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Saxophonist Branford Marsalis on Classical Music, the NEA Awards and Durham

Publication: WNYC Culture Desk
Author: Terrance McKnight, WQXR Host
Date: October 1, 2010

Renowned saxophonist Branford Marsalis will reunite with trumpeter Terence Blanchard for a special performance at the Lincoln Center’s Rose Theater on Friday, Oct. 1 and Saturday, Oct. 2 at 8 p.m.

“It’s going to be modern jazz at a very high level,” says jazz critic Nate Chinen, who writes for The New York Times. “Both these bands are very assertive rhythmically and advanced harmonically. Plus, there’s a lot of driving force and energy.”

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Submitted by Ben on October 1st, 2010 — 01:43pm

Detroit International Jazz Festival wrap-up: A fiery final day

Publication: MLive.com
Author: Mike Stratton
Date: September 7, 2010

The theme of this year’s Detroit International Jazz Festival was Flame Keepers, and the heritage and jazz history on display at the festival shows the music to be very much alive and in good hands.

Where else can you see Barry Harris watching Mulgrew Miller from a front row seat? Or young Tia Fuller grab a chair to make sure to catch Roy Haynes’ burning set? Or watch Gerald Wilson grow young before our eyes leading a dynamic big band through some punchy arrangements?

Highlights of the last day of the festival included an amazing set of music by Branford Marsalis Quartet. Caught backstage and asked, “What’s your personal highlight of the festival?” Wess “Warmdaddy” Anderson answered, “This right here.” When questioned what he thought of Branford he answered immediately and authoritatively: “Branford Marsalis is the greatest living saxophonist.”
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Submitted by Ben on September 8th, 2010 — 12:44pm

The Marsalis Family: Music Redeems

Publication: Off-Beat
Author: John Swenson
Date: September 1, 2010

The family band has been a cornerstone of the American entertainment industry since the 19th Century, when singing families became the first domestic music stars. There’s something magic about the way blood relatives interact with each other spiritually and instinctively rather than technically. This is even more important in the African-American music tradition, in which musicians have learned from their relatives for generations. That special relationship is much in evidence on Music Redeems. Liberated from the critical necessity to make a Big Statement or define some new trend, the Marsalis family’s only agenda here is to enjoy playing together.
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Submitted by Ben on August 31st, 2010 — 03:21pm

Branford at 50

Publication: The Gig
Author: Nate Chinen
Date: August 26, 2010

You read that headline correctly: saxophonist Branford Marsalis was born half a century ago today. Some of us will want a minute to absorb that information. Take one if you need it.

Branford has a new album out this week with the Marsalis Family, which is naturally part of his claim to fame. That’s not what I want to talk about here, though. I’d like to talk about the specific achievements of Ellis’ eldest son: as a saxophonist, as a bandleader, and as a public figure besides. (Forgive me, folks, this may get a little personal.)

To view this blog entry in full, please click HERE!

Exclusive – Branford Marsalis: New Orleans remains in crisis

Publication: Larry King Live on CNN.com
Author: Branford Marsalis
Date: August 27, 2010

Editor’s Note: Be sure to watch Harry Connick Jr. on LKL tonight from Musicians Village in New Orleans.  Also, check out the Marsallis Family’s new album, “Music Redeems.”  It benefits the Ellis Marsallis Center for Music.

Five years after Hurricane Katrina struck and decimated my hometown, I am certainly buoyed by the rebuilding successes of a city reinforced with an invincible spirit and proud of the strides we have made through our partnership with New Orleans Habitat and through the contributions of individuals from around the world. I am fiercely disappointed, though, by the inconsistency of the attention paid to this disaster between these anniversaries and the lack of a sustained, long-term approach to the rebuilding our city.

New Orleans remains in crisis.
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Connick Jr., Marsalis Attend Event In Musicians' Village

WDSU.com
General Release
August 26, 2010

Musicians’ Village in the Upper 9th Ward was conceived post-Hurricane Katrina to give several generations of musicians and other families a community in which to live and prosper.

On Thursday, nearing the five-year mark since the storm, the milestone was celebrated in an area of the city that’s coming into its own.

The McDonogh 35 Choir helped mark the big moment, along with Harry Connick jr.

An oversized fleur de lis was raised to the top of the Ellis Marsalis Center for Music, which is halfway finished.
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Submitted by Ben on August 27th, 2010 — 12:59pm

Harry Connick, Jr., Ellis Marsalis, attend ceremony for 'Center for Music'

Publication: NOLA.com
Author: Times Picayune Staff
Date: August 27, 2010

Musicians Ellis Marsalis and Harry Connick Jr. joined Mayor Mitch Landrieu on Thursday for a topping-off ceremony for the new Ellis Marsalis Center for Music in the Musicians Village.

Completion of the center is expected next year. It will serve as a center for the education and development of musicians.

The 17,800-square-foot Ellis Marsalis Center for Music will have three sections: a performance hall, offices, and a community room.

All 72 single-family homes and five duplexes in Musicians Village were constructed by New Orleans Area Habitat for Humanity staff and volunteers. The village stands on the site of Kohn Junior High School, which was torn down in the 1990s.

Submitted by Ben on August 27th, 2010 — 12:21pm

Music: CD Reviews The Marsalis Family: Music Redeems

Publication: Campus Circle
Author: Doug Simpson
Date: August 25, 2010

Music Redeems is all about giving. This release of traditional jazz, testimonials and a spoken word piece is a salute to Marsalis patriarch Ellis Marsalis; plus proceeds from sales of this hourlong live record will benefit the planned Ellis Marsalis Center for Music, a New Orleans arts facility.
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Submitted by Ben on August 26th, 2010 — 01:27pm

For the Marsalis Family, Music Redeems

Publication: JazzPolice
Author: Andrea Canter, Contributing Editor 
Date: Thursday, 26 August 2010

When pianist/patriarch Ellis Marsalis retired from the faculty of the University of New Orleans in 2001, the school established a chair in his honor in the School of Music; the celebration concert was released as The Marsalis Family: A Jazz Celebration (2003, Marsalis Music). Last year (2009), The Duke Ellington Jazz Festival in Washington, DC, presented Ellis Marsalis with its Lifetime Achievement Award. Another reason for a family celebration, the clan came together again, now released on Marsalis Music as Music Redeems. In addition to Ellis, the recording includes Wynton, Branford, Delfeayo and Jason, with support from bassist Eric Reavis and drummer Herlin Riley, guest Harry Connick, Jr., and brother Ellis III reciting an original poem.
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Submitted by Ben on August 26th, 2010 — 01:15pm

The local beat goes on, familial-ly and festival-ly

By: Geraldine Wyckoff, Contributing Writer
The Louisiana Weekly
Monday, August 23, 2010

Intellectually, we are, of course, aware that the Marsalis family is chocked full of hugely talented musicians. Nonethe­less, when the emcee of this concert introduces each one of them by name — saxophonist Branford, trumpeter Wynton, trombonist Delfeayo, drummer/vibest Jason (in their birth order) and finally patriarch “maestro” Ellis Marsalis, one can’t help but marvel. Later, photographer/writer Ellis Marsalis III adds his voice to the mix.
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Submitted by Ben on August 24th, 2010 — 12:02pm