By Nicholas Howard, VCFA: Writing & Publishing Program
A preview of Herbie Hancock, who performs on the Flynn Main Stage Wednesday, February 6.
Herbie Hancock’s show at the Flynn on Wednesday, February 6 will be the first in an eight-show tour that takes the multi-Grammy winning keyboardist down the east coast. His final destination will be the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival in May.
It will be, to steal the title of his 1965 album, the “maiden voyage” with his band of Vinnie Colaiuta, James Genus, Lionel Loueke, and Terrace Martin, as they discover the chemistry, timing, and overall plan for playing that will guide them on this journey.
Lucky for all of us, he keeps on his pursuit of art.
John Lennon once famously posed to all of us “And what have you done? / Another year over / and a new one just begun,” a thought I am sure many of us are sharing now that February is approaching and we are, for better or for worse, settled in 2019. I would argue Herbie’s music is the perfect companion for such contemplation.
Being able to follow along as he explores beautiful and measured sonic paths will invite us in the coming months to consider different paths as they may present themselves. His musical ability to expand and grow, incorporating new sounds and build off of others, could be symbolic for what we want to do in our own lives.
At the same time, being able to live within an individual song for upwards of ten minutes will provide respite from having to worry about what will come next. Herbie will be in charge. He will be guiding. All we have to do is enjoy the space we find ourselves in. It may be a treacherous night getting to the Flynn, but we can have some respite from the weather and season for a few hours.
I know as an artist, my thoughts will turn to how I can incorporate Herbie’s approach of always pursing the new and the fresh. I will be inspired as he discovers again some of his classics such as Watermelon Man or Chameleon.
For all of us in the audience that night, we will be able to take note of how to press on through the cold, snow, and ice into the warmer months and larger year ahead.