Articles by Rob Garratt

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Live Review

Joyce Cheung, Daniel Chu, Bowen Li and Patrick Lui at Youth Square

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Joyce Cheung, Daniel Chu, Bowen Li and Patrick Lui Y Theatre, Youth Square Jazz World Live Series: Our Jazz Pianists Chai Wan, Hong Kong July 4, 2021 There was a proud sense of ownership evident in dubbing this event Our Jazz Pianists. Hong Kong's Jazz World Live Series has brought legions of international legends to the city over the past eight years: from Herbie Hancock and Chick Corea to Marcus ...

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Live Review

Patrick Lui Jazz Orchestra at Hong Kong City Hall

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Patrick Lui Jazz Orchestra Hong Kong City Hall French May June 17, 2021 Yes, that date above is correct--and if the world's ongoing global nightmare has offered any relief to musicians of late, it might be the fresh appreciation afforded often overlooked players in their own communities. Nightlife and concert venues may be tentatively reopening, but while travel and quarantine restrictions remain, who else is going to play them? The spotlights are ...

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Interview

Gary Bartz At 80: On Jazz Is Dead, Miles Davis And Why Improvisation Is A Dirty Word

Read "Gary Bartz At 80: On Jazz Is Dead, Miles Davis And Why Improvisation Is A Dirty Word" reviewed by Rob Garratt


It's hard to talk to Gary Bartz about music. Not because he's a difficult or reluctant interviewee—quite the opposite. In fact, the 80-year-old saxophonist is refreshingly unguarded and garrulous when looking back over his formidable six-decade musical career. It's just finding the right words that's the tricky part. Like many musicians, jazz isn't one of them he's a fan of—for the word's pejorative roots as much as its genre pigeonholing. Which is why, as a quick-fast rule, it ...

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Album Review

Kari Ikonen: Impressions, Improvisations and Compositions

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Twentieth century artists were often known to power their creative process with a jazz soundtrack—Jackson Pollack's frenzied brushstrokes supposedly sparked by bebop horn spurts—while further back loftily enlightened Romantic composers often hoped to distill the essence of other mediums in their work—perhaps most famously with Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition. Jazz musicians taking sonic inspiration from the fruit of visual art may not be entirely uncommon, but for Kari Ikonen it's painterly methods, not products, which ...

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Record Label Profile

Analog Africa: digging deeper into forgotten corners of global groove

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For casual but curious collectors of eclectic sounds and global grooves, Analog Africa might be the Holy Grail. Since being founded in Germany by Samy Ben Redjeb in 2006, the Tunisian crate digger's deeply personal and highly idiosyncratic imprint has birthed a steady stream of 40 peerless releases and counting—carefully curated collections of rare and obscure analogue-era recordings which invariably act as thrilling sonic transporters, touristic time capsules and irresistible dance-floor fillers. The story begins in 2000 when ...

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Interview

Takuya Kuroda: Fly Moon Die Soon's Delicious Future-Funk Throwback

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Last time All About Jazz spoke to Takuya Kuroda, just days after the release of his smoky, neo-soul-styled breakthrough Rising Sun (Blue Note, 2014), the Japanese trumpeter was asked what he wanted to record next. “I see myself doing more of a straight-ahead thing," he said at time. “I might do an album with strings." Kuroda guffaws heavily when reminded of expressing this sentiment. After all, Rising Sun was instead followed by the thick funk/fusion workout of Zigzagger ...

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Interview

Kendrick Scott: Making Walls into Bridges

Read "Kendrick Scott: Making Walls into Bridges" reviewed by Rob Garratt


Kendrick Scott authored one of the most compelling jazz releases of last year with A Wall Becomes a Bridge (Blue Note, 2019), a nuanced meditation on identity, history and prejudice, shepherded under the direction of producer and former band mate Derrick Hodge. Pairing gorgeous, searching improvisatory canvases with break beat interludes and samples from guest DJ Sundance, it's a record that feels unmistakably engaged in its moment, and marks the culmination of Scott's work with his quintet Oracle, unmistakably colored ...


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