Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Jazz Up Close & Classical Music in My Hometown

Jimmy Katz image
The Russell Library, 123 Broad Street in Middletown, presents the second installment of "Jazz Up Close", a series cured by pianist, composer and educator Noah Baerman and supported by Resonant Motion Inc., this Thursday at 6:30 p.m. in the Hubbard Room. In case you have never attended, Mr. B brings guest artists in to not only play jazz but also to talk about what and why they do what they do. This month, drummer/composer Johnathan Blake (pictured above) will join the pianist plus bassist Henry Lugo for a program that will surprise and move you.  Mr. Blake, the son of the late violinist John Blake, Jr., had worked with such fine musicians as trumpeter Tom Harrell, in the Mingus Big Band, the Kenny Barron Trio and with the 3 Cohens, is a dynamic drummer and maturing into an excellent composer.

The event is free and open to the public.  For more information, go to www.russelllibrary.org. To find out Johnathan Blake, go to his website at www.johnathanblake.com. To check out Professor Baerman's Top 10 Favorite tracks by father and son Blake, go to blog.noahjazz.com.

Here's a piece from the younger Mr. Blake's 2012 Sunnyside release "The Eleventh Hour." The hard-driving piece features saxophonists Jaleel Shaw (alto) and Mark Turner (tenor) plus bassist Ben Street.

This Saturday (5/16), the Library presents the Tesla Quartet in concert at 2 p.m. in the Hubbard Room. TQ is composed of violinists Ross Snyder and Michelle Lie, violist Edwin Kaplan plus the Russian-born cellist Serafim Smigelskly and have been together (with a few personnel changes) since forming in 2008 while attending the Julliard School in New York City.  The group's repertoire ranges from Haydn to Schubert to Mendelssohn to modern composers such as Matthew Browne.

The concert, free and open to the public, is co-sponsored by the Library and the Edythe & Arthur Director Family Music Fund of Congregation Adath Israel.  To find out more about the Tesla Quartet, go to www.teslaquartet.com.

Here's the TQ with a piece from Haydn:

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