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Live at Newport

Live at Newport

Irvin Mayfield

Label: Basin Street
Format: CD
Barcode: 0652905040928
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Catalog number: BSR 0409
Releasedate: 07-07-17

- With his latest record, Grammy and Billboard Award winning Irvin Mayfield joins the ranks of Miles Davis, Nina Simone, Ray Charles and Led Zeppelin. The latest in a recording career of more than 30 live and studio albums

- Together with the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra

- Recorded Live

With his latest record, Grammy and Billboard Award winning Irvin Mayfield joins the ranks of Miles Davis, Nina Simone, Ray Charles and Led Zeppelin. The latest in a recording career of more than 30 live and studio albums, Live at Newport gives the listener an opportunity to hear Mayfield and the nineteen musicians of The New Orleans Jazz Orchestra fresh, raw, and uncut.

Live at Newport contrasts the intimate sound of Mayfield’s previous release, New Orleans Jazz Playhouse (2015, Basin Street Records), a 300 page coffee table book including seven nights worth of live performances recorded at his Bourbon street jazz club in New Orleans and featuring a small selection of members of the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra, by highlighting the full Jazz Orchestra in front of a massive crowd. But even in front of a large crowd, Mayfield finds a way to make the performance personal. Underscoring Live at Newport is the maturity Mayfield has achieved as a bandleader and trumpeter engaged in a decades-long career. This maturity is highlighted in moments when Mayfield speaks on the need for prison reform in his introduction to his original composition named for the infamous Louisiana prison, “Angola,” or in sharing the painful memory of his father’s death in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and the renewed meaning he finds in the tribute “May His Soul Rest In Peace.”

Mayfield’s evolution as a musician and bandleader are more subtly evident in his Ellington-esque willingness to step back and highlight the talents of his orchestra members, such as Ashlin Parker’s extensive and brilliant solo on “Angola,” or “Sweetbread on the Levees,” an entire track dedicated to Dr. Ed “Sweetbread” Petersen and featuring his impassioned saxophone playing. Mayfield’s talents are further articulated in the complex arrangement of “The Elder Negro Speaks,” which features several intricate transitions and sections reminiscent of one of Mayfield’s greatest influences, Jelly Roll Morton.

Mayfield and Co. are in their element tackling standards such as the funky New Orleans Mardi Gras tune “Indians” and “I’ve Got The World On A String” featuring the easy, soulful vocal stylings of one of Mayfield’s many protégés, Leon “Kid Chocolate” Brown.

The New Orleans Jazz Orchestra never fails to please crowds, and in recent years they’ve accomplished this with several performances highlighting the music of famous rock and pop artists such as Nirvana, Stevie Wonder, Queen, The Beatles, The Grateful Dead, and Led Zeppelin. They included three contrasting examples of these works with the Lennon/McCartney ballad classic, “Yesterday,” an ardent rendition of Stevie Wonder’s “Overjoyed” with the oft-featured vocals of trombonist, Michael Watson, and they close out the set with a bombastic version of Queen’s “We Will Rock You.”

Live at Newport takes a well-rehearsed Jazz Orchestra, a veteran trumpeter/bandleader, and brings you through a world of jazz experiences from well-known standards, heavily orchestrated traditional New Orleans-style jazz, and jazzified rock and pop. It’s a live experience entertaining to all and is not one to be missed.

A Grammy and Billboard Award-winning producer, composer, trumpet player, and author.

Mayfield’s credits include over 30 records, collaborations with Frank Ocean, Lenny Kravitz, George Clinton, Wyclef Jean, Bob Weir, Ani DiFranco, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Haley Reinhart, Wynton Marsalis, Dr. John, Ernest Gaines, and Gordon Parks.

His career started in Latin music as a cofounder of the celebrated group, Los Hombres Calientes with veteran percussionist Bill Summers in 1998. Since then, Mayfield has been named the Jazz Artist in Residence at the Apollo Theater in 2014, Artistic Director of Jazz from 2009 to 2014 at the Minnesota Orchestra, and Founder and Artistic Director of the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra from 2002 to 2016.

Mayfield’s catalog includes live recordings at the prestigious Blue Note Jazz Club, the Village Vanguard, and most recently a live recording at the Newport Jazz Festival.

Domestically, Mayfield has headlined all major performing arts centers including Carnegie Hall and has twice performed at the White House for presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama.

Internationally, Mayfield has headlined major Jazz festivals from North Sea in Europe to the Sydney Jazz Festival in Australia and has toured extensively throughout four continents.

Mayfield has authored two coffee table books, A Love Letter to New Orleans and New Orleans Jazz Playhouse, and has received an honorary doctorate from Dillard University.

Mayfield was nominated by President George W. Bush and appointed by President Barrack Obama to the National Council on the Arts. He was also nominated for an NAACP Image Award for his recording with Dee Dee Bridgewater.