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Electric Bass

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Sunday 8/19/2018 Show: Jamaladeen Tacuma

Photo: Jamaaladeen Tacuma @ NYC Winter Jazz Festival | © Joyce Jones/ Suga Bowl Photography. Some Rights Reserved. Creative Commons CC-NC-BY-ND. Used with Permission.

The next show will air on August 19, 2018 from 11:00 PM – 1:00 AM Monday Eastern Standard Time on WBAI, 99.5 FM in the NYC metro area or streaming online at wbai.org. This broadcast features an interview with bassist and composer Jamaaladeen Tacuma.

Few musicians leave their audiences with a feeling that they have truly witnessed something amazing. Artist/Producer/Performer/Arranger/Innovator and Bassist Jamaaladeen Tacuma does just that. This native Philadelphian has always stretched the old mold of what and how a bassist is supposed to play. Tacuma has simply re-defined his instrument’s artistic potential. In the mid 70’s, his creatively free approach to the bass caught the eye and ear of the legendary saxophonist Ornette Coleman. Tacuma became a member of Coleman’s electric band, Prime Time, he toured with the group and played on some of Coleman’s historic recordings such as: Dancing In Your Head, Body Meta, and Of Human Feelings. As a soloist, Tacuma continued to press the musical envelope with his debut album in 1983 entitled simply, Showstopper. Several records followed, some of which include: Renaissance Man (1984), Music World (1987) and JukeBox (1989), Cosmetic, Boss of The Bass, which confirmed his ability to flip between various musical genres. Even the critics have had high praise for Tacuma’s musicianship and artistry. One year he received the highest number of votes ever for an electric bassist in the “Talent Deserving Wider Recognition” category of the Down Beat critics’ poll.

Tacuma has performed and recorded and collaborated with musicians on nearly every continent such as Japan, Korea, Europe and the Middle East. In September 2007, Jamaaladeen released a new recording entitled The Flavors Of Thelonious Monk Reloaded paying musical homage to the great pianist composer Thelonious Monk and also releasing a new recording in October 2007 with “Free Form Funky Freqs,” a trio with guitarist Vernon Reid (Living Color), and G. Calvin Weston (John Laurie, Medeski, Martin & Wood) on drums entitled Urban Mythology on Thirsty Ear Records. He has also played and produced for many American and European Jazz/Funk musicians. Furthermore, the release Mirakles by Derrick Bailey, G. Calvin Weston & Tacuma was cited as one of the “most important recordings of year 2000” by All Music Guide. He also recently completed a recording entitled Dust with Bauhaus member Peter Murphy on the Metropolis label. He is also featured as writer and co-producer on the new 2006 release of the World Saxophone Quartet’s album on Justin Time Records entitled Political Blues with a song by Jamaaladeen entitled “Blue Diamond” Tacuma has collaborated with a diverse and talented roster of artists: Guitarists Jeff Beck, Carlos Santana, Marc Ribot, James Blood Ulmer, Jean Paul Bourelly and Derek Bailey.

He has performed and recorded with saxophonist Pharoah Sanders, Grover Washington Jr., David Murray, Odean Pope, Wolfgang Puschnig and James Carter. He has worked with orchestras led by Anthony Davis at Carnegie Hall, to recording and performing with the Hip Hop rap group The Roots, DJ King Britt and DJ Logic. Tacuma has shared the stage with the great comedian and philanthropist Bill Cosby at the JVC Jazz Festival, on the David Letterman Show where Tacuma was Band Director for the night. He has even written music for the hit TV show, The Cosby Show. He has worked with poets Jayne Cortez, Quincy Troupe, Amiri Baraka and co-wrote and co-produced a song entitled “Women First” with the R&B Neo Soul group from Philadelphia, KINDRED (the family soul) on their new CD recording In This Life Together on the Hidden Beach/Motown label (2006). Jamaaladeen has recently explored the music of legendary saxophonist, composer John Coltrane with a preview recording and an extended European tour which featured the British saxophonist and BBC award recipient Tony Kofi. Jamaaladeen’s For The Love Of Ornette, released 2010 on his own label, was a monumental recording made in honor of his mentor Ornette Coleman. In 2013 Jamaaladeen released Bon Vivant his 2nd studio recording with Free Form Funky Freqs trio with G. Calvin Weston and Guitarist Vernon Reid on his newly formed recording label Jam All Productions.

In recent years Jamaaladeen has been gaining recognition from some of the Unites States most prestigious artist foundations, 2011 Jamaaladeen received the Pew Arts & Heritage Award, The Marcus Garvey Foundation Award, Uptown Theater Hall of Fame Award 2014. Jamaaladeen has received composer’s residencies at the prestigious MacDowell Colony , Headlands Center for the Arts, and Civitella Rainier Italy, where he composed a new project he will be presenting in 2015. Staying true to his artistic and experimental approach to music, Tacuma is consistently bringing musical happiness to fans World Wide.

(Bio adapted from Tacuma’s website.)

This program is hosted, engineered, produced, and edited by Joyce Jones. Listen for our On the Bandstand segment with NYC metro area appearances of Suga’ guests at the end of the first hour with Associate Producer Hank Williams.

Web Extras:

Watch Tacuma play with the Free Form Funky Freqs in this live 2011 clip.

Hank Williams is assistant producer for Suga’ in My Bowl and produces the weekly “On the Bandstand” segment as well as running the show’s website and blog, where he has reviewed several jazz festivals. His writing has also appeared in Left Turn magazine and American Music Review. He teaches at Lehman College in the City University of New York system.

Sunday 1/22/2017 Show: Melvin Gibbs

melvin_giggs_suga_cover
Photo: .| Joyce Jones. Some Rights Reserved. Creative Commons CC-NC-BY-ND.
 
The next show will air on Sunday, January 22, 2017 from 11:00 PM – 1:00 AM Monday Eastern Standard Time on WBAI, 99.5 FM in the NYC metro area or streaming online at wbai.org. This broadcast features bassist, composer and producer Melvin Gibbs.
 

 
Bassist Melvin Gibbs has played with some of the greats of ’80s and ’90s jazz and rock. A graduate of Boston’s Berklee College of Music, Gibbs spent part of the ’80s as a member of the Power Tools trio with Bill Frisell (and later, Pete Cosey) and Ronald Shannon Jackson, and performing with Joseph Bowie’s jazz funk band, Defunkt. Later that decade, Gibbs played in legendary jazz/rock guitarist Sonny Sharrock’s band. By the time he joined the Rollins Band in 1993, Gibbs had also played in a trio with Arto Lindsay and Dougie Bowne, and in the group Eye & I. With Rollins, Gibbs toured again through Europe, and the West coast. Gibbs became a producer for Rage records after leaving the Rollins Band. By the close of the ’90s, he was active in the experimental rock band Harriet Tubman, who had a 1998 release on Knitting Factory records, had performed or recorded with Elliot Sharp, Ikue Mori, Chocolate Genius, and the Brazilian singer Marisa Monte.
 
Partial bio adapted from Allmusic.
 
This program is hosted, engineered, produced, and edited by Joyce Jones. Listen for our On the Bandstand segment with NYC metro area appearances of Suga’ guests at the end of the first hour with Associate Producer Hank Williams.
 
Melvin Gibbs will be at The Stone on February 18 with Harriet Tubman.
 
Web Extras:
 
Watch Gibbs play with Harriet Tubman in this live 2010 clip.
 

 
Watch Gibbs play with guitar great Sonny Sharrock in this live clip from 1988.
 

 
Watch Gibbs play “When We Go” with Ronald Shannon Jackson’s Power tools in this live 1988 clip.
 

 
Hank Williams is assistant producer for Suga’ in My Bowl and produces the weekly “On the Bandstand” segment as well as running the show’s website and blog, where he has reviewed several jazz festivals. His writing has also appeared in Left Turn magazine and American Music Review. He teaches at Lehman and Hunter colleges in the City University of New York system.

Sunday 9/04/2016 Show: Richard Bona

Richard_Bona_475px
Photo: Richard Bona | Flickr user tom.beetz. Some Rights Reserved. Creative Commons CC-NC-BY-ND.
 
The next show will air on Sunday, September 4, 2016 from 11:00 PM – 1:00 AM Monday Eastern Standard Time on WBAI, 99.5 FM in the NYC metro area or streaming online at wbai.org. This broadcast features an interview with bassist and multi instrumentalist Richard Bona.
 

 
Fans call him “The African Sting,” critics call him a pro, but it’s his unique and electrifying style of connecting with his audience that titles him what he really is—a true musician. Richard Bona’s seemingly effortless voice, fierce skills on the bass, unique songwriting/arranging expertise and ability to learn just about any instrument simply from watching, position him as a rare African artist to have established an unscalable reputation on an international platform.
 
Originally from Cameroon, Bona remains true to his roots, with African rhythms reflected in each of his seven albums; the first three, Scenes from My Life, Reverence and Munia display his unique approach to storytelling through sounds. Seeking inspiration from his origins, the themes of Bona’s albums address international issues which mirror his desire of using music to take a stance on issues affecting the oppressed. As an artist with a purpose, he expanded into new musical territories and teamed up with Congolese star, Lokua Kanza and Antillais singer/composer Gerald Toto to create the 2004 collective, Toto, Bona, Lokua on which Bona wrote four tracks.
 
The trio then hit the road and toured across France; however, Bono remained in Europe to tour with guitarist Mike Stern and guest star on Japanese guitarist Kazumi Watanabe’s album Mo Bop 2. Shortly after, the pair embarked upon a tour of Japan, providing Bona with the opportunity to incorporate the culture and sounds of a new territory into his work. Furthermore, he toured with Pat Metheny and appeared as a guest on two of Bobby McFerrin’s albums, along with numerous notable collaborations.
 
He later garnered recognition at the Victoires du Jazz Awards where he won the trophy for “Best International Artist of 2004;” such a prestigious award confirmed his ability to appeal to a multitude of audiences ranging from jazz, pop, bossa nova, traditional, afro-beat and funk. In 2005, Bona guest appeared on Mario Canonge’s album Rhyzome and contributed to the soundtrack for Pascal Plisson’s film Massai, les guerriers de la pluie. Also known for his role in the group, Steps Ahead, Bona has performed on many stages such as the Adelaide International Guitar Festival and with many luminaries such as John Legend for his album, Tiki, which was also nominated for a Grammy in 2007 for “Best Contemporary World Music Album.”
 
Despite the fact that he spent the entirety of 2008 and 2009 on a non-stop tour, Bona released The Ten Shades of Blues, which illustrates his experience with different shades of the blues that he interacted with during his tours throughout locations such as the Sahel, Brazil, India, United States and Cameroon. Shortly after, Bona was honored by the Festival International de Jazz de Montreal with the Antonio Carlos Jobim Award; as one of seven recipients, he is distinguished as an artist in the field of world music whose influence on the evolution of jazz is widely recognized. He also received the prestigious SACEM Jazz Award (Grand Prix Jazz SACEM) in 2012 for the Jazz Grand Prize. Additionally, his certified Gold 2013 album, Bonafied, demonstrates a fusion of cultures in which he is continuously developing into a new album that will be toured internationally. With numerous awards, performances, and years of expertise, Bona has become one of the most accomplished and sought-after musicians of this generation. As he continues to redefine his sound, Richard has released his Afro-Cuban project Mandekan Cubano on June 2016 with his new album Heritage.
 
Bio from Richard Bona’s website.
 
This program is hosted, engineered, produced, and edited by Joyce Jones. Listen for our On the Bandstand segment with NYC metro area appearances of Suga’ guests at the end of the first hour with Associate Producer Hank Williams.
 
Bona will be appearing at Club Bonafide from September 9-10 with Mandekan Cubano.
 
Web Extras
 
Watch Bona in a live version of “Teen Town” with a great solo at the beginning.
 

 
Watch another amazing Bona solo.
 

 
Hank Williams is assistant producer for Suga’ in My Bowl and produces the weekly “On the Bandstand” segment as well as running the show’s website and blog, where he has reviewed several jazz festivals. His writing has also appeared in Left Turn magazine and American Music Review. He teaches at Lehman and Hunter colleges in the City University of New York system.

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