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Jazz Articles about Dorothy Ashby

Radio & Podcasts

String Along with Dorothy!

Read "String Along with Dorothy!" reviewed by Patrick Burnette


A music with as complicated and rich a history as jazz is always going to be subject to rediscoveries and reappraisals and we wouldn't want it any other way. This fortnight's episode focuses on a pioneering practitioner on that truly rare avis, the jazz harp. Yes, we're diving into the early work of Dorothy Ashby in honor of a new box set celebrating her first six albums. So throw aside those conceptions of cartoon animals going to heaven and bourgeoisie ...

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Album Review

Dorothy Ashby: With Strings Attached, 1957-1965

Read "With Strings Attached, 1957-1965" reviewed by John Chacona


Imagine if Sidney Bechet, Charlie Christian and Jimmy Smith were barely remembered and recordings of their music were long unavailable and known only on the geekiest corners of Discogs. That is essentially the status of harpist Dorothy Ashby. Like the three figures cited above, Ashby essentially created a language for her chosen instrument, the harp, where virtually none has existed before and established it as a legitimate and expressive vehicle for jazz improvisation at the highest level. Just how brilliantly ...

Profile

Dorothy Ashby: With Strings Attached, 1957-1965

Read "Dorothy Ashby: With Strings Attached, 1957-1965" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi


Questo lussuoso cofanetto di sei LP in edizione limitata dedicato all'arpista Dorothy Ashby è un importante contributo che colma l'attuale vuoto di registrazioni e rende giustizia a un'artista tanto importante quanto dimenticata. Non troverete il suo nome sulle massime storie ed enciclopedie del jazz, e la sua morte prematura dell'aprile 1986 (aveva 55 anni) fu data con mesi di ritardo in trafiletti di poche righe. Anche grazie al successo di giovani arpiste come Brandee Younger, oggi la ...

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Radio & Podcasts

These Leos Are Jazz Lions

Read "These Leos Are Jazz Lions" reviewed by Mary Foster Conklin


Some heavyweight birthdays in this mid-August broadcast, which included new releases from saxophonist Ben Flocks, songwriter Mark Winkler and guitarist Paul Silbergleit with celebratory shout outs to songwriter Bernice Petkere, Benny Carter and organist Trudy Pitts in the first hour, Roberta Piket, Jeri Southern, Howard Johnson and Regina Carter in the second hour, Abbey Lincoln in the third hour and Dorothy Ashby for the final hour. Playlist Zoot Sims with Bob Brookmeyer “Lullaby of the Leaves" from Morning ...

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The Jazz Session

Unsung Heroes of Jazz Harp

Read "Unsung Heroes of Jazz Harp" reviewed by Dirk Sutro


Listen Saxophones and trumpets are familiar stars of modern jazz, but a few brave souls have utilized unlikely instruments such as accordion (Renzo Ruggieri), bagpipes (Rufus Harley), and bandoneon (Astor Piazzola), as well as the ethereal harp of Dorothy Ashby. In the 1950s, Ashby proved that this classical instrument could also swing. She wasn't the first jazz harpist, but she was the first to record as a leader, and to show how the harp, a relative of ...

244
Album Review

Dorothy Ashby: Afro-Harping

Read "Afro-Harping" reviewed by Joshua Weiner


Cue up “Soul Vibrations,” the first track on Verve’s reissue of Dorothy Ashby’s Afro Harping, and revel: a one-note syncopated bass line over a slamming drumbeat that you’re sure you’ve heard sampled somewhere. Enter the double-tracked theremins, followed by swoopy strings. Next, over the relentless beat, an echo-plexed harp solo by Ashby, during which the strings return with 16-notes; then the theremins run the groove into a fade-out. And there you have it: 3’15’’ of pure aural time capsule in ...


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