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Dwight Trible and Ernie Andrews at Disney Concert Hall

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When you speak of “The Avenue” and the words “Jazz Music” are in the sentence, those of us from Los Angeles know and remember one place, “Central Avenue.” The best in jazz music was played on that street from some of our very own; Charles Mingus, Eric Dolphy, Art Farmer, Dexter Gordon, Harold Land, Teddy Edwards. People came from all over to experience the sound, even the Duke!

Tonight at the brand new Disney Complex, we got another chance to experience those days. The show started out with poetry by Wanda Coleman. Born and raised in South Central she remembers her father, his love for the music, and those early days as a child on Central Avenue. Ivy Anderson’s Chicken Shack, The Elks Lodge and the Dunbar Hotel, it was the Sunset Blvd of yesterday.

Ernie Andrews the coolest of cool was on hand. He and Phil Wright together played and sang the stories of “Old Man Jazz.” Ernie is one of Los Angeles’s greatest treasures and he sings and tells the stories of back in the day so vividly, that you can see the room transform to clubs of the day on Central Ave right before your eyes. “Lucky So and So,” “Jump for Joy,” and the comic “Love Me” were just of few of the tunes Ernie belted out for us. He says that there are plenty more tunes and recordings locked in the vaults of Capital records. A virtual gold mine just waiting for issue and re-issue. Well, Ernie is our goldmine and we are certainly proud of that. He always leaves me with a big smile on my face!

The music in Los Angeles moved up the street and around the corner from Central Ave to the streets of Lemeirt Park. A place where legends have played. Billy Higgins, Horace Tapscott and many others have inspired so many. One of those being the supreme of love, spirituality, goodness and the sound that represents the love in jazz music, Mr. Dwight Trible!

DAMN! Thou hath been hailed the “Kick-ass Holyman” by critics. For those of you who have experienced the waves of sound and love, you understand. Dwight, fantastic as usual sang. It just feels like the heavens open up and the music pours in. We don’t drown but instead, we are uplifted as we float on the power of the spirit of the music. Harold Land Jr. on piano, Trevor Ware on Bass and Daniel Bejarano on Drums. Talk about the sound of Trane! This band goes to the source, puts its hand on the pulse and delivers the ultimate in (close your eyes and become one with the music) experience.

The evening ends as it began, with poetry accompanied by the guitar sound of Tommy Tedesco. A brilliant ending to a wonderful night!

Click here for pictures and video!

LeRoy Downs

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  • godoggo

    I was there, as usual. I look forward to the Central Avenue festival all year, and this was the most enjoyable I can remember. The vibe was relaxed and friendly, and all the music I heard was just amazing. Dwight, Ernie, singer Barbara Morrison, saxophonist Justo Almario, and big band leader/composer Gerald Wilson are all truly great artists (and entertainers), who really should be better known than they are. The level was so consistently high that it’s hard to pick out favorites, but I guess I especially enjoyed especially enjoyed Dwight’s ecstatic jazz/gospel thing, along with his tenor player Joshua Spiegelman’s Pharoah-styled multiphonics, and Barbara, who can shout the blues like Etta James or swing and improvise like Carmen McRae (and I know that sounds like hyperbole, but it really isn’t). New to me was a group of talented young musicians called Expressions, who played an intriguing third stream/avant garde piece dedicated to Teddy Edwards, featuring an astounding young alto player who sounded like equal parts Phil Woods, Cannonball Adderly and Eric Dolphy (again, no hype!),

    One other Central Avenue tradition should be mentioned, for it’s really becoming an integral part of the show: the Lady with the
    Red Dress On (as Barbara Morrison sang, “I bet she can do the electric slide all night long”).

  • godoggo

    Oops, sorry, different show. Wow, they were at Disney, too?