Cracking open the clubs for spy music and loons


The massive CGI Rochester Intercontinental Jazz Competition demonstrates at downtown’s Parcel 5 have been rough to miss out on, with the bass booming off the encompassing buildings. The Booker T Soul Assessment packed the spot Thursday the music is convenience foodstuff for the soul.

But you have to crack open up the golf equipment, like a squirrel hustling an acorn, to discover a deal with like New York City’s Big Lazy.

“Don’t worry,” guitarist Steve Ulrich assured the packed space at Montage Audio Hall. “Everything’s gonna be Alright.”

Ulrich and his trio, Large Lazy, have been previously deep into its first set Thursday by the time they received to that piece, “Dear Issues,” a moody soundtrack of guitar, drums and bass.

As instrumental trios go, this was a dim 1. But that was Okay. A soundtrack of intrigue, with Ulrich turning up to 10 the reverb and echo outcomes on his guitar. Criminal offense surf.

Ominous. But that was Alright. Not shockingly, these guys are massive fans of Tom Waits’ junkyard mentality. “Highway twang,” Ulrich termed it. Driving songs, with the best down. For unique effects, Large Lazy drifted no more than bowed bass on just one song, or Ulrich taking part in some lap-slide guitar (a lot more effectively pronounced “gee-tar”).

Movie noir. Ulrich does compose soundtracks he’s accomplished a few for HBO. They introduced out John Lennon’s “Girl,” while it was not particularly recognizable as “we place it through our odd small filter,” Ulrich reported. Without a doubt, “Girl” arrived out as variety of a tarantella lullaby, with a split for chaos in the center. In the same way, Ulrich discovered “Night Train” as “roadhouse blues.” Perhaps it was the outdated Jimmy Forrest track, but … it’s possible not.

Of course, intrigue. But that was Alright. “Spy tunes,” Ulrich suggested, setting up the story of how the longtime band had in the beginning known as itself Lazyboy, until finally the makers of recliner chairs hit them with a cease-and-desist purchase.

That’s the variety of creative hurdles faced by our musicians now.

Huge Lazy plays two sets Friday night time at The Very little Theater.

Today’s jazz haiku

Existence as a movie

riffs as character scientific studies

notes in black and white

Dissecting Hans Bilger

If you bear in mind dissecting a frog in significant college biology class, which is what we have been looking for from the Hans Bilger Group at The Little Theatre. In accordance to his bio, he’d examined evolutionary biology at Yale, and included the seems of character — birds, bats and frogs — into his music.




CGI Rochester Worldwide Jazz Competition

Hans Bilger.

Along with Ivy Leaguer Bilger, this was a high-minded trio. The electric guitarist composes classical new music. The drummer is a poet.

Bilger is from Brooklyn, and splits his time now among New York Town and Austin, Texas. He explained to of coming to the Rochester jazz fest a number of situations more than the many years, viewing musicians these as the drummer Brian Blade and pianist Cedar Walton.

Commonly actively playing acoustic guitar, Bilger would choose up a double bass when inspiration named for it. “Same Desire,” he said, was impressed by the pandemic, “when repetition seemed more frequent.” Bilger told of remaining inspired by a drive together Oregon’s Columbia River gorge. He was impressed by a woman, Maria.

There was mention of a loon. The inspiration of birds, bats and frogs appeared overplayed. Or perhaps they basically set the mood, like car problems does for Tom Waits. Instead, dissect Bilger and what we discover is a delicate indie hero.

Preview: Julia Nunes delivers household the bacon, and The Bacon Brothers

It took Julia Nunes six many years to go from strumming her ukulele even though sitting on her mattress at Skidmore University to sitting down in a chair up coming to Conan O’Brien on the set of his late-evening speak clearly show.

That extensive indie-admirer-fueled journey for the Fairport native, which commenced in 2007, arrives back again house Friday, when she opens for The Bacon Brothers for a totally free exhibit at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Park.

Nunes’ job has spanned seven albums of normally-quirky songs, driven by a savvy use of social media. She to start with caught fire while playing her uke in her dorm space, masking music by common functions this sort of as The Beatles and Destiny’s Kid and putting up them on YouTube. Some of her variations on the system have soared over and above a million views. Her YouTube channel has around a quarter-million subscribers.

Julia in Rochester

Summer Engman


Provided by CGI Rochester International Jazz Festival

Julia Nunes.

Nunes has opened formerly for The Bacon Brothers, the acoustic job headed by the actor Kevin Bacon and his brother, Michael. She’s also opened for Ben Folds and Ben Kweller, performed the Bonnaroo Tunes & Arts Competition 2 times, chatted with David Dye on NPR’s “World Café” and toured England twice, which incorporated being interviewed on BBC1.

Nunes operates on a do-it-oneself ethos. Her loyal enthusiast base donated $77,888 by Kickstarter to fund her fourth album, “Settle Down,” which went on to No. 9 on Billboard’s Unbiased Albums chart. Subsequent YouTube campaigns pulling in $134,403 and $71,025 backed her upcoming two albums.

Video clips have also been a component of Nunes’ story. “Stay Awake,” the music she done on O’Brien’s display, characteristics her going for walks by way of an office environment, impishly participating in tips on sleeping workforce, then executing for a sleeping audience.

As her songs have grown a lot less adorable, and extra hard, so have her films. Now residing in Los Angeles, Nunes identifies as queer, and the online video for “No Sudden Moves” capabilities her luxuriating with one more girl in a bathtub stuffed with glass beads. The movie accompanying “Dear Ben” is awash in pink imagery — balloons, flowers, candy hearts — as she difficulties a gentle warning, extremely significant on a prime obscenity, that Ben had improved not try any romancing with her once again.

Nunes goes on at 7 p.m. The Bacon Brothers at 9 p.m.

Schedule variations

Davina & the Vagabonds joined the checklist of jazz fest bands that had to drop out because of to travel troubles, sickness or COVID. Accomplishing in their place Friday at Innovation Theater is the John Bailey Quintet and on Saturday at Montage, Grace Serene & The Superclean.

And for Saturday’s Drum Struggle at Innovation Theater, Justin Faulkner replaces Kenny Washington.




CGI Rochester Intercontinental Jazz Competition

Joe Locke.

Jeff’s Friday picks

  • Joe Locke Team, Temple Theater, 7 and 9:15 p.m. One of the major jazz vibraphonists in the earth, Locke grew up in Rochester and discovered his jazz in the clubs here. But he’s also tuned into the moment. Locke’s site presently characteristics a online video that combines Bob Dylan’s “All Together the Watchtower,” his have “Breathe” and the phrases of Frederick Douglass in a effective condemnation of racism today.
  • The New Electric power Era Plays the New music of Prince, Parcel 5, 9 p.m. Alumni of the late Prince’s backing band have been holding the songs alive. Assume a big group, and a huge party, equivalent to what we saw Wednesday evening when Sheila E performed the venue.
  • Bobby Hurry, Hyatt Regency Ballroom, 7:45 and 9:45 p.m. Now in his 80s, the blues guitarist’s most current album won a Grammy for Ideal Regular Blues Album.


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