Talin, the two-year-old son of award-winning alto saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa, is surprisingly aware of his dad’s job. “If he sees me leaving for work,” Mahanthappa said recently over a lunch of pastrami and corned beef, “Talin will say, ‘Daddy working? Saxophone? Toot-toot?’” His DownBeat Critics Poll-winning “Jazz Album of the Year,” Bird Calls, is based on snippets of tunes by Charlie Parker, his major inspiration. This past weekend, Mahanthappa played his butt off at Newport, as a guest soloist with Arturo O’Farrill’s Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra. Here’s my profile of him from the August 2015 DownBeat.
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