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America's Music: Jazz In Newark

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America's Music: Jazz In Newark Barbara J. Kukla 324 pages ISBN: #978-0-9768130-3-3 Swing City Press 2014 Every jazz fan has a story about how the music became an important part of their life. For some the point of entry was taking up a musical instrument. Others fell under the music's spell after hearing a family member's or neighbor's jazz records. And there are those whose exposure to sounds intended as an aphrodisiac led to a lifelong love affair with the music. Barbara J. Kukla's introduction to jazz occurred in ...

BIG BAND REPORT

Moody's Mood Was Always Happy

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James Moody, whose noble spirit and radiant personality were as impressive as his exploits on saxophone and flute for more than six decades, died December 9, 2010 from pancreatic cancer at his home in San Diego. He was 85 years old. To anyone who was lucky enough to meet him, the Moody hug was unforgettable: a warm, good-natured embrace accompanied by a smile as wide as the horizon. Moody's personality was the same: friendly, outgoing, overflowing with geniality and humor. Although he never took himself too seriously, music was another matter. From the time he was a ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

James Moody: Moody 4B

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A stellar follow up to Moody 4A (IPO, 2009), saxophone icon James Moody presents the sequel Moody 4B, actually recorded the day after the first session with the same blue chip quartet. Legendary pianist Kenny Barron, renowned bassist Todd Coolman and versatile drummer Lewis Nash all lend their collective musical energy for this second date. Much like the first album, 4B introduces a couple of original tunes mixed in with a select number of standards from the Great American Songbook and a few oft recorded classics.Moody takes a ride on the train for his opener, Billy Strayhorn's “Take ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

James Moody: Moody 4B

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James Moody's 4B is a companion-piece--or continuation-of-sorts--of 2009's 4A. The two albums, while released a year apart, were recorded on back-to-back days in 2008. While the “B" status might lead to the conclusion that this is a consolation prize of an album, that's is hardly the case. Moody and his superb quartet, featuring fellow Dizzy Gillespie-alumnus Kenny Barron on piano, Todd Coolman on bass and Lewis Nash on drums, lend their expert skills to original material, jazz classics and Great American Songbook fare. Finding new ways to bring oft-played favorites to life, and finding something meaningful to ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

James Moody: Moody 4B

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Each year since 1950, James Moody has played a concert at Carnegie Hall in New York. In 2010, the annual visit will be a little sweeter as Moody celebrates his 85th birthday, with a slice of cake on Seventh Avenue and a concert of greats. No doubt, the sprightly sax (and flute) master behind such classic tunes as “Moody's Mood for Love" is still playing strong. Moody 4A (IPO, 2009) featured a killer quartet with longtime partner in crime, pianist Kenny Barron, as well as the excellent pairing of drummer Lewis Nash and bassist Todd Coolman. The follow-up, Moody 4B, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

James Moody: 4A

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Saxophonist James Moody has been an important fixture in the jazz world since the late 1940s, when he emerged and gained notice as a member of the Dizzy Gillespie Orchestra. Now, a robust 84 years young, Moody offers 4A, the first release from a two-day recording session which took place in July of 2008 with the inevitable 4B to follow. Still going strong, as his sharp solos demonstrate, his suave tenor voice glides over the melodies slightly more gently than in the past, perhaps, but just as gracefully. Along with Moody's long-time bassist Todd Coolman,, pianist Kenny Barron and versatile ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

James Moody: 4A

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In the late '40s, saxophonist/flutist James Moody staked his claim on the jazz landscape when he gained prominence as one of the key ingredients of Dizzy Gillespie's orchestra. Nearly six decades later, at the age of 84, Moody shows no signs of slowing down. He's in excellent form on his latest release 4A. On 4A, Moody stretches out on eight standards, getting solid support from Kenny Barron (piano), Todd Coolman (bass) and Lewis Nash (drums). “Secret Love" opens the disc with a martial drum march before segueing into a laid-back, mid-tempo groove. Everybody shines on Barron's “Voyages," ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

James Moody and Hank Jones: Our Delight: Hank Jones and James Moody

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"Our Delight," penned by Tadd Dameron, is a fitting title for a quartet date fronted by two venerable elder statesmen of jazz, James Moody and Hank Jones. Close listening will surely enchant lovers of acoustic jazz interpretations of timeless songs by Dameron and Dizzy Gillespie, Moody's mentor, dear friend, boss and frontline partner over four decades. Bassist Todd Coolman and drummer Adam Nussbaum, regulars in Moody's steady group, round out the quartet and give secure support for Jones' customarily tasteful comping and refined improvisations. Jones, 90, is rightfully acclaimed as the dean of jazz pianists and his ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

The James Moody and Hank Jones Quartet: Our Delight

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James Moody and Hank Jones have had limited contact with each other, insofar as performing and recording music is concerned. However, they seem to be quite familiar as they perform twelve songs that are either standards or compositions closely associated with them as musicians.Moody, on tenor saxophone and flute, and pianist Jones, are joined by Todd Coolman on the bass, and drummer Adam Nussbaum, to form The James Moody and Hank Jones Quartet. While Moody and Jones have lived through the development of modern jazz, Our Delight brings the foursome together in a straight-ahead session.“Birk's Works" ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

James Moody and Hank Jones Quartet: Our Delight

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The title Our Delight should have been subtitled with (to borrow a line from Ornette Coleman) “This Is Our Music," not so much in the sense of revolution as revelation. But then Pianist Hank Jones and saxophonist James Moody have been revealing their precious gifts of music since the 1940s.

Both artists have been witness (and contributors) to the history of jazz. Jones played music in the hotbed of Detroit as did his brothers Thad and Elvin, then there were the many years accompanying Ella Fitzgerald. His 'solo' career of the last thirty years has elevated him into the living ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

James Moody / Hank Jones: Our Delight

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Marking the very first pairing of these two giants of Jazz, Our Delight brings together two legends, saxophonist James Moody and pianist Hank Jones in a performance with one purpose, to delight jazz audiences with the music of Tadd Dameron and Dizzy Gillespie. The late great trumpeter took Moody under his wing and became his mentor, providing a jazz education that gives the saxophonist a unique perspective of Gillespie's music. Jones traveled a different path, gaining an enrichment of jazz by performing with a virtual “Who's Who" of musicians from Detroit to New York, from the '40s to the present. ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Gil Fuller with Dizzy Gillespie & James Moody: Gil Fuller & The Monterey Jazz Festival Orchestra featuring Dizzy Gillespie/Night Flight

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Make a shortlist of your favorite, classic Dizzy Gillespie songs and the odds are that more than a few of them will share a connection to arranger Gil Fuller. Gillespie worked closely with Fuller during the height of his big band period in the mid to late ‘40s, resulting in numerous essential recordings. Their collaboration also produced a handful of eventual standards on which Gillespie and Fuller share songwriting credit, such as “Manteca” and “Tin Tin Deo.” By 1965, Dizzy wasn’t working with Fuller in an official capacity; the trumpeter toured and recorded on his own while the ...

NEW YORK BEAT

Bebop Lives! Jazz at Lincoln Center

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James Moody, Roy Hargrove, Charles McPherson, and Roberta Gambarini Jazz at Lincoln Center, Rose Theater New York City January 26-27

James Moody started off this Jazz at Lincoln Center concert celebrating bebop by hurling a huge challenge. “Bebop is more valid than even classical music said Moody. “Nobody plays Beethoven through the keys. If they want to say classical music is better than jazz, play all those things through different keys, and then I'll go along with them.

No one alive has more credentials to utter such a claim ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

James Moody: Hey! It's James Moody

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There is nothing earth-shattering on this collection, which was originally issued as two LPs: Flute'n The Blues (1956) and Hey! It's James Moody (1959). What remains remarkable, though, is how fresh James Moody sounds, even when some of the arrangements show their age and some of the ensemble passages lack precise intonation. Indeed, some of these tracks have passed into jazz lore, including “Last Train from Overbrook (the salute to Moody's return to the scene) with Eddie Jefferson's ebullient vocal, as well as an instrumental take and the classic Moody-Jefferson piece “I'm in the Mood For Love, performed since as ...



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