August 9, 2010 performance report by Dave Read.
Herbie Hancock brought his The Imagine Project tour to Ozawa Hall at Tanglewood, and just about blew the roof off the joint. Mr. Hancock, more youthful and fit than any 70 year old man should expect to be, was accompanied by Vinnie Colaiuta on drums, James Genus on bass, Lionel Loueke on guitar, Greg Phillinganes on keyboards (and vocals), Kristina Train, vocals (and violin). They played one immense set that opened with Actual Proof (1974 “Thrust”) and closed with Chameleon (1973 “Head Hunters”), which we caught on video, while the usually staid Tanglewood audience got busy!
The day before this gig, while Mr. Hancock and the Imagine Project were headlining the Newport Jazz Festival, Yo Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble were putting on a festival of their own in Tanglewood’s Koussevitsky Music Shed. That’s notable because the former has a mission to “utilize(s) the universal language of music to express its central themes of peace and global responsibility” and the latter seeks to “connect the world’s neighborhoods by bringing together artists and audiences around the globe.”