You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Randy Weston

Still developing his unique fusion of mainstream jazz and African and Caribbean tunes and rhythms, Randy Weston checked into the Jazz Bakery Tuesday with an unusual twist on the traditional piano trio.

With:
Band: Randy Weston, Alex Blake, Neil Clark.

Still developing his unique fusion of mainstream jazz and African and Caribbean tunes and rhythms, Randy Weston checked into the Jazz Bakery Tuesday with an unusual twist on the traditional piano trio. With two longtime colleagues at hand — Alex Blake (bass) and Neil Clark (African percussion) — Weston’s African Rhythms Trio produced some absorbing musical incantations, one of which lasted longer than a half-hour.

Weston, who turned 77 on Sunday, has been fairly quiet on records since his decadelong string of often-brilliant, often-African-themed albums for Antilles and Verve ended with 1998’s “Khepara.” (His latest, “Ancient Future” on Mutable Music, is a coupling of a new solo session with a solo album from 1983.) But that says more about the fading state of the major-label jazz recording business than it does about Weston, who remains a commanding, quirky, unpredictable creative force, stabbing away on the house Yamaha piano in his Monk-rooted, highly individual manner.

Blake and Clark, too, display their unique personalities. Hardly your average self-effacing anchor on bass, the carbon-steel-fingered Blake strummed and slapped his instrument like an inspired madman, summoning techniques associated with flamenco guitarists and scatting along a la Slam Stewart. Clark eschewed the usual drum kit and didn’t need it, generating all the drive Weston and Blake could want with a set of congas, bongos, hand-played cymbals, claves and a diverse collection of shakers. And Clark’s setup sounded clearer and sharper in this room than an ordinary trap set often does.

All of this was on display in the lengthy opening medley that commenced with an antic jazz waltz/blues “Blues Africa” and careened into a deliberately discordant, conga-driven “Caravan.” Later, Weston used “The Healers,” a dignified composition from his double-CD magnum opus “The Spirits of Our Ancestors,” as a solemn homage to African drumming pioneer Babatunde Olatunji, who died on Weston’s birthday, releasing the tension with a sprightly Afro-Cuban-accented follow-up.

Randy Weston

Jazz Bakery; 144 seats, $25

Production: Presented inhouse. Reviewed April 8, 2003, closed April 13.

Cast: Band: Randy Weston, Alex Blake, Neil Clark.

More Music

  • Mary J. Blige

    Mary J. Blige Joins Illustrious Group of Golden Globes Double Music-Acting Nominees

    Still developing his unique fusion of mainstream jazz and African and Caribbean tunes and rhythms, Randy Weston checked into the Jazz Bakery Tuesday with an unusual twist on the traditional piano trio. With two longtime colleagues at hand — Alex Blake (bass) and Neil Clark (African percussion) — Weston’s African Rhythms Trio produced some absorbing […]

  • Shazam

    Apple Is Buying Shazam: Acquisition of Music Recognition App Confirmed

    Still developing his unique fusion of mainstream jazz and African and Caribbean tunes and rhythms, Randy Weston checked into the Jazz Bakery Tuesday with an unusual twist on the traditional piano trio. With two longtime colleagues at hand — Alex Blake (bass) and Neil Clark (African percussion) — Weston’s African Rhythms Trio produced some absorbing […]

  • Kesha and Macklemore to Tour Together

    Kesha and Macklemore to Tour Together in 2018 (Watch)

    Still developing his unique fusion of mainstream jazz and African and Caribbean tunes and rhythms, Randy Weston checked into the Jazz Bakery Tuesday with an unusual twist on the traditional piano trio. With two longtime colleagues at hand — Alex Blake (bass) and Neil Clark (African percussion) — Weston’s African Rhythms Trio produced some absorbing […]

  • Grateful Dead

    Grateful Dead's Bob Weir and Phil Lesh Announce First-Ever Tour as a Duo

    Still developing his unique fusion of mainstream jazz and African and Caribbean tunes and rhythms, Randy Weston checked into the Jazz Bakery Tuesday with an unusual twist on the traditional piano trio. With two longtime colleagues at hand — Alex Blake (bass) and Neil Clark (African percussion) — Weston’s African Rhythms Trio produced some absorbing […]

  • Josh Homme Apologizes to Photographer in

    Josh Homme Apologizes to Photographer in Emotional Video: 'I Was a Total D---'

    Still developing his unique fusion of mainstream jazz and African and Caribbean tunes and rhythms, Randy Weston checked into the Jazz Bakery Tuesday with an unusual twist on the traditional piano trio. With two longtime colleagues at hand — Alex Blake (bass) and Neil Clark (African percussion) — Weston’s African Rhythms Trio produced some absorbing […]

  • Almost Acoustic Christmas Review

    Concert Review: KROQ's Almost Acoustic Christmas 2017, Night One

    Still developing his unique fusion of mainstream jazz and African and Caribbean tunes and rhythms, Randy Weston checked into the Jazz Bakery Tuesday with an unusual twist on the traditional piano trio. With two longtime colleagues at hand — Alex Blake (bass) and Neil Clark (African percussion) — Weston’s African Rhythms Trio produced some absorbing […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content