[JPL] Jazz in Sofia

Dr. Jazz drjazz at drjazz.com
Tue Oct 2 22:26:34 EDT 2007


Jazz amusements in Sofia
09:00 Mon 01 Oct 2007 - Elitsa Grancharova

The rhythm of jazz makes me relax, a soft touch that has a classy 
brilliance. So the fact that more and more jazz stars are visiting 
Bulgaria makes me happy, and also proud, that my fellow countrymen can 
enjoy live jazz performances without leaving Bulgaria.

The first autumn concert this year was by the acid jazz formation Count 
Basic. It was also the opening of the autumnal Sofia Jazz Peak, which 
this year coincided with the Day of Sofia on September 17, and with the 
sixth birthday of Jazz FM Radio. This year's festival started with Count 
Basic and will continue on with two more jazz stars.

In the National Place of Culture (NDK), Billy Cobham will play on 
October 24, and on November 13 jazz fans can enjoy the first live 
performance by the Francesco Cafiso Quartet in the country. Tickets for 
Cobham's concert are currently being sold for 40, 50 and 60 leva and 
tickets for Cafiso's will be on sale in the first week of October. 
Tickets for both concerts can be obtained at the NDK box office, 
Bulgaria Hall or at tickets-bg.com, eventim.bg or ticketstream.bg.

This year is the seventh that Sofia Jazz Peak has occurred. It was first 
held in 2003 and since then it has transformed from an annual to a 
twice-yearly event. Since 2006 it has taken place in the spring and in 
the autumn, Jazz FM Radio's PR officer Vessela Vencheva told The Sofia Echo.

Among the names that have performed at the festival are Marcus Miller, 
Earth, Wind and Fire Experience and Al Jarreau. Jarreau came again in 
2007 because he "fell in love with the Bulgarian audience" in 2006, 
Vencheva said. During his most recent visit, he performed together with 
the legendary George Benson.

Some of the other musicians who have played and sung at Sofia Jazz Peak 
are Mezzoforte, Maceo Parker, Michael Legrand, Gabin, Peter Erskine, De 
Phazz, Nigel Kennedy and Tasha's World. Marcus Miller, Al Jarreau, 
George Benson, De Phazz, Gabin, Maceo Parker and Peter Erskine have come 
to Bulgaria only for this music event.

Billy Cobham, the next performer scheduled to fill Hall 1 of the 
National Palace of Culture with sound, is coming to Sofia for first 
time; it will be his second time in Bulgaria. (He has played in Plovdiv.)

For more than 30 years, Cobham has received international recognition as 
the perfect percussionist. He studied at New York's High School of Music 
and Arts and his career began soon after he graduated. Cobham started 
recording with Miles Davis in 1969, while at the same time he was 
playing with Les McCann and Junior Mance. In addition, Cobham is one of 
the founders of one of the first fusion bands, called Dreams. Further, 
he played in John McLaughlin's Mahavishnu Orchestra.

In 1973, Cobham recorded one of his legendary albums, Spectrum. At that 
time, one of his band mates was the Bulgarian piano virtuoso Milcho Leviev.

That same year he recorded a second album, Shabazz, at the Montreux Jazz 
Festival.

Cobham was a frequent guest of Montreux and in the mid-70s he recorded 
many live albums, most famous of which is Live In Europe with George 
Duke. In 1985 appeared the fantastic albums Warning and Power Play.

During his career, Cobham has performed live in America, Europe and 
Japan and has recorded in many countries, including Israel, Chile and 
Australia. At the Sofia Jazz Peak he will present Culture Mix -- one of 
the eight projects on which he is simultaneously working.

Next during the festival comes Francesco Cafiso Quartet. Cafiso is one 
of the fastest developing young talents in the history of jazz. At only 
29 years old, he has already worked with world-famous musicians. In 
2003, Cafiso met Wynton Marsalis; this was the breakpoint of his career. 
Marsalis invited Cafiso to join his European tour, where the young jazz 
musician had the possibility to play in some of the most prestigious 
halls and cities in Europe.

Later Cafiso practised in New Orleans with Ellis Marsalis, Jason 
Marsalis, Morris Brown and many other important local musicians. In 2005 
the Japanese music magazine Swing gave Cafiso its New Star award. He has 
won various other prizes: the Massimo Urbani Award in Urbisaglia, the 
EuroJazz Award in Lecco, the International Jazz Festivals Organization 
Award in New York, the World Saxophone Competition in London and the 
Django d'Or in Rome.


-- 
Dr. Jazz
Dr. Jazz Operations
24270 Eastwood
Oak Park, MI  48237
(248) 542-7888
http://www.drjazz.com
SKYPE:  drjazz99

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