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THE BIG QUESTION

How are you celebrating Jazz Appreciation Month or International Jazz Day?

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Jazz Appreciation Month (April) and International Jazz Day (April 30) represent opportunities to program special events and bring together communities to draw public attention to jazz and its extraordinary heritage. Your friends at All About Jazz celebrate jazz and the musicians who make the music every day of the year. In addition to providing daily coverage and distributing jazz events across the internet, we're also organizing a massive house concert effort to present jazz in homes around ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Charles Ruggiero: Boom Bang, Boom Bang!

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Though jazz drummer Charles Ruggiero has made many recordings as a sideman over the last twenty-five years, he makes his long-awaited debut with Boom Bang, Boom Bang!, paying a tribute of sorts to Herbie Hancock and Chick Corea, two of his favorite jazz artists. Growing up with the sounds of the flute and the Fender Rhodes, it was only natural that he decides to make his first recording effort using these voices and not make an album with a “drummy" ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Laura Dickinson: One for My Baby: To Frank Sinatra with Love

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Invoking the name Frank Sinatra, even in adulation, always presents a challenge, as Ol' Blue Eyes is considered by many aficionados to be the best-ever interpreter of American popular song. Singer Laura Dickinson writes that she “fell in love" with Sinatra as a teen-ager and resolved then to help keep his music and that of the Great American Songbook alive. One for My Baby thus represents Dickinson's admirable attempt to breathe new life into “a select few" of the many ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Oren Ambarchi: Live Knots

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"Knots" was originally a thirty-three minute track that was the centrepiece of Oren Ambarchi's album Audience of One (Touch, 2012). On the elaborate production, Ambarchi's own guitars, autoharp and percussion were joined by strings and French horn arranged by Eyvind Kang, plus drummer Joe Talia and vocalist Stephen Fandrich. Being full of drama and variety, the piece was an obvious choice for Ambarchi to take on the road, which he duly did in 2013. Now come the recordings that resulted ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Brandon Seabrook: Sylphid Vitalizers

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Guitarist Brandon Seabrook (Andrew Drury, Anthony Braxton) is justifiably garnering considerable press as a burgeoning firebrand who terrorizes or perhaps, atomizes the banjo and guitar with punk metal, free jazz and anarchistic rock proclivities. With his third solo release he conjures otherworldly and brain-bending propositions via an array of highly disciplined supercharged performances on banjo and guitar. He's also a frequent collaborator on the jazz improvisational front amid first-call session duties for new wave jazz productions that our largely outside-the-box. ...

BUILDING A JAZZ LIBRARY

Tony Bennett

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"Tony Bennett is the best singer in the business, the best exponent of a song," Frank Sinatra once said. “He's the singer who gets across what the composer has in mind, and probably a little more. There's a feeling in back of it." Tony Bennett began his career as a singing waiter in his Queens, NY neighborhood. He served in WWII as part of “the greatest generation" and returned home to his music. Two enduring career hallmarks--his inexhaustible ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Chris McNulty: Eternal

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Eternal is a work of love and loss, a celebration of life, and a poignant piece of artistic expression. Vocalist Chris McNulty crafted this album as a tribute to her son, Sam, who passed away in 2011. This album took shape in the days following Hurricane Sandy in 2012, as McNulty, with no electricity, heat, or running water, sat with her thoughts and selected songs that reflected the complex emotions that were running through her. In the ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Emily Saunders: Outsiders Insiders

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Four years on from her debut Cotton Skies London's Emily Saunders has taken near complete control on this wonderful follow up and artistic leap forward. While she also produced her debut, this time Saunders wrote and arranged all nine tracks, not needing to augment them with covers from the likes of Airto Moreira as she did on Cotton Skies. Admirable though this undoubtedly is in these times when myriad mediocrities feel the need to inflict their interpretations of ...



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