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Wynton’s Blog – 2015 Archives

  • We finished our beverages and started our journey down a long stretch of Brazilian highway.

    Posted on March 27th, 2015

    We landed in Rio last Friday feeling the excitement in anticipation of participation. Everyone knows about its rich and fertile culture, but Rio also has a mythical significance in the Jazz world so we knew our time there would be meaningful and well spent.  Our presenters, Chris Street and Monica Moreira of Dueto Produções greeted us at the airport. They have already been wonderful partners and Clarice Philigret, who has been our point person for this leg of our Brazilian tour, has put in countless hours to make it happen. They are on top of every detail and instantly establish a climate of warmth and familiarity. This in itself is a highly specialized skill of great value. We arrive at the hotel and some members of the band head immediately out to enjoy the beach.   Keep reading »

  • One night in Buenos Aires is not enough. I can’t believe we didn’t see Fats

    Posted on March 25th, 2015

    When we left Montevideo last Wednesday the weather was spotty. We were set to travel by ferry to Buenos Aires and ended up being delayed by about an hour and a half. As we waited for the skies to clear, we sat in the spacious chairs and had the chance to fellowship with each other. The conversation ranged from a Shorty Rogers record, to the schedule of our next concert season. Due to the fragility and state of support for the arts today, I’m always cautious when speaking about an upcoming season. I’ll mentally substitute the word ‘if’ rather than ‘when’  just to be safe.  Once on our way, the ride is easy and soon we are pulling into Buenos Aires at 3 pm with a 5pm soundcheck and an 8 o’clock gig. Not a lot of time but just enough.   Keep reading »

  • Upon arriving in Montevideo we are met by Philippe Pinet and Remigio Moreno

    Posted on March 24th, 2015

    Upon arriving in Montevideo we are met by Philippe Pinet and Remigio Moreno, who tells us that he goes by the name ‘Tato’. Just the name ‘Tato’ lets us know we are in good hands.  Both native Uruguayans, Philippe is of French ancestry and Tato is of Andalusian. We head off to have a good meal and discuss family, nations, heritage and the next day’s events and objectives.   Keep reading »

  • “Jazz is a magical language”. The JLCO in Santiago de Chile

    Posted on March 22nd, 2015

    We arrived in Santiago de Chile last Thursday and were greeted at the airport by an elegant and beautiful lady named Veronica. She is with the Teatro Municipal de Santiago and before she could even say ‘hello’ she informed me, “Your friend Pepe is waiting for you right outside.” Now, Jose ‘Pepe’ Josiason is 83 years old and a true aficionado of Jazz, and I’m so happy to see him.  After tussling to get the luggage in the car, our driver Manuel began what would be a long, congested journey into the city, and Pepe and I had the chance to catch up on family, music and the state of all things important and trivial. It was great to have the opportunity to talk but whew, that Santiago rush hour traffic!!   Keep reading »

  • This is our first time performing in Lima, so everyone is dedicated to representing

    Posted on March 19th, 2015 | 2

    When we landed in Lima last Monday, the weather was warm and balmy. Our hosts for the next few days, Lali Madueño Medina and Nata Furgang, greeted us at the airport, displaying a level of professionalism and attention-to-detail that was so on point, we knew we were in expert hands. On our way to the hotel, we noticed that Lima is a very expansive and layered city. There is a motley assortment of apartment buildings in all shapes and colors and in various states of undress. We could see everything from the underlying brick frames of unfinished apartments to the sheen of the ultra modern. And despite the traffic and hustle-bustle of a population of over 10 million people, everyone was going about their daily business with an unusual calm. They exemplify relaxed urgency at its most refined.   Keep reading »

  • In my 35 years of touring, Jazz has never been in the crosshairs of any nation

    Posted on March 16th, 2015 | 1

    A little more than a week ago we left Mexico in high spirits. The concerts were well received and we were all pleasantly surprised by the large number of students who came out for our workshops and performances, their attentiveness and enthusiasm. We were sorry to leave, but headed off to the airport bound for our next stop on the tour – Venezuela. We flew from Mexico City to Panama City, where we planned to take our connecting flight to Caracas.  Our staff back home, members of the band and their families, had all been diligently monitoring the ‘goings on’ in Venezuela for the last few weeks. Although politics and posturing are standard practices across the global landscape, art usually tends to fly high above that radar. Still, there was some concern. In my 35 years of touring, Jazz has never been in the crosshairs of any nation, not even our own, making it even more of a disappointment when we made the tough decision to cancel our trip to Venezuela and stay in Panama City.   Keep reading »

  • Kenny Rampton and I called the legendary trumpeter Victor Vitin Paz

    Posted on March 14th, 2015

    As soon as our plane landed in Panama City last Monday night, Kenny Rampton and I called the legendary trumpeter Victor Vitin Paz. He is 83 and currently living in Panama.   Keep reading »

  • I always like to play very contemporary concepts of swing right next to New Orleans music

    Posted on March 8th, 2015

    This afternoon was much better than last night. 5pm on a Sunday is a good time for a concert.   Keep reading »

  • Lew Soloff… Tragic loss for music, irrecoupable loss for trumpet

    Posted on March 8th, 2015 | 6

    Tragic loss for music, irrecoupable loss for trumpet. First Wilmer, then CT and now Lew. Damn! All I can think about is how is Jon Faddis handling this? They had the deepest personal and collegial relationship full of mutual respect, admiration and love. And each set a higher standard for our instrument, but together!......it was otherworldly. Both Lew and Jon have always treated me with so I much love and support for which I AM ALWAYS GRATEFUL!   Keep reading »

  • As the concert goes on, I feel we relax and play more inside the space.

    Posted on March 7th, 2015

    This morning Vincent led us in an 11am soundcheck/workshop at the majestic Palacio de Bellas Artes oficial. Elliot Mason was delayed getting in due to some visa complications so we recruited a 16-year old substitute, Mr. Hernan Cruz Calderon from Oaxaca, a southern Mexican state with more than 600 family wind bands! Someone should do a study to see if these families are any more or any less dysfunctional than non-band families. These bands have played for generations at family parties, state and city events and parades.   Keep reading »