Interesting item from the Weather Report mailing list: Innerviews journalist Anil Prasad reports receiving the following official word from a key individual at Sony/Legacy Recordings, regarding the status of the Weather Report live set: “The Weather Report box is currently in limbo. It definitely won’t appear this year.” That was the sum total of the response.
The wait continues…
I just found All About Jazz‘s Peter Erskine interview by Fred Jung, published this past February. In it, Peter talks some about his days with Weather Report and Jaco. Worth a read for Weather Report and Jaco fans.
Australian journalist Seth Jordan sends word that the Zawinul Syndicate will be the headline performer at the Wangaratta Festival of Jazz, which will take place November 3-6 in Wangaratta, Victoria, Australia. You may want to check out the article about Zawinul at the online version of Australia’s The Age newspaper.
I have also received word that the Zawinul “special project” will include a couple of concerts in Austria. I’ll post specifics if and when I get them.
The Zawinul Syndicate wrapped up its month-long summer tour of Europe with a performance at the Malta Jazz Festival. Malta-based British musician Jonathan Sorrell, who has performed with the likes of Wayne Shorter and Toots Thielemans, sent this report.
“Last Saturday, July 22nd, the Zawinul Syndicate played an outstanding set that left people speechless. Bear in mind that this festival attracts some heavyweight artists. Last year Herbie Hancock and McCoy Tyner were among the performers, and this year’s program included the Yellowjackets, David Sanchez, and Cubanismo. So audience expectations are fairly high.
“But through a combination of pure zest, intense humour and passion, audience interaction and simple professionalism, Zawinul’s performance was the most memorable set I or any other people I know can remember. In particular the haunting beauty and spirituality of Amit Chatterjee’s vocals, combined so sensitively with Zawinul’s accompaniment, reminded us all of how just occasionally in life we manage to temporarily elevate above the mundane.”
Incidentally, Syndicate bass player Victor Bailey broke two toes in Los Angeles just prior to the start of the European tour, and during the earlier concerts he had to take the stage on crutches and perform sitting down.
Next month Zawinul will lead a “special project” on brief tour of Eurpope, with musicians Richard Bona, Manolo Badrena, and Lelo Nika on accordian.
And according to IMN, the Syndicate has booked a concert in Los Angeles on October 3, perhaps as a stepping stone to a tour of Australia and parts down under.
Az-Iz Films’ documentary, Two Years with the Zawinul Syndicate, is now available in PAL format and can be purchased at the Zawinul Syndicate shows this summer, or directly from Az-Iz. For American audiences, the NTSC version is due in a couple of weeks, and Az-Iz is taking advanced orders now. The cost is $24.95 USD per tape, including shipping from New York. To request order infomation, send mail to [email protected].
The remastered version of Jaco Pastorius’ eponymous debut album is scheduled for release on August 1. It will include two previously unreleased tracks: an alternate take of “(Used to be a) Cha-Cha,” and “6/4 Jam,” with Jaco, Herbie Hancock, Lenny White, and Don Alias.
Tower Records Jaco Pastorius page