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Jazz on the Half Pipe 

Wednesday, May 1 2013
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When we think skateboard soundtrack, bands like JFA and RKL still immediately spring to mind. Early on, the speed and rebellion of punk were the aural embodiment of the skaters’ innate disregard for life and limb. But recently, we saw a deck painted up with Marvin Gaye and that made sense, too — weaving through urban obstacles with the leonine grace of the Prince of Soul. Under the art direction of Ian Johnson, Western Edition has produced a number of jazz-inspired skateboards, including the Miles Davis Quintet. It’s not a huge leap. Jazz and skateboarding both require complexity, dexterity, and mastery, which naturally lends itself to improv, and perhaps collaboration. Enter MacArthur Genius Jason Moran. Turning heads and winning awards since the late ’90s, this young jazz giant was recently named the Kennedy Center’s Artistic Advisor on Jazz (at half the age his predecessor was appointed). So when Moran said he wanted to conclude his residency at SF Jazz with a half-pipe, they said, “How high?” The ramp will sit right in front of the stage, where Moran’s exceptional trio Bandwagon will exchange movements with skaters such as Ben Gore, Adrian Williams, Alex “Tons” Wolslagel, and Jake Johnson.
Sat., May 4, 7:30 p.m., 2013

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Silke Tudor

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