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

Ralph Peterson & the Messenger Legacy: Onward & Upward

Read "Onward & Upward" reviewed by Paul Rauch


Generally speaking, legacy bands are created to preserve the music of an artist. They feature innovative interpretations of an artist's compositions or past performances to share with future generations of listeners. In the case of drummer Ralph Peterson, his ambitious efforts to honor the continuum of his mentor Art Blakey are forward thinking, about a collective gathering of resources that stress creative thought and individuality. Just as the true legacy of the Jazz Messengers portends, contributors are charged with replenishing ...

4

Album Review

Ralph Peterson & The Messenger Legacy: Legacy Alive, Volume 6 at the Side Door

Read "Legacy Alive, Volume 6 at the Side Door" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic


Recorded loud and live at the Side Door Jazz Club in Old Lyme, CT, Ralph Peterson—the last drummer to play side-by-side with the incomparable Art Blakey—delivers an unstoppable two-disc hyperdrive swing-fest celebration of his mentor with Legacy Alive, Volume 6 at the Side Door. It's no deep state secret that Blakey, with his effortless and effusive glee, seamlessly bridged all of jazz's thrilling variants: '40's swing and blues; the nascent bop and hard bop of the '50s to ...

6

Album Review

Ralph Peterson: Triangular III

Read "Triangular III" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan


At the age of 53, Ralph Peterson has come full circle in terms of his role in modern jazz. Back in the '80s, he was considered a “young lion" when he debuted with hard bop collective Out of the Blue. These days, he can be considered an accomplished jazz elder, giving back generously to a new generation of up and comers as a dedicated educator. It is in this spirit that he has assembled a new piano trio group with ...

3

Album Review

Lainie Cooke: The Music is the Magic

Read "The Music is the Magic" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey


Lainie Cooke is a singer not afraid to take chances. Her third recording, The Music is the Magic, she populates her recital with near standards: songs that are familiar but not cliche. Supported by a reeds-led quartet anchored by drummer (and producer on this recording) Ralph Peterson, Lainie displays a command of vocal jazz that is impressive. “Lazy Afternoon" and “Sweet Pumpkin" are sung with a Sarah Vaughan angularity betraying a good deal of practice and talent. Abbey Lincoln's tightly ...

2

Album Review

Ralph Peterson: ALIVE at Firehouse12 Vol. 1 - The Unity Project

Read "ALIVE at Firehouse12  Vol. 1 - The Unity Project" reviewed by Steve Bryant


Drummer/composer/bandleader Ralph Peterson has got to be one of the hardest working men in jazz today. He seems to drop a new CD every few months, and the kicker is that the theme and product are markedly different than his previous efforts. In addition, he changes lineups like guys change socks. The band on ALIVE At Firehouse 12 Vol. 1--The Unity Project is not the same one on his previous outing, 2012's The Duality Perspective (Onyx). As a matter of ...

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Album Review

Ralph Peterson: The Duality Perspective

Read "The Duality Perspective" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky


Balance is often overlooked in music criticism, yet it's such an important aspect in music-making and life. Light doesn't exist without dark, bold only takes shape when placed next to bland and earthbound realities are only truly understood by those who also know how to take flight. Drummer/educator Ralph Peterson understands this better than most, and The Duality Perspective documents his balanced outlook for all to hear. This album is really two records in one, as Peterson ...

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Album Review

Ralph Peterson's Unity Project: Outer Reaches

Read "Outer Reaches" reviewed by John Kelman


To build the kind of staying power that keeps fans coming back for more, you've got to have consistency. In a jazz world where artists are expected to be self-reliant when it comes to promotion, dropping out for more than half a decade can have some serious implications. Emerging loudly as part of 1980s young lion supergroup Out of the Blue, drummer Ralph Peterson has since built a significant discography with his instrumentally intriguing Fo'Tet, last heard on Fo'Tet Augmented ...


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