Somehow Wynton Marsalis became the official spokesperson for all things jazz. Like his rock counterpart Bono, this gets really annoying. Any time a filmmaker, biographer or reporter needs a quote about the genre, there's Marsalis hyperbolizing about someone most people have never heard of. The New Orleans-born musician even appeared twice on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood . This overexposure lends skeptics to believe the trumpet player is less a musician and more a commercialized commodity sent by the powers that be to talk about what has unfortunately turned into a dying scene. But unlike the U2 front man, Marsalis can talk a good game and deliver the goods. His previous performance at the Orange County Performing Arts Center found him with a smaller group than the 15-piece Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra he's bringing this week, but the results should remain the same. Simply put, Marsalis can flat-out blow!
Thu., Jan. 31, 8 p.m., 2008