February, 2016

Ran and Knife
Lexington, MA
Fri. March 4th at 8pm

They’ll be playing at the historic Follen Church in Lexington, MA as part of a performance & lecture series by Lexington Community Education. Past guests have included Irish President Mary Robinson, Ralph Nader, Noam Chomsky, and Anand Giridharadas; poets Robert Bly, Coleman Barks, and Galway Kinnell; musicians John Densmore, Bucky Pizzarelli, Tom Rush, and Joe Lovano. Ran and Knife are honored to be in such esteemed company!

Ran at Constellation
Chicago, IL
Sat. March, 26th at 8:30pm  
Ran is taking a trip to Chicago, IL this month where he will be playing a solo concert at Constellation with dedications to Ornette Coleman and Stevie Wonder. He will also perform new compositions DeKtor!, Moti (for Moti of Moby Dick of Boston, MA),  and, a remembrance of Gunther Schuller, Gunther.Tickets are $15-20 and can be purchased HERE.
Constellation is located at 3111 N Western Ave, Chicago, IL 60618

Night of the Hunter
Jordan Hall (Boston, MA)

Thurs. April 14 at 7:30pm

Pianist/composer/improviser Ran Blake and trombonist Aaron Hartley celebrate their 11th year in coproduction of New England Conservatory‘s famed Film Noir series with Night of the Hunter, a fable about a wayward preacher with violent schizophrenic tendencies. Instead of pronouncing his evil, instead Reverend Harry Powell hides behind a religious facade; the evil of the cloth. Night of the Hunter was an original novel by Davis Grubb and adapted for film in 1955 under the direction of Charles Laughton, Robert Mitchum, and Terry Sanders.

Members of Aaron Hartley’s Storyboard Noir Ensemble play a key role in this annual Film Noir concert. Each fall, ensemble members engage in a rich exploration of creating music for film, through aural study of original scores, development of student compositions in tandem with traditional repertoire, and collective improvisation.

Free and Open to the Public!
(Special Guests TBA)

Chabrol Noir is Here!
Chabrol Noir, recorded in 2012, just came out on impulse! There is a limited supply in the US, but it is for sale on ranblake.com ($20, please allow a few extra days for shipping) and you can probably also track it down on amazon.com ($25).A review by Alex Dutilh:
“After “Cocktails at Dusk: A Noir Tribute to Chris Connor,” acclaimed by critics when it was released last year, the American pianist Ran Blake offers us with “Chabrol Noir” further evidence of his passion for the dark movie.

With this new album, which comes out on Impulse!, Mr. Blake makes particular tribute to one of the most famous representatives of the New Wave, the late Claude Chabrol.

The interest of Ran Blake for noir film goes back to his childhood, when he saw the film, when he was only twelve, “The Spiral Staircase”, the Robert Siodmak film released in 1946. This clash initial led him to discover other legendary directors such as Alfred Hitchcock, Otto Preminger, Fritz Lang, Elia Kazan and, of course, Claude Chabrol.

In his albums, Ran Blake has always sought to reconcile his love of film noir and passion for the gospel, soul, bebop, blues and classical music.

Also identified are we without difficulty the influence of film noir in many classics Third Stream jazz he recorded during his career as “The Newest Sound Around” with Jeanne Lee (RCA, 1962), ” Realization of a Dream “(Owl, 1978),” Film Noir “(Novus, 1980) and ” Vertigo “(Owl, 1985).

Ran Blake, now 80 years old (over thirty albums to) is more passionate than ever, still shines through his teaching at the New England Conservatory and continues to offer us a fascinating musical mix, like any good film noir, beauty and suspense.”


Complete Film Noir Liner Notes from Re-Issue

Many times there’s just not enough space to publish everything you’d like to say about a recording, especially a re-issue. Here are some additional thoughts Ran wrote about Film Noir that weren’t able to be used when it was re-released in 2015.

Concerts in March, 2016

There are many wonderful concerts taking place this month. CI faculty Mark Zaleski is giving his 10th annual tour in MA, NY, and CT from March 8th-11th, Robbie Pate is giving his graduation recital on Sat. March 12th at 8:30pm, Rick Ford will be playing in Dudley Square that same night, Collage New Music is presenting an all Elliott Carter program on Sunday March 13th at 8pm, Eden MacAdam-Somer’s faculty recital is on Monday, March 14th at 7:30pm. There is rumor that Aaron Hartley and Ran will join her for a guest number.

See the full calendars below for more great concerts!