Some of these are the lights of campus. One is an almost full moon.

A good time on the rolling hills

My posts Saturday and Sunday about the M&T Syracuse Jazz Fest concentrated on the music. Big time, big fun for the 32nd edition of the free-admission event. For my weekly community blog for Syracuse public media site waer.org, I commented about how the return this summer to the rolling hills of Onondaga Community College brought…

B.B. King waves to the five-figure crowd Saturday night at the M&T Syracuse Jazz Fest.

A King can still count on his court, B.B. shows

When they gingerly walked B.B. King out on the stage to join his big orchestra who’d been entertaining the five-figure crowd for the closing set Saturday night at the 32nd M&T Syracuse Jazz Fest for a good while, everybody stood and applauded as the American music legend took a seat. The 88-year-old King worked hard…

Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, entertaining the crowd something like this.

Funk Trombone, Good Voodoo, Guitar Noir, New Voice

The first day of the 32nd edition of the M&T Syracuse Jazz Fest was all that in the headline above plus a shining sun, silvery moon, cheering thousands and a damned good beef quesadilla. From night to day: Headliner Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue drew the big free-admission crowd forward and into the aisles and…

An attractive schedule for the M&T Syracuse Jazz Fest.

Two days of music, capped by Mr. B.B. King

I recall being pretty excited placing the call to a certain Riley King. Goes by the initials B.B. Stands for Blues Boy. And B.B. King comes on the phone, starts talking, and I knew why I liked that job writing about music for the big daily so damn much. In fact, the American blues legend…

Paul S. Russo at the Savoy in Rome, N.Y. (Photo by John Herr)

Paul Russo was a jazz guy who wanted everybody to be, too

If jazz music in Syracuse was part of your life, you knew Paul Russo. The man made certain of that. The Syracuse native loved the style of music to its heart and his core. His son Craig played Latin jazz, put out albums. His brother Victor taught jazz, won awards as educator of the year.…

Bernie Williams, a man comfortable working hard with his guitar.

Bernie Williams, at the park and in the theater

Bernie Williams would rather talk about his current pursuit as a guitar player than his past career as an all-star center fielder with the New York Yankees, publicist Steve Fortunato said while setting up my phone interview two days ago. I can respect that. During a very invigorating phone conversation yesterday, Bernie Williams told me…

Call it a lot to do.

Listen to music, watch the people, taste the food

For more than two decades, when I went out to hear music, music was my sole focus. My job was to review concerts for the big daily in Syracuse. Hey, people, I’m trying to hear a band here. Even when I went to local series and bars and such, I knew I’d be writing about…