Thirty-seventh music presentation session for the blind and visually handicapped took place this time in two locations. Ostrava: 9th of March 2022 in Stará aréna Ostrava theatre and in Prague on 16th of March 2022 in the presentation room of Czech agency SONS (Czech Blind United). You can find the background of this project in an article about the first session here.
Ostrava: Congratulations to Jon Batiste, The Temperance Movement and Charlotte Day Wilson
Prague: Congratulations to Kill The Dandies!, Jon Batiste and Nikol Bóková.
|01 – Mono – Innocence||10|
|02 – Maria Schneider – Sputnik||10|
|03 – Jon Batiste – I Need You (Live)||20.5|
|04 – Charlotte Day Wilson – I Can Only Whisper (Live)||12.5|
|05 – Russian Circles – Geneva (Live)||5|
|06 – Audience Choice #1 – KING 810 – Alpha & Omega||1.5|
|07 – Chelsea Carmichael – Myriad (Live)||4|
|08 – Kill The Dandies! – How To Hold a Gun||7|
|09 – The Temperance Movement – Only Friend (Live)||17.5|
|10 – Nikol Bóková – Prometheus||9.5|
|11 – Audience Choice #2 – Simple Minds – Waterfront||1.5|
|12 – Bonus: Special message from Sting||12|
Playlist in Ostrava was supported by a list of cultural tips in the region.
It seems as a perfect start to include post rock/metal bands. I am a fan of this genre for years, but during the past couple of years, there haven’t been many great releases. Lately, I have been positively surprised with some great release, both from the new bands (There’s A Light), as well as the main bands of the genre. The latest album from Japanese Mono called Pilgrimage Of The Soul is amazing and I gladly played a track called Innocence.
My spotify playlist on post rock/metal called A Touch Of Singularity here
Maria Schneider is an icon of orchestral jazz and she was supposed to come to Czech Republic on 2nd of February, but it was for obvious reasons cancelled. However late 2021 it was not clear yet. Therefore I was preparing a one hour show about her career and arranging an interview with her. The interview was postponed due to the fact, she had a family over for her birthday party and she was not feeling well. I instantly fell in love with her smile in David Bowie documentary The Last Five Years, where she was commenting on their cooperation on Blackstar album. However, on the other side of the Zoom call was tired, sick and nervous lady, which was frustrated from an insane number of unanswered emails and uncertainty of an upcoming EU tour. Therefore I offered her to just chat without any formalities and it was an honest friendly discussion which ended up on the cover of March issue 2022 of Czech classical/world music/jazz magazine Harmonie.
One hour special about her discography at Český rozhlas Jazz in Czech here
Another article I wrote for the March issue of Harmonie was about an amazing singer/pianist and extremely skilled composer Jon Batiste who had eleven nominations for this years’ Grammys. I covered a couple of recent years in his career, prepared a Spotify playlist and went for a live version of the track called I Need You from Tiny Desk. It’s from his latest album We Are, which I believe deserves to be checked by everyone, no matter what genre you prefer. Plus, I would really love to hear these track on some mainstream radios. His five awards from Grammys might help it.
Next to all kinds of rock, modern jazz and world music, I love to check quality soul/r’n’b. In the case of Charlotte Day Wilson it was a great combo, as she is also cooperating with an amazing Canadian band BadBadNotGood, which I included in the previous sessions due to a profile of their saxophone player Leland Whitty and our interview. I first came to Charlotte through her track Funeral on Spotify. It had an incredible Fight Club vibe with this songs intro: “I went to a funeral, so I could feel something.” Later I realized Leland was part of this track. Unfortunately, she was not available to provide me a couple of thoughts on their cooperation, when I was preparing material about Leland. Recently she released an album Alpha and prepared a series of live performances. The best one would be a thing called I Can Only Whisper. Wait for her guitar solo.
Next to new releases and anniversaries, I like to include some of the most honest personal cultural recommendations. In March I wanted to promote upcoming EU tour of post metal band Russian Circles. I remember I wrote one of the first magazine reviews on their 2009 album Geneva. Since then, they are – let’s use this shitty cliché – aging like a good wine. Number of events was naturally cancelled, but on 14/4 they will finally come again to Prague. I included a live version of the title track from the mentioned album from dunk!fest 2016 which I consider their best available live performance. Interesting fact is they are for a long time starting their tour in Prague and getting a gear from Czech company Nomads of Prague. I wanted to prepare a video material, including an interview with the band to monitor this process, but I didn’t manage. At least you can soon check my interview with the support band Helms Alee which will release their new amazing album Keep This Be The Way on 29th of April.
Audience choice #1
As the first choice from an audience, In Ostrava my friend Tom, asked for a quite challenging track Alpha & Omega from KING 810. Luckily nobody left during the break. In Prague an older part of the audience agreed on Špitál u sv. Jakuba from legendary Czech blues Petr Kalandra & ASPM.
|01 – Mono – Innocence||5|
|02 – Maria Schneider – Sputnik||3.5|
|03 – Jon Batiste – I Need You (Live)||12.5|
|04 – Charlotte Day Wilson – I Can Only Whisper (Live)||2|
|05 – Russian Circles – Geneva (Live)||9|
|06 – Audience Choice #1 – Petr Kalandra & ASPM – Špitál u sv. Jakuba||11.5|
|07 – Chelsea Carmichael – Myriad (Live)||7|
|08 – Kill The Dandies! – How To Hold a Gun||14|
|09 – The Temperance Movement – Only Friend (Live)||7.5|
|10 – Nikol Bóková – Prometheus||12|
|11 – Audience Choice #2 – The LoveCrave – Outsider||4|
|12 – Bonus: Special message from Sting||6.5|
After the break
As I am a part of the Český rozhlas Jazz team, I fortunately get into a contact with some great new jazz stuff. I used multiple opportunities to share a work of a great London-based saxophone player Chelsea Carmichael. She recently released her full length debut called The River Doesn’t Like Strangers, which was coproduced by iconic Shakaba Hutchings from Sons of Kemet, The Comet Is Coming or Shabaka & The Ancestors. A lot a great stuff, but I still love the most coming back to the first single Myriad, backed by this great live version. Cheers BBC.
Next to cool international stuff, I try to be aware of the important music news in the Czech Republic. Kill The Dandies! is a band playing sort of a surf atmospheric rock and they recently won a Czech “Oscar” called Český Lev (Czech Lion) for their soundtrack from alternative Czech movie Okupace. Luck tends to stick with them, as some time ago they had Steve Buscemi in their video for a track called Laura.
When I was preparing this playlist, my good friend Renáta said: „It’s a really good playlist, but give me finally some good heavy rock. I immediately thought of a notification from YouTube that The Temperance Movement released the full version of their Live at YouTube show. Great opportunity to get back amazing track Only Friend, which helped them to establish themselves on the market as an extremely important band bringing back the old school bluesy hard rock energy.
Nikol Bóková is an amazingly talented Czech piano player from my home region Ostrava. She recently won an award by Český rozhlas Jazz and she is nominated for a main Czech music award Anděl. Her discography brings top quality, but her latest release Prometheus is a masterpiece. As a part of the promotion of this album, her team prepared a three piece video. I played in both locations the first part called Prometheus. It’s really strong and heavy emotional experience. Especially towards the end, where is clearly visible, it was dedicated to her father who recently passed away.
Audience choice #2
As the second choice from an audience, In Ostrava my dad asked for a track called Waterfront from Simple Minds. In Prague my good friend and a stable guest Antonín asked for a track called Outsider from an underground Italian gothic rock/metal band The LoveCrave.
As a bonus I wanted to play a track from Sting, which was a slight update of one of his famous songs. It was a message for peace in Ukraine. You will find it here.