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June 2008


P6260001 A few months ago, jazz saxophonist Andrew D'Angelo became a cause celebre for the need to provide musicians with adequate, affordable healthcare after he came down with a dangerous brain tumor while without health insurance. Andrew had two surgeries to remove the tumor and appears to have made a full recovery; to date, there has been no triage performed on his bank account.

P6260004Last night at Barbes, Andrew played in a trio including Gerald Cleaver (drums) and Chris Lightcap (bass). You might expect someone four months shy of brain surgery to go easy. Not Andrew. The guy was full of manic, ferocious energy, pausing only briefly between numbers (he calls them "songs") to catch his breath.

"You would think my head hurts, but actually it's the back of my neck that's giving me issues. Go figure."

Towards the end of his set, Andrew played "Gay Disco," which shone like spun sugar, bright and brilliant. The best kind of affirmation:

The Golden Voice

DSC09598 An extraordinary show by Malian superstar Salif Keita at Celebrate Brooklyn last night. The entire bandshell was on its feet, dancing wildly to Afropop rhythms that came out sounding like a mix of club beats, funk, and gospel. Keita, 58, was clearly channeling some sort of extranormal power, his emotive, quavering voice sending us thousands into an ecstatic trance (including one grandmother who danced down the center aisle, cane raised above her head.) It was like witnessing the return of the Godfather - times 10.

More pics here.