2015 Kicks OFF with Orlando Julius meets The Heliocentrics & Carleen Anderson encounters The Masters… and Gilles Peterson dishes out his Worldwide Awards…. Freedom! resurfaces at The Vortex.
OK… first up… HAPPY NEW YEAR! May it be a good one – overflowing with innovation and creativity – for one & all!
That said, for us in the UK, following a major solar eclipse in April, a general election looms large and in the face of the overwhelming political mediocrity on offer we need to temper our potential disillusionment and rid ourselves of the disgraceful and contemptible coalition. Confronted with a void of radical and futuristic thinking we clearly have a responsibilty to come together to shape our own politically charged cultural agenda in the same way on-line activists like Avaaz and Fight For The Future have done.
My last post of 2014 featured Carleen Anderson making her own political contribution to the ongoing struggle for equal rights and justice and it seems appropriate that she should kick off 2015 with three nights at Ronnie Scott’s (8th, 9th & 10th January) paying tribute to the Masters who have inspired her – Duke Ellington, Sarah Vaughn, Thelonious Monk, Marvin Gaye and more.
“To say it’s a challenge would be a HUGE understatement,” maintains Carleen but she is clearly looking forward to an unmissable artistic opportunity.
Another session that is unmissable is the forthcoming live collaboration between Nigerian legend, Orlando Julius and The Heliocentrics at the 229 in Great Portland Street. It celebrates the release of their excellent album which is available via Strut records – ‘Jaiyede Afro’. Check out the “making of” video below and head on down to the 229 in Great Portland Street. If their recordings and live sets with Ethiopia’s Mulatu Astatke are anything to go by this is one psychedelic afrobeat session that is bursting with outernational promise.
Orlando Julius and The Heliocentrics also make an appearance Gilles Peterson’s annual Worldwide Awards at KoKo in Camden town on January 17th alongside Lone, Anushka, Alex Patchwork, Skinny Macho aka Blackfoot Phoenix, Atjazz, Melanie De Biasio, Adrian Younge, Bilal, Dorian Concept, Marshall Allen, Taylor McFerrin, Fatima, Lil Silva, Clap Clap, Nikitch, and nuff more to come….
Tickets are still on sale… https://www.musicglue.com/worldwide-awards/events/17-jan-15-gilles-petersons-worldwide-awards-2015-koko/
Those of you into the free-jazz-improv thang will welcome the return of FREEDOM! which takes up monthly residence at The Vortex in Dalston on the 12th January.
Known for its wild, totally free-style sessions, which have consistently united a cross cultural and cross generational posse of players, Freedom will continue to pursue the promise of legendary associations like the AACM, the Black Artist Group and Sam Rivers’ legendary NYC loft session.
At the helm of Freedom! are Jazz Warriors International’s Orphy Robinson and Cleveland Watkiss. It takes place on the 2nd Monday of each month and will see an opening set from a specific ensemble and that will be followed by a constantly shifting set of soul stirring improv session open to all – so, tune in and get involved. Between sets I-man will continue to represent and delve into the record collection – expect Oliver Lake to Keith Hudson.
See ya there!