Airs Monday, September 30 at 8 p.m. The young trumpet player performed at the Newport Jazz Festival on August 6, 2011. Trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire is only 29; his hover around that age too .But not only are they among the most sought-after and most distinctive players of their generation; they've been working together as a band for years already. Their collaboration bears fruit on 2011's "When The Heart Emerges Glistening," a svelte and darkly modernistic disc highlighted by Akinmusire's clarion solos. The quintet performs from Newport's Harbor Stage.
Airs Tuesday, July 2 at 9 p.m. What if there were lost big-band masterpieces by the great composer/arranger Gil Evans which never made it to record? In fact, there are plenty of them, according to composer/arranger Ryan Truesdell. He's culled, researched, transcribed and completed a handful of the best for Evans' 100th birthday anniversary. It helps that he's the lead copyist for composer Maria Schneider; he's borrowed much of her orchestra to record and now perform this rich, intensely-hued material.
Airs Tuesday, June 18 at 9 p.m. Here's a pairing that raises the question: "Why hasn't this happened before?" The Bad Plus have been a revisionist cover band and today mostly make original piano trio music. Bill Frisell is the quintessential jazz collaborator. The guitarist, making the second of three appearances at this year's Newport Jazz Festival, is down for anything involving good musicians, and can be counted on to execute it well. Together, they paid tribute to one of their mutual heroes, the late drummer Paul Motian, in a set comprised mostly of his haunting compositions. The band features Ethan Iverson on piano, Reid Anderson on bass, Dave King on drums and Bill Frisell on guitar.
Airs Tuesday, June 11 at 9 p.m. Drummer Lewis Nash is certainly no stranger to prestigious festival stages; he's served in bands led by Betty Carter, Branford Marsalis and Tommy Flanagan, and that was relatively early in his career. So it's a great move to give the supporting cast member, who truly innovates within jazz traditions, a share of the spotlight. One of the bands he leads features the front line of Jeremy Pelt on trumpet and Jimmy Greene on tenor sax, with Donald Vega on piano and Peter Washington on bass.