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Jazz Articles about Leon Foster Thomas

4
Album Review

Leon Foster Thomas: Calasanitus

Read "Calasanitus" reviewed by Chris May


Born in Trinidad and in 2023 based in London, steel-pan virtuoso Leon Foster Thomas surprised and delighted many in the jazz world with Metamorphosis (Ropeadope, 2016). It was his third album but the first to receive widespread distribution in the US and Europe. The disc proved the steel pan to be serious and sophisticated, sitting comfortably in a lineup of otherwise standard instrumentation, and an instrument that in the right hands can be as expressive as the vibraphone, its nearest ...

9
Album Review

Leon Foster Thomas: Metamorphosis

Read "Metamorphosis" reviewed by Dave Wayne


Throughout the history of jazz, what once seemed to be oddball instruments have inexorably become part of accepted sonic landscape, while others have fallen into disuse. It's hard to believe that the vibraphone, flute, and violin were once seen as un-swinging, non-jazz instruments, while the banjo and tuba were considered essential linchpins of the jazz sound. Some instruments--both the clarinet and the tuba leap to mind--have gone fully 180 degrees from hip to obsolete and back to hip again. Others ...

14
Album Review

Leon Foster Thomas: Metamorphosis

Read "Metamorphosis" reviewed by James Nadal


Being one of the newest percussion instruments on the planet, (circa 1939) the steel pan is actually on a similar timeline with the development of modern jazz. Taking into consideration strong African influences and a hybridization process, they appear to be a natural combination. Pan Master Leon Foster Thomas has taken the instrument most associated with his homeland of Trinidad, right into the heart of jazz composition and performance with Metamorphosis, in a bold rhythmic and melodic encounter.With ...

7
Album Review

Leon Foster Thomas: Brand New Mischief

Read "Brand New Mischief" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky


The sound of steel pans seems to surface at beaches and poolside bars more often than jazz clubs, but that doesn't mean that these sunny-sounding metal melody makers aren't welcome or cut out for the jazz life. Steel pan trailblazers, like Jaco Pastorius-associated Othello Molineaux and jazz-meets-world music giant Andy Narell, established a place for their instrument in the jazz world a long time ago and paved the way for new and emerging pan players from future generations to join ...


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