Vamp Man 

Robert Glasper at Yoshi's.

The new hot stars on Blue Note aren't content to sit with traditional jazz album formulas — a couple standards, a couple originals, some long-distance improvisations, and a trio version of some well-known pop tune. Instead, they're finding ways to meld a well-honed jazz pedigree with contemporary influences, with mixed results. Meshell Ndegeocello's use of hip-hop DJ Jahi Sundance enhanced her concept-driven Spirit Music tour in 2005, while Christian McBride's idea of substituting the same DJ for an actual drummer seemed, well, unfortunate. Meanwhile, Blue Note pianist Robert Glasper found a unique way to blend old-school and modern styles in this year's In My Element, which includes sampled voicemail "drops" and a tune based on a vamp from Radiohead. Glasper's idea of writing piano arrangements for beats from the late hip-hop producer J-Dilla showed that he's not just a hipster with a passing interest in the genre, and won him respect from heads. He'll perform Wednesday, August 22 at Yoshi's, with shows at 8 p.m. ($16) and 10 p.m. ($10). or


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