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Jazz Articles about Jessica Williams

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Radio & Podcasts

A Wish For the New Year With New Releases by Fred Hersch & Esperanza Spalding, Remembering Artists Who Passed and More

Read "A Wish For the New Year With New Releases by Fred Hersch & Esperanza Spalding, Remembering Artists Who Passed and More" reviewed by Mary Foster Conklin


This first broadcast of the new year celebrates 2023 with new releases from Fred Hersch & Esperanza Spalding and a single from Carla Muller, plus Part I of some favorite recordings of 2022 and a nod to some of the artists that left the planet last year. Thanks for listening and please support the artists you hear by purchasing their music during this time of pandemic so they can continue to distract, comfort, provoke and inspire.Playlist Pete Malinverni ...

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Radio & Podcasts

JC Plays Pretty for You: Ballads, Blues, and Soulful Tunes

Read "JC Plays Pretty for You: Ballads, Blues, and Soulful Tunes" reviewed by David Brown


This week, The Jazz Continuum plays pretty for you. Ballads, blues, and soulful tunes from Vi Redd, Ben Webster, Joel Ross, Derek Bailey, Somi, Les McCann, and many more. Plus, a remembrance of pianist Jessica Williams. Playlist Joel Ross “Prayer" from The Parable of the Poet (Blue Note) 0:01:20 Randy Weston African Rhythms “Prayer Blues" from Kephera (Verve Records) 0:09:06 Vi Redd “If I Should Lose You" from Bird Call (United Artists Jazz) 0:16:19 Ben Webster “Time After ...

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Profile

Remembering Jessica Williams: Trailblazing Pianist/Composer

Read "Remembering Jessica Williams: Trailblazing Pianist/Composer" reviewed by Paul Rauch


The world of jazz lost a bright star on Saturday, March 12, 2022, when iconic pianist/composer Jessica Williams passed at her home in Yakima, Washington with her devoted husband Duncan at her side. She was 73 years old. Williams was born in Baltimore, MD in 1948, and began playing piano at age 4. Classically trained, she went on to study classical music and ear training with Richard Aitken and George Bellows at the Peabody Conservatory of Music. From ...

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Album Review

Jessica Williams: With Love

Read "With Love" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


Successful musicians play “the truth." If you want to hear some truth there are certain artists you can seek out. Thelonious Monk couldn't play anything but the truth, right from the beginning. Pianist Jessica Williams came upon the truth--a purer form of it, at least--after experiencing “the fix of Illness" that she has discussed on her website and in interviews. Her first “fix" came about via her struggle with hypothyroidism, and resulted in a string of gorgeous recordings on Origin ...

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Album Review

Jessica Williams: Songs of Earth

Read "Songs of Earth" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


Jessica Williams, with her last four CDs on Origin Records, is like a butterfly coming out of its cocoon. Earlier in her career, Williams--who once held the piano chair in drummer Philly Joe Jones band--wrapped her artistry in the Great American Song on Some Ballads Some Blues (Red and Blue, 1999), along with stellar tributes to departed star pianists Art Tatum and Thelonious Monk.Around the beginning of her teaming with Origin Records--in conjunction with the creation of her ...

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Album Review

Jessica Williams Trio: Freedom Trane

Read "Freedom Trane" reviewed by Jeff Winbush


It is no coincidence that pianist Jessica Williams draws inspiration and energy from saxophonist John Coltrane, another iconoclast whose dogged pursuit of his individalistic muse stood in defiance of trends, customs, critics, and marketplace concerns. Like Coltrane, Williams prides herself in being relentlessly faithful to her own standards of how to play and how to market her music. While that enables her to be a fiercely independent talent, it has also made her an underrated one.On her solo ...

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Extended Analysis

Jessica Williams: Freedom Trane

Read "Jessica Williams: Freedom Trane" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


Jessica WilliamsFreedom TraneOrigin Records2011 Jessica Williams, one of our top jazz pianists, has evolved since she tossed the record company expectations and jazz games out the window into the thorny rose bushes, and sought out her own way, and found it, via the establishment of her own record label, Blue & Red Records, and with the work she has done for Seattle's Origin Records. Songs for a New Century (Origin Records, ...


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