Thursday, May 03, 2007

this space for rent



Not really. I've just been too busy to do any writing outside of writing for work. The above photos: a Pediocactus simpsonii on the Rio en Medio Trail and Fritz Hochstaetter taking a picture of same. Yesterday morning at 7 am I met Herr Hochstaetter and the two of us went out into the boggy wilds. A drenching rain had fallen since about midnight. We had to cross the same river many times (Heraclitus be damned). Sodden, cold feet. I should never hike first thing in the morning. I'm not really paying attention. It was fascinating, though, meeting and getting to hang out with the world's greatest living expert on the genera Pediocactus, Sclerocactus and Toumeya. (His taxonomy is highly controversial, but that doesn't negate his contribution to the understanding of a group of plants otherwise fairly obscure). I know absolutely no German; Fritz knows very little English. This made for some absurd and comic moments.

Like "jazz," cacti seem best appreciated by Europeans.

I've been studying up on Roscoe Mitchell and playing a lot of Mitchell's compositions on the radio show, in preparation for his appearance at The Outpost in Albuquerque on May 19. I always thought of the Art Ensemble of Chicago as largely a collaborative. Check out the composer credits on Art Ensemble albums; it's highly instructive, especially in regard to Mitchell. The AEC book relied heavily on Mitchell's structured, whimsical, fierce and soulful lines. I hadn't really taken notice before that many of my favorite satirical/parodic AEC pieces are by Mitchell, as well as some of the more intricately structured themes. If all goes as planned I'll be interviewing him next Wednesday morning for broadcast on the May 17 show.

This just in: the New Mexico Jazz Festival is bringing Sonny Rollins to the area for two shows, in Albuquerque and here in Santa Fe, in late July. I haven't heard Rollins' new CD yet. I did play some of the Night at the Village Vanguard tracks today on the air-- Strivers Row and All the Things You Are, and was yet again reminded what a launch into new form that pianoless trio format was. In 1957, too. Two whole years before The Death of Jazz, according to Darius Brubeck.

1 comment:

Dan said...

Is this his Chicago Quartet with Corey Wilkes, Harrison Bankhead and Vincent Davis? Sometimes he has his Detroit rhythm section of Jaribu Shahid/Tanni Tabbal. I'll anxiously await your review of the show...especially of the 3/4 of the Quartet other than Roscoe, whose playing I know very well from seeing countless times around town. I'll keep my opinions to myself until then.

Enjoy...I'm jealous...I've never seen a bad RM show, and that very quartet played one of the most memorable sets of my audience listening life a couple years back.