It must be a generational, well age thing: musicians sending us postcards?! And who may it be? The jolly jokers of the Nighthawks, of course! They just wanted to remind their label on their upcoming concert in its home town. And now, of course, we are wondering, if carnival is already raging again down in Cologne. In response we have printed a pretty blue postcard in discreet Hanseatic design. And since we are brothers in spirit now, we will, at least for a while, ignore all new media hypes and take a stroll to the nearest mailbox. More importantly though: advance ticket sales are great.
Once upon a time I used to count my coins of German Marks and then walked them to my local record shop. While they were weighing heavy in my pockets, their chink was part of the joyful anticipation of the pending purchase. Credit Cards and streams don´t make any noise and don´t need to be walked. The world has become aseptic and somehow unwholesome, because there is less to sense. And to my mind the effects of this trend are to be felt in music culture as well.
"Borrowed and Blue", the new album by Berlin-based singer Lisa Bassenge, will be released on September 28th! Now we are providing you with one more track to download or stream. Paul Simon's classic song "Still Crazy After All These Years" is interpreted by Lisa Bassenge in a trio formation with pianist Jacob Karlzon and Andreas Lang on bass. This trio has achieved a version of timeless beauty.
The 4th floor! I am pretty sure, that by now nobody knows better than Lisa Bassenge: the weight of vinyl is considerable. One hundred records in one swoop. Why so many? Lisa is signing her new album Borrowed and Blue, which will be released on September 28th, for jpc. Don´t worry – CD´s will be available too. And of course you will find the album in all the usual download forums. Lisa Bassenge has a different problem though: how to get this huge box of vinyl down to the ground floor again, because the records have to be back at jpc in good time.
Wonderful! Just two days ago Benny Greb and I had a rather pleasant barbecue session and over the food we got to talking about drums. Basically I wanted to find out more about how drummers think their music. It was the beginning of an intense and, particularly on my part, insightful discussion. Benny simply is great at explaining: a bit like the kind of teacher one always wanted to have, captivating and inspiring, with a roguish smile sparkling over the edges of his glasses.
It has been a truly grand weekend at the Jazz Open in Hamburg. Brilliant sun all around and magnificent jazz music sounding from the open air stage at the park Planten un Blomen. Good reasons for many a thousand people to come flocking in. Amongst them a man dressed in black, inconspicuously acting as a walking talking advertising column for the upcoming date of the Nighthawks at the Fabrik. And – surprisingly, or not – he gets asked, talked to and assurances to meet again on the 24th of November at the Fabrik.
The early bird catches the worm. To be proven by Lily Dahab and her band this Tuesday morning, the 28th of August, when she will be featured in the ZDF Morgen Magazin at the dusky break of dawn. The music of the Argentinian-born singer would not really be classified as autumnal though – much rather will she enchant the studio of the ZDF with summery flair and lightness. Her melange of Latin sounds and jazz is simply fascinating and a celebration of life. So out of your beds and take your coffee to the TV or PC and tune in at 8:50 am. Hola – buenos dias!
Not long to wait now! On September 28th we will release Lisa Bassenge´s new album Borrowed and Blue. Since the 17th of August a second outtake is available: Keep Me in Your Heart, written by legendary songwriter Warren Zevon. Previously, in July, we already had released Three Cigarettes in an Ashtray. Go and check them out on Itunes. It may not have have your conventional shop-door – one may say the mobile phone acts as such. Without a door handle, but open 24/7.
There have been more than a few musical revelations in my life. But it was Aretha Franklin who really awoke my musical mind, filled it with a sense of truth and direction. Her music crossed the borders of the USA and the ocean with ease and even as a child it seemed obvious that this is great and important music – and fun as well! Her energy, timing, timbre, her jubilating power and richness of seemingly effortless ornamentation filled me with awe. How often did one together with friends or strangers spontaneously join into singing the refrains?!
With "Borrowed an Blue" Lisa Bassenge has recorded a finely crafted album, perfectly suited for the not too distant autumn – it will be released on September 28th. The mood of this album: sombre timbres bedded in gentle and subtle mid tempo grooves. At her side Swedish pianist Jacob Karlzon and Danish bass player Andreas Lang.
Last night Jeff Cascaro has opened the Stimmen Festival in Lörrach. And today the Badische Zeitung, as current as can be, features the jazz & soul singer on their front page. It was a memorable night indeed, during which the singer also presented himself once more as the formidable trumpet player that he is.
Summertime is festival time. The season is in full swing and our artists are right in the midst of it. Lily Dahab will present her new program Bajo un mismo cielo on Thursday July 19th at the Cultoursommer in Halle, 8 p.m. at the Hof des Neuen Theaters. The next day she and her band will be heading to Straubing to open the Rivertone Festival at 6 p.m.. The title of her brand new album translates as “underneath a heaven shared” - and that is precisely the attitude towards life that is transported by her music.
Tickets for these festivals are available here:
As a singer Lily Dahab is more than used to holding a microphone in her hands. One more reason for her and her piano player/arranger Bene Aperdannier to be as comfortable as delighted about being invited for an interview at Radio Eins. Here – close to the microphone and clearly relaxed – she could talk about her new CD Bajo un mismo cielo and explain her musical world. The programme is called Lokalmatador (´local hero´) and is a perfect fit for a musician originally from Argentina, and now at home in Berlin. You may call Lily´s music a skilful mix of all kinds of Latin styles and jazz.
In the western regions of Germany you may come across some awe-inspiring symbols of early industrialism. For me, a child of the more idyllic Black Forest, the sight of the Zeche Zollverein in Essen is quite simply breathtaking. And it is here, at this industrial monument, that the first and very well attended JazzNacht took place – which has proved to be a perfect choice by the organisers.
All these mornings tend to be alike: up with the legs, have a tea. Not just a ritual, rather a necessity. But the thoughts already revolve around music. This morning I took the three sidesteps to the stereo and put on Jeff Cascaro´s latest record “Love and Blues in the City”. No later than the fabulous track “Ain´t No Love in the Heart of the City” and the spirits are wide awake and jumping. An incredibly beautiful piece of music, with a gentle, subtle groove. While listening to this production it occurred to me, that something might have got lost in contemporary jazz.
Berlin and Hamburg quickly are growing together closer this year. The simple explanation being the tight communication between the artist and the label. A constant back and forth of information. And despite the pace, we are keeping connected to our shared vision: providing good listeners with good music. That is not just a matter of marketing, for in the end it is you, the critical listeners, who will decide. And by the end of September you will be equally surprised and excited by the mature brilliance of Lisa Bassenge´s new album Borrowed and Blue.
Summer is here and so is Lily Dahab´s new summer album. What kind of music are we listening to in summer? Vivacious and passionate music, of course! Which is exactly what Lily Dahab has to offer in abundance. The singer, being raised in Argentina and now based in Berlin, has incorporated an ever wider range of Latin sounds and rhythms into her music. Original compositions, as well as interpretations of songs by Djavan, Violeta Parra, or Baden Powell – everything the heart desires.
How truly delightful, if you have the time – and will - to take some time off now and then. That way you may climb up the stage, take a good look around and ponder how the artists may feel. On June the 1st during the Elbjazz at the Schiffbauhalle with a felt temperature of 30° degrees I had the chance to do exactly that. When the Nighthawks were entering the Schiffbauhallen-stage at 22:45 a mighty early summer thunderstorm had just passed. And the warm groovy sound of this great band provided the perfect conclusion for the first festival day in front of a swinging swaying crowd of 2000.
In 2011, at one of the first editions of the Elbjazz, the Nighthawks gave a legendary performance. This is documented on their CD & DVD “Live in Hamburg”. Now the signals are send across the Elbe once again and the band will return to the Blohm & Voss site to present their new album “707”. On June the 1st this award-winning rock-jazz-ensemble will play at the Schiffbauhalle 7. The concert will begin at 22:30 h. If you love moments for eternity – don´t miss it!
The 23. Hildener Jazztage are taking place between the 29th of May and the 3rd of June, featuring international jazz artists of all styles. On Friday, June 1st, at 21 h, Jeff Cascaro will present his varied and exciting new program in a quartet with Hendrik Soll (piano and keyboards), Jörg Achim Keller (drums) and Christian von Kaphengst (bass). The concert will be recorded by radio station WDR and broadcast on WDR 3.
Forststraße 73, 40723 Hilden
More information and tickets: