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January 2020 Issue

Martin Wind Newsletter

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"Mays plays Mays": new CD by Bill Mays and friends out on "No Blooze Music"
Recap I: Kennedy Center Honors 2019 weekend in Washington, D.C.
  1. 12/5: Ann Hampton Callaway's "Tribute to Linda Ronstadt" at the Kennedy Center
  2. 12/7: National Symphony Orchestra concert
  3. 12/8: Kennedy Center Honors Gala
JEN Conference in New Orleans
Mohonk Mountain Jazz Festival 2020
Scott Robinson Quartet at Jazz@Kitano
Northwest Tour of Matt Wilson and Honey and Salt
Ack van Rooyen turns 90!
First I hope that you all had a wonderful holiday season and a good start into the new decade; here is to a healthy, happy and swinging 2020!
 
I want to begin my first newsletter of the new decade with really exciting news:

"Mays plays Mays": new CD by Bill Mays and friends out on "No Blooze Music"


That's right, my dear friend and mentor for almost thirty years, pianist Bill Mays has just released his latest studio album "Mays plays Mays" on his own "No Blooze Music" label; it is now available on iTunes, CD Baby, and at www.billmays.net.

The album features Bill's long-standing trio of Matt Wilson on drums and myself on bass in addition to special guest appearances by Marvin Stamm on trumpet, and John Hart on guitar. Here is an excerpt from the promo:

"On many of his previous recordings, he primarily focused on other peoples' music--jazz chestnuts, classical themes, and Great American Songbook standards. Here, all but two of the 15 tracks are Mays compositions, celebrating people and places, encompassing the blues, a mini-suite dedicated to family members, a Manhattan neighborhood "soundscape," a Gershwin classic, various trio romps, and the composer himself on two vocals. Over the course of 68 minutes, Mays and his musical friends take you on a sparkling sonic journey, beautifully recorded by Matt Balitsaris and mastered by Michael MacDonald."

Here is what Dr. Judith Schlesinger's had to say about the album in her four-star-review for All About Jazz:

https://www.allaboutjazz.com/php/article.php?id=568661

Look out for more articles in major jazz publications over the next couple of months and put in your order now!
 

Recap I: Kennedy Center Honors 2019 weekend in Washington, D.C.

1.)    12/5: Ann Hampton Callaway's "Tribute to Linda Ronstadt" at the Kennedy Center 

 

On Wednesday, December 4 I hit I-95 South for my fifth consecutive trip to the Kennedy Center awards proceedings in Washington, D.C. After checking into the "KCH Awards Hotel", the Melrose Georgetown and our first read-through rehearsal the next morning I hooked up with my dear friend Ann Hampton Callaway and her band for a "Tribute to Linda Ronstadt" set on the Millennium Stage, where the Kennedy Center presents a free concert or comparable event almost every single day of the year!

Here is a video of our show; you'll be listening to Billy Stritch (piano, vocals), Bob Mann (guitar, background vocals), Tim Horner (drums) and Ann and I, playing my "Alien" acoustic bass guitar.
Ann Hampton Callaway's "Tribute to Linda Ronstadt" at the Kennedy Center. 12/5/2019


2.)    12/7: National Symphony Orchestra concert
 

We usually rehearse on Thursday, pre-record on Friday and do the dress rehearsal and the actual awards show on Sunday, which always gives us the Saturday off. I love exploring the city, spend hours on walks and museum visits and for the past three years have attended concerts of the National Symphony Orchestra.

This year's program included Sergei Rachmaninoff's 1st piano concerto, as well as Aaron Copeland's 3rd Symphony. The conductor was Leonard Slatkin, and the piano solo part was performed by the phenomenal Olga Kern, who I ran into in the hotel lobby later that evening:
National Symphony Orchestra
with Olga Kern
I loved the piano concerto, but Copeland's symphony just blew me away - what an amazing work!


3.)    12/8: Kennedy Center Honors Gala
 

After seeing the list of honorees and rehearsing the "Forrest Gump" play-on I was secretly hoping to meet one of the greatest actors of the last thirty years; of all the celebrities that were gathered at the gala, he was the one that - if I had a choice - I would love to have my picture taken with...and then it actually happened!!!
with Tom Hanks
Directly after the event was over I saw Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks with their wives trying to make their way out of the packed hall via the stage, avoiding the crowded aisles and exit doors. They stopped for some cold pizza, which had been put out for the stage crew and started to walk towards me. 
Just as I had packed up my bass Tom appeared chewing, following the Spielbergs and his wife; I looked straight at him, and he looked back at me saying: "You're the bassist, you guys were amazing!" to which I responded "You're amazing, too! Would he mind taking your photo with me?" After we took this shot I thanked him and said "Enjoy your cold pizza" to which he proclaimed "There is nothing wrong with cold pizza!"....and that was my encounter with Tom Hanks. A lot of my friends and family members actually did not recognize him with that beard, clear glasses and receding hairline, but it sure was him!

Other highlights of the evening included Trisha Yearwood and Aaron Neville's Duet of "Don't know much" as part of the tribute to Linda Ronstadt (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FT78_adVbC0), as well as the final number of the evening, a star-loaded rendition of the hit"September" by supergroup Earth, Wind and Fire (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Q2mMUG_wwo).
Linda Ronstadt Tribute - Kennedy Center Honors
Earth, Wind and Fire Tribute - Kennedy Center Honors

JEN Conference in New Orleans

From January 7 - 9, 2020 I will be attending the annual jazz musician schmooze-a-long better known as the JEN conference, which will be taking place in New Orleans this year. On January 8 (my mother's birthday!) at 2 pm you will find me at the Imperial Ballroom Number 5 of the Hyatt Regency Hotel together with my pal Matt Wilson leading a workshop entitled "Bandstand Assistance" about the special bass/drums relationship in our music (or in music, period!). Some of our friends will be joining us on stage, so come by and "dig our scene"!

Mohonk Mountain Jazz Festival 2020

I will be heading back home a day before the official end of the convention, because on Friday, January 9 an event starts, that I do not want to miss a minute of; I'm talking about the 2020 "Jazz on the Mountain Festival" at the Mohonk Mountain House near New Paltz, NY. I'm very fortunate to have become an integral part of it over the years. The line-up looks intriguing as ever, and my duties will include performances with the Mohonk All-Stars, the Catherine Russell, La Tanya Hall, and Carolyn Leonhart Trio, and, as always, the festival-concluding Parlor Games.
Image of Mohonk Mountain House - https://www.mohonk.com/
Here are the details:

Friday, January 10, 9 pm: Mohonk All Stars
Featuring Scott Robinson (tenor sax), Dave Stryker (guitar), Helen Sung (piano) and Allison Miller (drums).
 
Sunday, January 12, 9 pm: Catherine Russell, La Tanya Hall, and Carolyn Leonhart Trio
Featuring Catherine Russell, La Tanya Hall, and Carolyn Leonhart (vocals), Helen Sung (piano) and Allison Miller (drums).
 
Monday, January 13, 10:30 am: Parlor Games Jam Session
Featuring whoever will still be on the mountain!
 
https://www.mohonk.com/events/music-arts/jazz-on-the-mountain/
 

Scott Robinson Quartet at Jazz@Kitano


After last year’s release of “Tenormore” we had a really nice run of gigs with Scott’s quartet. Try to catch us at the club, which has become our “home base” – the wonderful “Jazz@Kitano” on the corner of Park Avenue and 38th Street in New York City!
Friday and Saturday, January 17 &18, sets at 8 and 10 pm: Jazz @ Kitano
66 Park Ave, New York City, www.kitano.com; for reservations: 212 – 885 – 7119
 
Scott Robinson Quartet featuring Scott Robinson (tenor sax), Helen Sung (piano) and Dennis Mackrel (drums)

Northwest Tour of Matt Wilson and Honey and Salt


On Friday, January 24 I’ll be heading out with Matt Wilson’s great “Honey and Salt” band/project for three concerts in two of my favorite states to visit: Montana and Washington State!
Matt Wilson’s Honey and Salt featuring Matt Wilson (drums), Dawn Clement (piano, voice), Jeff Lederer (saxes), Nadje Noordhuis (trumpet)
 
Here are the dates:
 
Friday, January 24, 7:30 pm: The Myrna Loy Theater, Helena, MT
https://themyrnaloy.com/happenings/matt-wilson/
 
Saturday, January 25, 7 pm: University of Montana, Missoula, MT
https://www.umt.edu/music/academics/ensembles/jazz/upcoming-events.php
 
Sunday, January 26, 6 pm: The Seaons Performance Hall, Yakima, WA
https://theseasonsyakima.com/events/the-seasons-presents/matt-wilson-honey-salt-tour-inspired-by-the-poetry-of-carl-sandburg

Ack van Rooyen turns 90!

You might not all be aware of the incredible Dutch trumpeter Ack van Rooyen, but please take my word for it: he is an absolute gem and one of the most melodic improvisers you will ever hear!
Ack with Clark Terry and Harry Carney
Clark Terry once called him one of his favorite trumpet players in the world, and he is without a doubt a European Jazz Legend, who became one of the go-to soloists for large ensembles such as the Kenny Clarke - Francy Boland Big Band, Peter Herbolzheimer's Rhythm and Brass, the United Jazz and Rock Ensemble and several of the German Radio Bigbands. 

For more info check out his bio: https://www.ackvanrooyen.com/bio/

While roaming Ack’s website I found this amazing photo with Mark Murphy (1st from left), Ack’s brother, the arranger and conductor Jerry van Rooyen (3rd from left) and John Clayton all the way on the right – this looks like some 70s action alright!
 
His brother Jerry was the chief conductor of the WDR Bigband in Cologne for a long time, and one of the most swinging arrangers in Europe; during my student years in Cologne I remember hanging out at the rehearsals of that band a lot, and I also played soccer with Jerry and other jazz musicians at a field along the Rhine river. 
And John Clayton??? !!!That's a whole other story...

Ack turned 90 years old on January 1st, and a couple of months ago I got to play a concert and record my latest album with him in Belgium, together with our friend Philip Catherine on guitar. 

When I called Ack to congratulate him a few days ago I mentioned how happy I was about the way the recording had turned out, and that he had played like an angel on it. His response was "well, I don't know about that - maybe like a retired angel!"
Photo by Olff Appold
Hopefully, I will be able to share some news regarding the release of the album, soon.
Martin Wind - "Light Blue"
Available at martinwind.com/lightblue
Also available on Amazon.com  and  ITunes
Martin Wind Quartet "Turn Out the Stars"
Available on ITunes,Amazon.com
Also available at WhatIf? Music
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