Nonesuch Events for the Weekend of January 26–28

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Jeff Parker and the New Breed, including Makaya McCraven, perform in Chicago and Iowa City. Ambrose Akinmusire, Bil Frisell, and Gregory Hutchinson bring Owl Song to Budapest and Helsinki. Jeremy Denk is in Utah. Mary Halvorson's sextet takes Cloudward to Germany and Austria. Emmylou Harris headlines Ann Arbor Folk Fest. Gabriel Kahane, Attacca Quartet, and Roomful of Teeth premiere his new work in San Francisco. Kronos Quartet celebrates 50 in Stanford. Brad Mehldau is in Canada and Connecticut. Natalie Merchant leads Fondazione Prada workshop/concert in Milan. Punch Brothers host Kacey Musgraves and Tiny Habits at their NYC variety hour. Cécile McLorin Salvant is in Milwaukee and Minneapolis. Molly Tuttle concludes UK tour with Tommy Emmanuel in New Brighton and Harrogate.

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Jeff Parker and his band the New Breed—drummer Makaya McCraven, keyboardist/saxophonist Josh Johnson, and bassist/synth player Paul Bryan—perform at Logan Center Performance Hall in Chicago tonight and University of Iowa’s Hancher Auditorium in Iowa City on Saturday. Parker’s latest album, Forfolks, was released on International Anthem and Nonesuch Records in December 2021, and was declared “a beautifully freewheeling, guitar-driven expression of joy and musical exploration,” by Guitar World, “a masterpiece of improvisation.” Parker is joined by the New Breed on his 2020 International Anthem / Nonesuch release, Suite for Max Brown, which debuted at No. 1 on Billboard's Current Contemporary Jazz Chart and was praised by Pitchfork as an “effortlessly detailed album, full of tradition and experimentation that spans generations … It lives at the vanguard of new jazz music.”

Makaya McCraven released his latest album, In These Times, in 2022 on International Anthem, Nonesuch, and XL Recordings, making several year's best album lists, including those of Pitchfork (“a high-water mark”), NPR Music's Nate Chinen (“the culmination of a years-long experiment in groove ... just might be Makaya McCraven's manifesto”), and Treble (“McCraven's masterwork”).

---

Composer and trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire began an eleven-date European tour earlier this week, performing music from his critically acclaimed Nonesuch debut album, Owl Song, with album contributor guitarist Bill Frisell and drummer Gregory Hutchinson, sitting in for Herlin Riley. Their tour continues this weekend, with shows at Eiffel Arts Studio in Budapest tonight and Savoy Theatre in Helsinki on Sunday. Owl Song has received critical acclaim since its release in December, including being named among the year's best by the New York Times, Jazzwise, Tidal, Tom Moon, Peter Margasak, ArtsFuse, and the Irish Times. “A quiet rush of gorgeous sound where space, tone and beauty come together in one of the most impactful albums of 2023,” says DownBeat in its five-star review. “This is one of the most interesting recordings to come along in a very long time by one of the most interesting artists of our time.”

---

Pianist Jeremy Denk brings a solo recital—featuring works by Bach, Chopin, Clara Schumann, Missy Mazoli, Ravel, and Schubert—to Utah State University’s Russell/Wanlass Performance Hall in Logan tonight, before heading to California to perform Bach’s Partitas for Keyboard, Nos. 1–6, at Soka Performing Arts Center’s Concert Hall in Aliso Viejo on Sunday. You can hear Denk perform Bach, Chopin, and many other composers on his 2019 album, c. 1300–c. 2000, which the Telegraph called “quite exhilarating” and BBC Radio 3 called “a thoughtfully curated, beautifully played, brilliantly annotated recital.”

---

Guitarist Mary Halvorson and her Amaryllis sextet—vibraphonist Patricia Brennan, bassist Nick Dunston, drummer Tomas Fujiwara, trumpeter Adam O'Farrill, and trombonist Jacob Garchik—conclude their eight-city European run, featuring music from their new album, Cloudward, this weekend: they play Gems Kulturzentrum in Singen, Germany, tonight, and a set at Kunsthaus Nexus in Saalfelden, Austria, on Saturday, as part of Jazzfestival Saalfelden, before returning to Germany for a show at Stadtgarten in Cologne on Sunday. Cloudward features eight new compositions Halvorson performs with the sextet—the improvisatory band that performed on her acclaimed 2022 Nonesuch debut albums Amaryllis and Belladonna—and “reveals a newfound sense of beauty and clarity,” per the Guardian. “[Halvorson] outdoes herself again,” says All About Jazz. “Cloudward is just too good.”

---

Emmylou Harris performs the Ann Arbor Folk Festival headline set at Hill Auditorium in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on Saturday.

---

Composer and pianist Gabriel Kahane is joined by Attacca Quartet and Roomful of Teeth for the world premiere of his new work, Where Are the Arms; Under A Tree, at Herbst Theatre in San Francisco tonight, as part of PIVOT Festival, of which Kahane is guest curator. The program also includes Caroline Shaw’s Partita for 8 Singers, Paul Simon’s “American Tune,” and works by Louis and François Couperin. The San Francisco Chronicle calls Kahane’s 2022 album, Magnificent Bird, on which he explores quiet, domestic concerns, coupled with losses personal and collective, against the backdrop of a nation and planet in crisis, “a gorgeous, intimate collection ... glistening and magical.” Attacca Quartet has won Grammy Awards for Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance for both of its Nonesuch recordings with Caroline Shaw (a guest on Magnificent Bird): Orange (2019) and Evergreen (2022).

---

Kronos Quartet is joined by movement artist Eiko Otake and singer and harmonium player Mariana Sadovska in bringing its Five Decades: A 50th Anniversary Celebration concert tour to Bing Concert Hall in Stanford, California on Saturday. The program includes Otake’s eyes closed, Sadovska’s Chernobyl. The Harvest, the world premiere of Gabriella Smith’s Keep Going, Sun Ra, Terry Riley & Sara Miyamoto’s Kiss Yo’ Ass Goodbye, and works by Nicole Lizée and Tanya Tagaq. The concert is followed by a post-performance talk, Artists Respond to Climate Change and Nuclear Disaster, with Kronos’ David Harrington, Otake, Sadovska, and Smith, moderated by Kyoko Sato, Associate Director of the Program in Science, Technology and Society.

As part of the Kronos: Five Decades celebrations, Nonesuch will release the group’s award-winning 1990 album Black Angels, the title piece of which inspired David Harrington to found the group in 1973, on vinyl next month. The Evening Standard included it among its “100 Definitive Classical Albums of the 20th Century.” Last year, Nonesuch released the first-ever vinyl edition of the acclaimed 1995 album Kronos Quartet Performs Philip Glass. The Washington Post called it “an ideal combination of composer and performers.”

---

Pianist Brad Mehldau performs at Places des Arts' Maison Symphonique in Montreal on Friday then gives the Canadian premiere of his new work, Fourteen Reveries, at Koerner Hall in Toronto on Saturday. The program also includes Mehldau’s “L.A. Pastorale,” which he composed and performed on the 2020 Nonesuch album I Still Play; selections from his Suite: April 2020; and songs by Elliot Smith, Radiohead, and more. Following that, he heads back down to the states for a concert at Ridgefield Playhouse in Ridgefield, Connecticut, on Sunday.

Mehldau's new solo album, Your Mother Should Know: Brad Mehldau Plays The Beatles, landed on year’s best lists from Jazzwise and DownBeat, which describes it as "the music of The Beatles channeled through the mind of one of our greatest living pianists." “A great improvising pianist takes on The Beatles,” says Mojo. “An inspired set that reveals new ways of hearing pop classics.”

---

Natalie Merchant returns to Milan, joined by Domo Emigrantes, for the Fondazione Prada's Accademia dei Bambini workshop and concert for children Sotto il lume delle stele (Under the light of the stars) at Cinema Godard on Sunday. The program features new songs in Italian adapted from poems by Jewish-Italian poet, scholar, educator and social activist Lina Schwarz. Merchant was on Radio Popolare in Milan late last year to talk with Niccolò Vecchia and Matteo Villaci about her new album, Keep Your Courage, and more and perform the title track to her 2001 album, Motherland, live in the studio. You can listen to the conversation and performance here. Keep Your Courage, which was released last year on Nonesuch Records, and made year’s best lists from Folk Alley and WFUV, “has some of Merchant’s best songwriting,” says the AP. Mojo calls it “her most beautiful in decades.”

---

Chris Thile and his fellow Punch Brothers conclude The Energy Curfew Music Hour, their new, fully acoustic musical variety show with special guests, at the Minetta Lane Theatre in New York City on Sunday. This weekend’s guests: Kacey Musgraves and Tiny Habits. The series, recorded for future release as an Audible Original, imagines a near future where electricity is rationed worldwide with 24 hours of the energy grid down to promote the unplugged lifestyle. In this future, The Energy Curfew Music Hour broadcasts across the country the hour before the lights go out.

---

Cécile McLorin Salvant and her quartet—pianist Sullivan Fortner, bassist Yasushi Nakamura, and drummer Savannah Harris—bring music from her critically acclaimed new album, Mélusine, and more to the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts in Milwaukee on Saturday and the Dakota in Minneapolis for two sets on Sunday. Mélusine, which DownBeat includes in its year’s best list and calls “a masterpiece of thoughtful, adventurous music,” is nominated for the Grammy for Best Jazz Vocal Album; the track “Fenestra” is up for Best Arrangement, Instrumental and Vocals for Godwin Louis’ arrangement. Salvant’s 2022 Nonesuch debut, Ghost Song was nominated in the same two Grammy categories last year.

---

Molly Tuttle concludes her month-long tour of the UK, as special guest of Tommy Emmanuel, with concerts at Floral Pavilion Theatre in New Brighton tonight and Royal Hall in Harrogate on Saturday. “I don't know how often it is that the support act ends up with a five-star review, but the guitarist Molly Tuttle got one from the Guardian the other day for a performance introducing her own musical hero Tommy Emmanuel at the Cadogan Hall," BBC Radio 4 Front Row presenter Tom Sutcliffe says of his guest last week. You can hear Tuttle talk with Sutcliffe and perform songs from her albums City of Gold and Crooked Tree here.

City of Gold, the second album from Tuttle and her band Golden Highway, is nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Bluegrass Album and has made year’s best lists from PopMatters, Folk Alley, No Depression, AllMusic, WFUV, and Holler, which calls it her “most captivating record yet … A heady 48 minutes of joy, Tuttle is single handedly making bluegrass her own.”

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Weekend Events: January 26, 2024
  • Friday, January 26, 2024
    Nonesuch Events for the Weekend of January 26–28

    Jeff Parker and his band the New Breed—drummer Makaya McCraven, keyboardist/saxophonist Josh Johnson, and bassist/synth player Paul Bryan—perform at Logan Center Performance Hall in Chicago tonight and University of Iowa’s Hancher Auditorium in Iowa City on Saturday. Parker’s latest album, Forfolks, was released on International Anthem and Nonesuch Records in December 2021, and was declared “a beautifully freewheeling, guitar-driven expression of joy and musical exploration,” by Guitar World, “a masterpiece of improvisation.” Parker is joined by the New Breed on his 2020 International Anthem / Nonesuch release, Suite for Max Brown, which debuted at No. 1 on Billboard's Current Contemporary Jazz Chart and was praised by Pitchfork as an “effortlessly detailed album, full of tradition and experimentation that spans generations … It lives at the vanguard of new jazz music.”

    Makaya McCraven released his latest album, In These Times, in 2022 on International Anthem, Nonesuch, and XL Recordings, making several year's best album lists, including those of Pitchfork (“a high-water mark”), NPR Music's Nate Chinen (“the culmination of a years-long experiment in groove ... just might be Makaya McCraven's manifesto”), and Treble (“McCraven's masterwork”).

    ---

    Composer and trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire began an eleven-date European tour earlier this week, performing music from his critically acclaimed Nonesuch debut album, Owl Song, with album contributor guitarist Bill Frisell and drummer Gregory Hutchinson, sitting in for Herlin Riley. Their tour continues this weekend, with shows at Eiffel Arts Studio in Budapest tonight and Savoy Theatre in Helsinki on Sunday. Owl Song has received critical acclaim since its release in December, including being named among the year's best by the New York Times, Jazzwise, Tidal, Tom Moon, Peter Margasak, ArtsFuse, and the Irish Times. “A quiet rush of gorgeous sound where space, tone and beauty come together in one of the most impactful albums of 2023,” says DownBeat in its five-star review. “This is one of the most interesting recordings to come along in a very long time by one of the most interesting artists of our time.”

    ---

    Pianist Jeremy Denk brings a solo recital—featuring works by Bach, Chopin, Clara Schumann, Missy Mazoli, Ravel, and Schubert—to Utah State University’s Russell/Wanlass Performance Hall in Logan tonight, before heading to California to perform Bach’s Partitas for Keyboard, Nos. 1–6, at Soka Performing Arts Center’s Concert Hall in Aliso Viejo on Sunday. You can hear Denk perform Bach, Chopin, and many other composers on his 2019 album, c. 1300–c. 2000, which the Telegraph called “quite exhilarating” and BBC Radio 3 called “a thoughtfully curated, beautifully played, brilliantly annotated recital.”

    ---

    Guitarist Mary Halvorson and her Amaryllis sextet—vibraphonist Patricia Brennan, bassist Nick Dunston, drummer Tomas Fujiwara, trumpeter Adam O'Farrill, and trombonist Jacob Garchik—conclude their eight-city European run, featuring music from their new album, Cloudward, this weekend: they play Gems Kulturzentrum in Singen, Germany, tonight, and a set at Kunsthaus Nexus in Saalfelden, Austria, on Saturday, as part of Jazzfestival Saalfelden, before returning to Germany for a show at Stadtgarten in Cologne on Sunday. Cloudward features eight new compositions Halvorson performs with the sextet—the improvisatory band that performed on her acclaimed 2022 Nonesuch debut albums Amaryllis and Belladonna—and “reveals a newfound sense of beauty and clarity,” per the Guardian. “[Halvorson] outdoes herself again,” says All About Jazz. “Cloudward is just too good.”

    ---

    Emmylou Harris performs the Ann Arbor Folk Festival headline set at Hill Auditorium in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on Saturday.

    ---

    Composer and pianist Gabriel Kahane is joined by Attacca Quartet and Roomful of Teeth for the world premiere of his new work, Where Are the Arms; Under A Tree, at Herbst Theatre in San Francisco tonight, as part of PIVOT Festival, of which Kahane is guest curator. The program also includes Caroline Shaw’s Partita for 8 Singers, Paul Simon’s “American Tune,” and works by Louis and François Couperin. The San Francisco Chronicle calls Kahane’s 2022 album, Magnificent Bird, on which he explores quiet, domestic concerns, coupled with losses personal and collective, against the backdrop of a nation and planet in crisis, “a gorgeous, intimate collection ... glistening and magical.” Attacca Quartet has won Grammy Awards for Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance for both of its Nonesuch recordings with Caroline Shaw (a guest on Magnificent Bird): Orange (2019) and Evergreen (2022).

    ---

    Kronos Quartet is joined by movement artist Eiko Otake and singer and harmonium player Mariana Sadovska in bringing its Five Decades: A 50th Anniversary Celebration concert tour to Bing Concert Hall in Stanford, California on Saturday. The program includes Otake’s eyes closed, Sadovska’s Chernobyl. The Harvest, the world premiere of Gabriella Smith’s Keep Going, Sun Ra, Terry Riley & Sara Miyamoto’s Kiss Yo’ Ass Goodbye, and works by Nicole Lizée and Tanya Tagaq. The concert is followed by a post-performance talk, Artists Respond to Climate Change and Nuclear Disaster, with Kronos’ David Harrington, Otake, Sadovska, and Smith, moderated by Kyoko Sato, Associate Director of the Program in Science, Technology and Society.

    As part of the Kronos: Five Decades celebrations, Nonesuch will release the group’s award-winning 1990 album Black Angels, the title piece of which inspired David Harrington to found the group in 1973, on vinyl next month. The Evening Standard included it among its “100 Definitive Classical Albums of the 20th Century.” Last year, Nonesuch released the first-ever vinyl edition of the acclaimed 1995 album Kronos Quartet Performs Philip Glass. The Washington Post called it “an ideal combination of composer and performers.”

    ---

    Pianist Brad Mehldau performs at Places des Arts' Maison Symphonique in Montreal on Friday then gives the Canadian premiere of his new work, Fourteen Reveries, at Koerner Hall in Toronto on Saturday. The program also includes Mehldau’s “L.A. Pastorale,” which he composed and performed on the 2020 Nonesuch album I Still Play; selections from his Suite: April 2020; and songs by Elliot Smith, Radiohead, and more. Following that, he heads back down to the states for a concert at Ridgefield Playhouse in Ridgefield, Connecticut, on Sunday.

    Mehldau's new solo album, Your Mother Should Know: Brad Mehldau Plays The Beatles, landed on year’s best lists from Jazzwise and DownBeat, which describes it as "the music of The Beatles channeled through the mind of one of our greatest living pianists." “A great improvising pianist takes on The Beatles,” says Mojo. “An inspired set that reveals new ways of hearing pop classics.”

    ---

    Natalie Merchant returns to Milan, joined by Domo Emigrantes, for the Fondazione Prada's Accademia dei Bambini workshop and concert for children Sotto il lume delle stele (Under the light of the stars) at Cinema Godard on Sunday. The program features new songs in Italian adapted from poems by Jewish-Italian poet, scholar, educator and social activist Lina Schwarz. Merchant was on Radio Popolare in Milan late last year to talk with Niccolò Vecchia and Matteo Villaci about her new album, Keep Your Courage, and more and perform the title track to her 2001 album, Motherland, live in the studio. You can listen to the conversation and performance here. Keep Your Courage, which was released last year on Nonesuch Records, and made year’s best lists from Folk Alley and WFUV, “has some of Merchant’s best songwriting,” says the AP. Mojo calls it “her most beautiful in decades.”

    ---

    Chris Thile and his fellow Punch Brothers conclude The Energy Curfew Music Hour, their new, fully acoustic musical variety show with special guests, at the Minetta Lane Theatre in New York City on Sunday. This weekend’s guests: Kacey Musgraves and Tiny Habits. The series, recorded for future release as an Audible Original, imagines a near future where electricity is rationed worldwide with 24 hours of the energy grid down to promote the unplugged lifestyle. In this future, The Energy Curfew Music Hour broadcasts across the country the hour before the lights go out.

    ---

    Cécile McLorin Salvant and her quartet—pianist Sullivan Fortner, bassist Yasushi Nakamura, and drummer Savannah Harris—bring music from her critically acclaimed new album, Mélusine, and more to the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts in Milwaukee on Saturday and the Dakota in Minneapolis for two sets on Sunday. Mélusine, which DownBeat includes in its year’s best list and calls “a masterpiece of thoughtful, adventurous music,” is nominated for the Grammy for Best Jazz Vocal Album; the track “Fenestra” is up for Best Arrangement, Instrumental and Vocals for Godwin Louis’ arrangement. Salvant’s 2022 Nonesuch debut, Ghost Song was nominated in the same two Grammy categories last year.

    ---

    Molly Tuttle concludes her month-long tour of the UK, as special guest of Tommy Emmanuel, with concerts at Floral Pavilion Theatre in New Brighton tonight and Royal Hall in Harrogate on Saturday. “I don't know how often it is that the support act ends up with a five-star review, but the guitarist Molly Tuttle got one from the Guardian the other day for a performance introducing her own musical hero Tommy Emmanuel at the Cadogan Hall," BBC Radio 4 Front Row presenter Tom Sutcliffe says of his guest last week. You can hear Tuttle talk with Sutcliffe and perform songs from her albums City of Gold and Crooked Tree here.

    City of Gold, the second album from Tuttle and her band Golden Highway, is nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Bluegrass Album and has made year’s best lists from PopMatters, Folk Alley, No Depression, AllMusic, WFUV, and Holler, which calls it her “most captivating record yet … A heady 48 minutes of joy, Tuttle is single handedly making bluegrass her own.”

    Journal Articles:On TourWeekend Events

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