyard Drive, HHI 29928; 843-842-2400) and Park Lane Hotel & Suites (12 Park Lane, HHI, 29928; 843-686-5700). Contact either hotel directly for rates and details, or go online to artshhi.com/performance-shows/jazz-vibes-showcase to learn more.
Showcase tickets are $40 for adults and $20 for students (ages 18 and younger). The four-session workshop is $50, which includes lunch; or $25 with an early-bird concert ticket purchased by October 12; and $35 with concert ticket purchase after October 12. Visit www.artshhi.com or call (843) 842-2787 (ARTS).
The Arts Center is located at 14 Shelter Cove Lane, Hilton Head Island, SC and is a non-profit, 501(c)-3 organization, which includes professional theater productions, a Great Performances series, as well as region-wide educational and outreach programs. Gloria Krolak is co-producing the event with financial services industry wizard, Rich Speer.
Updated: Apr 17, 2021
It’s always a treat to hear in person a vibes player whose recordings I play on Good Vibes and this particular evening in October was no exception. Vibraphonist Joe Doubleday and his Showtime Band played The Jazz Corner in Hilton Head, his third sold-out performance there. From hot and swinging to cool and expressive, the quartet of pianist Gerand McDowell, bassist Karl Kohut and drummer Dag Markhus with Doubleday at the head, showed every sign of being the real deal. They wowed the super-attentive audience with tunes special to vibes pioneer Lionel Hampton, some of whom had seen Hamp in person back in the day. Others, unfamiliar with both Hampton and the instrument, heard Doubleday’s pithy explanation of the bars, resonators, and dampers that make up the vibraphone’s most important parts, something I never heard any player do on stage. A little education goes a long way to appreciation.
They opened with “Moonglow,” then went on to play over two sets, “On Green Dolphin Street,” “Red Top,” “Someday My Prince Will Come,” and “Honeysuckle Rose,” among others. Doubleday bowed out so his trio could play a sweet rendition of “Pennies from Heaven,” then returned for the Milt Jackson/Modern Jazz Quartet favorite, “Softly as in a Morning Sunrise,” the Gigi Gryce tune, “Minority,” and a rapid-fire rendition of “Night in Tunisia,” a pace that Doubleday seems to really relish. The photo was taken while they played, “Tunisia” during one of those high-speed rolls of the mallets. The closing tune was the Gershwin brothers’ “The Man I Love,” especially touching with Doubleday’s mom and dad from Oklahoma in the room.