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Jazz Articles

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Myra Melford + Ben Goldberg: Dialogue

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In their first duo release Dialogue avant-garde jazz pianist Myra Melford and clarinetist Ben Goldberg's two instruments move in tandem yet independently, complimenting one another while exhibiting distinct qualities. At the forefront of open-minded music, the two have worked together in other ensembles yet performed sporadically as a duo since 2008. A 2013 Guggenheim Fellow, Melford is a fearless improviser and bandleader of several groups with exceptional recordings The Whole Tree Gone (Firehouse 12, 2010) and Snowy Egret(Yellobird,2015). A consummate ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Myra Melford: Snowy Egret

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Restlessly innovative pianist and composer Myra Melford brings her exploratory approach and her adventurous melodic sense to her 2015 release Snowy Egret with her new ensemble of the same name. The inspiration for this intriguing album is Uruguayan author Eduardo Galleano's Memory of Fire trilogy. Originally part of a multimedia performance called the “Language of Dreams" the music, full of provocative harmonic ideas and a cinematic ambience, plays as a soundtrack of an art film.The haunting and wistful ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Myra Melford: Snowy Egret

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Based on her multidimensional jazz schematics amid associations with like-minded artists nestled in the modern wave of jazz composers and improvisers, you wouldn't expect pianist, Myra Melford to compose works based on evening strolls in the park or mundane issues, for example. With her top-flight ensemble, Melford frames this plot on Eduardo Galeano's lucid and poetic Memory of Fire trilogy, concerning historical facets of the Western Hemisphere. And as surmised, the pianist consummates a broad perspective with these incandescent tomes, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Alister Spence and Myra Melford: Everything Here Is Possible

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This exceptional piano duo featuring American Myra Melford and Sydney-based Australian Alister Spence, known for his local trio and an acclaimed duo with Scottish saxophonist Raymond MacDonald ; (Stepping Behind The Shadows, Rufus, 2012), was recorded during late 2012 while Melford toured Australia with her Trio M. The pianist/composers got to know each other through a mutual friend, Japanese pianist Satoko Fujii, who recorded a duo with Melford, Under The Water, Libra, 2009). This aptly-titled session ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Myra Melford: Life Carries Me This Way

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All great artists turn their listeners into voyeurs, allowing them an intimate glimpse into their private thoughts. For pianist Myra Melford the invitation has been a long time coming. After twenty-plus years of recording, Life Carries Me This Way is her first solo session. She has drawn praise for her recent work in the collaborative Trio M with Matt Wilson and Mark Dresser, her quintet Snowy Egret, the electric-acoustic Be Bread, and a duo project Dialogue with Ben ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Myra Melford: Life Carries Me This Way

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Pianist Myra Melford's first solo disc, Life Carries Me This Way, is a musical exploration the paintings of California visual artist Don Reich. Rendering a painting--an art form that can be taken in at once, with one look--and addressing its moods, colors, shapes and textures over the course of a composition is not a easy task. Though in jazz, it's certainly not unheard of. The connection between abstract art and the improvisation-based music goes back at least to pianist Dave ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Myra Melford's Language of Dreams at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts

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Myra Melford's Snowy Egret Yerba Buena Center for the Arts San Francisco, CA November 8, 2013 Within the intimate confines of the YBCA Forum in the heart of San Francisco's museum district, a gray, out- of-focus video screened a country road. On one platform set directly under the screen, piano, drums, two chairs and two stools were set up in a row, awaiting the arrival of the musicians. A stage directly below held a large, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Myra Melford's Be Bread: The Whole Tree Gone

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Pianist Myra Melford founded this ensemble in 2002, specifically as an outlet for her compositions. She's blessed indeed, because this line up realizes them so beautifully. Her work can be described as pervasively contemplative though never quiet, which in its way is every bit as distinctive as the late Andrew Hill's depth of compositional character.

Melford's not afraid to cover bases either. Her solo free exposition into “Moon Bird" is the work of a pianist secure in her ...


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