Herbie Hancock is Beautiful in Santa Barbara and L.A.

The iconic Herbie Hancock and Jazz great Terrance Blanchard with Saturday Night Live bassist James Genus, drummer Trevor Lawrence Jr. (Snoop Dogg/Dr. Dre), and saxophonists, Chris Potter and Devin Daniels played the Arlington Theater in Santa Barbara, CA April 17th. This was just a week after Hancock’s 84th birthday. 

Hancock played piano, keyboard, and an Ax-Synth. Hancock’s career spans over six decades which began with Donald Byrd then Miles Davis followed by his group Head Hunters and the album celebrated 50 years ago last year. 2022 marked the 60th anniversary of Hancock’s debut album “Takin’ Off” and since he’s released over 40 albums and since 1984 has won 15 Grammys and an Academy Award. The set included Wayne Shorter’s “Footprints,” “Actual Proof,” and the encore was “Chameleon” with Hancock on the Ax-Synth.

The Chicago Tribune called Hancock “One of music’s most catalytic forces” this year and last year Washington Post gave Hancock the title of “Our greatest living Jazz artist,” and indeed he is both. A Hancock show takes you through a journey of not only his career, but the evolution of Jazz over the last 60 years as well as being one of the final links to Jazz legends that came before that are no longer with us. This show had everything from the iconic songs to solos, and how technology has played a major role in Hancock’s career and hearing songs way ahead of their time. Like the song title "Actual Proof," Hancock is actual proof of a living legend.

The tour concluded three days later at the Walt Disney Hall in Downtown Los Angeles, CA and Hanock will return to the Hollywood Bowl for a Head Hunters reunion August 14th. Last year Hancock honored his friend Wayne Shorter at the Hollywood Bowl with a once in a lifetime tribute including Joni Mitchell, Carlos Santana, Cindy Blackman, Brian Blade, Marcus Miller, Terri Lyne Carrington, Kamasi Washington, John Patitucci, Terence Blanchard, Alex Acuna, and Esperanza Spalding.