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INTERVIEWS

Jimmy Bruno: From Surgery and Carjackings to His Guitar Institute

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Jimmy Bruno's stature as one of jazz's top hard bop guitarist is undisputed. His career as a musician and educator warrants the numerous times that he has been interviewed at All About Jazz. In this interview with AAJ contributor Edward Zucker, Bruno discusses his current CD, Maplewood Avenue (Affiliated Artists, LLC, 2007), the Jimmy Bruno Guitar Institute, carpal tunnel surgery and a near carjacking. He also offers his uncensored opinion on numerous other topics.

Chapter Index Surgery Carjacking and Guns The New CD Philadelphia's Jazz Scene Jimmy Bruno Guitar Institute

Surgery

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Jimmy Bruno: Maplewood Avenue & Jazz Hits, Vol. 1

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Jimmy Bruno Maplewood Avenue Affiliated Artists 2007 MB3 Jazz Hits, Vol. 1 Mel Bay 2006

Jimmy Bruno, one of the most technically proficient yet stylistically-nuanced hard bop guitarists to emerge from the lineage of fellow Pennsylvanians Pat Martino and George Benson, remains a guitarist's guitarist -- if not a trendsetter, certainly a standard bearer. Maplewood Avenue, a trio date with Tony Miceli (vibes) and Jeff Pedraz (bass), shoots ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jimmy Bruno: Maplewood Avenue

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Guitarist Jimmy Bruno opts for the quiet mood, which he sets up with Tony Miceli (vibraphone) and Jeff Pedras (bass), on several of the tunes on Maplewood Avenue. The accent is on chamber jazz but they move out of it on occasion, to lend a welcome balance.

The trio sets an intimate atmosphere and lure the listener into the center of that spell. The impact is immediate, as the three ventures into “Maplewood Avenue. The melody has a lilt that is perfect for Miceli to explore. He improvises within the theme before setting out to find new pastures. Bruno is ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jimmy Bruno: Maplewood Avenue

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What is it about Philadelphia boxers and musicians? And I'm not talking about Rocky Balboa, he's fictional, rather Joe Frazier and Bernard Hopkins. No one in their right mind would get in the ring with Sonny Liston. Same with musicians, some of the baddest players one could find in late night “cutting contests were Joe Venuti, Philly Joe Jones, Grover Washington Jr. and, while not born in Philly, both Dizzy Gillespie and John Coltrane can be claimed as sons.

Another Philly musician, Jimmy Bruno has ruled the city for the past twenty years, scorching guitar lines whenever and ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jennifer Leitham & Jimmy Bruno: Two For the Road

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Recorded in 1999, Two for the Road features two of the most effective string jazz artists on the planet. As they remind us here, Jennifer Leitham and Jimmy Bruno share a love for the powerful release of expression through music. The blues comes through it. And yet both demonstrate superior technical proficiency on their instruments.

The session begins with reminiscences of Mingus. Cool and comfortable, the duo interprets “Nostalgia in Times Square with a swinging texture that emphasizes its melody. Both artists converse over the tune's chord structure and stretch out individually with a driving demeanor. From walking ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jimmy Bruno: Solo

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A lot of musicians first learn their craft through the various method books produced by Mel Bay Publications. And so it is within reason to expect outstanding technique on the recordings recorded by Mel Bay Records.

Solo , guitarist Jimmy Bruno's first album for the fledgling label, doesn't disappoint on that score. It's a fiercely swung set of standards and originals featuring walking bass lines, sweep-picked arpeggios, and whole tone scales imaginatively deployed on solo guitar. There's even a rendition of John Coltrane's “Giant Steps." Bruno not only improvises melodically and soulfully over the tune's labyrinthine chord progression, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jimmy Bruno: Midnight Blue

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Guitarist Jimmy Bruno, known for his flawless bop guitar, spreads himself in many directions for his latest disc, a seventh for Concord records. The Philadelphia native's adventure on Midnight Blue takes him from modal jazz to jazz-funk and soul, in other words, a 21st century 'back to the future.'

This session, recorded with an all-Philly lineup, may ruffle the traditionalist a bit with Bruno's heavy nod towards the Mister magic days of Grover Washington Jr. and all its soulful spin-offs. But given the level of talent Bruno possesses, he maintains a high standard of musicianship throughout. Inspired by drummer Marc ...



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