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Articles | Featured | Future

CATCHING UP WITH

Gordon Au: Untraditionally Mad About Trad

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Gordon Au draws upon a palette ranging from the traditional jazz of Louis Armstrong to the modern jazz of today. In New York, Gordon leads the Grand St. Stompers, a traditional jazz band called “a pillar of New York's hot jazz scene" by The New York Times, and appears with the Grammy-winning Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks, the Louis Armstrong Eternity Band at Birdland, Dandy Wellington, and others. He is in demand around the country as a soloist (International Trumpet ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Tim Stevens Double Trio: with whom you can be who you are

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Most jazz pianists with classical training in their backgrounds seem to feel the pull of of the strings: whether it be Bill Evans with his Bill Evans Trio With Symphony Orchestra Verve, 1965); Phineas Newborn, Jr. on While My Lady Sleeps (Bluebird/RCA, 1957); or, to bring it into the new millennium: Brad Mehldau's Highway Rider (Nonesuch, 2010); and Danny Green's Danny Green Trio Plus Strings (OA2 Records, 2018). Australian pianist Tim Stevens--best known perhaps for his work with ...

CATCHING UP WITH

Michael Feinstein: Errands and Rhythm Galore

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"If you could have dinner with anyone from history, who would you choose?" That's a game many of us played as we imagined chatting up apostles, prophets, and heroes from the past. With Michael Feinstein, it's not a game. He's done it. He, more than anyone else, is the jazz Boswell: observer and companion to the likes of George Shearing, Rosemary Clooney, Frank Sinatra, Andre Previn, Ira Gershwin, Johnny Green, and many more who wrote or interpreted great ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Irene Aranda, Johannes Nästesjö and Núria Andorrà: Inner Core

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A trio of adventurous Spanish improvisers, pianist Irene Aranda, bassist Johannes Nästesjö and percussionist Núria Andorrà channel forces of exploration, energy and elemental mystery on Inner Core, six inventive tracks that plumb their astonishing creative depths with a fervid curiosity. Fans of free improvisation may recognize these musicians through their mutual connections with pianist Agustí Fernández, currently one of the most highly-regarded performers in this genre. And like Fernández, Aranda has a penchant for delving into the insides ...

RADIO

From Newk To Tatum, Trane And Wayne

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We kick off this week with a question from singer Teri Roiger, answered by John Coltrane (on the newly discovered Both Directions at Once sessions with the classic quartet). This week we also begin our Sonny Rollins celebration with tracks by singer Babs Gonzales from 1949, when Newk was a mere 19-year-old. And have you ever heard Art Tatum's first recordings, backing singer Adelaide Hall? We will celebrate Wayne Shorter --who turned 85 last month --with a rare ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Devin Gray: Dirigo Rataplan II

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Dirigo Rataplan is a group led by drummer Devin Gray that contains three outstanding musicians with Baltimore ties, saxophonist Ellery Eskelin, trumpeter Dave Ballou and bassist Michael Formanek. They first recorded in 2012, and six years later they have released a followup CD, Dirigo Rataplan II, with a rambunctious inside-outside style that is based on strong melodies and rhythms but still allows plenty of room for fiery improvisation. Several of the tracks are built around heavy rumbling bass ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Cecile McLorin Salvant: The Window

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Cécile McLorin Salvant has one of the most powerful voices in jazz. Which doesn't make her always easy to listen to. Sometimes she instills new meaning to an old lyric, other times she tries too hard and goes over the top. Still, at least she tries. She comes from Miami, daughter of a Haitian father and a French mother. Aware of the power of her voice from an early age, she trained in classical music, but then ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Piano Trios: 3x3

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Immortal Onion Ocelot of Salvation Requiem Records 2017 This Polish trio seems out to confuse from the start. If you're pinning your metaphysical hopes on a jungle cat, your spiritual leanings probably lean toward ideas of oneness and harmony more than salvation from evil. Vegetables aren't exactly things we think of in terms of lifespans. And aren't onions poisonous to most animals anyway? Well, if the surface wackiness is appealing, the music offers ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Thelonious Monk: Mønk

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Summer 2018 has seen the release of previously unknown recordings by two giants of mid-twentieth century jazz. First we had John Coltrane's Both Directions At Once: The Lost Album (Impulse!), and now Thelonious Monk's live album Mønk. Both discs were made in 1963. The breathless hyperbole which greeted the Coltrane was unjustified, if predictable, but the album is nonetheless a valuable addition to the archive. The Monk is, quite simply, among the pianist's strongest quartet recordings. Mønk was ...

RADIO

A conversation with Majid

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Violinist Majid's new album, Sound of a Flower, has a solid jazz foundation, but draws heavily from soul, hip-hop, and classical music giving rise to an infectious sound that is uniquely Majid's. Majid is a classically trained violinist who has worked with a diverse range of household names in the music industry including hip-hop artist m: Mr Cheeks = 29956, actor and singer m: Keith David = 76824, and Jazz trumpeter m: Wynton Marsalis = 1914. Join me ...