October, 2012

October 2012

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Welcome to the October issue of Ran’s monthly newsletter. This month’s photos (courtesy of David “Knife” Fabris) are from Ran’s October trip to Quebec, where he performed a well-received tribute to Alfred Hitchcock’s “I Confess” at the Quebec City Jazz Festival. A review in Le Soleil (in French) is available here.

Right: Ran’s view from the window of his hotel (Chateau Frontenac).

Ran’s Reflections

Note: This is the second and final installment of Ran’s thoughts on his July trip to Europe.

It was very nice meeting new and old friends this summer. I was hosted in Toucy by Louis Schneider, a French architect who is currently designing a hospital in Morocco. He has fabulous taste in food and wine and a heroic car driver.

In Brussels, I met Jean-Philippe Allard and Farida Bachir, who were responsible for many of the great Universal Jazz France recordings and have produced albums of Helen Merrill, Abbey Lincoln, Charlie Haden, Randy Weston, and Ornette Coleman. Of course you are all aware of my love of Abbey Lincoln, and a great many of Abbey’s recordings were created by Jean-Phillipe and Farida. While there, we recorded material for two albums, one dedicated to Chris Connor and the other to Claude Chabrol.

I also want to single out is Jesus Manuel Alvarez Fontaneda, who I first met when he came from Western Spain to hear a recital I did in Rome. What a listener he is — he travels all over Europe to support his musical interests. Suddenly I saw Jesus at the Paris concert I did with Sara Serpa.

Being in Paris was extremely exciting and the greatest joy was meeting old friends. I had the pleasure of seeing Yorgos Simeonidis, who flew up for the week from Athens, and Maritza, who is originally from Cuba and who had other business to attend to in Europe. I also met Phillipe Carles, who Jeanne Lee and I met for the first time in Paris in 1963.

The audience that Sara and I drew was not extremely large but there was so much soul and international diversity in it.

Ran with a Fiend

skullRan meets a local at Les Ancient Canadiens (a restaurant).

Meeting and Greeting

ellcropRan with April Ellington (Duke Ellington’s daughter), Mrs. Ellington, and trumpeter Tiger Okoshi, who performed at the festival.

Ran and Knife

stepsRan and Knife at L’Escalier Casse-Cou, the steps where Alfred Hitchcock made a cameo appearance in the first minute of “I Confess.” Click on the photo to see Ran reenact the scene.

Ran with a Fan

autographRan accommodates a fan’s request to sign his arm.

Et Cetera

Ran’s book, The Primacy of the Ear, is available on lulu.com. The book outlines Ran’s philosophy on development of the ear and explains how musical memory is the key to becoming a more potent musician and shaping a personal musical style.

To learn more about studying at NEC’s Contemporary Improvisation department, please visit the department’s website or contact Department Chairperson Hankus Netsky.

Thanks for reading. We’ll see you in November.
–Steve

Vol. 8, No. 10

You can read back issues here.