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Jazz Articles | Blog

PHILOSOPHISTICATED LADY

What would Plato have thought about jazz music?

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"The safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato." (Alfred North Whitehead, Process and Reality, p. 39 [Free Press, 1979]) Have you ever wondered what one of the most celebrated philosophers of Ancient History might have thought about jazz music if he had lived to witness its development? There are several fragments of Plato's writings that may point us in the direction of finding out.

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Orrin Evans: #knowingishalfthebattle

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Since the 1990s Philadelphia-based pianist Orrin Evans has carved out a revered career as a band leader, producer, composer, and first and foremost, one helluva jazz pianist. Recorded live at New York's Sear Sound's Studio, #knowingishalfthebattle is his third release on Smoke Sessions with an all-star lineup that includes two other well-known Philly natives, guitarists Kevin Eubanks and Kurt Rosenwinkel. Energy runs through the session through the virtuosic performances of the three headliners as well as the ...

MY BLUE NOTE OBSESSION

Lee Morgan: The Sidewinder – 1964

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What's left to say about Lee Morgan's most popular album, The Sidewinder? How about this: It is one FUN record. That's capital F, capital U, capital N. Anything wrong with that? Sometimes it feels like all the fun has gone out of jazz. As if nothing can be Good unless it is Serious. As if muted Miles and spiritual Trane are the ultimate barometers of true jazz respectability. Hey, I love Miles and Trane and all ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

John O'Gallagher Trio: Live In Brooklyn

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Over the past 25 years, altoist and New York resident, John O'Gallagher has worked with the likes of Joe Henderson, Maria Schneider, Kenny Wheeler, Billy Hart and Chris Cheek amongst many others. German born but long-time New Yorker bassist Johannes Weidenmueller has played with the Hank Jones trio, the John Abercrombie quartet, Joe Lovano and many others. Born in California, in-demand drummer Mark Ferber has worked with Lee Konitz, Don Byron, Fred Hersch, Norah Jones and Steve Swallow to name ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jeff "Siege" Siegel Quartet: King Of Xhosa

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It is appropriate that the opening track on King Of Xhosa, is a hand drum invocation and an introduction in the Xhosa language of South Africa, as that is exactly where the origins and influences of this music came from. Drummer Jeff “Siege" Siegel and his quartet are augmented on this recording by Feya Faku, a South African native, on trumpet and flugelhorn, and the one who sets the character of the music. Siegel, an accomplished drummer, leader, ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Yelena Eckemoff: Blooming Tall Phlox

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You can look up the phlox flower online: there are 67 species, many of them fragrant. But none of the photographs or botanical classifications will tell you how it smells. For that we have pianist/composer Yelena Eckemoff's musical impressions here, along with a range of other smells recalled from her Russian childhood. When Eckemoff visited Finland and saw how much it reminded her of Russia she decided it was the best place to record an album about her Russian aroma ...

LIVE REVIEWS

ECM Showcase at NYC Winter Jazzfest 2017

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(Photo credit: Glen DiCrocco) ECM Showcase at NYC Winter Jazzfest 2017 Tishman Auditorium, The New School New York City January 7, 2017 Music has been a comfort in troubling times ever since there were humans to bring about troubles to begin with. Rare, however, is that music which seeks not only to placate but also demonstrate. The world of ECM Records, insofar as it has come to be defined through nearly ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Nick Finzer: Hear & Now

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New York-based trombonist Nick Finzer has benefited from mentorships under trombone masters Wycliffe Gordon and Steve Turre; but his third CD release, Hear And Now also brings the original trombones master, J.J. Johnson to mind. One of Johnson's last CDs, the minor masterpiece, Heroes (Verve Records, 1995), featured a sextet configuration with an enormously-talented pianist, Rene Rosnes, in the mix. Hear & Now is a sextet outing with an up-and-coming, unlimited potential talent, Glenn Zaleski, sitting in front of the ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Trichotomy: Known-Unknown

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It's been a while, 4 years to be precise, but Australian piano trio Trichotomy is back. Known-Unknown appears after a break during which the band's members have been busy with numerous other projects and sees the first appearance of a new bassist, but it takes just a few bars of “Five" to reassure fans that this cohesive, exciting trio is back and on track.Pianist Sean Foran and drummer John Parker are joined by bassist Samuel Vincent and all ...


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