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DVD/VIDEO/FILM REVIEWS

The Girls in the Band

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The Girls in the Band Collective Eye (Educational version) 2011 That there are problems of race and gender in the history of American jazz comes as no surprise. Music, and popular music (as swing was in the 1930s and 1940s), is a part of everyday life. Why should jazz be any different? Yet the issues manifest themselves in many different ways. In all my time listening to swing bands as a kid, and you could ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Rob Mazurek: Alternate Moon Cycles

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The first half of the decade has seen cornet virtuoso and composer Rob Mazurek through significant achievements and personal losses, often linked inextricably through his creative processes. In and around the passing of his mentor and colleague, the trumpeter Bill Dixon in 2010 and his mother in 2013, Mazurek has found inspirations that are unique even for an innovator of his caliber. The latter life event was the impetus for two very different collections--Mother Ode (Corbett vs Dempsey, 2014)--a solo, ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Bill Mobley, Andrew Beals, Jeff Pittson, Mark Hagan, Jimmy Madison At The Old '76 House

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Bill Mobley, Andrew Beals, Jeff Pittson, Mark Hagan, Jimmy Madison The Old 76 House Mark Hagan's Jazz Salon Tappan, NY January 21, 2015 Jimmy Madison, the first of the band to arrive, wheeled his cymbal case in on a portable carrier and surveyed the array of drums, cymbals and stands before him. Spread out hither and yon and looking decidedly out of place in a formal dining room of tables with starched white ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Meeco: Souvenirs of Love

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Pianist, composer and producer Meeco alias Michael Maier delivers his fourth album with Souvenirs of Love offering a “collection of love songs that tell my life" story as the artist states, through a range of R & B, intimate jazz ballads and a touch of the hip-hop influence provided in a tasteful elegant platform. Not a conservative musician by any stretch, Meeco is used to doing things big, out of the norm and striking a new approach. On this venture, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Selasee & The FaFa Family: Time For Peace

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West African palm wine music, by the 1920's, was morphed into highlife in the country of Ghana --becoming the country's most popular and identifiable genre--and is the core substance of Time For Peace. Led by Ghanian native Selasee Atiase, now residing in America, The FaFa Family delivers roots reggae inflected with a soft undercurrent of highlife, and heartfelt inspiration of gospel and soul. Prepared with a strong music background and acknowledged as a gospel singer back in his ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Marbin: The Third Set

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Marbin is known for its extensive touring schedules, coupled with the instrumentalists' exhilarating interactions. But in the studio, the musicians present a variegated jamboree of acoustic-electric pieces, often layered with memorable hooks and textural soundscapes amid the frontline's invigorating solo jaunts. However, The Third Set captures the unit's explosive progressive rock and jazz rock nomenclature at its finest. It's an unrelenting feast for the aural senses as guitarist Dani Rabin and saxophonist Danny Markovitch generate lightning fast unison choruses and ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Spandau Ballet SiriusXM Artist Confidential

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Spandau Ballet SiriusXM Studios Artist Confidential January 20,2014 A small group of 40 and 50-something men and women huddled outside of the McGraw Hill building in New York City in a cluster, kidding around, eager for a glance or maybe an autograph, toting odds and ends of memorabilia under arms clad in substantial winter coats. Bundled against the winter wind that cut between the tall buildings on this side of town, these die-hard Spandau Ballet ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Zhenya Strigalev's Smiling Organizm: Robin Goodie

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It's always interesting to discover how the rest of the world views your country and this, the second album by Strigalev's six piece Smiling Organizm, was apparently inspired by his time in England. So while we might reasonably expect a paean to the joys of tea, queue etiquette and appalling public transport, the mirror Strigalev holds up instead highlights “nature... humour, heroism, strong personalities, love, rebelliousness and... some stupidity." Well, I guess it could have been worse! There ...



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