I’ve been to some mind-blowingly good jazz shows lately, all part of the Ottawa Jazz Festival. Hancock, Shorter, Holland, and Blade was great, as was the Dave Turner Quartet, but I expected that. I went to a couple of shows yesterday though where I had no idea what to expect, and they were both awesome. The Mike Murley/David Braid quartet showed off some amazing compositions at Confederation Park, and later on the William Parker quartet played a crazy show at the NAC Studio. William Parker demonstrated many unique but musical ways to play the bass during his solos, the horns (Rob Brown and Lewis Barnes) were astounding, and the drummer (Hamid Drake) had some great solos with amazing technique and musicality.
This year I bought a festival pass, which I strongly recommend to anyone in Ottawa with even the slightest interest in Jazz. In the past, I’ve bought individual tickets to one or two shows I really wanted to see, but with a pass I find myself going to see shows by groups I’ve never heard of, some of which have been really worthwhile.
(update) I hate this entry. It sounds too much like I’m trying to be a newspaper reporter or something, which I’m not. I’ll probably fix it, sometime.