Taiwan music fans regularly pencil an
October trip to Taichung into their calendars, as that's
when the Taichung Jazz Festival rolls around each year.
This year's festival--on the weekends of Oct. 21-22
and 27-29--provides more outstanding live jazz from
a spectrum of styles and local and international artists.
Highlights include the following (performance times
Incredibly, alto sax player Bud Shank
(Oct. 21, 7-10 p.m.) has played a big role in the U.S.
jazz scene for 60 years as a player, composer and arranger
from the "West Coast" jazz movement. Since
the '40s, he has performed and worked with dozens of
jazz greats--from Ray Brown and Phil Woods to Jackie
McLean--in over 50 albums and countless performances.
Now in his 80s, he still welcomed by jazz fans the world
The Erik Truffaz Quartet (Oct. 21,
7-10 p.m.) is led by French trumpeter Truffaz. Often
compared to Miles Davis, Truffaz has won acclaim for
his own brand of new jazz that features modern dance
rhythms, from drums and bass to hip hop, in a jazz-pop-rock
fusion. This Blue Note Records artist has released a
number of albums, including 1998's European hit "The
Dawn". A Japanese household name and leading jazz
pianist Yosuke Yamashita (Oct. 21, 7-10 p.m.) has released
over 40 albums and toured widely the past 30 years.
He and his New Quartet will Taichung to his unique brand
of contemporary jazz.
Acclaimed, world-class tenor sax player
and BMG recording artist Harry Allen (Oct. 29, 7-10
p.m.) has over 20 recordings and has worked with jazz
musicans worldwide, including Rosemary Clooney, Ray
Brown and Hank Jones. Trio da Paz (Oct. 29, 7-10 p.m.)
consists of three top Brazilian jazz musicians--guitarist
Romeo Lubambo, jazz drummer Duduka Fonseca and string
bassist Nilson Matt. Formed in 1990, they have ganed
fame for their live performances and collaborated with
artists from Charlie Byrd to Herbie Mann.
Other Festival artists/bands include
Taiwan's Japanese-born UNO Jazz Trio, the Dizzy Jazz
Big Band, JEG Jazz Band, Montunos Lartin Band, Japanese/Taiwanese
acid jazz quintet Hip Swing, Taipei Jazz Ensemble, Mosquito
Latin Band, and Taichung's own popular bands 'Round
Midnight and Jazzaholics.
Performances start at 3 p.m. on Oct.
21, 22, 28 and 29, and at 6 p.m. Oct. 27 on the two
smaller J1 and J2 stages along the JingGuo Boulevard
parkway, where dozens of food and drink vendors will
also be present. Big-stage performances on Peoples'
Square are on Oct. 21 and 29 from 7 to 10 p.m. For more
information, go the Festival website at http://www.jazzfestival.com.tw