Sunday, June 25, 2006

Living Colour August 2006

July 8 2006 Weert (NL) - BOSPOP Festival

August 12 AMSTERDAM(NL) - Paradiso
August 13 ZOETERMEER(NL) - Boerderij
August 15 BUDAPEST(HUN) - Sziget Festival
August 16 POTSDAM(D) - Lindenpark
August 17 WINTERTHUR(CH) - Salzhaus Tickets
August 18 HODOKVAS(SVK) - Rock Festival
August 19 TRUTNOV(CZ) - Rock Festival
August 20 TBA

Friday, June 23, 2006

Note from Vernon Reid - audience recording allowed!

"The show last night was great...but a light turnout...Should get better by the weekend maybe a shoutout to all my LA and westcoast "friends" to come through might be cool...Also I was thinking of letting folks know that I'm cool with taping Masque shows
strictly by live taping guidelines (non-commercial trading is okay, no selling, etc.)"

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Vernon Reid and Masque Dates

June 22 @ Catlina Jazz Club LA, CA 8:30pm
June 23 @ Catlina Jazz Club LA, CA 8:30pm and 10:30pm
June 24 @ Catlina Jazz Club LA, CA 8:30pm and 10:30pm
June 25 @ Catlina Jazz Club LA, CA 7:30pm and 9:30pm

all tickets available @

June 26 @ Jazz Alley Seattle, WA 7:30pm Ticketmaster

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Riffing with Vernon Reid

Published: Thursday, June 8, 2006
By Brent Hallenbeck

The opening guitar notes to the 1988 Living Colour song "Cult of Personality" sliced through the air with an urgent slash that somehow managed to maintain an immaculate pop hook. The tune sent the band and its guitarist, Vernon Reid, on to a slot with the inaugural Lollapalooza tour and top-selling stardom.

Living Colour isn't quite dead -- Reid terms it "a project in deep flux right now" -- but the guitarist has turned his attention toward a rock-jazz hybrid. He'll play Friday during the Burlington Discover Jazz Festival with his current group, Masque, on a bill with the World Saxophone Quartet and its tribute to Jimi Hendrix.

In a recent phone conversation from his home in Staten Island, N.Y., Reid, 47, spoke about his jazz leanings, the significance of Hendrix, and why he enjoys the silence:
Q: Living Colour was a rock group, and what you're doing now with Masque is jazzier. Does one style of music fit your personality more than the other?

A: I think they're complimentary. You know, I really think of it as an inquiry into identity. That very question is the tension that gives it substance. I think of myself as more comfortable with the rock label, but jazz and improvisation, whether it's the blues or rock or jazz, is a part of it.

Q: How is the jazz-concert experience different from the rock-concert experience?

A: The only thing I'm hoping for is openness in an audience. I've had situations where rock audiences have been incredibly open and jazz audiences have been incredibly open, and I've been in situations where supposedly avant-garde audiences have been incredibly narrow and "alternative rock" audiences have been incredibly narrow. I think there's a danger if you don't really focus on what's being expressed, but you get caught up in the novelty or you're facing an audience that's sort of jaded or bitter. It can be really difficult. Audiences are mixed. Some people are looking for even the smallest authentic thing, and if they hear it, they're really happy. Once you hear it, you hear it. Jerry Garcia, one of the things he said is, "You are the music." The event of a concert is not just the people performing on stage.

Q: The jazzy instrumental version of Depeche Mode's "Enjoy the Silence" on your new CD "Other True Self" sounds just as beautiful, in a completely different way, as the original. How did you settle on covering that?

A: My first real introduction to jazz was hearing (John) Coltrane's version of "My Favorite Things." The thing about popular music and jazz is oftentimes popular music was seen as a harmonic vehicle. The thing about "My Favorite Things" is Coltrane is very invested in the original lyric, and that's what really informs what he did with it. That impulse is the same sort of impulse with the Depeche Mode song. The lyrics of that song, aside from the melody and the chords, the lyrics of that song are just really phenomenal to me. That's really where it's coming from.

Q: Your guitar style has been compared to that of Jimi Hendrix. How did he influence you?

A: He's such a monumental and towering figure. He was a person that embodied the spirit of the times in the way The Beatles embodied the spirit of the times. He came at a radical point in American and world history. In the midst of the civil rights struggle, as an iconic figure, he was just a huge thing. As a musician, he completely altered the course of rock 'n' roll music. He really marked a template. Hendrix, (Eric) Clapton, Jeff Beck, you know, Jimmy Page, maybe to a lesser degree Robert Fripp, they really defined the figure of the guitarist in rock music. What he did, I can't even imagine how people made sense of it. The guitar is completely screaming, and he's controlling it in this kind of way to make music. It's really pretty unprecedented. He also was a real improviser. You listen to his versions of say, "Red House," they're just wildly different. The other thing he did is he, like Coltrane, did two pieces of music in particular that were iconic -- his version of "Machine Gun" with Band of Gypsys, and his version of "The Star-Spangled Banner" from Woodstock. It was one of the definitive versions of the anthem, and was a score for the country at the time. In the Vietnam War, the conflict was between the young and the old, the conflict between the races, it was all there. He was questioned about why it was so fierce. I just thought it was so beautiful.

Q: Did he influence jazz?

A: I think that he certainly influenced jazz, people like James Newton and Miles Davis. Miles just knew that this cat was bringing something that was just other and next. He was someone of great importance in 20th-century music and beyond. The only caveat I have is if somebody wanted to be Hendrix and dressed like him and played his things note for note, that's the reaction to someone so powerful and iconic. In a way that's not what he's telling us to do. His art is not telling us that. His art is screaming at everyone to find his thing. He found his thing and did his thing.

Contact Brent Hallenbeck at 660-1844 or If you go: The World Saxophone Quartet Plays Hendrix, with Vernon Reid and Masque, 8 p.m. Friday, Flynn Center, Burlington. $21-$37. 863-5966 or

Okayplayer Review : Vernon Reid and Masque : Other True Self

Anyone reading this review is probably well indoctrinated to the idea of Vernon Reid’s unclassifiable nature. Just look at his album dedications on Masque's newest release Other True Self which lists Rosa Parks, Nipsey Russell, James Doohan, and Ol’ Dirty. Anybody that can call out Star Trek’s Scotty and ODB in the same sentence is on his own path. Other True Self is an album at once indulgent in the artists every whim and an honest representation of one mans individuality.

The breadth of influence spreads to include a cover of The Tony Williams Lifetime’s ““Wildlife,” neo-traditional afro-pop with Vernon’s excellent Francis Bebey tribute, “Prof. Bebey,” and even Radiohead. And Masque handles complex arrangements and the split second shift of gears with the united cohesion of an early 70’s Meters. Vernon’s overdriven Santana-esque melody and bass and keys dub groove of “Flatbush and Church Revisited” is steadied by the metronomic precision of drummer Don McKenzie that internalizes the infectious bounce. “Overcoming” reworks the Yohimbe Brothers version recorded by Vernon and DJ Logic. Dropping the sampled breakbeats and placing the guitar front and center, “Overcoming” takes on a dark pulse that heaves forward with a violent striving not present in the original. Reid seemingly at will calls out longing melodies that can cut through bone. The effected arpeggios of Depeche Mode’s “Enjoy the Silence” are absolutely phenomenal, and the following solo is exhibit A for why Vernon Reid is one of the most technically capable guitarists on the planet and simultaneously, one of the most melodic.

Vernon steps aside to spotlight the talents of the band as well. Keyboardist Leon Gruenbaum’s composition “Whiteface” is a distorted 6/8 sledgehammer that lays the perfect foundation for his virtuosic synthesizer freak-outs. Hank Schroy’s arrangement of “Oxossi”, which he previously recorded with Jorge Amorim, is presented here in a beautiful stripped down format using the staccato repetition of the bass as a foundation for the subdued explorations of the band. “Kizzy,” drummer Don McKenzie’s contribution is an ethereal, crawling return to Vernon’s downtown experimental roots.

Be assured that Vernon and company have enough musical chops for half a dozen bands, but musicality is never sacrificed for personal displays of ego. At times there is a sense that every member of the band is fighting for the sonic space to be heard, but it is used as dramatic effect and not an accidental result of unsympathetic self service. Other True Self is a document of what virtuosity could mean to an audience beyond fellow musicians.

– Brian Hull

Monday, June 05, 2006

Corey Glover will be joining the cast of Jesus Christ Superstar!!!

September 8 - 13, 2006
Buffalo, NY
Center for the Arts

September 16 - 17, 2006
Saginaw, MI
The Dow Event Center (The Dowv.)

September 22 - 24, 2006
East Lansing, MI
Wharton Center For Performing Arts

September 26 - 27, 2006
Utica, NY
The Stanley Performing Arts Center

October 5 - 8, 2006
Toledo, OH
Stranahan Theatre

October 31, 2006
Statesboro, GA
Georgia Southern University Performing
Arts Center

November 4, 2006
Monroe, LA
Monroe Civic Center (Impresario’s Choice)

November 10 - 11, 2006
Columbia, SC
The Ira & Nancy Koger Center For The Arts

November 14, 2006
Corpus Christi, TX
American Bank Center - Selena Auditorium

November 18, 2006
Galveston, TX
The Grand 1894 Opera House

November 19, 2006
Baton Rouge, LA
Baton Rouge River Center (LSU)

November 24, 2006
Gainesville, FL
University of Florida Performing Arts

December 2, 2006
Clearwater, FL
Ruth Eckerd Hall

December 4 - 10, 2006
Cleveland, OH
Playhouse Square Center

January 8, 2007
Mason City , IA
North Iowa Area Community College

January 10, 2007
Cedar Rapids, IA
Paramount Theatre

January 14, 2007
Cedar Falls, IA
Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center

January 19 - 21, 2007
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, CA
TCU Place Arts & Convention Centre

January 26 - 28, 2007
Reno, NV
Pioneer Center for the Performing Arts

January 29, 2007
Bakersfield, CA
Rabobank Arena, Theater and Convention

February 6 - 11, 2007
Salt Lake City, UT
Kingsbury Hall

February 13 - 14, 2007
Colorado Springs, CO
Pikes Peak Center

February 22, 2007
Farmington, NM
Farm. Civic Center Foundation for the
Performing Arts

February 24 - 25, 2007
San Diego, CA
California Center For The Arts, Escondido

Feb. 27 - March 1, 2007
Eugene, OR
Hult Center For The Performing Arts

March 5, 2007
Medford, OR
Craterian Ginger Rogers Theater

March 9 - 11, 2007
Cerritos, CA
Cerritos Center For The Performing Arts

March 13 - 18, 2007
Thousand Oaks, CA
Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza

March 20 - 25, 2007
Phoenix, AZ
The Orpheum Theatre

March 26 - 27, 2007
Mesa, AZ
Mesa Arts Center

March 29, 2007
El Paso, TX
Historic Plaza Theatre

March 30 - April 1, 2007
Albuquerque, NM
Popejoy Hall - Center for the Arts

April 12, 2007
Lowell, MA
Lowell Memorial Auditorium

April 13, 2007
Springfield, MA
Springfield Symphony Hall

April 17 - 22, 2007
Dayton, OH
Schuster Center (Victoria Theatres)

April 23, 2007
Owensboro, KY
RiverPark Centre

April 24, 2007
Evansville, IN
The Center

April 25, 2007
Fort Wayne, IN
Embassy Theatre

May 3, 2007
York, PA
Strand-Capitol Performing Arts Center

May 4, 2007
Greenvale, NY
Tilles Center for the Performing Arts

May 5, 2007
New Brunswick, NJ
State Theatre

May 8 - 13, 2007
Greenville, SC
The Peace Center

May 18 - 20, 2007
Baltimore, MD
Lyric Opera House

May 30, 2007
Fargo, ND

May 31, 2007
Sioux City, IA
Sioux City Orpheum

June 1 - 3, 2007
Omaha, NE
Slosburg Hall - Orpheum Theater

Vernon Reid and Masque Tour Dates

June 6, 2006
Vernon Reid & Masque
at Scullers Jazz Club
Tuesday, June 6 at 8:00 PM

June 6, 2006 -
Vernon Reid & Masque
at Scullers Jazz Club
Tuesday, June 6 at 10:00 PM

June 7, 2006 -
Vernon Reid & Masque, Liquid Soul
Canal Room, New York, NY
Wed, Jun 7, 2006 08:00 PM

June 9, 2006 -
A Double Header Inspired by Jimi Hendrix
World Saxophone Quartet plays Hendrix
Vernon Reid and Masque

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Vernon Reid Live review - Guitarist takes crowd on electrifying journey

By GREG HAYMES, Staff writer

First published: Tuesday, May 30, 2006

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. -- Vernon Reid flailed away at his guitar with almost superhuman zeal on Sunday, coaxing a primordial phalanx of squiggly, otherworldly sounds from its six strings, as he and his three musical cohorts conjured up a dense amalgam of heavy metal and progressive rock.

The occasion was the sixth anniversary of MASS MoCA, the former Sprague Electric factory converted into one of the largest and most relentlessly cutting-edge museums of contemporary art on the East Coast. With their electrifying, futuristic sound, Reid and his New York City-based band Masque fit perfectly into the museum's envelope-pushing plan.

But MASS MoCA's new group exhibition, "Ahistoric Occasion: Artists Making History," which opened on Saturday, also takes a look back at the past, as filtered through modern eyes, and Reid followed suit, rooting his thick, high-octane, high-volume squall deeply in the blues tradition.

He opened the show with "Lightnin,' " an homage to blues great Lightnin' Hopkins, which Reid liberally peppered with guitar quotes from Hopkins. And more than an hour and a half later, he wrapped up the night with another look back -- "Red House," a slow grinding blues from a kindred sonic explorer, Jimi Hendrix.

In between, Reid, keyboardist Leon Gruenbaum, bassist Steve Jenkins and powerhouse drummer Don McKenzie focused squarely on the future, spiking the concert with the thundering squall of "You Say He's Just a Psychic Friend," the stuttering second-line bayou rhythms of "Voodoo Pimp Stroll" and a freewheeling rip through Radiohead's "National Anthem."

As adventurous a player as Reid is, he is also quite capable of crafting a gorgeous, wistful melody, as he proved with "Flatbush and Church," the undulating reggae rhythms dissolving into the deep, spacey echoes of dub during Gruenbaum's melodica solo.

Led by tenor sax man Mars Williams, Chicago ensemble Liquid Soul opened the show with a blast of neo-funk that had the crowd sweating up the dance floor. Expertly mixing together bebop and hip-hop with a 21st-century variation on the horn-fueled funk of the Average White Band, the seven-piece combo featured some amazing beat-box vocals by David Arrendondo and free-styling rap from Mr. Greenweeds.

Focusing on material from their new album, "One-Two Punch," they churned through the anthemic "Attaboy," the Latin-tinged "Boxer's Fracture" and even a funk-filled update of Dizzy Gillespie's bop classic "Salt Peanuts."

The bands joined forces for a 40-minute encore that morphed effortlessly from old-school hip-hop to squealing free jazz to Hendrix's "Red House" -- Reid's only vocal of the night -- proving that sometimes even eclectic sonic explorers like to get down and party. Greg Haymes can be reached 454-5742 or by e-mail at

Music review


When: 8 p.m. Sunday

Where: The Hunter Center at MASS MoCA, 87 Marshall St., North Adams, Mass.

The crowd: The nearly sold-out audience spanned several generations Length: Masque, 105 minutes; Liquid Soul, 55 minutes Highlights: Masque's "Flatbush and Church" and "Voodoo Pimp Stroll"; Liquid Soul's "Boxer's Fracture" and the fuzz-out strut of "Kong" Upcoming: MASS MoCA serves up the country-rock sounds of the Deedle Deedle Dees for a family concert at 2 p.m. on June 10

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Living Colour - August 2006 European Tour

8. July 2006 Weert (NL) - BOSPOP FESTIVAL
12. August AMSTERDAM(NL) - Paradiso
13. August ZOETERMEER(NL) - Boerderij
15. August BUDAPEST(HUN) - Sziget Festival
16. August POTSDAM(D) - Lindenpark
17. August WINTERTHUR(CH) - Salzhaus
18. August HODOKVAS(SVK) - Rock Festival
19. August TRUTNOV(CZ) - Rock Festival
20. August TBA

Message From Will Calhoun's site

May 31, 2006

I would like to personally thank all friends, fans, and loved ones who have tried contacting me during my clinic tour in Indonesia. I'm fine and will return the States in a few days. I wasn't near the Central Java area during the Earthquake. I performed a few hours away the following day, and due to the damage we had to change Hotel and venue address. My International mobile phone was on limited service until today. The Earthquake is devastating for Indonesians, the body count has risen to 5,200 persons.

Being present in Indonesia today I strongly recommend (if possible) that you or anyone you know make a contribution to the Indonesian community of Central Java. Contact local or International assistance programs, check cable news networks to arrange for proper contact/donation information.

Thanks again to all.


Will Calhoun