Tag Archives: Hillside Club
Rio de Janeiro native Ricardo Peixoto has spent almost his entire adult life in the United States, but his music is still steeped in the luscious melodies and insinuating rhythms of Brazil. The Oakland-based guitarist joins forces with another Brazilian master, pianist Marcos Silva, Saturday at the Hillside Club, performing his original music with flutist Bob Afifi and bassist Aaron Germain in various duo, trio and quartet configurations.
“It’s all Brazilian-based in terms of rhythm and harmonic vocabulary, but it always includes improvisation,” Peixoto says. “My tunes reflect my background, which is classical guitar, jazz, and a whole bunch of Brazilian rhythms: choro, baião, samba. I usually don’t like the term Brazilian jazz because it brings up associations I don’t particularly care for. I think of music as music, and I’m not particularly faithful to any tradition.” … Continue reading »
When it comes to jazz and new music, the Bay Area is a medium-sized pond that sustains a dazzling array of small, often intermingled scenes. It’s an ecosystem in which a tropical profusion of players has found a niche, and among the most versatile and gifted is reed master Sheldon Brown, who is equally accomplished on an array of clarinets and saxophones.
The Eureka native moved down to San Francisco in 1979, and he’s been turning up in some of the region’s most interesting ensembles ever since, from Club Foot Orchestra, which revived the art of composing and performing scores for silent films, to Berkeley’s Klezmorim, the band that helped spark the revival of Ashkenazi Jewry’s party music.
He’s toured and recorded widely with Cuban pianist Omar Sosa’s expansive ensemble. And he’s played a key role in Clarinet Thing, the all-clarinet ensemble led by Beth Custer, and Hemispheres, a world jazz combo led by percussionist Ian Dogole. … Continue reading »
Trumpeter Erik Jekabson isn’t among the Berkeley High Jazz Band’s best known alumni, but that says more about program’s glittering roster of graduates and Jekabson’s far-ranging musical interests than any deficit in talent or imagination.
Since graduating in 1991, Jekabson has collected several degrees from conservatories (Oberlin and San Francisco Conservatory of Music) and extensive first-hand knowledge from veteran masters in New Orleans and New York City. Equally comfortable composing chamber music or West African-inflected funk, he possesses a lustrous, singing tone and an expansive rhythmic vocabulary. He also has a knack for assembling interesting ensembles.
Jekabson performs on Friday at Berkeley’s Hillside Club (a venue with a fascinating story itself), accompanied by largely the same cast featured on his impressive 2010 CD, “Crescent Boulevard”, which he released on his own label: Jekab’s Music. Featuring ace bassist John Wiitala, pianist Grant Levin, drummer Smith Dobson V, and special guest John Santos on percussion, the band is focusing on new Jekabson pieces conceived specifically for these players. … Continue reading »
Ian Dogole has a knack for assembling singular, talent-laden bands. A percussionist with a global vision and a truckload of instruments from far-flung lands, he’s turned his attention to the vast and wondrous world of Wayne Shorter, the saxophonist and composer who has shaped jazz ever since joining Art Blakey’s Jazz Messenger in the late 1950s.
The Marin-based Dogole presents his Shorter Moments project Friday at the Hillside Club, introducing a quintet featuring rhythmically supple bassist Dan Feiszli, supremely versatile pianist Frank Martin, and inventive reed players Dave Tidball and Mike Zilber.
Supported by a grant from San Francisco Friends of Chamber Music, Shorter Moments encompasses the saxophonist’s entire career, from his early recordings for VeeJay and his epochal run with Miles Davis in the mid-1960s through his hugely influential Blue Note albums and Weather Report, the trailblazing fusion supergroup he founded with Joe Zawinul in 1970. … Continue reading »
By Susan Anglin
Berkeley ceramicist Ehren Tool is less concerned with our position on war, than with making sure that all non-veterans are made very aware of its consequences.
Tool’s vehicle for achieving this end are the thousands upon thousands of clay cups he has thrown, decorated and fired over more than a decade.
Tool has experienced war first-hand. He served as a Marine during Desert Shield and Desert Storm in 1991, leaving the Corps in 1994.
His art … Continue reading »
Chua’s views on parenting have triggered an explosion of heated debate internationally after the Wall Street Journal ran a provocative excerpt of her book on January 8 titled “Why Chinese Mothers are Superior” (a headline she does not approve of). A number of people who had booked tickets online to see Chua in Berkeley were turned away after Brown Paper Tickets oversold the event.
More than 200 people, roughly half of whom were Asian, made it into the Hillside Club, several choosing to stand to hear Chua being interviewed for over an hour and a half by KPFA’s Aimee Allison. Chua, who has local roots in that her father, Leon O. Chua, teaches at UC Berkeley’s College of Engineering and she attended El Cerrito High School, spoke breathlessly about her memoir which, she said, had been misrepresented as a parenting guide. … Continue reading »