Warren Schlote's blog

An Open Letter to the Jazz Festival

Submitted by Warren Schlote on Wed Jul 6 9:54am

How time flies.

We have now come to the end of the 30th annual TD Toronto Jazz Festival. At times it seemed like it was over in a heartbeat, while at others it felt as though it would never end (mostly when I had to work at 7:30 a.m. all week). I learned a lot about myself, jazz, and writing, and will certainly take this TDJ News Corps experience with me as I pursue a career in journalism.

Saying Goodbye with Radiohead and Jazz

Submitted by Warren Schlote on Mon Jul 4 10:08am

With my time at the TD Toronto Jazz Festival drawing to a close, I knew I wanted to go out with a bang. I decided to make my way to the Rex for the Toronto Jazz Orchestra's Radiohead Jazz Project. If there’s one thing I love, it’s when jazz fuses with other genres – the fact that it was Radiohead was simply the icing on the cake. After much begging and pleading, I managed to secure my spot at the show.

Was I ever glad I did.

Open Jam at the Rex

Submitted by Warren Schlote on Mon Jul 4 9:22am

On Thursday night/Friday morning (June 30/July 1), I attended my first and only Late Night Jazz Jam at the Rex. The jams were hosted by the Chris Gale Quartet, and any musicians are invited to sit in on the sets.

And I do mean ANY musicians, because they let my friend and fellow TDJ News Corps member David Cruz sit in for a tune. (As well as Festival Artistic Director Josh Grossman, but I feel like listing him here might put my job in jeopardy.)

Jazz - Not Wasted on the Youth

Submitted by Warren Schlote on Mon Jul 4 9:04am

Players from far and wide came to the Youth Jazz Showcase. Opening the set was the National Youth Jazz Combo, directed by Kirk MacDonald and featuring some hometown jazzers. Petros Anagnostakos played drums, Carter Brodkorb was on piano and Anson Cai was on saxophone. The only out-of-town player was Evan Gratham on bass, who hails from Vancouver and is in his second year of the NYJC. They played a swinging set which was met favourably by the audience. Brodkorb introduced the players and the tunes from the piano.

Experimentation for Meditation

Submitted by Warren Schlote on Sun Jul 3 12:13am

When the name on the marquee reads “The Robert Glasper Experiment,” you never know what to expect. Glasper’s group routinely crosses the boundaries between jazz, hip hop, R&B, soul – you name it, he’s likely done it.

Wednesday (June 29) night’s performance at Nathan Phillips Square was an excellent display of musicianship. Glasper held down the piano and keyboards while Casey Benjamin rocked saxophones and the vocoder. Mark Colenburg joined on drums and Burniss Travis played bass.

Jazz - Past, Present and Future: Gregory Porter

Submitted by Warren Schlote on Sun Jun 26 10:12pm

Warren's original plan for this interview was to meet Gregory Porter in an alley, paying tribute to the title of his latest record Take Me to the Alley.

Upon the advice of his mentors and the Jazz Festival, a more traditional interview format was chosen. It was probably for the best.

Enjoy the perspective of jazz present as discussed with one of the biggest names in contemporary jazz, Gregory Porter.