Recent Articles

BUILDING A JAZZ LIBRARY

Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans?

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This article was originally published in September 2005. Do you know what it means to miss New Orleans? The Big Easy. The Crescent City. N'awlins. Some adore it, some despise it. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans continues to be the testimonial travesty of the United States. With certain political officials claiming that jny: New Orleans is “not worth rebuilding, I would have to strongly object. Anyone who has ever enjoyed a beignet with ...

BUILDING A JAZZ LIBRARY

Jazz Trumpet, Part 1

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Jazz trumpet is practically an art form unto itself, with a richness in terms of its greatest soloists that is hard to match. Some have even argued for it being the “classiest," most sophisticated solo instrument in jazz. Moreover, it seems that in every period of jazz history, dominant voices on trumpet have leapt to the fore and made critical contributions to developing styles. Consider swing without Roy Eldridge, bebop without Diz, hard-bop without Lee Morgan, post-bop without ...

DVD/VIDEO/FILM REVIEWS

Jazz on Film: Caveat Emptor

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There are good documentaries about jazz. A person can see the films listed on this site and walk away without reaching for the gas pipe. But, as the furor around the film Whiplash (well, to jazz people it was furor) reminds us, it's wise to keep the bar low. When Hollywood does jazz, it should stick to hagiography and cheesy romance: The Benny Goodman Story, The Fabulous Dorseys, The Glenn Miller Story; these are really just the Lindbergh, Curie and Young ...

JAZZ PRIMER

How to Listen to Jazz

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All About Jazz readers are usually very hip to the joys and challenges of listening to this uniquely American and endlessly fascinating art form we call jazz. Aficionados of jazz like to talk about jazz, like to recommend jazz to others, and like to listen to how others listen to jazz. This is why strangers can so easily talk jazz. In that spirit, consider how to grow even bigger ears for the music. Obstacles may stand in ...

THE VINYL POST

Louis Armstrong & The All Stars: Complete Newport 1956 & 1958

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It's interesting how time seems to serve an artist when offering a better perspective of a particular time period or body of work. Such is the case with Louis Armstrong. Critics often cite his earliest recordings as the be all and end all, as if he had never recorded another note past 1950. In fact, Armstrong was still a few years away from his 60th birthday when he was captured on tape at Newport doing what he did best-interacting with ...

BOOK EXCERPTS

On Highway 61: Music, Race, and the Evolution of Cultural Freedom

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The following is an excerpt from the “Spirituals to Swing" chapter of On Highway 61: Music, Race, and the Evolution of Cultural Freedom by Dennis McNally (Counterpoint Press, Berkeley, 2014). Danny Barker, who in the 1930s was Cab Calloway's guitarist, told a particularly revealing story of working at the Nest Club, a Harlem after-hours joint. Business would be dead when the doorman buzzed three loud rings to indicate that they had prospects coming. The band would strike ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Glen David Andrews at the Rockwood Music Hall

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Glen David Andrews with special guest Henry Butler Rockwood Music Hall New York, NY June 18, 2014 Glen David Andrews is a showman--pure and simple. He thrives in the spotlight. Shine a spotlight on the man and he comes alive. He is a force of nature, and one to be reckoned with. He has been described as over-the-top. In many ways that's an understatement. He is over-the-top. He is pure energy. He has charisma. He ...

THE CLUB CAR

All Smiles on Hilton Head Island

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Fly, drive, bike or walk, if you can, to The Jazz Corner on Hilton Head Island in South Carolina. But make reservations first or you may be going home early. This intimate jazz and blues club is booked solid every night weeks in advance, and I do mean every night. So it's been for 15 years, an incredible feat by owners Bob and Lois Masteller. The club, with its well-planned sound system and sightlines for all 100 seats, was named ...



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