Music Scene: Charleston Jazz Orchestra, Yonder Mountain String Band, Big Gigantic
By Matthew Godbey Special to The Post and Courier – Wednesday, January 23, 2013
The Charleston Jazz Orchestra will open its fifth season Saturday night with “Coltrane: The Music of John Coltrane.”
The CJO will pay homage to the legendary jazz saxophonist and composer with a musical journey through Coltrane’s remarkable career and life.
Bandleader Charlton Singleton worked with members of the band as well as the community when composing the performance, reminding us all once again of the immense local talent in Charleston.
For the Johnny Hartman vocal pieces featured in some of Coltrane’s work, the CJO has recruited renowned jazz vocalist Anthony Burke.
The band will perform two sets, 7 and 10 p.m., with no intermission, at the Charleston Music Hall, 37 John St.
Adult tickets are $30-$40; senior and student tickets are $25-$35. Students qualify with valid school ID. Seniors qualify at 65. All student and discounted tickets must be purchased in person.
Tickets are available online at thejac.org; by telephone at 641-0011; or in person at the Charleston Jazz House, 185-A St. Philip St., 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday. On-site box office sales the day of the show begin at noon at the Charleston Music Hall.
The Colorado-based progressive bluegrass quartet Yonder Mountain String Band returns to Charleston this year behind its 2009 release with veteran producer Tom Rothrock (Beck, Foo Fighters).
“The Show” consists of 14 compositions and features several guest appearances, most notably Elvis Costello’s sideman, Pete Thomas, on drums for six of the album’s tracks.
With five studio and five live albums since its inception more than 14 years ago, Yonder Mountain String Band, like most bluegrass and jam bands, has spent much of its time touring and playing the festival circuit.
But unlike many bluegrass and jam bands, its albums have steadily found success on the charts. All but one of its past six releases has made the top five on the U.S. bluegrass charts, with the most recent three reaching No. 1; all but one of its past five have cracked the top 100 on the U.S. country charts.
Perhaps Yonder Mountain’s album success has a lot to do with its ability to be creative without confinement from any one genre. “The Show” showcases songs ranging in influence from traditional bluegrass to alternative country and pop-tinged rock hooks, all of which culminate to a well-rounded and highly contagious set of fun, feel-good songs appealing to a range of tastes.
Yonder Mountain String Band will perform Tuesday at the Music Farm, 32 Ann St. Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets are $22.50 in advance, $25 the day of the show, and are available at the door or online at etix.com.
Call 577-6969 or go to musicfarm.com.
Colorado-based electronic duo Big Gigantic began its journey in 2008 after saxophone/keyboard player, DJ and composer Dominic Lalli and drummer Jeremy Salken decided to join forces after separately playing the Colorado music circuit for a number of years.
The pair began combining their influences of jazz, electronic, funk and rock into one animated sound often referred to as “jamtronica” due to its tendency for improvisation.
A great live show is a must for bands on the electronic circuit, and Big Gigantic provides just that. But what has set Big Gigantic apart from other electronic acts is its expansively creative compositions and mixture of both acoustic and electronic instruments.
Big Gigantic’s unusual musical style and spirited live show quickly caught the attention of some of its better-known peers, such as Sound Tribe Sector Nine, Xaphoon Jones of Chiddy Bang and Adam Deitch of Pretty Lights/Break Science. The support from peers like these significantly boosted Big Gigantic’s popularity in its short time together and landed the band opening spots for such acts as Umphrey’s McGee and Widespread Panic.
The duo is touring behind its latest album, last year’s “Nocturnal.”
Big Gigantic will perform Wednesday at the Music Farm, 32 Ann St., with Two Fresh. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $24 in advance, $25 the day of the show, and are available at the door or online at etix.com.
Call 577-6969 or go to musicfarm.com.