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by Chris May
The violin has an eventful history in jazz. But it is still a niche instrument, despite a line of singular players stretching back to Stephane Grappelli and Stuff Smith (who deserves some bonus points for composing the immortal If You're A Viper"). There are no schools of jazz violinists, simply a succession of one-off stylists, with Grappelli, Smith, John Blake, Michael White, Leroy Jenkins, Regina Carter and Billy Bang prominent among them. There is also Ornette Coleman, but let's not ...read more