Jazz Artists on the Greens 2012, Trinidad
by Production One Ltd.
Leaning towards the Caribbean Jazz idiom for inspiration, Jazz Artists on the Greens has grown into the largest Caribbean jazz event in Trinidad and Tobago with the potential to expand further. On March 24 the event will celebrate its tenth anniversary, a milestone in the entertainment industry locally and regionally which points to its validity as an entertainment option here.
As with previous editions, the 2012 event promises a powerful mix of contemporary Caribbean jazz styles, delivered by some of the most talented performers to grace our stages.
This year’s line-up includes:
- Dominican cultural ambassador Michele Henderson;
- London-based Trinidadian pannist Annise Hadeed and his group comprising bassist Douglas Reddon, guitarist Theron Shaw and drummer Richard Bailey;
- Carlton “Zanda” Alexander and The Coalpot Band;
- the charismatic, lively and eclectic jazz stylings of songbird Llettesha Sylvester;
- and Clifford Charles launching his new CD, “Songs From Deep Within.” The audience is in for a delightful treat.
The event is again being hosted at the spacious accommodation at the bucolic Greens at Farm Road in St Joseph. This well-lit, secure facility also offers adequate off-the-road parking for patrons’ vehicles. The demise and decline in 2011 of a number of similar events, in Barbados and Cayman Islands for example, signal an opportunity for local corporate entities and entrepreneurs to have confidence that this product from Production One Ltd has legs.
Founded in 2003, Jazz Artists on the Greens™ has grown from strength to strength, ever widening its base of regional performers and its audience. As it evolves in the new decade of the 21st century, its initial purpose of exposing as many new patrons and young musicians as possible to jazz has been expanded to include becoming a major platform for the expression of Caribbean jazz artistes, based locally, regionally and internationally. The high demand by artistes for spots on the show will allow for the inclusion of surprise guests to be confirmed closer to the date. Suffice it to say, with the increased options in the marketplace for live music lovers, Production One Ltd has focused on the improvement of the concert experienced for the patron and artiste from production value to marketing opportunities. Apart from the idea that jazz can be listened to on mats, blankets and lounge chairs while sipping wine and consuming tender victuals, the “atmosphere of lavish escapism” attendant on the various jazz festivals in the Caribbean including Tobago, has not taken hold on the Greens. This informal setting has helped remove much of the mystique that seemed to surround the genre.
The slow-growth organic model of a Jazz Artists on the Greens™ is a winning template as opposed to the hit-and-run approach of Plymouth. Jazz Artists on the Greens™ is the signal event that begins a jazz season in the Caribbean preceding Tobago and St Lucia by days and weeks, respectively, and it allows us to hear the possibilities of jazz transformed from the American response to the blues, with improvisation into a renewed inversion of Caribbean rhythms on improvised melodies. Over the years the producers of this signal event successfully created a true festival atmosphere, by offering space to concessionaires who offer food, drinks, CDs, musical instruments, festival memorabilia and give-aways. For 2012, the range of festival-related concessions and paraphernalia includes local jewelry, painters/artists, other food caterers, leather craft and musical instruments. Over the past nine years, the event has received glowing reviews in the press and encouraging responses from its many patrons who have been attending in increasing numbers and anticipation it ripe that 2012’s production will continue in this vein of success.
Additional Resources: JAOTG
Saxist Jocelyn Menard makes the rounds of the French Antilles
Francophone saxophonist Jocelyn Menard is making the rounds of the French Antilles including St. Martin, Martinique, The Butterfly Island, Guadeloupe, and Désirade, with shows at L’Artchipel and Salle Robert Loyson in Guadeloupe and Salle Paroissiale de Désirade among others.
Menard’s participation in “Chante moi un conte, conte moi une chanson” with guitarist Gilbert Laumord started on Tuesday, October 18 2011 at Salle Robert Loyson, Le Moule where they played two scheduled afternoon sets.
Three daily engagements were to follow on Wednesday, October 19 through Friday, October 21 at L’Artchipel in Basseterre.
After a day’s break, Menard and Laumord were back on the bandstand, Sunday, October 23, but on the neighbouring island of Désirade for a mid-afternoon concert at Salle Paroissiale de Désirade.
Four days on, Chez Henri on Marie Galante was the place to be.
Their penultimate engagement for the month of October was at Salle de Beauperthuy, Ste-Rose, Guadeloupe. The month ended for them at Centre Pénitencier in Baie Mahault.
The tour entered its second month in Port Louis, Guadeloupe. The venue? Beauport/Pays de la Canne. The date? Saturday, November 04.
Come Sunday, November 05, and still in Guadeloupe by the way, the duo played Lakasa at 08:00 pm.
From there, they are off to Martinique, Guadeloupe and St. Martin, in that order.
Source: Jocelyn Menard tour dates
Occasional DA band, Freddie and Friends Jazz up Cadence-Lypso and then some
In the hands of any occasional Dominican band other than Freddie and Friends, classic Cadence-Lypso from the golden era of the seventies, would sound like, well Cadence-Lypso. However, strap the accomplished Fred Nicholas to the four string electric bass and co-opt the services Fitzroy Williams, arguably the most adventurous and tuneful keyboardist Dominica has ever known (ask Roy Shillingford), the competent guitarist Jerry Moulon and Kenrick Lawrence on drums and the classics come out sounding a hell of a lot different from the originals.
The Freddie and Friends set, though severely cut short by the producers due to time constraints, was long enough for them to cover two songs from Bill O Men including “African Music,” the band’s greatest claim to fame.
Alternating the Bill O Men originals was the seminal neo-soul standard bearer, “Rapture” by Anita Baker and the Stevie Wonder hit, “Lately.”
“Rapture” was special in that it was given the Zouk treatment highlighted by Moulon’s guitar that was at first stunted by mistake, but which became fluid again as he regained control and smoothed out the edges. This gave way to William’s synthesized pan solo that drew rapturous applause from the slowly building throng on the grass.
The Wonder tune had its share of drama too. It attracted the attention of a French rapper who injected himself onto the stage for a freestyle cameo.
That invasion paved the way for another French artist, saxophonist with the Midnight Groovers, Jussi Paavola, to find himself a microphone to riff the horn arrangements on “African Music” that Bill O Men was noted for.
More to come…