When bassist John V. Brown, director of Duke University's jazz studies program, decided to create the Duke Jazz Festival
, he didn't mess around. He booked the ageless drummer Roy Haynes
, who is 80 years old but moves with the easy grace of a young lion on the prowl. As a kid during the late '40s, Haynes apprenticed with sax legends Lester Young and Yardbird Parker--and he never looked back. John Coltrane adored him, as did hall-of-famers Stan Getz and Sarah Vaughan. Today, contemporary stars like Chick Corea and Pat Metheny dial him up when they want a certain percussive feel that's fueled by a sure sense of history, yet tempered by the unerring desire to move forward anyway, damn the torpedoes. That's Roy Haynes, the dapper drum dancer, a blur of color and motion, past and future.
Haynes and his young touring combo conclude the inaugural Duke Jazz Fest on Saturday, April 23 at 8 p.m. at Duke's Page Auditorium. The John Brown Quintet and Duke Jazz Ensemble open. The same afternoon at 2 p.m., the music travels outdoors to a Jazz on the Green rite of spring at Duke's East Campus Quad. Headliners include the Triangle Youth Jazz Ensemble, Duke Jazz Ambassadors, Equinox and the ultra-chic guitar-meets-voice of Scott Sawyer and Lois Deloatch. Imagine the tantalizing sensory counterpoint of blooming redbuds and the blues. How can anyone resist? Call 684-4444 for ducats.