Unusual instruments, unusual sounds.
BY BRETT CAMPBELL
When last we spotted Erik Friedlander, the intrepid New York cellist was exploring the boundaries of his instrument in a moody, even spooky solo interpretation of surrealist French poetry at The Shedd. It was an amazing show, though not for the timid.
On Wednesday, March 30, Friedlander returns to The Shedd with his quartet Topaz to play original jazz and other improvised chamber music in a show that's hardly conventional — quick, think of another jazz cellist — but should appeal to music lovers from your average Pat Metheny fan to denizens of the downtown NYC clubs Friedlander frequents.
|Friedlander (right) has worked with musicians as diverse as Laurie Anderson, Dar Williams and Joe Lovano, and played Broadway shows and PBS specials.|
Friedlander has worked with musicians as diverse as Laurie Anderson, Dar Williams and Joe Lovano, and played Broadway shows and PBS specials. His accessible yet adventurous Topaz music has seamlessly incorporated Indian, Persian, klezmer and other world music influences while maintaining his jazz and funk base. Although the quartet (which includes sax/reedman Andy Laster, fretless bass master Stomu Takeishi, and percussionist Satoshi Takeishi) can reach the outer limits, this is one of those rare concerts of exploratory improvised music where you can sample something deliciously different without being assaulted by burp-shriek free jazz cliches.
One of Friedlander's New York co-conspirators is the expatriate Brazilian singer/ songwriter/ guitarist/ percussionist Vinicius Cantuária, who plays The Shedd on Saturday, March 19. I discovered Cantuária's atmospheric lyricism in Bill Frisell's sublime Intercontinentals. But long before that, he was writing songs with David Byrne and Caetano Veloso (and playing in the latter's band), working with Brian Eno, DJ Spooky, Laurie Anderson and many other forward- thinking musicians, and leading the electronica-tinged resurgence of Brazilian pop. If you like the classic bossa nova of his idols Antonio Carlos Jobim and Gilberto Gil (whom he covers often), you'll groove to Cantuária's updated 21st century Brazilian cool.
If jazz cello isn't odd enough for you, how about jazz harp or flute? On Tuesday, March 29, Park Stickney and Rüdiger Oppermann will play originals and covers of music by Duke Ellington, Miles Davis, Sting and more at the UO's Beall Concert Hall. And on Thursday, March 31, flute innovator Mattias Ziegler plays Beall in a program that flits back and forth across the increasingly ephemeral boundary between jazz and contemporary classical music. Although he plays the traditional repertoire in his day job as principal flutist in the Zurich Chamber Orchestra, Ziegler's electro-acoustically amplified contrabass flute can produce a startling range of sounds and textures in contemporary compositions.
More avant-improv music appears at DIVA, where on March 30, you can hear California's Adrian Rollini Trio, featuring vibraphonist Nathan Hubbard, bassist Justin Grinell, and drummer James Burton. On March 29, DIVA hosts a trio of out-there sound and noise artists from Los Angeles: Cal Arts performance artist Adam Overton, a former jazz drummer who specializes in computer-assisted sound performance and installation that "explores the body, the mind and the medium … through the use of biometric sensors and interactive sound software"; Bob Bellerue, who uses feedback and other electronic and computer trickery, along with metal, bamboo, radios and other sources to produce strange soundscapes; and Albert Ortega, "sound situationist" who builds instruments and creates sound environments, such as (I'm not making this up) a goat playing a percussion-enhanced slinky. And you can hear contemporary Asian-influenced music by non-Asian composers at DIVA on Sunday, March 27, when guitarist Stefan Gaelens joins classical soprano Yu-Cheng Lu in works by Wisconsin composer/ percussionist Brandon McIntosh, influenced by Hindustani and Korean music.
Jazz heads might recognize some of the sounds at the Eugene Symphony concert on March 17, featuring one of the great 20th century guitar showcases, Joaquin Rodrigo's Concierto de Aranjuez, which Miles Davis and Gil Evans memorably transformed on Sketches of Spain. Lyrically evoking Baroque influences and Spanish scenes, it's one of most deservedly popular of 20th century classical compositions, and it'll be played by a master of contemporary guitar music, David Tanenbaum. The show also features one of the most popular Romantic symphonies, Dvorak's ninth ("From the New World"), and his Carnival Overture.
Looks like we're going to have to head out of town to hear anything approaching contemporary opera this year, but Kurt Weill's landmark 1947 Street Scene is well worth the drive up the 5 to hear Portland Opera's production of this American classic on March 26 and 31 and April 2. Based on a Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Elmer Rice, it boasts lyrics by Langston Hughes and paints a vivid portrait of immigrants in New York.
Heart on the Line
Canadian singer/songwriter Ferron plays Paradiso.
BY KAREN B. OLCH
No doubt Ferron has the ability to pull from the depths of the human soul and through the core of the heart to create music which is quintessential poetry. Her artful crafting of lyrics is second to none.
|Ferron Café Paradiso, 8 pm. Friday 3/18. $15.50 adv/$17 door. 484-9933.|
This brilliant Canadian singer/songwriter had her beginnings as one of seven children of a working class family in the outskirts of Vancouver, B.C. After leaving home at the age of 15, her search to understand the human spirit led her along many paths: cab driving, waiting tables, working in coffee factories and fish canneries. She draws on those experiences in soaring songs and her autobiographical lyrics strike a universal chord.
Ferron's body of work reflects the introspective, searching nature of someone who has lived with depth and intention. Of her own work she says, "I feel this responsibility to say something and have it be true for me. The fit to me is finding that my work somehow resonates on a deep level with other people and they find that it is also true for them."
With flawless precision, Ferron nails it on the head every time. Her lyrics are incisive and insightful. If you are human, you have experienced love, loneliness, questioning, kindness and loss. Ferron translates the essence of these feelings into her songs, and conveys a reverence for the most basic of human emotions.
With 11 recordings to her credit over the past 27 years, Ferron has danced in and out of view, but always reappears to find an ever-faithful following of fans. With her first two albums recorded in 1977 and 1978 respectively, her next recordings, Testimony (1980) and Shadows on a Dime (1984) catapulted her into the spotlight.
But it was six more years before she released Phantom Center followed by a live recording, In a Still Life, and her only instrumental recording, Resting With the Question (both in 1992). In 1994, Diver made it to second place on The New York Times' top 10 albums list.
Like other unique and stellar musicians, her deal with a major label (1995 to 1997) didn't last. You can't dilute this woman. And lucky for us, she remained true to herself and struck back out on her own once again. In 1999, she released a light, fun album of cover tunes, Inside Out: The IMA Sessions, followed in 2000 by the retrospective Impressionistic. In March, she'll release her newest album, Songs From A Goat Path, on her own label Fair and Loving Music.
Ferron helps us perfect the art of listening, forcing us to stop in our tracks and take heed of that inner voice. She encourages us to shout an emphatic "Yes!" to life in all its raw, gritty pain and joy and sorrow and exuberance. Her image-filled lyrics will stretch and expand the confines of your heart. Guaranteed.
DJ Dan-O-Mite pops off at the McDonald.
BY STEVEN SAWADA
Oxblood red paint and gold-framed mirrors canvas every inch of wall space as star shaped disco lights dart between the floor and ceiling. The shiny black bar stretches seductively across a background of multi-colored glass bottles illuminated by a gigantic, gold-framed plasma screen television.
|DJ Dan-O-Mite and guests McDonald Theatre Lounge, 9:30pm-2am Friday 3/18 & 25 Free www.mcdonaldtheatre.com|
Stowed away in the far corner of the room, dressed in a velour, navy blue Lacoste sweater, a pair of pure white Adidas shell toes, and colorful striped golf slacks, DJ Dan-O-Mite's wiry 6-foot frame blends in perfectly with the posh decor of the McDonald Theatre Lounge.
His style is unfadeable.
At 37, Dan Lococo, continues to rock with the best as well as the youngest DJs Eugene has to offer. This Los Angeles native moved to Eugene 10 years ago, trading in the bustle of the big city for a relaxed family-friendly environment. "I wanted a simpler life," he says. "I want fresh water. I want fresh air. I don't want a busy town. I was pretty much over the nightlife scene because I had been doing it for so long."
In his laid back Southern California surfer vocal inflection, Lococo explains how over the past 20 years, his approach to DJ-ing morphed from a dizzying social affair to a more relaxed hobby focused on creating moods. Although he admits his love of playing to ravenous, beat-hungry partiers, Lococo says he knows his days in front of hundreds at packed clubs is over. "My ego wants that again," he says. "I want to be able to play the right stuff and make the people dance and have everybody like what I'm doing. But it really is like more of a hobby now. It's kind of like I'm retiring."
With grace and wisdom, Lococo weaves an intimate, mature atmosphere from a smooth pulse of deep, soulful house, upbeat dancehall and old school hip hop. "I'm not really trying to make people dance," he says. "I'm just trying to create a good environment for people to chill, have a drink, and socialize."
Hip hop's enlistment of the DJ as a musician, or someone who creates new sounds from old records, has slightly skewed the public's perception of the role of the DJ. Whereas some DJs scratch and cut-up beats and samples with their records and turntables, Lococo's focus is more on the record itself, the original song in its entirety and the mood it creates. Instead of scratching or beat juggling, he seamlessly blends songs of varying rhythms and tempos to energize or mellow the mood of the audience. "I gotta give those guys (turntablists) respect," he says. "The skills they have as far as manipulating one sound with the cross fader and their hand is an art. The other spectrum of that is the beat mixing and playing songs the crowd wants to hear."
Although he incorporates a small amount of scratching over his selection of classic tunes, Lococo says his strength as far as DJ-ing is in the depth and variety of his crate, or record collection. He can flawlessly move from the joyful, innocent bump of Musical Youth's "Pass the Dutchie" to a sophisticated deep house groove. He'll mix in a little bit of A Tribe Called Quest with The Brand New Heavies.
He credits this style of DJ-ing to an older crew of DJs who mix hard-to-find, rare-groove, funk and soul tracks with newer, underground hip hop, dancehall and acid jazz. The always affable and generous Lococo often splits his sets with other old school local DJs including Tim Stubson, Hanif, Tekneek, Jeff Ray, and Eugene Chism.
Once in a while, you can catch Lococo sharing a set with the Brothers of Beat at Café Lucky Noodle on Saturdays. The Lounge at the McDonald Theatre also showcases DJ Dan-O-Mite several Fridays a month. You can always check the theater's online calendar for Dan-O-Mite's next appearance.
Pearl Django's got it going on.
BY MELISSA BEARNS
Some musical forms are like bell-bottoms and day-glo. They're popular. Then they're not. And decades later they enjoy a renaissance. But the people who still have a pair of embroidered, hip-hugger jeans with flared bottoms stashed away in the attic have moved on to more comfortable elastic waistbands. To the fresh-faced fashionistas, the style is new and cutting edge.
Django jazz is like that. On the heels of WWI and the roaring '20s, caught up in the whirlwind of Paris in the 1930s, a legend emerged from the cacophony of automobiles, airplanes and machines. Django Reinhardt cut a swath through the new world and carved an indelible place for himself at the top of guitar history. Playing with Stéphane Grappelli in the Quintette du Hot Club de France, his music continues to influence guitarists today, particularly musicians who improvise. Both Trey Anastasio (Phish) and Beck list Reinhardt as one of their major influences.
Born in Belgium and a member of the Sinti tribe of gypsies, Reinhardt was a rising star when his left hand was badly injured in a fire. The perceived loss of one of the most promising guitarists to emerge from the gypsy culture was devastating to many — legend has it that people cried when they heard of the accident. But Reinhardt rehabilitated his partially paralyzed hand enough to continue playing.
Forced to develop a new style that accommodated his disability, Reinhardt is now considered the grandfather of django jazz — an upbeat, swingy, jazz-based style now enjoying a surge in popularity, both in Europe and in urban U.S. communities with strong jazz followings. It's especially popular in the Northwest, with a big scene in Seattle, Portland and San Francisco.
Seattle-based Pearl Django is one of bands leading the resurgence of django jazz. Listening to the lyrical melodies of "Nuages" (off their newest album Under Paris Skies), or the cascading, lightning-fast notes in "Zingarelli," or the lilting beat in "La Rive Gauche" it's easy to see why. The very style weeds out amateurs — the fast-paced tunes with zippy melodies and complex harmonies require a certain level of proficiency, skill and sophistication. It's hot music — funky and fun, both old and new at the same time.
"I'm an improvising violinist," said band member Michael Gray. "It allows me more room than bluegrass or old-time or rock. In its essence it is improvised music and harmonically, it's got a lot going on." — Melissa Bearns
Pearl Django Luna, 8 pm, Saturday 3/19. $14.
AX BILLY GRILL & SPORTS BAR
999 WILLAMETTE ST. 484-4011
SA: Olem Alves—8; Jazz
50 E. 11TH ST. 686-6619
TH: Outspent, Under the Stairs—9:30
SU: Caught in the Act Karaoke—9
MO: $1000 Karaoke Contest—9
TU: Acoustic Monk—9:30
|TODD MARTIN PLAYS SWEET ACOUSTIC FOLK MONDAY AT CAFé PARADISO.|
115 W. BROADWAY 484-9933
SA: Paul Safar & Nancy Wood, Silas—8
MO: Todd Martin, Keiskagato—7:30
TU: Acoustic open mic night—7:30
FR: Claudia Schmidt, Sandy Holder—8
2222 CENTENIAL BLVD.
SA: DJ Tekneek—10:30; Hip hop, R & B
COFFEE GROVE COOPERATIVE
510 E. MAIN, COTTAGE GR. 942-8847
SA: Prairie Dawgs—7:30; Bluegrass, Americana
COUNTRY SIDE RESTAURANT
4740 MAIN ST. 744-1594
TH & SA: Line dance lessons—7
645 RIVER ROAD 463-7632
FR: Music Alliance Show Jam w/ Daniel Shaw, Peter Giri & The Jammers Band—8
COZMIC PIZZA@THE STRAND All Ages
8TH AVE. & CHARNELTON ST. 338-9333
TH: Retro Night w/ The Divers—8
FR: Middle Eastern Dance Guild—8:30
SA: Salsa Dance Party w/ Jose Cruz, Johnny Bravo and Samantha—8:30
MO: "Global Trends, Local Choices"—7; TV-style talk show
Core 13, Unknown Horizons—9; Rock
TU: Open mic night—7
WE: Blues Alliance w/ Paul Biondi, Peter Giri, Steve McCallum—7
915 OAK ST., DOWNSTAIRS 345-7878
TH: Old School Karaoke, Kamikaze Hip Hop—8
FR: Rob and Carlos present Hip Hop Live—9
SA: DJ Mead—9
MO: Metal Trilogy Mondays—9
WE: Free Sushi Wednesdays—10
959 PEARL ST. 343-2346
TH: St. Patrick's Day w/ Reeble Jar, Rustica—9
FR: I-chele & the Circle of Light—10; Rock, reggae
SA: The Quick & Easy Boys, Eagle Park Slim Band—10; Blues, funk, cowpoke
SU: Texas hold 'em—3
Kung Fu Karaoke—10
MO: DJ Diablo & DJ Turbo—10; Funk, rock, requests
TU: Free pool—10
WE: Texas hold 'em—7
The Hounds—10; Funk
1795 W. 6TH.
TH & SA: Ben Coleman's Karaoke—9
EMBERS SUPPER CLUB
1811 HWY. 99 N. 688-6564
TH: Billy McCoy—9; Country
FR: Michael Anderson Trio—9; Variety, country
SA: Michael Anderson Trio—9; Variety, country
WE: Billy McCoy—9; Country
EUGENE WINE CELLARS
255 MADISON ST. 342-2600
WE: Tango dancing & lessons w/ Andrew & Rebecca—5
GAME DAY SPORTS BAR
1156 HWY. 99 607-2485
SA: Two Leg Lucy—9:30; Rock
375 E. 7TH AVE. 484-7181
TU: Rooster's Blues Jam—8
259 E. 5TH AVE. 343-8488
TH: Jo Fed's All Star Jam Session—9
FR: Streamliner ft. Mike Anderson—9
SA: The Side Project—9
SU: Mark Alan—9; Jazz
MO: Skip Jones Hammond Organ Trio—7:30
TU: Barbara Dzuro—7:30
WE: Olem Alves & Mike Hanns—8
JOE'S BAR & GRILLE
25 W. 6TH 221-3360
TU: DJ Tekneek—10; Hip hop, R & B
JOGGER'S BAR & GRILL
710 WILLAMETTE ST. 343-0224
TH & FR: Karaoke—5
SA: Dancing w/DJ Ty—19; Old school hip hop
MO: Working Man's Blues Jam—9
TU: Dancing w/DJ Ty—9; Old school hip hop
|WAYNE "THE TRAIN" HANCOCK ROLLS INTO JOHN HENRY'S ON WEDNESDAY.|
77 W. BROADWAY 342-3358
TH: '80s Night w/Chris, Jenn and John—10
FR: Eugene Walker Presents a Night of Japanese Hip and Dance Music—10
SA: Freaks in the House w/ DJ Steve Sawada & The Audio Schizophrenic—10
SU: John Henry's Broadway Revue—10; Burlesque, variety
WE: Wayne "The Train" Hancock—7:30
DJ Kal El vs. DJ Tekneek—10; Reggae vs. hip hop
23 WEST 6TH AVE. 338-9000
4711 W. 11TH AVE. 345-5563
LATITUDE 10 CAFE All Ages
2757 FRIENDLY 343-3460
SA: Edson Oliviera—6; Brazilian guitar
LAVELLE'S WINE BAR & BISTRO
5TH ST. PUBLIC MARKET 338-9875
TH: Skip Jones—5; New Orleans piano
FR: Gus Russell—5; Jazz piano
SA & WE: John Crider—5; Jazz piano
LION'S DEN LOUNGE
205 COBURG RD. 342-5201
SU: Blues jam w/ Jerry Zybach—7
LONE STAR BAR & GRILL
33301 VAN DUYNN, COBURG 686-8686
FR: Coyote Ugly night—9; Dancing, karaoke
SA & MO: Karaoke/dancing—9
WE: Coyote Ugly night—9; Dancing
LUCKEY'S CLUB CIGAR
933 OLIVE ST. 687-4643
TH: St. Patrick's Day w/ Toad in the Hole (last show), Man Overboard, outdoor beer garden & Irish food—7
FR: Ahimsa Theory, The Koozies, The Dry County Crooks—10; Indie, alt country
SA: Yeltsin, The High Violets, Safari—10; Rock
TU: Spin Box—10; Rock
WE: Touch Force—10; Punk
30 E. BROADWAY 434-5862
FR: The Project—9; Jazz blues fusion
SA: Erik Muiderman—6; Singer-songwriter
Pearl Django—8:30; Acoustic gypsy jazz
MAC'S AT THE VET'S
1626 WILLAMETTE ST. 344-8600
TH: Mac's & Mo's Jam
FR: Ooney Egghan & His Band of Tricks (formerly Bill Willie Bluz) w/ Paul Biondi
SA: The Valley Boys
WE: Christie & McCallum
MCSHANE'S BAR & GRILLE
86495 COLLEGE VIEW ROAD
TH: Eugene Highlanders, Dabbledooya—8
|KIMBERLY FREEMAN PLAYS SATURDAY AT THE MONROE STREET CAFé.|
MONROE STREET CAFE
1193 MONROE ST. 343-0863
TH: Pound Dog Ben
FR: Martin Barkley, Dunya
SA: Kimberly Freeman
SU: Poetry open mic—7
MO: Drum & Dance Circle
WE: Open mic—7
THE O BAR & GRILL
115 COMMONS 349-0707
TU: Karaoke w/ Jared—9
770 S. BERTELSEN 342-5028
TH: Blues Jam—8
444 E. 3RD AVE. 484-2927
FR: Tim & Tonic—8; Rock, variety
SA: Music Alliance Show Jam w/ Daniel Shaw, Peter Giri & The Jammers Band—8
TU: Patrick & Giri—8; Hot & tasty acoustic
WE: Gordon Kaswell—6
767 WILLAMETTE ST. 687-9102
TU: Tango night w/ Andrew McCullough—7:30
WE: Irish jam—7:30; Celtic
TH: Old-time jam—7:30; Appalachian
2105 W. 7TH 485-5925
TH: 8-Track Liberators—9; Modern rock, blues
SA: Eleven Eyes—9; Modern funk
WE: Blues jam—8:30
225 COBURG 342-5181
FR & SA: Rock-it—9:15; Classic rock
SAM BOND'S GARAGE
407 BLAIR 431-6603
TH: St. Patrick's Day w/ The Ovulators, Tom Heinl—9
FR: The Tones w/ The Swing State Road Show—9; Acoustic
SA: Dan Jones Birthday Bash w/ Lewi Longmire & Andrea Maxand—9; Rock
SU: Irish Jam--5
The Great All Merge's American Beauty Tribute—8:30; Rock
MO: Open mic—9
TU: Sam Bond's Bluegrass Jam--9
WE: The Earl Brothers—9; Bluegrass
825 WILSON ST. 484-4455
TH: Drag Kings—10
FR: Ordinary Flies—9
980 OAK ST. 345-6577
TH: Kyoko, Timmys Jimmy, No Agents—9
FR: Church of Hate, Mind Staind, Severa, Debris, w/ special entertainment Trailer Park Mafia—9
SA: The Decliners, Bitch Machine, Little Brown Bat—9
SU: Tales from the Crate—10
MO: Industrial night w/ live fire dancing—9
TU: Retro night—9
WE: DJ Ephrin—9
STACY'S COVERED BRIDGE
401 E. MAIN ST., COTTAGE GROVE 767-0320
WE: Open Mic Night w/Ron O'Keefe—8:30
VALLEY RIVER INN 687-0123
FR: The Sonny Hess Band—8:30; Blues
SA: Pound for Pound—8:30; Rhythm & blues
TAYLOR'S BAR AND GRILL
894 E. 13TH AVE. 344-6174
TH: DJ Smuv & DJ Tekneek—10; Hip hop, R & B
SU: Free pool
MO: Hip Hop vs. Dancehall w/ DJ Tekneek
394 BLAIR BLVD. 687-8383
FR: Shaun's Birthday w/ Uncle Stumbles—8:30
MO: 15 Minutes of Fame w/ Ol' What's His Name's Open Mic—9
WE: DJ Secret Hippie's Disco Inferno—9
922 GARFIELD ST. 345-3606
TH: St. Patty's Day Bash w/ The Koozies, Sawyer Family, The Whopner County Country All-Stars—9
SA: The Burn Unit, Money Shot, Destro Destructo, SoundProof, Neurotivity—10; Hip hop
|CARBON LEAF PERFORM SUNDAY AT THE WOW HALL.|
WOW HALL All Ages
291 W. 8TH AVE. 687-2746
TH: Volunteer orientation—6:30
SU: Carbon Leaf, The Paperboys—7:30; Roots, Celtic
4TH AND W. BROADWAY, VENETA 935-1921
FR & SA: Mofessor—9
137 SW 2ND 752-7570
TH: St. Patrick's Day w/ The Nettles—9:30
BOMBS AWAY CAFE
2527 NW MONROE
TH: Neil Grandstaff & Ray Brassfield—7:30
126 SW 1ST ST.
SA: Ala Nar, bellydancing w/ Kendra—9; Egyptian, Turkish
2740 SE 3RD ST. 738-7600
SA: A Night w/ Ramblin' Rex & Friends—8:30; Blues
PLATINUM NIGHT CLUB
126 SW 4TH
FR: Salsa/Merengue Night—10
MO: Karaoke night w/ Patches—9
WE: Wet Dawg—8
100 SW. 2ND ST.
SA: Jive Kitchen, Flaming Inhalers—9:30
125 SW 2ND ST. 754-8522
FR: El Kabong Orchestra—9; Eclectic swing, rock
SA: Bryant/Mezier Group—9; Blues
WE: Improv blues & jazz jam w/ Neal Grandstaff & Ray Brassfield—8:30