Christian Scott Brings His Erudite, Eclectic Trumpet Stylings to Harlem
New Orleans trumpeter Christian Scott a.k.a. aTunde Adjuah is playing Minton’s this weekend, May 15-16, with an interesting quintet configuration – flute, alto sax and two drummers – and sets at 7:30 and 9:30 PM. Your best bet is to grab a seat at the bar, which is a lot cheaper – $25 – than the tables, which will probably be full anyway since the venue is a popular upscale neighborhood hangout. This guy has jazz in his bloodlines – his uncle is alto sax powerhouse Donald Harrison – and for a long time was sort of the Concord label’s token edgy act. Scott’s music is very diverse and defies categorization. As a player, he likes to choose his spots – he’d rather develop an idea or explore an emotion than floor you with volleys of postbop, though he can do that too if he’s in the mood.
His catalog runs the gamut of brooding third-stream vamps, cinematic soundscapes as well as more traditional postbop and adventures in the traditions of his native New Orleans – although Scott is hardly a traditionalist, drawing on soul music both old and not so old, and hip-hop as well. Scott also holds the distinction of being the only man to serve as chief of the four Indian tribes of New Orleans and was also ostensibly the inspiration for a character in the tv series Treme. You can hear Freddie Hubbard clarity but also Wadada Leo Smith wide-angle exploration, with Clifford Brown depth in the rearview mirror, in Scott’s lines – a complex guy with some disarminngly catchy tunes.
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