Led by mandolinist Chris Thile, The Punch Brothers reinvent bluegrass in “How to Grow a Band”
Documentary / Film Reviews / Music / Recommended / What to watch on Netflix

Led by mandolinist Chris Thile, The Punch Brothers reinvent bluegrass in “How to Grow a Band”

Is it possible to have a successful band when its members may not be musical equals, even if they are all very talented virtuosos? It was a central question in Cameron Crowe’s film “Almost Famous” about the often bickering, fictional band Stillwater, which had a guitarist who had musically surpassed his peers. Since it was … Continue reading

There were never too many notes from solo mandolin virtuoso Chris Thile at the SFJAZZ Centre
Bay Area / Highly Recommended / Music

There were never too many notes from solo mandolin virtuoso Chris Thile at the SFJAZZ Centre

In the encore to Chris Thile’s fantastic sold out show at the SFJAZZ Centre on Friday, the refrain went: “I’ll play you a song on the mandolin. There’ll be too many notes, but then again…There ain’t too many folks can play too many notes on the mandolin”. And many notes there were – although never … Continue reading

Bay Area / Highly Recommended / Music

Weekend Jazz: James Farm, Mulgrew Miller & Kenny Barron, and Hugh Laurie

The Memorial Day long weekend was an amazing one for jazz fans on both sides of the Bay, featuring musicians young and old from a variety of styles. I started off the weekend with a trip to Yoshi’s Oakland on Friday, a venue with consistently high-quality international acts on a student budget, making it well … Continue reading

Highly Recommended / Music

Dave Holland Overtone Quartet jazzes up SF

It goes without saying that when a concert involves bassist Dave Holland and saxophonist Chris Potter—in collaboration—it’s going to be good. Holland’s rhapsodic syncopated bass lines and Potter’s counterpoint cerebral, dissonant, rich sax are at their best live and always sound amazing, no matter who the two are playing with. They’ve both played with their … Continue reading

Highly Recommended / Music

Stanley Clarke Band delivers jazzy performance (Stanford Daily)

Stanley Clarke Band recently swung through San Francisco, playing a fantastic show with a familiar repertoire re-imagined. From the album “Return to Forever,” the song “No Mystery” was recreated for an acoustic ensemble, full of energy and spunk but with no signs of fusion, and with space made for the violin to play a key … Continue reading