Photos by Scott Preston
Tag Archive for bela fleck
Review by Bill Whiting
Photos by Bernice Whiting
Any time Bela Fleck and The Flecktones visit the southern Ohio region, it is a highly anticipated event, and their return on April 20 at Millett Hall in Oxford, Ohio was no exception. Gracing the grounds of academia at Miami University, Bela and The Flecktones put on a rewarding night of entertainment, focusing in on their Grammy award winning 2011 release, Rocket Science. Opening the show with “Bottle Rocket,” Fleck quickly had the audience’s heads bobbing along to his toe tapping, swirling jazz banjo interplay with the other members of the quartet. Original Flecktone Howard Levy led the ensemble on harmonica on the striking and swinging composition, “Life in Eleven.” A Flecktones night would not be the same without Victor Wooten’s awe inspiring solo, and the bassist did not disappoint, delivering a brain altering depth of sound perception peppered with layered loops and sonic effects. The steady backbeat of brother, Roy “Future Man” Wooten, on the percussion sampling Synthaxe, also known as a “drumitar” because of it’s visual likeness to an electric guitar, influenced the bouncing vibes of the joyously grooving piece, “Prickly Pear.” Each Flecktone seems to react to one another musically in a naturally telepathic manner, and the journey back to their beginnings on the medley of “Reflections of Lucy/Irish Medley/ Storm Warning” had more than a few Miami University students dancing in the aisles. Read more
Bela Fleck & The Flecktones Garner Grammy Nomination, Announce 2012 Tour Dates – Miami Univ in Oxford on 4/20
The eOne Music Group is proud to announce that Bela Fleck & The Flecktones have garnered a GRAMMY nomination for best instrumental composition for “Life In Eleven,” off their hit 2011 record, Rocket Science. The much anticipated reunion record marked the original founding members of the Flecktones’ first recording together in 20 years and immediately jumped to #1 on both Billboard’s Jazz Charts and Soundscan’s Jazz Charts upon its release. Rolling Stone notes Rocket Science “finds the Grammy Award-winning group still in fine progressive form.” Read more
Show Review – 2.22.10 – Bela Fleck and The Africa Project invade Hamilton, Ohio’s Parrish Auditorium
Written by Bill Whiting – email@example.com
Centered around the Sascha Paladino documentary, Throw Down Your Heart, and it’s subsequent Grammy award winning album, banjo master Bela Fleck and a collection of musicians from Africa engaged a sold out Parrish Auditorium audience with stories and songs from their homeland on February 22. Fleck’s entrance was unassuming, but his complex, classical- jazz leanings on the banjo soon had the crowd in the palm of his hand. Introducing the blind Tanzanian thumb harp player Anania Ngoliga and acoustic guitarist John Kitime, Fleck left the stage to the sounds of the deep African rhythms swirling through Ngoliga’s mind. A wide range of emotive singing, grunts and comedic groans from Ngoliga held the Parrish’s denizens spellbound. Ngoliga eventually convinced the Hamilton, Ohio citizens to sing in unison about ” finding their way back home.” Fleck returned to welcome Mali’s Bassekou Kouyate and Ngoni Ba. Seven players dressed in traditional African tribal garments took the stage to play songs from the Sub Pop release, I Speak Fula. An arresting world beat of high powered jazz rhythms mixing with African blues and original folk elements had the auditorium’s patrons tapping their feet and nodding their heads in a trance. For the second half of the program, Fleck broke out an acoustic number entitled “Katmandu.” Then he chose to mix it up with guitarist Kitime and Ngoliga. Soon Kouyate entered the groove as well, playing a slow blues on his African banjo. The full ensemble coalesced around a sustained jam that included percussion via the talking drum. Kouyate and Ngoni Ba’s seasoned improvisations dominated the proceedings, and they picked away feverishly with a passion and inner drive on the arresting tune, “Musow.” The evening ended on a high point as The Africa Project returned to the Grammy winning instrumental, “Throw Down Your Heart.” It was an unforgettable experience that will last in the hearts and minds of the energized crowd that left the Miami University auditorium on a cold February night.
Chicago Bluegrass & Blues Fest – 12/12 – Featuring Bela Fleck, Dr Dog, Emmitt-Nershi Band and Many More
The Congress Theater, in conjunction with Chicago independents Kingtello Presents, is proud to announce the second coming of the Chicago Bluegrass & Blues Festival. While rooted in the foot-stomping influences of bluegrass and blues, the festival will transport the concertgoer through the genre-defying evolution of music today. The all-ages one-day event, held on Saturday, December 12 from 11 a.m. to midnight, will serve as a tribute to two schools of music that continue to shape and inspire contemporary rock, jam, funk, folk, roots, Americana, and indie cultures.
Against the backdrop of an official Chicago landmark and one of the last of the classic “movie palaces,” fans will be treated to a party with a purpose, featuring 3 stages and 25 bands for less than the typical price of the headliners alone. Six-time Grammy-winner Béla Fleck and his Flecktones will unite for their first Chicago date together since mid-2007, as Béla has been devoting extended stints to the likes of the Sparrow Quartet, The Africa Project, Edgar Meyer, and Zakir Hussain.
They’ll be joined by Philadelphia’s psych-folk harmonizers, Dr. Dog, who’ve rapidly ascended the public consciousness this year with breakout performances at both Coachella and Camp Bisco. The Emmitt-Nershi Band, uniting Leftover Salmon’s mandolin and vocals (Drew Emmitt) with the songwriting and flat-picking guitar of The String Cheese Incident (Billy Nershi), joins the party as well. And Eddie “The Chief” Clearwater, proudly declared “Chicago’s premier blues entertainer” by the Chicago Tribune, will properly represent the scene that put his city on the international music map. Read more
Throw Down Your Heart, the third volume in banjo virtuoso Béla Fleck’s renowned Tales From the Acoustic Planet series, is the 11-time Grammy winner’s most ambitious project to date and earning some of the best reviews of his career.
Through on-location collaborations with musicians from Uganda, Tanzania, Senegal, Mali, South Africa and Madagascar, Fleck explores the African origins of the banjo, the prototype of which was brought to American shores by African slaves. Transcending barriers of language and culture, Béla finds common ground with musicians ranging from local villagers to international superstars such as the Malian diva Oumou Sangare. Read more
Proud to bring you the first-ever holiday record by Béla Fleck & the Flecktones.
Béla Fleck & the Flecktones Jingle All The Way (September 30th/ Rounder) With First Holiday Record Of Their 20-Year Career
Flecktones With Guest Elves Edgar Meyer, Andy Statman & Tuvan Throat Singers ‘The Alash Ensemble’ Contribute Renditions Of Everything From Bach To Rudolph, With Tributes To Joni Mitchell & Vince Guaraldi Read more