DVD/Video/Film Reviews

DVD/VIDEO/FILM REVIEWS

Low Down

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Low Down Directed by Jeff Preiss Screenplay by Amy Albany and Topper Lilien Oscilliscope Laboratories 2014 Low Down is an independent film that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January, 2014. It relates to the life of the late Joe Albany, a well accomplished if lesser known swing and bebop jazz pianist during the 1940s through 1980s. Albany performed with the likes of Lester Young, Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, and Charles Mingus with intermittent periods of descent into heroin addiction. Several decades later, based on the memoirs of Albany's now ...

DVD/VIDEO/FILM REVIEWS

Fred Hersch: My Coma Dreams

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My Coma Dreams Music composed by Fred Hersch Conceived, Written, and Directed by Herschel Garfein Palmetto Records 2014 If you were a composer, would you write a piece of music based on your experience of being unconscious for 40 days in a medically-induced coma? The answer is probably “No!" You'd want to forget the whole ordeal--unless you're a pioneering pianist and composer who is always expanding his reach and someone who for whom bouts of illness are familiar, i.e. a long term survivor of AIDS. That is, unless you're ...

DVD/VIDEO/FILM REVIEWS

Clark Terry: Keep On Keepin' On

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Clark Terry Keep On Keepin' On RADiUS-TWC 2014 Produced by Quincy Jones and Paula Dupre' Pesmen with first time filmmaker Al Hicks the multiple award winning documentary Keep On Keepin' On brings an intimate view into the extraordinary friendship between trumpet great Clark Terry and aspiring young pianist Justin Kauflin. The film begins with what seems like a simple teacher/student session. But there's something different about the setting. Terry is almost bedridden, wearing a robe and oxygen mask and in declining health. Kauflin is blind. As the lesson concludes there's a shared gratitude between the ...

DVD/VIDEO/FILM REVIEWS

Elliott Sharp: Ostryepolya

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Elliott Sharp / Scott Fields Ostryepolya PanRec / NotTwo Records 2013 The musical meeting of innovative guitarists Elliott Sharp and Scott Fields came by coincidence. Both were aware of each other's work for many years, but the opportunity of playing as a duo never arose. Each is a master composer and improviser with extensive experience accumulated in various formats. Sharp pioneered the usage of fractal geometry, chaos theory, genetic metaphors and using software in his compositions. Fields, who, like Sharp, plays the soprano saxophone, was commissioned for orchestral compositions.

DVD/VIDEO/FILM REVIEWS

Charles Lloyd: Arrows Into Infinity

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Charles Lloyd Arrows Into Infinity ECM Records 2014 Undoubtedly deserving the title modern day saxophone titan Charles Lloyd has made one of the most important contributions to the art better known as contemporary or modern jazz. Widely recognized as one of the most timeless and significant musicians in the history of jazz, his melodic sensibilities, playing style and compositions have delighted listeners and have influenced generations of musicians. Easily one of the most influential tenor saxophonists, the sound of this venerable saxophonist is recognizable in a matter of seconds. Directed by ...

DVD/VIDEO/FILM REVIEWS

Brownie Speaks: A Video Documentary: The Life, Music, and Legacy of Clifford Brown

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Brownie Speaks: A Video Documentary: The Life, Music, and Legacy of Clifford Brown Glanden Productions 2014 This thoroughly researched and fascinating documentary about legendary jazz trumpeter Clifford Brown reveals the full scope of the man and his music through extensive interviews, recordings, photos, and both new and archival film and video footage. It is the result of the labor and devotion of Don Glanden, pianist and Division Head of Graduate Jazz Studies at The University of the Arts in jny: Philadelphia, who, with his son, Brad Glanden, a media expert, spent many years researching and ...

DVD/VIDEO/FILM REVIEWS

Charles Lloyd: Arrows Into Infinity

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Charles Lloyd Arrows Into Infinity ECM Records 2014 It's rare to have an opportunity to see a music film in both the theatre and the comfort of your own home, but a serendipitous invite to the 2013 Jazztopad Festival in Wrocław, Poland not only provided the chance to hear saxophonist Charles Lloyd premiering a new work, commissioned by the festival, with an entirely new group; it also presented, in a movie theatre, Arrows Into Infinity, a nearly two-hour look at Lloyd's life and career, directed by his longtime life partner, manager and co-producer Dorothy ...



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