Featured Stories

DRUMMER TO DRUMMER

Dave King: We do music, so we know music

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Ever the emphatic artist, drummer Dave King is most famous as a founding member of the contemporary trio The Bad Plus. Rooted in jazz, The Bad Plus has taken creative music to a new abstract height, examining reinterpretations of works by artists as diverse as Stravinsky, Nirvana and Tears for Fears. However, his re-definition of a performing musician's role has not been limited to TB+, his personal side projects, or even the drum set. In this article, we'll explore Dave's love of comedy, visual art, and the creative process behind his music. All About Jazz: The first time ...

CATCHING UP WITH

Ben Sidran: The First Existential Jazz Rapper

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Ben Sidran is an old school hipster in the authentic sense of the word. He's a no frills, musician's musician who's got the heart, got the chops. He's been there, done that, and ready to do more. Sidran has never been interested in following trends or squeezing into categories and is not about to start now. “In jazz, they want you to be yourself, but they only want you to be yourself in their category, and if you're not, it becomes your problem and not theirs. I'm a child of R & B and a child of rock 'n roll, ...

DVD/VIDEO/FILM REVIEWS

Whiplash

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Whiplash Directed by Damien Chazelle Sony Pictures Classics 2014 Whiplash is director Damien Chazelle's portrait of an aspiring jazz drummer who falls prey to an overbearing conservatory teacher. Although the film has attracted well-earned praise for its acting and editing, this review sets technical flourish aside and approaches Whiplash not as a film, per se, but as a failed musical exercise--a didactic riff, if you will, on the power of “greatness" and the suffering born of its realization. Andrew Neiman (Miles Teller) is the 19-year-old protagonist, whose single stroke roll opens the film's ...

INTERVIEWS

Kobie Watkins: A Drummer's Voyage

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jny: Chicago native Kobie Watkins is a leading voice in the new generation of jazz drummers. I saw Watkins several months ago at The Jazz Room in jny: Charlotte and his performance was bananas--the crowd was in awe and after each solo there was thundering applause. An absolute wonder to watch, his polyrhythmic creativity and concepts create unique musical art that has put him in the category of a young jazz master. For this reason, he has been sought after by the best in the industry. Watkins has toured with a number of jazz greats such as Sonny ...

Best of Mr. P.C. 2014

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Dear Mr. P.C.: Why is it that whenever I go to a jam session, the best players are the meanest? Does that mean that I have to become a jerk if I want to get good? --Still A Nice Guy Dear SANG: Sounds like you're buying into some very common but misguided notions of “best." Just what is it that you admire about these “jerks"? That they play comfortably and melodically at any tempo? Negotiate chord changes effortlessly? Phrase naturally at all dynamic levels? What you don't realize is that ...

BEST OF / YEAR END

The 2014 Desmond Award Winners

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Despite that serious expression you often see on a jazz musician's face, the truth is that laughter gets him through the day. The late, great pianist Horace Silver knew it. If you didn't see it in his impish smile, you could hear it in his music. Especially in his last studio album, which knowingly proclaimed Jazz Has A Sense of Humor (GRP, 1999). We've gotten to know lots of musicians over the years, and though we marvel at their exceptional skill and talent, we equally appreciate their humor. Ranging from outlandish, to dry, to prickly, to ...

WEBSITE NEWS

Giving Thanks & Sharing the Jazz Love!

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We're celebrating Thanksgiving by recognizing everyone who volunteered to help improve All About Jazz this past year. Your contributions were immeasurable and we thank you for your generosity, passion and friendship. The good people who support this website are as cool and as essential as the music itself. Thanks again! Since 1995 At All About Jazz and Jazz Near You, we celebrate jazz every day. We publish new content seven days a week, including articles, news announcements, downloads, photos, musician profiles, and we now host to the most active international jazz events calendar on the web. ...



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