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Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Producer's Note: Gordon Chambers and Magos Herrera return to BAMcafé Live

by Darrell McNeill

BAMcafé Live week three: We are on the verge of complete righteousness—two amazing shows played to packed houses! BCL is definitely hitting a mid-season groove.

What can be fittingly said about Hank & Cupcakes? Simply, they dropped a bomb on the Lepercq. Close your eyes and you were transported back to the Ritz when bands like Siouxsie & the Banshees, the Thompson Twins, and Modern English ruled the dance floors. And the following night, blues was conjured at its most uplifting and communal as International Blues Express, featuring Sidi Toure and Cedric Watson, elevated the room with a night of culturally and spiritually transcendent music.

After three straight weeks of artists making their BCL debuts, two very popular favorites return for week four. Award-winning soul singer-songwriter Gordon Chambers returns to the café on Friday, October 11, performing from his three independently released albums and his extensive catalog of hits with the biggest names in R&B music. On Saturday, October 12, Latin jazz chanteuse Magos Herrera continues her musical journey though the nations of Central and South America, marrying the indigenous rhythms and melodies of those diverse cultures to American jazz modes.

Gordon Chambers’ discography is a virtual constellation map of R&B, gospel, and hip-hop royalty: Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, Marc Anthony, Gladys Knight, Aaron Neville, The Isley Brothers, Anita Baker, Patti LaBelle, Queen Latifah, Usher, and countless others have feature tracks penned, arranged and/or produced by Gordon, and he’s garnered a wall full of hardware to back up his pedigree. His own work, naturally, is of a more personal and intimate nature, speaking honestly to personal experience and maintaining the traditions of all the soul greats.

Magos Herrera’s performances are a musical expedition which start in her native Mexico and make their way through Brazil, Cuba, Colombia, Venezuela, Puerto Rico, and the entire western Latin diaspora, their links to jazz the common thread between nations. Her work has put her in rarified air in the Latin jazz community, collaborating with luminaries such as Tim Ries, Luis Perdomo, Steve Gonzalez, John Pattituci, and Lionel Loueke. Her intense delivery shimmers with slow-burning heat and paints adoring landscapes of the people and the lands of this rich and dynamic culture.

These shows will probably be well-attended, having been huge successes in the past, so get here early. Can’t wait to see you.

Darrell McNeill is the Associate Producer of Music Programming at BAM.

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