R.I.P. Guitarist and Teacher Steve Maase (Updated)

Steve Maase. Photo courtesy of the family.

Steve Maase. Photo courtesy of the family.

Known to generations of Albuquerque music fans and students, guitarist and teacher Steve Maase passed away last weekend, quietly and peacefully in his sleep of “complications due to an underlying heart condition, peacefully and in his sleep,” report his daughters, Lily Maase and Ari Nicole. Continue reading

Two from the Heart: Releases from Matt Wilson and Kevin Zoernig

The latest release from drummer Matt Wilson, featuring a large ensemble, and the new solo effort from pianist Kevin Zoernig have one thing in common: they both mine deep seams of emotional content. Continue reading

Let’s Go to the Movies: Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Bill Evans, and Omar Sosa

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I can’t hardly believe it’s been a month, dear reader, since we last met. In the interim, I traveled back east to visit my mom and then up to New York to hang with friends old and new. While in the city, I trekked out to Brooklyn on the F train for a concert at iBeam, a musician’s cooperative in Gowanus. The program featured three piano duos—Carol Liebowitz with saxophonist Nick Lyons, Kazzrie Jaxen with guitarist Adam Caine, and Virg Dzurinko with trumpeter Ryan Messina—and it was a night to remember. More than any other medium, music for me has the capacity to open doors deep in the psyche, and at iBeam that night, doors were swinging open left and right.

Which brings me to today’s subjects: Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Bill Evans, and Omar Sosa. Each of them has keys to those doors, and each is the subject of a film worth seeing and supporting. Continue reading

Local Don’t Mean Yokel (Part 3): Mark Weaver

Mark Weaver. Photo by Heather Trost.

Mark Weaver. Photo by Heather Trost.

The New Mexico Jazz Festival and the New Mexico Jazz Workshop’s summer jazz and blues series bring stellar talent to town. This year we’ve got the likes of NEA Jazz Masters Dave Holland, Charles Lloyd, and Dr. Lonnie Smith just for starters at the festival, and Brian Lynch and Matt Savage are among the stars lighting up the NMJW series.

The festival and summer series also offer top-drawer musicians in New Mexico an opportunity to perform in listening rooms and on stages where their music does not have to compete with bar chatter and the clink of silverware on china. This three-part series features ear-worthy local (or formerly local) acts stepping into the spotlight in the coming weeks. This final installment features tuba player/composer Mark Weaver and his UFO Ensemble, with original band member George Lane on trumpet, Micah Hood on trombone, and Rick Compton on drums. Continue reading