Meet Edward Blanco
I joined All About Jazz in: 2005
What made you decide to contribute to All About Jazz? The desire to participate in some small way, in helping to promote and become a part of the jazz music I love. AAJ is the top jazz resource on the internet and it provides me an opportunity to get published and read by a wider audience than any other site could provide.
How do you contribute to All About Jazz? Though I have written festival, concert and DVD reviews in the past, my main contribution by far continues to be music reviews of new jazz albums.
What is your musical background? Though I played the drums in High School, I do not consider myself a musician. I have been listening to jazz music for 40 years and am far more familiar with it than the average person. I have been a broadcaster for six years having my own jazz show in Miami, FL and serve as Board of Trustees for WDNA.
What was the first record you bought that you would still listen to today? Honestly, I can't remember.
What type of jazz do you enjoy listening to the most? Straight ahead jazz that has discernible melodies and harmonies. Love the big band genre, like jazz vocals, progressive and modern jazz.
Aside from jazz, what styles of music do you enjoy? I do like Latin, classical and pop music.
What are you listening to right now? New York Voices, Dave Lalama Big Band, Greg Abate Quintet with Phil Woods, Paul Winters Sextet, Roberto Magris, Rob Parton Big Band, Harry Allen, Pacific Mambo Orchestra, L.A. Sessions, and many more.
Which five recent releases would you recommend to readers who share your musical taste? Paul Winters Sextet, Joey Stuckey, Dave Lalama Big Band Hofstra Project, Greg Abate Quintet featuring Phil Woods, Roberto Magris Aliens in A Bebop Planet.
What inspired you to write about jazz? My love of jazz inspired me to get more involved in the music and writing reviews for me seemed the appropriate vehicle to help promote it.
What do you like to do in your free time? Any hobbies? I am President of the City of Miami Retirees Association, I have a weekly radio show every Sunday mornings from 7 to 9:00AM (Jazz Cafe) on WDNA, 88.9FM here in Miami. I am also involved in the local film industry as a working extra on TV and commercials.
What role does jazz music play in your life? As a retired former public official, jazz now occupies a role in my maintaining an active retirement. It is more than a hobby to me, it is a passion I cannot live without.
How does writing about jazz contribute to the music itself? Writing about jazz keeps jazz music on the radar and relevant in peoples lives. Let's not forget that jazz is not the most popular music in the country or the most profitable for professionals. It just happens to be the best music around. Writing also serves to help educate audiences on the new music being produced especially for those in markets without a jazz radio station.
What do you like most about All About Jazz? The wide range of areas covering live music, recorded music and the musicians. As a staff writer, I appreciate the help AAJ has provided me in learning to be a better writer and being part of a jazz family.
What positives have come from your association with All About Jazz? The opportunity to have learned more about writing, the music, the friendships created with fellow writers and the feeling of being a full-fledged member of the jazz community. Thanks to my association with AAJ, the music industry now refers to me as a "jazz critic" a label one has to earn. For that I am deeply humbled and appreciative.
Edward Blanco at All About Jazz.