Listening Parties

Join us for free Listening Parties, as musicians and scholars play for you legendary records that shaped the course of Jazz history. Hear from some of today’s greatest artists as they share with you the albums and artists that inspired them. All Listening Parties are free and open to the public. Unless otherwise indicated, seating is available on a first come/first served basis.


The Irene Diamond Education Center (IDEC) unless otherwise noted
Time Warner Center, 60th Street and Broadway
5th Floor

May 2, 7 pm

EJ Noble Classroom

Appropriating Culture: A Musician Performs History

Hosted by Allen Lowe

In this class, we will talk about the composer and history, and then perform the work of the composer, in an attempt to illustrate the points which we have been discussing. Allen Lowe is a saxophonist, composer and music historian whose 8 CD career retrospective, Disconnected Works 1980-2018: An Avant Garde of Our Own, is being issued this week by the venerated jazz label ESPDISK. The class will celebrate this release with performances of material contained in the set, as well as additional pieces that Lowe has composed over the years based on American song forms. We will discuss what those forms are, how they relate to both improvised and non-improvised music, why the composer has written them the way they are written, and what ‘meaning’ they contain, if any, in relation to America’s musical history. There will be a number of special guests appearing and performing including Jimmy Halperin, Ray Suhy, Lewis Porter, Jeremy Carlstedt, Lisa Parrott, Hilliard Green, and Brian Simontacchi (and Allen Lowe on alto sax).

The writer Darius James, whose book Negrophobia has been reissued by the New York Review of Books, will be reading portions of the book, accompanied by the band. James’ work has been described by Paul Beatty as “luridly funny and unsparingly smart…American arcana of the highest order. And like all truly cool books, destined to forever be ahead of its time;” and by Ishmael Reed as “comic, manic, and amazing…(it) tells more about American race relations than all of the walking dead suburban experts and academics.”

Please note, there are no reservations.  Seating is limited, and available on a first come, first served basis.