jeudi 21 septembre 2006

Kurt Elling in Taiwan

From Helena, Taïwan

Voici le premier billet de notre correspondante Jazz à Taïwan, Helena. Le billet est en anglais, mais considérez ici qu'Helena s'exprime habituellement en mandarin! Je vous rappelle le blog d'Helena, Blue Pages, sous la rubrique ELSEWHERE de ma Blogoliste.

This summer brought us the Summer Jazz Party

Each year, jazz lovers in Taipei, Taïwan, are looking forward eagerly to this small Jazz Festival. From anywhere in the world, three or four preeminent jazz artists or groups are invited to perform at our National Concert Hall. The Kenny Garrett Quartet and Stacey Kent came in 2005. In 2004, Joe Lovano, Ahmad Jamal and Jack DeJohnette were on the program. Personally, I prefer the latter artists. I went to the concerts of Joe Lovanoe and Jack DeJohnette, which were splendid.

So, you can imagine how I look forward to the Summer Jazz Party every year. Just take a look at the list of invited artists in 2006 : Kurt Elling, Brad Mehldau, Fourplay and Markus Stockhausen. Amazing, isn’t it? What’s even more fabulous, I got the tickets to the Kurt Elling concert. And that’s not all ! Read on.

 Kurt Elling's Program

Of course, we know that Kurt Elling is an original jazz singer and that is a guarantee that the show will be fantastic. Besides, he also agreed to be interviewed by our Radio Philarmonic Taipei. This became a series of radio programs. During the interview, he talked about how his career debuted and the influence that Jon Hendricks and Mark Murphy had on him. He also explained the difference between vocalese and scat, and he gave his opinion about music-making.

Kurt Elling and HelenaSince I work on the staff of the radio station, I had the chance to meet Kurt Elling in person (that’s me in picture, besides Kurt). He is much friendlier in person than he looks on the cover of his CD. It was very kind of him to take a picture with me.

But, back to the concert. It was last august 19th. The evening began with the wonderful performance by the Kurt Elling Quartet. Elling greeted us by speaking in Chinese and he also showed his sense of humor throughout the show. The quartet plays very well together. The pianist Laurence Hobgood is an old sideman of Elling. The other members of the quartet are the young and talented Rob Amster who plays bass and Kobie Walkins who plays drums with power and passion. They are great companions when Kurt Elling is singing his very poetic lyrics with his slow-pitched voice.

 This Time It's Love  Close Your Eyes

The show lasted 90 minutes and several songs were played during the performance. Although Elling sings standards like My Foolish Heart or April In Paris, he does them in a completely different way. To end the show, the last song was Eye Of The Hurricane, originally composed by Herbie Hancock. As the lyrics evolved into an artful vocalese by Kurt Elling, it turned into an incredibly fresh new song. And finally, it was time to say goodbye. There were only two musicians present for the encore, Kurt Elling and the pianist Laurence Hobgood. Together, they played a beautiful and sentimental song.

Summer has gone and took our Summer Jazz Party with it. But I can still hear the music play in my mind. I’ll be waiting eagerly for next year’s Summer Jazz Party in Taipei. - Kurt Elling, This Time Its Love - Kurt Elling, Close Your Eyes

Written by Helena, Blue Pages, Taïwan

2 commentaires:

Anonyme a dit...

Quelle belle manière d'internationnalisé un blogue !

Génial ce partenaria !

Jean Francois a dit...

Christian, merci pour ton commentaire!

Je vais me faire un plaisir de le traduire pour le faire suivre à Helena à Taïwan (en anglais toutefois, pas en mandarin...)