Pianist Henry Butler will be our guest for a unique solo piano show for our next Jazz Live San Diego, Tuesday, April 12, 2011.
Henry's Bio on his website.: An eight-time W.C. Handy “Best Blues Instrumentalist - Piano” award nominee, Henry Butler knows no limitations. Although blinded by glaucoma since birth, Butler is also a world class photographer with his work displayed at exhibitions throughout the United States. Playing piano since the age of six, Butler is a master of musical diversity. Combining the percussive jazz piano playing of McCoy Tyner and the New Orleans style playing of Professor Longhair through his classically trained wizardry, Butler continues to craft a sound uniquely his own. A rich amalgam of jazz, Caribbean, classical, pop, blues and R&B influences, his music is as excitingly eclectic as that of his New Orleans birthplace.
Preview Tune: Orleans Inspiration from Orleans Inspiration (1990)
Mastering baritone horn, valve trombone and drums, in addition to the piano, at the Louisiana State School for the Blind in Baton Rouge, as a youngster, Butler began formal vocal training in the eleventh grade. He went on to sing German lieder, French and Italian art songs and operatic arias at Southern and Michigan State Universities, earning a Masters degree in vocal music. He has taught music workshops throughout the country and initiated a number of different educational projects, including a residential jazz camp at Missouri State School for the Blind and a program for blind and visually impaired students at the University of New Orleans.
Mentored by influential jazz clarinetist and Michigan State University teacher Alvin Batiste, Butler was encouraged to explore Brazilian, Afro-Cuban and other Caribbean music. With Batiste’s help, he successfully applied for National Endowment for the Arts grants to study with keyboard players George Duke, then with Cannonball Adderley’s Quintet, and the late Sir Roland Hanna. He studied with Harold Mabern, pianist for the late Lee Morgan, for a summer and spent a long afternoon studying with Professor Longhair.
Preview Tune: Goin' Down Slow from Orleans Inspiration (1990)
Going to be live blogging the event below, so watch out!
And now the interview plays and I'm off to get set for a Henry Butler preview...
9:30 And the crowd goes wild...while the band takes a bow out front! What a fantastic show!
9:24 Tune 13 "Down Home Feelin": She needs a break, but is gutting it out! Heading down to close it out!
I will be heading down soon to say good night to our studio audience and getting things ready for a Henry Butler preview of our April 12, 2011 Jazz Live San Diego! But I think they will be doing one more tune after this, so I'll hang tight!
9:17 Tune 12 "Exposure". Another from Check The Box, which tonight's pianist Luis Perdomo plays on. She's really working the set list tonight!
9:11 Tune 11 "Five More Days". Mid-tempo tune, starting out with Rebecca doing another vocal.
She talks a bit about being a West Coast girl that went to NY, but loving San Diego and playing Frisbee at the beach today.
9:04 Back in the perch, after the station ID and a chat about trying out new stuff in front of an audience and the change it might undergo.
Tune 10 "Regrets": Another new tune. She explained is as very improvisational, like a improve painting. With a little structure that she has built for it. Feels like she is trying out a different kind of composition. And this is just a trio, Perdomo piano, Camacho bass, Franks trumpet.
Tune 9 "Mass" (before the break): Another tune from 2009's Check The Box. Boy it sure swang hard!
8:52 Time for me to go down and figure out what I'm going to ask her in about 8 minutes....ah...
Here's a slide show of the pictures from tonight's show and before hand...
8:47 Explains some of the dead air as she is changing up the set list as she goes. Next up a reggae tune... Tune 8 "<a reggae tune>": Another vocal by Rebecca...she really loves to sing!
Here's a shot from up in the perch above the Seville Theatre
8:42 Tune 7 "3/4": She said she didn't know what time it was and someone from the crowd yelled "8:42". She said "Time flies when you are having fun!". I hope she has enough tunes to get the full 90 minutes in...I'm sure she does!!
8:35 Tune 6 Hugs From Heaven. A tune written for her father who passed away about a year ago. Rebecca sings for the first time tonight. Before the tune, as there was a little dead air for you at home on the radio, she came back and explained: "A little out of order...which isn't too strange for me" (a little paraphrase, but you get the very humble idea!).
8:29 Tune 5 Genetic Makeup. Another tune written in the last couple of months. Never recorded. Probably played live very few times....nice! Swinging tune, with Luis Perdomo taking a really nice turn on piano! Also, Rene Camacho did it up..and the crowd loved it!
We are soooo lucky to be hearing lots of previously unheard, new music from Rebecca...she is hoping to record this in June 2011.
8:22: Rebecca introduces the band. Just met Andy a couple gigs ago. Luis Perdomo, piano, played on her "Check The Box" disc from 2009. Tune 4: "Open Heart". Ballad.
8:16 Tune 3 - Movin' On. To commemorate quitting her college teaching gig and deciding to play full time! Great choice! Nice solo by drummer Andy Sanesi!!
She back announced the first tunes... Tune 0 (before the on air): Thursday. Tune 1: LuLu Tune 2: Someday. The first tune she wrote at age 20!
The shot I took, with the program, from backstage, while the band played their first tune:
8:08 Back in the perch after opening the show, the first tune was a nice shuffle with RCF really blowing it away! She must have been a little inspired by the Kermit Ruffins that Barry Farrar played right before he tossed it to us in the theatre. Tune 2 is a sweet bossa-ish swinger.
7:47 In the perch, but heading backstage to get the band and then out front to introduce them and get the show started! Break a leg!!