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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Billy Taylor and Gerry Mulligan: Live at MCG

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The typical jazz listener easily tires of hearing standards covered by newer artists. However, it's occasionally good to hear the masters revisit some of these old compositions--a way of staying connected. Jazz legends Billy Taylor and Gerry Mulligan have done that with Live at MCG. The Manchester Craftsmen's Guild is a non-profit organization in Pittsburgh, USA whose mission is to preserve, present and promote jazz. In doing so, MCG brings in artists such as Taylor and Mulligan to entertain and ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Billy Taylor and Gerry Mulligan: Live at MCG

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Dr. Billy Taylor has spent so much of the latter part of his nearly sixty-year career in jazz as an educator and broadcaster that it's easy to forget what a brilliant pianist he is. This splendid 1993 date, billed as his first-ever performance with the late baritone sax legend Gerry Mulligan, should serve as a reminder of Taylor's often overlooked talents--as well as a valuable addition to Mulligan's legacy. The album features the two veterans, Taylor, then ...

LIVE REVIEWS

IAJE 2006: Three Legends Offer Insight Into Music

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The International Association for Jazz Education's annual conference January 11-14 offered ample opportunities to not only hear great music, but to hear the stories behind it from some true music masters.

Billy Taylor

I managed to catch interviews with Billy Taylor, Clark Terry and writer Dan Morgenstern, but missed out on a rare chance to hear Sonny Rollins because the hotel ballroom where he spoke was filled to capacity.

Dr. Taylor is “thinking about" writing an autobiography. Terry has written ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Billy Taylor: Taylor Made at the Kennedy Center

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Dr. Billy Taylor and friends begin this concert performance compilation with homage to early bebop as Terence Blanchard recalls the loose, pioneering spirit of Diz and Stanley Turrentine does his best to interpret Bird's spirit in his own way. Russell Malone and Stefon Harris broaden the scope, turning Taylor's idea into a thrilling jam session that presents Jazz at the Kennedy Center with open ears and smiling faces. Tradition has been served.

Performed and recorded between 1999 and ...

BOOK EXCERPTS

"Bebop" from Taylor Made Piano

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By Billy Taylor Chapter 9: Bebop Originally published in 1982, this book is an invaluable and popular resource for both music students and professional musicians alike. Billy Taylor conveys the history and development of America's classical music, jazz, through a unique perspective--that of practicing musician, jazz pianist and educator. This excerpt is taken from the chapter on Bebop.

Bebop was the next step in the evolution of Jazz. The most musically complex ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Billy Taylor: Taylor Made at the Kennedy Center

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A tribute to the retiring Dr. Billy Taylor, Taylor Made at the Kennedy Center documents the artist's performance career at the Kennedy Center and presents him in the context he loved best--on stage and sharing his love of jazz by not only performing his own music, but also bringing to the audience some of jazz's greatest contemporary voices.

Culled from several years' worth of live recordings at the Kennedy Center's Terrace Theater, the album presents nine tracks, each an original ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Final Notes: Dr. Billy Taylor Retires from Concert Performance

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Educator, ambassador, author, composer, and master pianist, Dr. Billy Taylor ended his concert career last Thursday night, concluding over sixty years as one of jazz's greatest emissaries with a rousing performance at the Kennedy Center's Terrace Theater by his trio and guest John Faddis. Billy Taylor's career has spanned the entirety of modern jazz, and his efforts have touched countless listeners and students, and helped to establish the careers of many of today's most notable voices. He ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Billy Taylor: A Comma - Not a Period

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The second and last set of pianist Billy Taylor's final public performances on March 31, 2005, was an emotional experience for many reasons. Although Taylor was born in North Carolina, Washington, DC was his home from the age of five, until he graduated Virginia State University. At the age of thirteen, Taylor played his first professional date at The Republic Gardens, a small club on the historic “U Street corridor of Washington, which contained many since closed venues (The Republic ...

JAZZ FROM THE VINYL JUNKYARD

Jazzy Soundtracks 3: Kwamina

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Billy Taylor Orchestra Jazzy Soundtracks 3: Kwamina Mercury 1962Continuing our look into soundtrack albums of a jazz nature, we depart this month from film scores to take a look at a jazz interpretation of music from a Broadway production. Opening in October of 1961 and running for a mere 32 performances, Kwamina takes place in West Africa in a British colony where a young woman doctor runs into trouble when she falls ...


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