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Jazz Articles

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Various Artists: Celestial Blues: Cosmic, Political and Spiritual Jazz 1970 to 1974

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When saxophonist and composer, Kamasi Washington, released his tripple album, The Epic in 2015, it was celebrated widely, not only in the spheres of jazz, but also in rock magazines. Washington was clearly on to something, forging a new spiritual sound that married world music, orchestral funk and free jazz. However, new sounds do not come out of nothing. Music is always born out of or into a tradition. The compilation Celestial Blues: Cosmic, Political and Spiritual ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Various Artists: Tanbou Toujou Lou: Merengue, Kompa Kreyou, Vodou Jazz & Electric Folklore from Haiti (1960-1981)

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For most listeners, Tanbou Toujou Lou: Merengue, Kompa Kreyou, Vodou Jazz & Electric Folklore from Haiti (1960-1981) will capture snapshots from a distant place--"the pearl of the Caribbean," Haiti. But for ALL listeners, it will capture snapshots from a distant, sometimes socially and politically turbulent, era. Tanbou Toujou Lou illustrates the different colors of music drawn by Haiti's unique geographic location amongst the rhythmic, melodic, and spiritual connections between the Caribbean and West Africa. Merengue danced in ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Various Artists: Oscar, with Love

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To mark the ninetieth anniversary of the legendary jazz pianist Oscar Peterson's birth (August 15, 2015), Peterson's widow, Kelly Peterson, produced a tribute album for the ages: Oscar, with Love, a marvelous three-disc set comprising ten never-before-recorded Peterson compositions, nineteen of his better-known works and seven compositions written especially for him, performed by sixteen contemporary piano masters on Peterson's personal Boesendorfer Imperial piano at his private studio in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. Makoto Ozone has the honor of ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Various Artists: Hungarian Noir

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When Billie Holiday released “Gloomy Sunday," in 1941, accompanied by the Teddy Wilson Orchestra, no one could possibly imagine the back story and consequent repercussions associated with this song. Originally composed by Hungarian Reszo Seress in 1933 as “Szomorú Vasárnap," it was quickly rewritten with lyrics by poet Laslo Javor, and recorded by Pál Kalmár in 1934, becoming the infamous “Hungarian Suicide Song," among the populace. It has been imputed for the countless suicides connected with it, and considered a ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Various Artists: The Boston Creative Jazz Scene 1970-1983

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Though jny: New York City remains first and foremost in everyone's mind as the “Jazz Capital of the World," aficionados know that many other cities in the US and abroad support significant and artistically important jazz communities. Boston looms large among the most important jazz cities, worldwide. The birthplace of Harry Carney, Roy Haynes, George Russell, Sonny Stitt, George Wein, Makanda Ken McIntyre and Charlie Mariano, Boston is also the home of two of the most forward- looking institutions of ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Everyone's Buzzin': The Complete Bee Hive Sessions

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The idea behind Jim and Susan Neumann's Bee Hive label was simple: gather together a bunch of great musicians for recording dates and let them play whatever they wanted. The sessions were led by talented musicians who may not have received the recognition they deserved in the jazz heyday of the fifties and early sixties -names like Sal Salvador, Ronnie Mathews, and Dizzy Reece to name a few--but who still had plenty to say. And for sixteen recording sessions, the ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Various Artists: Detroit Jazz City

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Blue Note president Don Was is a metro jny: Detroit native. He grew up exposed to the rich musical legacy of the city, as well as to the economic struggles of many of the city's residents. This celebrates both. As the press release states, “All proceeds from the album will be donated to Focus: HOPE to aid in their on-going pursuit of intelligent and practical solutions to the problems of hunger, economic disparity, inadequate education, and racial divisiveness in Southeastern ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Various Artists: Groove & Grind: Rare Soul 1963 - '73

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We call it “soul music" for a reason: Because from Ray Charles grooving on “America the Beautiful" to Maxwell gently hammering out his steps to “Ascension," the best soul music hits deep in our ears, our minds and our hearts. Groove & Grind: Rare Soul 1963 -'73, which compiles more than 100 rare soul singles across four themed CDs, is sure to tickle the ears, mind and heart of just about anyone who digs just about any style ...


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