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Tenor madness at the last Brookstreet jazz jam of 2015

View photos from the jam session with the HML Trio at the Options Jazz Lounge at the Brookstreet Hotel:

Every Christmas, Ottawa jazz fans get an extra gift. Ex-pats who've been away studying or performing and developing as musicians in Toronto, Montreal, or the U.S. return to see family, and share their new skills and techniques in jams or their own local shows.

The swinging sounds of "Tenor Madness", performed by the duo of Claire Devlin and Chris Maskell, enlivened the jazz jam at the Options Jazz Lounge at the Brookstreet Hotel on December 17. Also contributing to the groove were the host band, the HML Trio, including J.P. Lapensee on bass and Alex Moxon on guitar ©Brett Delmage, 2015

On Thursday, December 17, listeners at the long-running weekly jam at the Options Jazz Lounge at the Brookstreet Hotel received an extra gift of liveliness from several ex-pats. Saxophonists Claire Devlin and Chris Maskell were in from Montreal, and pianist Deniz Lim-Sersan from Toronto.

Joining the host band the HML Trio (Alex Moxon, J.P. Lapensée, and Jamie Holmes), and a good selection of Ottawa-area players, they contributed to several hours of mostly upbeat jazz standards that kept the room swinging.

Devlin and Maskell teamed up on “Tenor Madness”, pushing each other to greater heights, with Lim-Sersan adding bright piano underneath. That song and similar standards inspired a few listeners to get up and dance in the aisles, while Brookstreet owner Sir Terence Matthews cleared extra space in front of the stage for them to dance.

There was a steady stream of musicians on and off the bandstand, playing everything from drums to trumpet to accordion to vocals.

Read more: Tenor madness at the last Brookstreet jazz jam of 2015

 

Rake-Star returns with Ra energy to IMOO at Ra(w) Sugar tonight

"Space is the Place" - Linsey Wellman evokes an extra-terrestial experience in the light of the Mugshots bar   ©Brett Delmage, 2015

Tonight (Sunday, October 25), the Rake-Star Arkestra will fill the Ra(w) Sugar Café with layers of intense sound, cool experimentation, and jaw-droppingly-inventive hats. Rake-star is an Ottawa collective of nine adventuresome musicians and improvisers who gather periodically to plumb the songbook of the great Sun Ra – and substantially improvise on Ra's material,

OttawaJazzScene.ca was at the Arkestra's show at the now-closed Mugshots bar on February 28, to bring you a visual feel of their show.

View photos of the February 28 Mugshots performance in our new photo gallery

See related OttawaJazzScene.ca stories:

 

Music in Motion: The Miguel de Armas Latin Jazz Quartet

 ©Brett Delmage, 2015

There's a physical excitement and vibrancy to Afro-Cuban jazz that transcends cultural and language barriers.

You can see that when Cuban pianist Miguel de Armas and his Latin Jazz Quartet perform, and even more in the full scale Afro-Cuban celebration that he's hosting at Shenkman Arts Centre on Saturday - which includes dancers.

OttawaJazzScene.ca was at the quartet's regular monthly show at Brookstreet's Options Jazz Lounge this month, when they were joined by several of the guest musicians – Caridad Cruz on vocals, Roberto Jerez on violin, Alejandro Vega on guitar – who will also perform at Saturday's celebration at Shenkman Arts Centre.

View photos of the September 4 Brookstreet show

Read more: Music in Motion: The Miguel de Armas Latin Jazz Quartet

 

A happy, bumpin' beat at the Elmdale

March 29 is the final day to hear organist Don Cummings and drummer Mike Essoudry's Bumpin' Binary duo at the Elmdale Oyster House and Tavern ©2015 Brett DelmageEach Sunday afternoon in March, drummer Mike Essoudry and organist Don Cummings have brought their Bumpin' Binary duo to the Elmdale Oyster House and Tavern in Hintonburg.

When OttawaJazzScene.ca walked over to see them on March 14, the room was almost full with a crowd clearly listening to the infectious mixture of jazz and R&B. Another attraction – particularly for the younger crowd and those more technologically inclined – was the intricate wiring on the back of Cummings' Hammond organ, which was facing the crowd.

The duo's last show is this Sunday, from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m., with special guest Tony Diteodoro on guitar, The Elmdale will continue late afternoon shows on Sundays this spring, with different groups each being showcased for a month. Subscribe to OttawaJazzScene.ca's weekly newsletter to get advance details about jazz-related shows.

   – Alayne McGregor


Photo: March 29 is the final day to hear organist Don Cummings and drummer Mike Essoudry's Bumpin' Binary duo at the Elmdale Oyster House and Tavern ©2015 Brett Delmage


   

Rake-star and hats to make a second orbit at Mugshots tonight

David Broscoe ©Brett Delmage, 2015Ottawa's Rake-star Arkestra brought the musical energy and extra-terrestrial feeling of Sun Ra to the Improvising Musicians of Ottawa-Outaouais (IMOO) concert on January 15. The seven musicians that comprised the arkestra that evening delivered a highly improvised set that had the audience smiling and frequently laughing with them at their fresh musical creations.  The concert included a Sun Ra composition, Moog synthesizer, and an essential, but quieter, set of hats.

They're making a second orbit tonight at Mugshots (8:30 p.m. 75 Nicholas Street - the old jail hostel). Their full planetary system will include John Sobol (baritone sax, tenor sax), Jamie Gullikson (drum set, percussion), and Don Cumming's full size Hammond organ. Come prepared for "a spirited, raucous and occasionally beautiful time."

View photos from this concert

    – Brett Delmage

See also: Rake-star aims for the sublime, and sometimes the chaotic, in Sun Ra's music


View the photos

   

Jazz Scene: Jazz Heard! OttawaJazzScene.ca celebrates 5 years, with a photo exhibit

The 'Jazz Scene: Jazz Heard!' exhibit: Just like any performance, you'll have to attend in person to fully appreciate it

OttawaJazzScene.ca is 5 years old on July 3! We're celebrating this milestone with a special photographic print exhibition of the Ottawa-Gatineau and Canadian jazz scene.

Originating in my work as OttawaJazzScene.ca's photojournalist, Jazz Scene: Jazz Heard!  speaks about the connections between listeners and musicians, photographed over the past decade.

The exhibit includes images made in many different locations, outside and inside, in small cafés and giant halls, mid-day and late at night, at festivals and one-time concerts.

There's something special about making an archival-quality, fine art photographic print to hang on a wall. As the famous landscape photographer Ansel Adams stated, “The negative is comparable to the composer’s score and the print to its performance. Each performance differs in subtle ways.”

Making my digital image is an essential first step in the public performance of my art, but it's only the beginning. The printing process provides opportunity to shape my digital score by cropping, and tonal and chromatic adjustments in subtle ways, and to select a paper that supports the image.

Read more: Jazz Scene: Jazz Heard! OttawaJazzScene.ca celebrates 5 years, with a photo exhibit

   

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