Kidd Jordan, Hamid Drake, and Jason Hwang (left to right), finally heard.
Michael Wilderman
Kidd Jordan, Hamid Drake, and Jason Hwang (left to right), finally heard.

Another Vision virtue is organic programming—drawn from life, not marketing plans. At the Abron Arts Center, the North-South Clarinet Ensemble expressed newfound communion between avant-gardist Perry Robinson and Michael White, who plays mostly traditional jazz in his New Orleans hometown. Though tentative at first co-leading a quintet, by set's end, the two found a common concept, something like the catharsis of a New Orleans jazz funeral meeting Downtown Manhattan's ecstatic ideal. "I'm not really here," White had said while introducing the dirge-based tune. "I'm dead, died five years ago." But if anyone embodies the idea of resilience, it is he, who lost mouthpieces from Sidney Bechet along with a house and a good chunk of his life to a flood five years ago. "When I hooked up with Perry," White told me later, in the downstairs CD market/cafeteria, "I was able to express feelings I'd been holding inside for a very long time. These things keep happening lately. It's like I'm onto another life now."

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