Terence Blanchard Celebrates the Legacy and Future of Jazz

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Wednesday April 01, 2015

Grammy Award-winning trumpeter and composer Terence Blanchard once said, ‘If you are hung up on maintaining the tradition, you’re never going to be yourself. This is music about breaking the tradition.’ In two very different concerts (one this week and one at the Playboy Jazz Festival in June), Blanchard will be celebrating the past of jazz as well as its future.

On Thursday night, Blanchard will celebrate the collaborations of jazz legend Miles Davis and arranger Gil Evans at Walt Disney Concert Hall in a show called Still Ahead. Their albums: Miles Ahead, Porgy and Bess and Sketches of Spain are considered masterpieces.

‘It’s one of those things where you had a perfect meeting of minds,’ says Blanchard of the duo’s work. ‘Gil’s arrangements were perfectly suited for Miles’ expression. You can’t manufacture that. You have to appreciate it and be thankful those guys found each other. When you look at Miles from Birth of the Cool, you can tell he was trying to simplify. Couple that with Gil Evans’ harmonic arranging you can tell he was opening up that harmonic sense and that really suited what Miles was doing at the same time.’

To read more by Craig Byrd in Los Angeles Magazine click here