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THE JAZZ LIFE

Yielding to Practice

Read "Yielding to Practice" reviewed by Peter Rubie

I was talking to a musician friend of mine the other day, asking her how her move from Brooklyn to Forrest Hills was going. She said, “I love it! I love the neighborhood and best of all, musically, I'm not running any more jam sessions at the moment, just doing gigs--and practicing! It's great." And practicing is a high for me as well. I miss it when I don't do it. I usually practice in the ...

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Mike Holober and the Gotham Jazz Orchestra: Hiding Out

Read "Hiding Out" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Mike Holober has been Hiding Out rather openly for the past ten years or so, waiting for the proper time to gather together his world-class Gotham Jazz Orchestra and record for the first time since 2009's widely acclaimed album Quake (Sunnyside), in which his picturesque compositions and arrangements were compared favorably to those of Duke Ellington and Gil Evans, to name only two. In the interim, Holober has hardly been sitting on his hands, serving time as director of New ...

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Lookout Farm: At Onkel Po's Carnegie Hall: Hamburg 1975

Read "At Onkel Po's Carnegie Hall: Hamburg 1975" reviewed by Chris May

Fasten your seat belt, please. Dave Liebman and Richie Beirach's club date with Lookout Farm barely lets up during an hour of ferocious jazz going on jazz-rock. It's in roughly the same bag as Miles Davis' post-Bitches Brew (CBS, 1970) electric albums, some of which had Liebman in the lineup. The tape lay in the vaults of German radio station NDR, for whom it was recorded for broadcast in 1975, until its rediscovery by Jazzline Records. It forms part of ...

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Petros Klampanis: Irrationalities

Read "Irrationalities" reviewed by Mark Corroto

You'd expect a strong pulse on Irrationalities by bassist Petros Klampanis. What comes as a beautiful surprise is the diversified approach he utilizes in his compositions and performance. Not that we don't hear a variety of approaches on he previous outings. Both Chroma (Minos-EMI, 2017) and Minor Dispute (Inner Circle Music, 2015) concentrated on a chamber sound with string ensembles. Here Klampanis pares down his expression to the a simple trio. A piano trio maybe actually be the ultimate ...

RADIO

Gordon Grdina, Karl Berger & Jason Kao Hwang, Byron Asher & Colin Hinton

Read "Gordon Grdina, Karl Berger & Jason Kao Hwang, Byron Asher & Colin Hinton" reviewed by Maurice Hogue

Vancouver's Gordon Grdina is masterfully adept at guitar and oud, so that flexibility leads to many possibilities for playing opportunities, from jazz and improv settings to his world music group, Haram. This episode finds Grdina opening things up with music from two very recent recordings: Skin and Bones (with Matthew Shipp and Mark Helias) and Cooper's Park with his Quartet (Russ Lossing, Satoshi Takeishi and Oscar Noriega). You'll also hear some state-of-the-art improvisation from violinist Jason Kao Hwang and pianist/vibraphonist ...

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Hendrik Meurkens: Cobb's Pocket

Read "Cobb's Pocket" reviewed by Nicholas F. Mondello

It may be posited that what Louis Armstrong was to the trumpet, Toots Thielemans was to the mouthorgan. With Thielemans now blowing in the Upper Room, the field is open to aspiring and worthy replacements. Hendrik Meurkens fits that bill appropriately and is a leading contender, for sure. Like his aforementioned hero, Meurkens is not only a superior harmonica player, he is, like Thielemans, a multi-instrument-playing musician. Cobb's Pocket, a very fine effort, has Meurkens fronting a ...

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Boléro, Blue Danube & Valkyries At The Jazz Corner

Read "Boléro, Blue Danube & Valkyries At The Jazz Corner" reviewed by Martin McFie

Justin Varnes Orchestra The Jazz Corner Classical meets Jazz Hilton Head Island,SC October 20, 2019 As a precursor to the two main pieces of music in this Sunday lunchtime program, the Justin Varnes Orchestra played the most famous waltz ever written, Johann Strauss' II “Blue Danube." The instantly recognized theme was so well-known it had kitsch value, the audience clapping along in time. There was that ironic, impish humor which Duke Ellington brought to ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Kenny Barron and Friends Celebrate Monk at SFJAZZ

Read "Kenny Barron and Friends Celebrate Monk at SFJAZZ" reviewed by Harry S. Pariser

Kenny Barron and Friends Celebrate Monk Herbst Theater SFJAZZ San Francisco, CA October 10, 2019 Seventy-six-year-old pianist Kenny Barron needs no introduction to avid jazz fans, having been a fixture on the scene for decades. He is known for his own work as well as his participation as co-founder of the Thelonious Monk tribute band Sphere which was active from 1982 to 1998 and had adopted the late pianist's middle name as its moniker. ...

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Hendrik Meurkens: Cobb's Pocket

Read "Cobb's Pocket" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Is there anything more satisfying than the simmer-and-swing sonics of an organ combo on the move? How about one fronted by one of jazz's premiere harmonic players and backed by one of the most distinguished drummers in the music's history? Following up their successful meeting on Harmonicus Rex (Self-Produced, 2016), Hendrik Meurkens and nonagenarian icon Jimmy Cobb join forces to deliver a beautiful set of music that alternately cooks, smolders and seduces. And with guitarist Peter Bernstein and organist Mike ...

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Darek Oleszkiewicz: Blues For Charlie

Read "Blues For Charlie" reviewed by Jim Worsley

The serious jazz musician or listener will tell you that to hear the music that prolific bassist Charlie Haden left us, is to be given a rare gift. Haden's extraordinary abilities first made an impact in the 1950s. Perhaps best known for his work with the Ornette Coleman Quartet, Haden's most influential mark was in the form of improvisation. He was a pioneer in pushing the bassist role beyond rudimentary rhythms and becoming an integral part of the band's conversation. ...

RADIO

Christine Tobin & Phil Robson - Partners in Time

Read "Christine Tobin & Phil Robson - Partners in Time" reviewed by Ludovico Granvassu

As one of the leading European vocalists, Christine Tobin has shown a versatility and depth that few other singers have. After moving to New York City in 2015 she has been involved in countless projects confirming her versatility and originality. She has found in long-time collaborator guitarist Phil Robson the perfect partner in time. This mixtape features highlights from their discographies, with a special focus on Christine Tobin's take on the poetry of William Butler Yeats and Paul Muldoon, new ...

RADIO

Bebop in 60s - Howard McGhee, Charles McPherson, Barry Harris, Sonny Stitt (1961 - 1971)

Read "Bebop in 60s - Howard McGhee, Charles McPherson, Barry Harris, Sonny Stitt (1961 - 1971)" reviewed by Russell Perry

Bebop was a revolutionary new music in the late 1930s, dominated jazz in the 1940s, and powerfully influenced all jazz that followed. By the 1960s it still had its adherents who were producing compelling music thirty years later. In this hour of Jazz at 100, we will hear bebop from trumpeter Howard McGhee, saxophonists Charles McPherson and Sonny Stitt, and pianist Barry Harris. Playlist Host Intro 0:00 Howard McGhee Quartet “Demon Chase" from Maggie's Back in Town (Contemporary) ...


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