Mack Avenue Records Takeover with Alfredo Rodriguez and Cameron Graves Trios, Mr. Musichead Gallery

December 12, 2018 What a monster night last Wednesday with the Mack Avenue Records Takeover of Mr. Musichead Gallery. Featuring two richly textured and completely energized piano trios. The new to me Alfredo Rodriguez was lyrical and joyful, as if the best of mid-career Pat Metheny flowed through the ivories via Cuba and Brazil. Bassist Munir Hossn, he of the cheshire grin and constant motion, would switch to a nylon string cutaway in quieter moments, and both Rodriguez and Hossn picked up the sticks to join drummer Daniel Rodriguez in percussive celebration before closing with a samba take on “Thriller”. (Q, a big influence on pianist Rodriguez). After a break, Cameron Graves took the rest of the night in another direction, mixing material from last year’s stellar “Planetary Prince”with new material for his trio, that includes Maximillion Gerl on bass, and the phenomenal Mike Mitchel on drums. Graves and fellow West Coast Get Downers Kamasi Washington, Miles Mosley, Ryan Porter, Ronald Bruner, Jr. among them, continue to shape and push and challenge and tug at jazz traditions, and hearing this trio do it’s thing in such an intimate space was a thriller of a different sort. Especially, drummer Mitchel, who […]

Newport Jazz Festival 2018, Fort Adams, Rhode Island

Music keeps you young. One didn’t have to look further than 92-year old George Wein introducing 80 year-old Charles Lloyd on Saturday to figure that out. Wein, co-founder and patriarch of all things Newport Jazz, was delighted when Lloyd wanted to kick off his ninth decade at Newport and Wein bestowed him the honor of 2018’s artist in residence, with Lloyd performing in strikingly different musical settings over the festival’s three days.   Count myself lucky this year to cover both the Folk and Jazz weekends at the Fort and still had the glow from the Folk Festival as the town pivoted with ease from one to the other. Monday night was a table setter at the 5th Element for trumpeter Doug Woolverton and Joshua Hill, an up and coming pianist who sat in, and I would get to know better as the week went on (and so will you in the years ahead).   As with Folk the previous weekend, discoveries are at the heart of Newport Jazz. And while I consider myself pretty steeped in the stuff, I was familiar with, perhaps, a quarter of the acts coming into Friday. While Still Dreaming featuring Joshua Redman and Brian […]

Arroyo Seco Weekend, Brookside Golf Course, Pasadena

June 23-24, 2018 Arroyo Seco Weekend is not fussy. The beer is thick with local crafts, the something for everyone eats abundant with vegetarian options, and, yes, it felt like a day in the park with a rich soundtrack. The inclusive, relaxed setting and vibe made for one of most satisfying fest experiences I’ve had outside New Orleans. Goldenvoice worked out many of the freshmen kinks to bring us a uniquely L.A. area festival that was musically textured and easy to navigate, with zero attitude, when it so could have gone the other way. No need to pony up for VIP treatment here. Getting around was no issue, food and (pricey) drinks were never too far, Rose Bowl bathrooms were always an option, and while the Oaks stage was packed for headliners, it was manageable and easy to get close throughout most of the day. Oh, did I mention parking was included with entry? Even with only three stages, I still racked up 7-8 miles a day covering 30 of 36 acts over the weekend, but the 8th and 9th holes and driving range of Brookside felt like carpet compared to most fests. Near perfect June weather helped. Saturday highlights […]
Jun 08
by Jim Brock in Reviews 1 comments tags: 610 Stompers, Aaron Wilkinson, accordion, Acura Stage, Aerosmith, Amanda Shaw, Americana, Anders Osborne, Anita Baker, Archie Shepp, Astral Project, Beck, Ben Ellmen, Big Chief Red, bluegrass, blues photography, Blues Tent, Bo Dollis, Bonerama, Brandon Lewis, Buddy Guy, Butler Bernstein, Cage the Elephant, cajun music, Carolyn Wonderland, Charles Lloyd, Charlie Gabriel, Chris Mule, Christian Scott, classic rock, Clint Maedgen, Commodores, concert photography, Congo Square Stage, Corey Henry, Darcy Malone, Dave Malone, David Byrne, David Shaw, Debbie Davis, Delbert McClinton, Dianne reeves, Dirty Notes, Doug Kershaw, Dumpstaphunk, Ellis Marsalis, Epiphone guitar, Erica Falls, Eye on the Music, Fais Do-Do Stage, Fats Domino, Galactic, Gentilly Stage, George Benson, George Wein, Gibson SG, Givers, Glen David Andrews, Gospel Tent, Henry Butler, Hiss Golden Messenger, Honey Island Swamp Band, Hot 8 Brass Band, Hot 9, Hot Rize, Instruments a'Comin', Irma Thomas, Ivan Neville, Jack Johnson, Jack White, Jake Shimabukuro, Jason Isbell, Jazz & Heritage Stage, jazz photography, Jeff Raines, Jesse McBride, Jim Brock Photography, Jimmy Buffett, John Boutte, John Mahoney Big Band, John Mayall, Johnny Sketch, Johnny Vidacovich, Jon Batiste, Kermit Ruffins, Kidd Jordan, Lagniappe Stage, Leah Chase, Les Paul, Leyla McCalla, Lionel Richie, LMB, Lucinda Williams, Lyle Lovett, Mardi Gras indians, Mark Mullins, MC Taylor, Mike Dillon, Mr Sipp, music photography, New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, Nicholas Payton, Old Crow Medicine Show, Paul Sanchez, Police, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Quint Davis, Radiators, reggae, Rich Vogel, Robert Mercurio, Rolling Road Show, Ron Carter, Ronell Johnson, roots music, Ruthie Foster, Samantha Fish, Shamarr Allen, Shannon Powell, Sheryl Crow, Sonny Landreth, Stanton Moore, Stephen Bernstein, Steve Miller, Steve Riley, Steve Tyler, Sting, Stratocaster, Sturgill Simpson, Talking Heads, Tank & the Bangas, Telecaster, Terence Blanchard, The Revivalists, Thinline, Threadheads, Tipitina's, Tipitina's Foundation, Toots & the Maytals, trombone, Trumpet Mafia, ukelele, Walter Trout, website, Wild Magnolias, WWOZ Jazz Tent

Reflections and Musings of a Jazz Fest Photographer – 2018 Edition

April 27 – May 6, 2018 Best Jazz Fest ever? It’s a tie between the last one and the next one. Jazz Fest 49 was no exception. Seven Fest days and 30 minutes of rain. Unheard of. Unexpected discoveries? Check. Food I’m still working off? Check. Love in an Elevator? Never mind. Yes, Aerosmith at Jazz Fest had some folks head scratching when announced, but they went over big at their only gig of the year. And, as any Fest vet knows, it ain’t about the BNAs (“big name acts”). While this year was solid with the likes of Sting, Rod Stewart, Beck, Jack White et al. who knew the place would be abuzz over Socks in a Frying Pan from Ireland? Aah, but I digress… This photographer is fortunate to have a few ease in days ahead of Fest and we got in the mood Thursday night with Tony Hall, Terence Higgins, Roosevelt Collier and Jonathon “Boogie” Long funking up Jimi at NOLA Brewing on Tchoup. Fueled by a bellyful of BBQ pork and house brew, this was a boatload of fun with plenty of room to move in the beer warehouse by day room. The playing was loose, […]

Tedeschi Trucks Band, Orpheum Theatre

November 11, 2017 Spoiler alert – pretty sure this won’t be an objective take on what transpired at the second of two nights with the Tedeschi Trucks Band at the historic Orpheum Theater in DTLA. I flat out think the TTB is one of the best touring bands on the road anywhere. It’s not just the nimbleness of a 12-piece unit that can fly like a jazz trio, or the cauldron that launches Derek Trucks’ journeys, or the purr to a growl joy of Susan Tedeschi matching those Strat/Tele/Les Paul driven sparks. TTB jams with intention and purpose built on a foundation of soul and blues, in their own voices and fused by those recently and long departed. To cut through it, the world hurts right now. In a big way. Music, the good stuff, whatever that it is for you, matters more than anytime since I’ve been around. The TTB is my good stuff, and damn, if I don’t want that to wash over me any chance I get. That chance was Saturday night. The 15-tune, two-plus hour set went deep, but really took off for me with “Midnight in Harlem”, a deceivingly languid stroll beautifully sung by Susan […]

Jim Brock Photography and Revel Cafe & Bar

Working with owners Chris and Laura McMillan, a select group of Jim Brock Photography open edition prints will be displayed at Revel Cafe & Bar in Mid-City New Orleans, beginning Sunday November 5, 2017. If you are in town, drop by Revel next Sunday between 6:30 and 8:30 for some nibbles and beverages and a chance to catch up when it’s not the craziness of Jazz Fest.  To those who haven’t checked out Revel, this gastro lounge founded by fourth generation bartender McMillan, with food by chef Jose Ayala, is a personal favorite go-to along Carrollton and I am really tickled that Chris and Laura McMillan have kindly offered Revel to display my work.  As a photographer based far from New Orleans, I can’t keep my lens away from its musical heartbeat. I know I am a visitor, an interloper of sorts, deeply drawn by what I hear and what I see. It is especially meaningful that these prints have a home in New Orleans and I am proud and grateful they do.
May 28
by Jim Brock in Reviews 0 comments tags: 20 Feet From Stardom, Aaron Neville, Aaron Wilkinson, Acura Stage, Adonis y Osain Del Monte, Alabama Shakes, Alex McMurray, Americana, Anders Osborne, Batiste family, Beausoleil, Blodie's Jazz Jam, blog, blues guitar, blues photography, Blues Tent, Blues Traveller, Bonerama, Brady Blade, brass bands, Brittany Howard, Buddy Guy, cajun music, Carl Dufrene, Charles Neville, Chris Mule, concert photography, Congo Square Stage, Cowboy Mouth, Craig Klein, Cuba Pavilion, Cuban music, Dairus Rucker, Dave Matthews, Dave Torkanowsky, David Shaw, Dawes, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Dumpstaphunk, Economy Hall Tent, Eric Lindell, Eric McFadden, ES-335, Eye on the Music, Fais Do-Do Stage, Galactic, Gentilly Stage, George Porter, Gibson Firebird, Gospel Tent, Greg Hicks, Gregory Davis, Harry Connick, Heartbreakers, Helen Gillet, Honey Island Swamp Band, Instruments a Comin', Ivan Neville, jam bands, Jazz and Heritage Stage, Jazz Epistles, jazz photography, JBP website, Jeff Raines, Jeff Tweedy, Jesse McBride, Jim Brock Photography, Jimmy Herring, Joey Alexander, John Bell, John Boutte, John Popper, Johnny Sansone, Jon Batiste, Jonathon Boogie Long, Jonny Lang, Judith Owen, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Kris Royal, Kristin Diable, Lagniappe Stage, Lake Street Dive, Lakland bass, Leo Nocentelli, Leon Bridges, Lisa Fischer, live music photography, Lone Bellow, Lorde, Lucien Barbarin, Margo Price, Mark Mullins, Michael Doucet, Mike Campbell, Mr Sipp, music photography, New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, New Orleans music, Pedrito martinez, Rachael Price, Revivalists, Rhiannon Giddens, Rickenbacker, rock photography, roots music, Roots of Music, Runnin' Pardners, Skerik, Stanton Moore, Stay Human, Stevie Wonder, Taylor Goldsmith, Telecaster, Terence Blanchard, The Meters, Threadhead, Tipitina's Foundation, Tips Interns, Tom Petty, Tony Hall, Tower of Power, traditional jazz, Trey Anastasio. Languedoc, Trombone Shorty, trumpet, Tuxedo Brass, Voice of the Wetlands All-Stars, Waylon Thibodeaux, Wayne Toups, Widespread Panic, Wilco, WWOZ Jazz Tent, zydecajun

REFLECTIONS AND MUSINGS OF A JAZZ FEST PHOTOGRAPHER – 2017 EDITION

Heading home from Jazz Fest 48 it seemed I’d passed through a lifetime’s worth of sounds, tastes and bonding since arriving in New Orleans a few weeks back. Friendships deepened, the palette was bathed in constant indulgence, the liver took a bit of a hit and a soundtrack that will echo well into the dog days of Summer still resonates sweetly. For the uninitiated, Jazz Fest (short for the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival) is the most diverse musical party on the planet replete with 13 stages, tents and pavilions spread across the Fair Grounds Race Course, a few miles from the French Quarter. Quite simply, there is nothing like it. And, as with the city that bears its name, Jazz Fest is not something you wrap your head around, it’s something you feel in your exhausted and happy bones. And, man, were they exhausted and happy.  My perspective is of a working photographer first and a fan second. I am on task covering 15 – 20 acts and 7-8 miles of ground a day. My musical encounters are often brief, and occasionally cosmically timed. My colleagues in the pit are extremely talented and a pretty respectful and decent bunch to […]

Newport Jazz Festival 2017

Jim Brock Photography is proud to contribute to the Newport Festival tradition with this splash image for next year’s Jazz Festival, the first under incoming Artistic Director Christian McBride.. Early flex tickets available now.

Lucinda Williams, Royce Hall

March 4, 2016 It seems many established acts are getting more artistically liberated in the deep end of their careers, or is that just me? Whether it’s an unusual union (David Crosby and Snarky Puppy come to mind in the moment), reaching way back into an early catalog, or running through entire albums from first groove to last, there’s a more untethered attitude towards a body of work than I ever recall. With a thriving concert renaissance, such deep track experiences and artistic reach have become especially rewarding for fans and bands alike (despite Billy Corgan’s distaste). Less constrained by sales and image, these can indeed be very satisfying times. Lucinda Williams knows this territory well. Long before Bruce rolled out The River from coast-to-coast, Williams played a 5-night stand at the El Rey Theatre running through her first five albums in their entirety in 2007. Yet, in the early days of her career, albums and tours had the frequency of a Terence Malick flick. Then “Car Wheels on a Gravel Road” reached the masses and deservedly expanded her audience who mostly knew her tunes, but not the writer. A mighty vein was struck and an outpouring of excellent albums […]

The Infamous Stringdusters and Della Mae, The Troubadour

February 25, 2016 Some serious stringing occurred at The Troubadour last week courtesy of another nice Bluegrass Situation Presents double bill of the globe trotting Della Mae first on before the Infamous Stringdusters. The women of Della Mae’s resumes are top flight and they pulled no punches during their hourish set. Oh, and did I mention they know how to squeeze every bit of languor from “Love in Vain”?               Celia Woodsmith prepped the crowd for the “face melting” Infamous Stringdusters and she wasn’t far off. The floor was packed for these guys and their devotion among the growing jamgrass legion was apparent. Not a lot of pickers could make “In God’s Country” sound straight out Music City. Fiddler Jeremy Garrett fueled the ‘dusters throughout their headlining set, who were joined by Della Mae’s Woodsmith and the Bay Area’s Nicki Bluhm for the last few tunes at the world famous Troub. In case their jamgrass cred left any doubt, guitarist Andy Falco and dobro player Andy Hall, as well as Nicki Bluhm, joined Phil Lesh and Friends at the Vegas Brooklyn Bowl later in the week for what I heard was a pretty fine […]