Last February, As part of Black History Month, I planned a trip to the Jazz Museum in Harlem and to one of their programs that I cancelled due to really lousy weather.
Last week, I organized an outing to a Jazz Museum program and dinner at Miss Maude's Spoonbread Too for two friends from elementary school days. On my way to meet my friends, I visited the Jazz Museum and I took a (not great) photo of the nearby building where the famous A Great Day in Harlem photo was taken.
One friend, who was in from Alaska managed to find a Groupon for Miss Maude's so we had 3 delightful meals and were able to give away the fourth one to the staff at the concert later. Miss Maude's is a great low key place for soul food near the Schomburg Library. They had a chance to stop in to see the latest exhibits. I will return soon.
The concert we saw in a back room of a nearby church is not written up on the Jazz Museum website but it was quite interesting. One friend said (on FB) "A conversation through jazz between kora and tap dance at National Jazz Museum in Harlem. Life is good." And I agree. My friend Charlene, who runs these blogs always says, "if you announce it, they will come". The audience was small but really into the performance experience we all shared with the performers.
Our Alaska friend and husband got tickets for a NY Philharmonic rehearsal - a Jazz Symphony written by Wynton Marsalis. Many friends have encouraged me to go to these but it took a visitor from Alaska to make it happen. This might have been my first time but it won't be my last. On this day, we added a Junior High School friend to our group.
After the rehearsal, we took a brief look at the permanent Al Hirschfeld exhibit at the Library for the Performing Arts and then we ate lunch at the Lincoln Center Film Cafe - Indie Food and Wine. The food was fine and we were able to sit and talk until the Alaskans had a plane to catch.
As far as Jazz goes, I am a curious listener - an explorer. I love the programs at Jazz at Lincoln Center and I managed to see the only New York performance of Louis the Movie a modern silent movie with live accompaniment written by Wynton Marsalis and performed by a 10 piece band.
If you want a great introduction to Jazz in New York I would recommend any tour with Gordon P.