Jazz Articles

Daily articles including interviews, profiles, live reviews, film reviews and more... all carefully curated by the All About Jazz staff. You can find more articles by searching our website, see what's trending on our popular articles page or read articles ahead of their published dates on our future articles page.

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Album Review

UMO Jazz Orchestra with Michael Brecker: Live in Helsinki 1995

Read "Live in Helsinki 1995" reviewed by Jack Bowers


If your fondness for big-band jazz includes searching for hidden treasures, here's a recently uncovered gem that should more than gladden your spirit: a concert recording from 1995 by Finland's superb UMO Jazz Orchestra featuring the renowned tenor saxophonist Michael Brecker who left us far too soon a dozen years later at age fifty-seven. The impeccably preserved performance at Helsinki's Royal Cotton Club finds Brecker in his customarily assertive mode, sprinting through ten engaging compositions that run the gamut from ...

11

Album Review

Roseanna Vitro: Clarity: Music of Clare Fischer

Read "Clarity: Music of Clare Fischer" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey


Roseanna Vitro is a “singer's singer." What does that mean? It means she is so excellent and still warranting much more attention. Her deep and precise alto is perfectly tuned and balanced. Her phrasing is textbook. This is what a jazz singer sounds like. But Vitro's skill set does not stop at vocal prowess. She is also a crack arranger, programmer and music journalist. That is a wealth of grace and talent from Hot Springs, Arkansas. Vitro's ...

6

Album Review

Tony Adamo: Miles of Blu

Read "Miles of Blu" reviewed by Nicholas F. Mondello


Long before rappers and scratchers, resurrected Mummies, and Lord Buckley's hipsters and flipsters, the ancient Greeks had a name for “cats" like Tony Adamo--rhapsode. The homonym notwithstanding, a rhapsode was a speak-singer--who plucked his lyre and “spung" (spoke-sung) expressive tales of towering, powerful Gods and the tribulations of mortals below them. Pan pipes and percussion types might have accompanied a rhapsode (perhaps doing an early Greek version of James Brown's “Famous Flames" or Adamo's hip crew here?).With Miles ...

4

Album Review

Jeff Berlin: Low Standards

Read "Low Standards" reviewed by Glenn Astarita


Indeed, bassist and educator Jeff Berlin is a modern era pioneer amid accolades that have piled high, spanning several decades via his astounding technique and contributions to progressive-rock, jazz fusion and modern mainstream jazz. Following up his jazz trio outing High Standards (2010, M.A.J. Records) also featuring bassist, pianist Richard Drexler, the core differentiator on Low Standards is that renowned drummer Mike Clark takes over the drum chair from Danny Gottlieb. Yet Berlin's game-plan is similar as Drexler uses the ...

5

Album Review

Michael Wolff & Mike Clark: Wolff & Clark Expedition

Read "Wolff & Clark Expedition" reviewed by Glenn Astarita


This jazz piano trio date by world-class musicians is all about the groove. Drummer Mike Clark, revered for his slippery jazz-funk beats, hearkening back to this tenure with Herbie Hancock's Headhunters, is touted as one of the most sampled drummers of the digital age. However, he is first and foremost a jazz drummer, as his resume includes stints with a list of greats too lengthy in scope to cite here. Teaming with fellow jazz giant pianist, Michael Wolff and first-call ...

45

Album Review

Bria Skonberg: So is the Day

Read "So is the Day" reviewed by Nicholas F. Mondello


It's a rare talent that can straddle--and dare request membership in--the trumpet artist continuum emanating from Louis Armstrong and progressing down through his “Neo Orleans" progeny: Byron Stripling, Wynton Marsalis and Nicholas Payton (whose big band trumpet section Skonberg graces). However, with her bravura performance on So is the Day, Bria Skonberg confirms that she is not only indeed a triple threat musician--player, vocalist and composer--but also that that esteemed lineage, consummate entertainers all, would heartily approve her membership.

83

Album Review

Randy Johnston: People Music

Read "People Music" reviewed by Nicholas F. Mondello


Perhaps more than any other musical instrument, the guitarists of today come drenched in the music of highly diverse musical genres. The instrument has been a fulcrum of expression, from folk, country and blues to jazz and rock--with a smidgen of classical thrown into the mix as well. Thinking about it, the task of developing as a guitarist has got to be daunting, with all of those musical bases to cover. With People Music, celebrated guitarist Randy ...


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