Photo: Red Bull Music Academy’s Night of Spiritual Jazz
When Suga’ in My Bowl host Joyce Jones and I first heard about The Red Bull Music Academy’s “night of spiritual Jazz” featuring Pharoah Sanders, the Sun Ra Arkestra, and Kamasi Washington on May 8, it sounded like the perfect lineup and we immediately cleared our schedules to go. Details were sparse–and the location was unannounced until about a week ago–when the organizers also announced that it is sold out!
A few commenters on social media who signed up for notices say that the tickets went fast. Although the organizers have finally announced a location–Brooklyn’s Greenpoint Terminal Warehouse at 73 West St.–good luck getting tickets. Fortunately, you can catch some of the action in the comfort of your own home.
If you tune in at 8 PM Eastern Standard Time to the Red Bull Music Academy’s Live radio channel and they’ll be streaming the concert there!
While it’s not quite the same as being there, it’s better than nothing and–depending where you live–either your only option or better than trekking out to a historic Greenpoint waterfront that looks to be a good walk from the G train.
Another option is checking into the event’s Facebook page, where people are asking for tickets. But the standard warnings obviously apply about safety and avoiding potential scammers.
Getting back to the radio channel, however, while scrolling through their online schedule, there were several interesting related broadcasts that are worth checking out:

  • A 2014 live performance of the Sun Ra Arkestra at 1 PM EST on Saturday
  • A “Fireside Chat” with Arkestra lead Marshall Allen at 9 AM EST on Sunday
  • A “Fireside Chat” with saxophonist Kamasi Washington at 10:30 PM EST Sunday
    They appear to rebroadcast things, so it’s worth checking back and scrolling through the complete schedule. I’d also be remiss if I didn’t point you to our own shows on Pharoah Sanders, Kamasi Washington, and the Sun Ra Arkestra/Marshall Allen, which all live in our audio archives.
    And if it’s some consolation, you can catch the Arkestra at this year’s Vision Fest on June 8th and Kamasi Washington in a free show on June 19th at Central Park’s Summerstage. Sanders recently finished a run at Birdland; I’d look for him to return in the late fall. I’ll revisit Vision Fest with a longer preview later on (and a quicker take of the Summerstage Jazz lineup’s on the way too), but for now the audio stream will have to tide many of us over.
    If you’re one of the lucky few to get tickets, let us know or feel free to leave some impressions of the performance in the comments.
    Hank Williams is an associate producer for Suga’ in My Bowl on WBAI Radio and webmaster for the Suga’ and Behind the Mic sites. He is also a PhD candidate in English and Africana Studies at the CUNY Graduate Center and teaches at Hunter and Lehman Colleges and The City College of New York.