mick’s blog

The Cosmos with NGC 2023

March 29, 2018

Carved by a bright young star in Orion’s dusty molecular clouds, NGC 2023 is often overlooked in favor of the nearby dramatic silhouette of the Horsehead Nebula. In its own right it is seen as a beautiful star forming emission and reflection nebula though, a mere 1500 light-years distant. Surprisingly colorful and complex filaments are detailed in this rare NGC 2023 portrait. Scattered points of emission are also from the region’s Herbig-Haro objects, associated with the energetic jets from newborn stars. The sharp telescopic view spans about 10 light-years at the estimated distance of NGC 2023. Off the right edge of the frame lies the more familiar cosmic Horsehead.

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Michael Brecker Day

March 29, 2018

Michael Leonard Brecker (March 29, 1949 – January 13, 2007) was an American jazz saxophonist and composer. He was awarded 15 Grammy Awards as both performer and composer. He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from Berklee College of Music in 2004, and was inducted into the Down Beat Jazz Hall of Fame in 2007.

Michael Brecker was born in Philadelphia and raised in Cheltenham Township, a local suburb. His father Bob (Bobby) was a lawyer who played jazz piano and his mother Sylvia was a portrait artist. Michael Brecker was exposed to jazz at an early age by his father. He grew up as part of the generation of jazz musicians who saw rock music not as the enemy but as a viable musical option. Brecker began studying clarinet at age 6, then moved to alto saxophone in eighth grade, settling on the tenor saxophone as his primary instrument in his sophomore year. He graduated from Cheltenham High School in 1967 and after a year at Indiana University he moved to New York City in 1969, where he carved out a niche for himself as a dynamic and exciting jazz soloist. He first made his mark at age 20 as a member of the jazz-rock band Dreams–a band that included his older brother, trumpeter Randy Brecker, trombonist Barry Rogers, drummer Billy Cobham, keyboardist Jeff Kent and bassist Doug Lubahn. Dreams was short-lived, lasting only from 1969 through 1972, but Miles Davis was seen at some gigs prior to his recording Jack Johnson.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9btgBo7E3Ss

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Pearl Bailey Day

March 29, 2018

Pearl Mae Bailey (March 29, 1918 – August 17, 1990) was an American actress and singer. After appearing in vaudeville she made her Broadway debut in St. Louis Woman in 1946. She won a Tony Award for the title role in the all-black production of Hello, Dolly! in 1968. In 1986, she won a Daytime Emmy award for her performance as a fairy godmother in the ABC Afterschool Special, Cindy Eller: A Modern Fairy Tale.

Her rendition of “Takes Two to Tango” hit the top ten in 1952. She received the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award in 1976 and the Presidential Medal of Freedom on October 17, 1988.

Bailey was born in Newport News in Virginia, to the Reverend Joseph James and Ella Mae Ricks Bailey. She was raised in the Bloodfields neighborhood of Newport News, Virginia.

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World Music with Vidushi Saraswati Rajagopalan

March 29, 2018

Performing on the Veena

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Daily Roots with Bobby Melody

March 29, 2018

Jah Bring I Joy In The Morning

3-29-18

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RHYTHM ROOTS WORKSHOP 3-28-18

March 28, 2018

RHYTHM ROOTS WORKSHOP

Wednesday March 28th 2018 noon-2pm

Partnership Resources Inc Minneapolis

Performance Day at 1pm featuring Gold Stars with Darani, Fartun, Tami and Maria.

Just Do It also performing today final day of Residency.

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The Cosmos with NGC 7252

March 28, 2018

NGC 7252 is a peculiar galaxy resulting from an interaction between two galaxies that started a billion years ago. It is located 220 million light years away in the constellation Aquarius. It is also called Atoms for Peace galaxy, a nickname which comes from its loop-like structure, made of stars, that resembles a diagram of an electron orbiting an atomic nucleus.

NGC 7252 is located in the southern part of Aquarius. With an apparent magnitude of 12.7, it is bright enough to be seen by amateur astronomers as a faint small fuzzy blob. Large loops of gas and stars around it makes the galaxy quite peculiar. Thus, it is also Arp 226 (the 226th entry in Arp’s list of peculiar galaxies).

In December 1953, U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower gave the “Atoms for Peace” speech. The speech was concerned about promoting nuclear power for peaceful purposes instead of nuclear weapons. Significant to the scientific community, the name of the speech was given to this peculiar galaxy. The two galaxies merging also resembles nuclear fusion and the galaxies giant loops resemble a diagram of electrons orbiting the nucleus of an atom.

The galaxy is the result of a collision of two galaxies. This collision is an opportunity for astronomers to study such mergers and to predict the future of our Milky Way after its expected collision with the Andromeda galaxy.

X-ray emissions were observed in NGC 7252. This suggests the existence of nuclear activity or an intermediate-mass black hole in the galaxy.

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Orrin Evans Day

March 28, 2018

Orrin Evans (born 28 March 1975) is an American jazz pianist. Evans was born in Trenton, New Jersey and raised in Philadelphia. He attended Rutgers University, and then studied with Kenny Barron. He worked as a sideman for Bobby Watson, Ralph Peterson, Duane Eubanks, and Lenora Zenzalai-Helm, and released his debut as a leader in 1994. He signed with Criss Cross Jazz in 1997, recording prolifically with the label. He was awarded a 2010 Pew Fellowships in the Arts.

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Tete Montoliu Day

March 28, 2018

Tete Montoliu (28 March 1933 – 24 August 1997) was a jazz pianist from Catalonia, Spain. Born blind, he learnt music in Braille at age seven. His real name was Vicenç Montoliu i Massana. His styles varied from hard bop, through afro-cuban, world fusion, to post bop. He recorded with Lionel Hampton in 1956 and played with the touring Roland Kirk in 1963. He also worked with Kenny Dorham, Dexter Gordon, Ben Webster, Lucky Thompson, and Anthony Braxton. Tete Montoliu’s recorded two albums in the US, and recorded for Enja and Soul Note.

Montoliu was born blind, in the Eixample district of Barcelona, and died in the same city. He was the only son of Vicenç Montoliu (a professional musician) and Àngela Massana, a jazz enthusiast, who encouraged her son to study piano. Montoliu’s first experimenting with the piano took place under the tuition of Enric Mas at the private school for blind children that he attended from 1939 to 1944. In 1944, Montoliu’s mother arranged for Petri Palou to provide him with formal piano lessons.

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Thad Jones Day

March 28, 2018

Thaddeus Joseph Jones (March 28, 1923 – August 20, 1986) was an American jazz trumpeter, composer, and bandleader who has been called “one of the all-time greatest jazz trumpet soloists.”

Thad Jones was born in Pontiac, Michigan, on March 28, 1923, to Henry and Olivvia Jones, a musical family of 10 (an older brother was pianist Hank Jones and a younger brother was drummer Elvin Jones). A self-taught musician, Thad began performing professionally at the age of 16. He served in U.S. Army bands during World War II (1943–46).

After his military service, which included an association with the U.S. Military School of Music and working with area bands in Des Moines and Oklahoma City, Jones became a member of the Count Basie Orchestra in May 1954. He was featured as a soloist on such well-known tunes as “April in Paris“, “Shiny Stockings” and “Corner Pocket”. However, his main contribution to Basie’s organization was nearly two dozen arrangements and compositions, which included “The Deacon”, “H.R.H.” (Her Royal Highness — in honor of the band’s command performance in London), “Counter Block”, and lesser known tracks such as “Speaking of Sounds”. His hymn-like ballad “To You” was performed by the Basie band combined with the Duke Ellington Orchestra in their only recording together, and the recording Dance Along With Basie contains nearly an entire album of Jones’ uncredited arrangements of standard tunes.

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World Music with Emilio Barreto

March 28, 2018

Yemaya from Cuba

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Daily Roots with Glasford Manning

March 28, 2018

Prophecy Call

3-28-18

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RHYTHM ROOTS WORKSHOP 3-27-18

March 27, 2018

RHYTHM ROOTS WORKSHOP

Tuesday March 27th, 2018 noon-2pm

Partnership Resources Inc St Louis Park

Performance Day at 1pm with SHAKE IT UP percussion team featuring Mike, Angie, Bethany and Deion.

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The Cosmos with the Milky Way near Carina Nebula

March 27, 2018

Monday, March 26, 2018: A star-forming region in the Milky Way resembles a Van Gogh painting in this stellar view from the European Space Agency’s Herschel space observatory. The image reveals a web of gas filaments, which astronomers believe are responsible for creating new stars. This region is located 7,500 light-years away in the neighborhood of the Carina Nebula.

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Sarah Vaughan Day

March 27, 2018

Sarah Lois Vaughan (March 27, 1924 – April 3, 1990) was an American jazz singer. She has been described by music critic Scott Yanow as having “one of the most wondrous voices of the 20th century.”

Nicknamed “Sassy” and “The Divine One“, Vaughan was a four-time Grammy Award winner, including a “Lifetime Achievement Award”. The National Endowment for the Arts bestowed upon her its “highest honor in jazz”, the NEA Jazz Masters Award, in 1989.

Vaughan’s father, Asbury “Jake” Vaughan, was a carpenter by trade and played guitar and piano. Her mother, Ada Vaughan, was a laundress and sang in the church choir. Jake and Ada Vaughan had migrated to Newark, New Jersey from Virginia during the First World War. Sarah was their only biological child, although in the 1960s they adopted Donna, the child of a woman who traveled on the road with Sarah Vaughan.

Biographies of Vaughan frequently state that she was immediately thrust into stardom after a winning amateur night performance at Harlem’s Zeus Theater. In fact, the story seems to be a bit more complex. Vaughan was frequently accompanied by a friend, Doris Robinson, on her trips into New York City. In the fall of 1942, by which time she was 18 years old, Vaughan suggested that Robinson enter the Apollo Theater Amateur Night contest. Vaughan played piano accompaniment for Robinson, who won second prize. Vaughan later decided to go back and compete as a singer herself. She sang “Body and Soul“, and won—although the exact date of this victorious performance is uncertain. The prize, as Vaughan recalled later to Marian McPartland, was $10 and the promise of a week’s engagement at the Apollo. On November 20th, 1942, Vaughan returned to the Apollo to open for Ella Fitzgerald.

 

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Ben Webster Day

March 27, 2018

Benjamin Francis Webster (March 27, 1909 – September 20, 1973) was an American jazz tenor saxophonist. Born in Kansas City, Missouri, he is considered one of the three most important “swing tenors” along with Coleman Hawkins and Lester Young. Known affectionately as “The Brute” or “Frog”, he had a tough, raspy, and brutal tone on stomps (with growls), yet on ballads he played with warmth and sentiment. He was indebted to alto saxophonist Johnny Hodges, who, he said, taught him to play his instrument.

Webster learned to play piano and violin at an early age before taking up the saxophone, although he did return to the piano from time to time, even recording on the instrument occasionally. Once Budd Johnson showed him some basics on the saxophone, Webster began to play that instrument in the Young Family Band (which at the time included Lester Young). Kansas City at this point was a melting pot from which emerged some of the biggest names in 1930s jazz. Webster joined Bennie Moten‘s band in 1932, a grouping which also included Count Basie, Oran “Hot Lips” Page and Walter Page. This era was recreated in Robert Altman‘s film Kansas City.

Webster spent time with quite a few orchestras in the 1930s, including Andy Kirk, the Fletcher Henderson Orchestra in 1934, then Benny Carter, Willie Bryant, Cab Calloway, and the short-lived Teddy Wilson big band.

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Leroy Carr Day

March 27, 2018

Leroy Carr (March 27, 1905 – April 29, 1935) was an American blues singer, songwriter and pianist who developed a laid-back, crooning technique and whose popularity and style influenced such artists as Nat King Cole and Ray Charles. He first became famous for “How Long, How Long Blues“, released by Vocalion Records in 1928.

Carr was born in Nashville, Tennessee, and raised in Indianapolis, Indiana. His recording career was cut short by his early death, but he produced a large body of work. Some of his most famous songs include “Blues Before Sunrise” (1932), “Midnight Hour Blues” (1932), and “Hurry Down Sunshine” (1934). He had a longtime partnership with the guitarist Scrapper Blackwell. His light bluesy piano combined with Blackwell’s melodic jazz guitar attracted a sophisticated black audience. Carr’s vocal style moved blues singing toward an urban sophistication, influencing such singers as T-Bone Walker, Charles Brown, Amos Milburn, Jimmy Witherspoon, and Ray Charles, among others.

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World Music with Kumina

March 27, 2018

Traditional Kumina drumming in the mountains of Portland Jamaica. Recorded during the January 2011 trip of the Jamaica Field Service Project.

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Daily Roots with Devon Irons

March 27, 2018

When Jah Come

3-27-18

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The Cosmos with the Coma Galaxy

March 26, 2018

Almost every object in the above photograph is a galaxy. The Coma Cluster of Galaxies pictured here is one of the densest clusters known – it contains thousands of galaxies. Each of these galaxies houses billions of stars – just as our own Milky Way Galaxy does. Although nearby when compared to most other clusters, light from the Coma Cluster still takes hundreds of millions of years to reach us. In fact, the Coma Clusteris so big it takes light millions of years just to go from one side to the other. Most galaxies in Coma and other clusters are ellipticals, while most galaxies outside of clusters are spirals. The nature of Coma’s X-ray emissionis still being investigated.

322.9 million light years away.

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Interviews