Ventana Abierta is an ideal art and culture organization in Nerja, Spain. They organize opera nights, wine tasting with flamenco, classical concerts and jazz concerts. I have attended a few of these, and I am struck by the high quality of the Spanish musicians I have seen. On Saturday night I saw Chapi Pineda Trio, with acoustic guitar, piano and percussion, and I got my eyes and ears opened to a musical mix of jazz, flamenco and South American bossa nova played by three virtuoso musicians.
Hedvig Mollestad is one of the toughest ladies playing the guitar. She plays with her own trio, a very personal mix of intricate jazz and pure heavy gutar rock. The trio has been on a hiatus while Hedvig Mollestad has been home with here baby, but now they are back with a vengeance. Yesterday they played at John Dee for an enthusiastic audience.
Norway have quite a few world class jazz musicians, among them Terje Rypdal, Arild Andersen, Jon Christensen, Karin Krogh, Bugge Wesseltoft, Nils Petter Molvær and Eivind Aarseth. But there is liitle dispute that Jan Garbarek is in a special class, and has been since the mid 70s. He started playing in the 60’s, but his career got up to full speed with the collaboration with Keith Jarrett on the LP Belonging in 1974, and he has kept up since then. Last night and tonight he plays two sold out houses at Bærum Kulturhus, awith his band, nd I was there yesterday.
The last time I saw Frode Alnæs, was with his band Dance With A Stranger who played their farewell tour this year. Before that I saw him with the Organ Club, a collaboration of Norwegian organ and jazz enthusiasts. I haven’t seen Frode Alnaes solo before, but Friday night he played with his trio at Olsen på Bryn.
I have a special respect for artists and musicians who transcend the borders between musical styles and who also make it hard for music librarians to categorize in an easy way. Jamie Cullum is such an artist, who moves between jazz and pop with no obvious difficulty. He is only 34 years old, but has been recording since he was 19, and playing publicly even before that.
Shining recently released their CD, One One One to good critics. Some critics didn’t like their new direction, but the general consensus was that this is another great album from the band. These days the band is on a tour to promote the CD, and Saturday night they played at Byscenen in Trondheim.
If you haven’t heard or seen Hedvig Mollestad Trio before, do it as soon as you get the opportunity! She combines guitar playing in the tradition of Jimi Hendrix and other rock heroes with advanced jazz rhythms and phrasings. Saturday night she played Byscenen in Trondheim, and I saw part of her show.
The headliner for the last of three concerts at Romsdalsmuseet during The Molde International Jazz Festival this year was Norah Jones. 5000 people had waited in the cold, but still sunny sunny weather for the star. She played twenty two songs from her 10 year career, and everyone went home a little warmer.
When Ane Brun entered the stage at Romsdalsmuseet on Thursday – an outdoor museum of old Norwegian houses – she was at home in more than one sense. She was born her in Molde and grew up here before she moved to Stockholm in 2001.
Soul music is known historically for their artists’ performances and their extravagant costumes. In later years many female soul artists have tried to enter the throne. Amy Winehouse was close, but Janelle Monáe looks like the most likely contender. Here are some pictures from her performance at the Molde International Jazz Festival yesterday.