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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Dr. John: Ske-Dat-De-Dat The Spirit of Satch

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New Orleans piano man Dr. John needs little introduction--his work as a groundbreaking genre-bending musician crosses multiple musical borders. Multiple collaborations with various artists throughout a long career have given him a well-deserved reputation that earned him a place in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame--even though he is a New Orleans boogie man at heart. His amazing tribute to the music of fellow Louisiana son Louis Armstrong features musicians from various backgrounds. The disc begins with a zydeco take on the classic “What a Wonderful World," presented miles away from Satchmo's classic ballad. The tune features ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Michael J McEvoy: The Long Way Home

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Michael J McEvoy is something of a musical chameleon--a composer, instrumentalist and producer who's played a crucial role in many musical projects without grabbing the limelight. He's composed film soundtracks (including 2008's Me And Orson Welles), and worked as musician or producer with an extensive array of artists including Ian Dury, Sting, Scritti Politti, the Bee Gees and Steve Winwood. On The Long Way Home McEvoy comes back to jazz (the “home" of the album title), with eight stylish and memorable self-penned tunes. The Long Way Home was recorded live over two sessions in May 2013, with the ...

CATCHING UP WITH

Stanton Moore Goes Indie

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Drummer Stanton Moore is one of the prodigal sons of jny: New Orleans. His fans know him well from projects like Galactic, Garage a Trois and Dragon Smoke, which prodigiously fuse rock, jazz and funk. Moore, whose musical career spans nearly 25 years, is also an educator and has released several instructional books and DVDs. However, he had never recorded a jazz-only album. Before taking that step, he immersed himself in the jazz world, and played with jazz veterans James Singleton and David Torkanowsky for a couple of years. When he felt ready to record the ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Bonerama at the Governors Island Beach Club

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Bonerama Governers Island Beach Club NolaFunk's 1st Annual Crawfish & Music Fest Governors Island, NY June 27, 2014 Laissez Les Bon Temps Rouler! Those who speak French know what the phrase means. If you have ever been to jny: New Orleans, you've “lived" this phrase. If you've had the pleasure of seeing Bonerama in concert you can't help but scream the phrase at the top of your lungs. French or English. Either way, Let The Good Times Roll!. Bonerama is a band. Yes it is, but that description is somewhat lacking. Bonerama ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Marcus Miller and Mustapha Baqbou at Essaouira Festival 2014

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Marcus Miller and Mustapha Baqbou Place Moulay El Hassan Essaouira Festival Essaouira, Morocco June 14, 2014 On Saturday a rebirth was being prepared at Essaouira Festival. The most awaited artist of the festival, bassist/composer Marcus Miller was going to play with accomplished gnaoua vocalist and guembri player, Mustapha Baqbou. At the conference room, and on his birthday, Miller confessed that he felt not the least uncomfortable about this fusion. To this end, he explained that the slap sound that he once thought very peculiar to the bass and his own ingenious style, he actually ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Herbie Hancock: Maiden Voyage

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Over the past forty-nine years there's been no shortage of ink spilled extolling the musical virtues of Herbie Hancock's 1965 recording, Maiden Voyage. Featuring the great trumpet of Freddie Hubbard and the bracing tenor of George Coleman, the record is as good as any effort turned in by Hancock during that period. It's a record every jazz fan should know. Unfortunately, Maiden Voyage also has a long-standing reputation for mediocre sound quality. In another review of an expensive vinyl re-release of this record I wrote, “There is nothing to be gained by a first-class analogue pressing of a ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Charlie Apicella & Iron City: Big Boss

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Thank god for groove music. In an era when needless complexity often dominates, it's nice to encounter a throwback record that's built on feel-good rhythms and soulful declarations. That's what Big Boss is all about. Sparks (Carlo, 2009) set things in motion for this band, as guitarist-leader Charlie Apicella planted his flag in soul jazz territory by delivering direct-and-honest originals and covering the music of organist Dr. Lonnie Smith, guitarist Grant Green, and saxophonist Lou Donaldson; The Business (Carlo, 2011), with another Green number ("Donny Brook") and a tip of the cap to slick saxophonist Stanley Turrentine ...

TAKE FIVE WITH...

Take Five With Jon O'Bergh

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Meet Jon O'Bergh: Jon Carl O'Bergh, known as the “Jedi Of Cool," has released nine albums, including his new smooth jazz/funk/fusion album Skin Deep (Pearl Jazz, 2014). Skin Deep marks O'Bergh's first solo jazz album on the Pearl Jazz recording label. O'Bergh's first release, Millenial Landscapes (Self Produced, 2000) reached no. 2 on the NAV Chart, where his follow-up release Carta (Timescape, 2000) reached no. 1, and his fourth album, Meditations From a Lost World (Timescape, 2002) peaked at no. 3. OBergh along with his band Gemini Soul, reached no. 37 on Amazon.com's “Bestselling Hot New & Future Music ...

BAILEY'S BUNDLES

Trio Logic: Phishbacher, Dominic J Marshall, Bob Henschen Trios

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The traditional jazz piano trio (piano, double bass and drums) remains a robust and productive format for jazz performance and interpretation. Here are three examples supporting this. Phishbacher Trio Dreamcatcher Jazz Sick Records 2014 Pianist and composer Walter Fischbacher with his wife, singer/composer Elisabeth Lohninger manage their Lofish Recording Studio in New York City when not pursuing each other's well- received recording careers. Fischbacher and his trio have enjoyed a productive new millennium, releasing their sixth recording, Dreamcatcher. Fischbacher eschews electronics in favor of piano trio for interpretations of ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Quentin Moore: You Forgot Your Heart

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Continuing the pattern of his self-produced debut Vintage Love (2009) and Quentinized (Mixtape) (2011), Quentin Moore wrote, sang most vocals, played most instruments, and recorded and produced You Forgot Your Heart himself, from the heart. “With this project, I wanted to offer something organic to listeners, while maintaining that core soul sound," Moore suggests. “I like to say my style is vintage soul, with a contemporary feel." You Forgot Your Heart honors and advances the vocal soul music traditions of Sam Cooke and Curtis Mayfield, of Stax and Motown Records. The smooth background vocal and shuffling beat gently ...

LIVE REVIEWS

John Daversa Small Band at the CAP

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John Daversa Small Band CAP Studio Sherman Oaks, CA January 22, 2014 Fans of John Daversa's music range in age from young people still in school to people who have been avid fans of jazz music for decades. Seeing the wide variety of people in the room was testament to how appealing Daversa's composing is, and the happy, excited chatter in the room was evidence of just how good this band is. The John Daversa Small Band's show was part of Jazz at the CAP, a weekly performance series at ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Scott Sawyer: Dreamers

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With a warm and inviting sound, guitarist Scott Sawyer offers an intriguing and engaging collection of songs in Dreamers, his latest release on Doll Records. Sawyer's style of playing is complex yet tastefully restrained and nuanced, reminiscent of guitar legends Jim Hall and Wes Montgomery. By doing so, he allows the song itself to shine as an artistic work, rather than using the song merely as a vehicle to display his prowess on the guitar. On Dreamers, Sawyer and his eclectic mix of side musicians explore genres beyond jazz with a collection of originals and covers (including songs ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Trombone Shorty: Say That to Say This

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For his third Verve album, Troy Andrews, a/k/a Trombone Shorty, and his band Orleans Avenue go back to school--more precisely, back to the slippery yet organic “old school" sound of R&B, soul and funk, thanks to contributions from composer, instrumentalist and co-producer Raphael Saadiq, formerly of the soul vocal group Tony!Toni!Toné! How does Shorty describe his new album? “Really funky, like James Brown mixed with The Meters and Neville Brothers, with what I do on top; and we have a bit of R&B from Raphael's side. All the guys in my band are big, big fans of his, so this ...

INTERVIEWS

Billy Kilson: Nasty Pitch

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Here's the wind up. And the pitch. Whoa, did you see that one folks? That pitch was just nasty. In baseball, occasionally a ball gets thrown by the pitcher that is so good, so perfectly placed, so unbelievable, the announcer calls it nasty. The opposing batter doesn't have much chance of hitting it, but can only look back at the mound and tip his hat with respect. Occasionally, the same thing occurs in music. Atop a musical mound, there sits a drummer who is so good, so in tune with his instrument, so in the moment, ...



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