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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Dexter Gordon: Soy Califa: Live From Magleaas Højskole 1967

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Tenor saxophone legend Dexter Gordon lived for much of the '60s and '70s in Copenhagen. Popular with the media as well as with the fans, Gordon was a regular on radio and TV. On the afternoon of August 5, 1967, he played a special concert at the Magleaas Højskole, a college for aspiring musicians. Danish TV recorded the event and a mere 47 years later three of the tunes are available on high-quality vinyl (plus a download code), courtesy of London's Gearbox Records, as Soy Califa: Live From Magleaas Højskole 1967. Far better late than never. The tunes--a ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Dexter Gordon: North Sea Jazz Legendary Concerts

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The North Sea Jazz festival has an immense archive of filmed concert performances, which makes its Legendary Concerts CD/DVD series an eye-wateringly interesting prospect. The first eight volumes--featuring tenor saxophonists Dexter Gordon, Yuri Honing and Wayne Shorter, pianist Michael Borstlap, guitarist Jan Akkerman, and trumpeters Miles Davis, Eric Vloeimans and Dizzy Gillespie--are all cherry-pickingly good, and more releases are planned. Already, Legendary Concerts is a major event. Recorded and filmed at The Hague's Carrousel Zaal during the 1979 festival, Dexter Gordon's performance was among the first he gave in Europe after relocating back to the US following fifteen ...

INTERVIEWS

Maxine Gordon: The Legacy of Dexter Gordon

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Legendary tenor saxophonist Dexter Gordon was a focal point of the bebop and hard bop revolutions. Later in his career, he achieved the status of an American icon with his lead role in Bernard Tavernier's 1986 film, Round Midnight, which garnered him an Academy Award nomination. His “homecoming" in New York City, after living in Europe for over a decade, resembled that of the main character in the film, although the scripted role is known to be a synthesis of the lives of pianist Bud Powell and saxophonist Lester Young. When he passed away in 1990, Dexter Gordon left behind ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Dexter Gordon: American Classic

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Reissued as part of the Warner Jazz Elektra Masters series, tenor saxophonist Dexter Gordon's American Classic was originally released in 1982. It was part of a late-period American renaissance enjoyed by Gordon, who, after 15 years in Europe, had made a much lauded return to the New York club scene in the mid 1970s. Gordon's renaissance took on even wider currency in 1986 with the release of Bertrand Tavernier's movie Round Midnight, in which Gordon took the star role, an amalgam of fellow boppers pianist Bud Powell and alto saxophonist Charlie Parker.

In truth, Gordon was playing himself ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Dexter Gordon: Doin' Allright

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Dexter Gordon Doin' Allright Blue Note / Music Matters 2009 (1961)

From the first track of this record--in Blue Note's 45rpm double-disc reissue series--tenor saxophonist Dexter Gordon certainly seems to be doing just fine. That opener, “I Was Doing All Right," lilts along with a nice 'n' easy, early 1960s treatment of an insistently positive George Gershwin melody. Gordon doesn't rush his solo, but allows it to intensify naturally from the surrounding breeze. He explores the entire range of his instrument, allowing his pace to ebb and flow while never jettisoning himself from the ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Dexter Gordon: Best Of 3CD

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As shoddily put together compilations go, tenor saxophonist Dexter Gordon's three-disc Blue Note collection, Best Of 3CD, scrapes rock bottom. From the asinine title, through the inadequate liner annotation (no recording dates, no original album titles, misspelled musicians' names), to the full page photo of Roland Kirk, in simultaneous saxello, stritch and manzello flight, on the inner gatefold cover, it's a lame effort. And it gets worse. That photo is followed by another double-page photo of Kirk, this one unambiguously titled “Dexter Gordon," on the centerfold of the liner booklet.

Take a bow EMI France, who put the ...

DVD/VIDEO/FILM REVIEWS

Jazz Icons Series 2 Set: Wes, Mingus, Coltrane, Dexter, Duke, Brubeck and More.

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Various Artists Jazz Icons Series 2 Box Set Reelin' in the Years 2007

While the advent of the DVD has resulted in the unearthing of a virtual treasure trove of archival live video performances, many available for the first time in any format, the quality can often be hit-and-miss. Not so with the Jazz Icons series of DVDs, the first series hitting the streets in 2006. It's been written that this outstanding series of live performances by legendary jazz artists is to jazz what the renowned Criterion Collection has been ...



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