Ariadne’s Notes: The World Poetry Café welcomed the Jazz musician Kris Allen to the monthly Jazz corner, on August 25, 1-2 pm on CRFO 100.5 FM with the team of Ariadne Sawyer, producer and host, Neall Ryon, Jazz host, Victor Schwartzman, sound engineer and Sharon Rowe volunteer.
Born in June 1976, Kris Allen grew up outside of Hartford, Connecticut, and studied with Jackie McLean at the Artists Collective and University of Hartford. He inherited a love of music from his mother, a church organist who gave him his first lessons on a tiny xylophone. Although he showed a gift while studying classical piano, the young Allen fell for jazz upon hearing a copy of Lee Morgan’s Blue Note LP The Gigolo and switched to alto saxophone. He entered two venerable jazz academies: first Hall High School in West Hartford, known for nurturing excellent jazz musicians (including Brad Mehldau and Joel Frahm) and then the Artists Collective in Hartford, where founder McLean schooled Allen in the blues and bebop language, composition and arranging. Allen was drafted twice for the Grammy All-American High School Jazz Band and named its Most Valuable Player in 1994.
With a full scholarship, Allen continued his apprenticeship with McLean at the Hartt School of Music. After graduation, Allen moved to New York City. Playing in multiple groups and fronting a few of his own, Allen also toured and recorded with the likes of Gerald Wilson, Illinois Jacquet, Andy Gonzales and Curtis Fuller, as well as Winard Harper, Andy Laverne, Mario Pavone and Helen Sung. An in-demand sideman, Allen has played in the groups of Jen Allen, Noah Baerman, Earl MacDonald, Benje Daneman, Andy Jaffe and Avery Sharpe among others. He is a member and co-founder of the Jazz Samaritan Alliance, as well as a member of the Truth Revolution Recording Collective. In 1999, Allen was handpicked by McLean to teach saxophone and ensembles at the Hartt School. He went on to hold positions at Trinity College, Southern Connecticut State University and the Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts. Since 2013, he has been the Lyell B. Clay Artist in Residence in Jazz at Williams College. Allen has also been a teaching artist for the Litchfield Jazz Festival since 2001.
Ariadne’s Notes: A wonderful World Poetry Plus show on August 25th, 1-2 pm, CRFO, 100,5 FM featuring the talented Michael Johnson with his new book: How to Be Eaten By A Lion, a unique book full of vivid imagery and flowing words. E-poems by La Shawna Griffith, Barbados and Johanna Boal, England. Music by Penn Kemp and Kris Allen.
Radio team: Host and producer, Ariadne Sawyer, MA, co-host, Neall Ryon, engineer, Victor Schwartzman , volunteer, Sharon Rowe.
LISTEN TO THE SHOW HERE!
Michael Johnson’s work has appeared in numerous literary journals including The Antigonish Review, The Fiddlehead, The Malahat Review, PRISM International, Mid-American Review and Gargoyle. He was a finalist for Poetry magazine’s Ruth Lilly Fellowship and the Bronwen Wallace Award for Emerging Writers. He was nominated for the Pushcart Prize and, in 2014, won the Dr. Sherwin W Howard Award for best poetry in Weber: The Contemporary West. He lives in Penticton, BC. For more information about the book, go to Nightwood Editions, www.harbourpublishing.com
Ariadne’s Notes: On August 18th, CFRO 100.5 FM, The World Poetry Café Plus welcomed Kim Fu whose unique creative voice is outstanding, Mixing humour and darkness with irony, her poetry is both compelling and fascinating. She was our second poet from Nightwood Editions and deserves a featured spot here . Kim will be participating in WORD and we hope to meet her then. World Poetry will be celebrating the poetry and music of Korea at WORD. Music from Don Amero and Andy Vine.
Kim Fu is a Canadian-born writer living in Seattle, WA.
Her debut novel FOR TODAY I AM A BOY (2014) was the winner of the Edmund White Award, finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award, a New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice, and long-listed for Canada Reads, among other honors.
Her first poetry collection HOW FESTIVE THE AMBULANCE (2016)
includes a Best Canadian Poetry selection and poems originally published in Grain, Room, PRISM International, Carousel, Ricepaper, Numero Cinq, Poetry is Dead, and The Rusty Toque.
Fu’s nonfiction credits include The Atlantic, NPR Books, The Rumpus, Hazlitt, Maisonneuve, and republication in Best Canadian Essays.
Fu has an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia. For 2015-16, she has received residency fellowships from Berton House (Dawson City, YK), the Ucross Foundation (Ucross, WY), Wildacres (Little Switzerland, NC), and the Wallace Stegner Grant for the Arts (Eastend, SK).
At the poet party
we talk about all the poets
who committed suicide.
The comparative merit
of stones in a pocket
over the gas oven.
“She didn’t want to leave
her children alone,” we say.
“But she did.”
as modern poets,
we are made of sterner,
less sentimental stuff.
We can weather the draft
through a crack in the bricks,
the presence or absence
of children or fame.
When one of us
we say he was ill,
not a poet.
Kim Fu (C)