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Old and New Dreams

I was so busy last month I didn't get around to writing about Joshua Redman's Still Dreaming at SF Jazz. With Ron Miles on trumpet, Brian Blade on drums, and Scott Colley on bass, the band's name is a tribute to Old and New Dreams, the 70's group with Joshua's dad Dewey Redman, Charlie Hayden, Ed Blackwell, and Don Cherry. Still Dreaming played selections from the older group, and also new, and very challenging originals. "Believe it or not, that was a blues" Joshua said after one tune, and indeed even I wouldn't have known. I was about to proclaim Still Dreaming as the most important band in jazz (supplanting Wayne Shorter) until I heard the Wayne Shorter Quartet at SF Jazz Thursday night. They are still number one. With Danilo Perez on piano, John Patitucci on bass, and Terri Lyne Carrington sitting in for Brian Blade on drums, the 83 year old Shorter seemed even more energetic than last year. And more forward. It is a very rare artist, in any discipline, that continues to constantly move forward. Even Miles got talked into revisiting the Gil Evans arrangements the month before he died by Quincy. (And it was a lovely performance. As much as I love late Miles, there wasn't a lot of innovation the last couple of years.) But Wayne not only has the best and most important group in jazz, it's also the most forward. Joshua will take over the mantle, but we are so lucky to have Wayne.
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