Quilts & Jazz

Vanessa Vadim: The Quilts of Gee’s Bend, 9/30/2015 by Monsters And Hamsters on Mixcloud

Draa Hobbs Youth Jazz Ensemble, 9/30/2015 by Monsters And Hamsters on Mixcloud

Coupla things are cookin’ for this week’s show.

If we’re lucky and she’s able to make it in, we’ll have filmmaker Vanessa Vadim for some or all of the first hour. She’ll be screening her documentary The Quilts of Gee’s Bend not just once, but three times at the Hooker-Dunham Theater in Brattleboro: geesbend Thursday, October 1 at 7:30 PM, and twice again on Friday, October 2 at 6:00 and 7:30 PM.

The Thursday showing is in conjunction with the grand gala opening of a Gee’s Bend quilt exhibit at the Catherine Dianich Gallery on Brattleboro’s Main Street, which will feature not only Gee’s Bend quilts, but also quilters from Gee’s Bend. Contact the gallery to inquire about tickets for the Thursday screening: catherinedianichgallery.com or 802-380-1607. The Friday showings are in conjunction with Brattleboro’s monthly Art Walk. Filmmaker Vadim will be on hand for Q&A at all three.

Interesting trivia: If you saw the powerful movie 12 Years a Slave, the character Patsey’s speech was based on the women in this documentary. “Our dialect coach, Michael Buster, found an amazing documentary called The Quilts of Gees Bend about an isolated African American community in Alabama and that is what we used as a template.” — actress Lupita Nyong’o

Hilltop Montessori’s middle school has been traveling to Gee’s Bend every couple years as part of its civil rights curriculum; this time, they’re bringing 11 of the quilters to Vermont. It’s a big deal. The school is also staging performances of the play “Gee’s Bend” at their new Arts Barn on Friday and Saturday. For a complete schedule of events and more information, visit hilltopmontessori.org/geesbend or call 802-246-4107.

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And then in the 8:00 hour I’ll be premiering a live recording that the Draa Hobbs Summer Jazz Youth Ensemble 2015 did at the WOOL studio just this past Sunday. Them kids can cook. It was old school: six players in a room (including a full drum kit and Draa) with three microphones catching them at it.

Draa has brought joy to countless people with his playing… but he’s also been teacher and mentor to hundreds of other musicians. This summer he was working with local up-and-comers Gabby Walton, Dylan Chambers, Ellie Guyon, Christian Terry, and Eric McCoy. They’re walking capably in the footsteps of greats like Dizzie Gillespie, Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, Sonny Stitt, Oscar Peterson, Earl Hines.

I’m not sure how long it’s been since that much talent has been in the studio at once. Tune in and hear ’em take on A La Mode, Blue Bossa, Someday My Prince Will Come, Long Ago & Far Away, and Moanin’.

They’ve all been invited to come to the studio for it, but totally at the last minute… so don’t count on it. But maybe! The editing wasn’t done until Tuesday, so they didn’t get a proper heads-up. This in no way precludes having any or all of them on as guests in the future.

The recording will be replayed at various times on various days over the next two weeks, so if you miss it this time or want to hear it again, stay tuned.

More about Draa Hobbs and his teaching availability at draahobbs.com.

One thought on “Quilts & Jazz

  1. Interesting trivia: If you saw the powerful movie 12 Years a Slave, the character Patsey’s speech was based on the women in this documentary. “Our dialect coach, Michael Buster, found an amazing documentary called The Quilts of Gees Bend about an isolated African American community in Alabama and that is what we used as a template.” — actress Lupita Nyong’o

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