Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

Articles | Popular | Future

ALBUM REVIEWS

Ron Thomas / Paul Klinefelter: Duo

Read "Duo" reviewed by Budd Kopman

One of the wonderful things about jazz is that it can be appreciated from more than one angle, oftentimes simultaneously: pure entertainment, art as entertainment, art as beauty and art as intellect among others. Some of this, of course, relates to music in general, but jazz as a genre has moved beyond any stylistic boundaries to the point where no one can claim any particular sub-genre to represent “jazz." This push-pull aspect of jazz allows a player to ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Ron Thomas/Paul Klinefelter: Duo

Read "Duo" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

Pianist Ron Thomas' talents range widely, from his Karlheinz Stockhausen-influenced electric outings like Elysium (Vectordisc, 2009), through his fluid free association piano trio sets, Music In Three Parts (Art Of Life Records, 2006) and Doloroso (Art of Life Records, 2006), to his mainstream outings that draw their inspiration from the late pianist Bill Evans--Two Lonely People (Vectordisc, 2011) and Blues For Zaranthustra (Art Of Life Records, 2008), a pairing a duo set with bassist Paul Klinefelter. Duo is ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Ron Thomas: Duo

Read "Duo" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer

The poet John Keats famously wrote: “A thing of beauty is a joy forever." That's the kind of album this is. It's one stretch of beautiful playing from beginning to end. It's not a “statement," it's not a “thing," it's not a “groove." It's just music that, taken as a whole becomes an “objet d'art," something special to have in your collection and listen to over and over again because its perfection draws you towards it. Pianist Ron ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Ron Thomas Trio: Impatience

Read "Impatience" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

A brief glance at pianist Ron Thomas' website is enlightening, to say the least. He chronicles his life there, providing a detailed biography, a rundown of commercially available compositions, a list of his colleagues, mp3 files, a discography, essays, videos, photos, teaching information, and a list of influences, with names both familiar (Bill Evans, Herbie Hancock) and relatively unknown (Ron Dewar, Dennis Sandole) to many jazz fans and musicians. But to really get to know Thomas, you need only spend ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Ron Thomas: Impatience

Read "Impatience" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

There is something elemental about the jazz piano trio. It is classically called the “Rhythm Section," that practical subset of a larger ensemble that produces the pulse that propels the band and compositions the band plays. It is also the most enduring of jazz performance formats that has included the giants of jazz. Whether it is the cathedral of Oscar Peterson, the interior world of Bill Evans or the durable consistency of Red Garland and Gene Harris, the jazz piano ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Ron Thomas: Two Lonely People

Read "Two Lonely People" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

A spin through pianist Ron Thomas's discography as a leader doesn't always directly point toward the music found on Two Lonely People. His two masterful trio outings, Music in Three Parts (Art of Life Records, 2006) and Doloroso (Art of Life Records, 2006) are both full of abstract and elastic originals; the highly electric and compellingly otherworldly Elysium (Vectordisc, 2009) stretches the boundaries way, way “out there"; and his 17 Solo Piano Improvisations (Vectordisc, 2006) leans heavily on the pianist's ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Bobby Rose / Ron Thomas: Galaxy

Read "Galaxy" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

On Galaxy a couple of mainstream jazz guys sit down and plug in to see where the interstellar winds will take them.The profiles of guitarist Bobby Rose and keyboardist Ron Thomas, subject to the laws of gravity, have not achieved the heights commensurate with their talent--an old jazz story. But both are immensely creative artists. The duo has recorded, separately, albums with guitarist Pat Martino: the mainstream Footprints (Muse records, 1972) and the early foray into what we ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Ron Thomas / John Swana / Joe Mullen: Elysium

Read "Elysium" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

The sound of Elysium is, in a word, otherworldly. Then throw in the electro-industrial tinge and cold liquid submersion resonance--like the noise of a high tech blacksmith shop on a distant planet with a dense atmosphere and heavier than Earth gravity like Neptune--music of an alien culture, or songs played for cryogenically suspended astronauts slumbering their way across vast expanses of space.Such are the sounds created by keyboardist Ron Thomas, trumpeter John Swana and drummer Joe Mullen.

ALBUM REVIEWS

Ron Thomas / Paul Klinefelter: Blues for Zarathustra

Read "Blues for Zarathustra" reviewed by Budd Kopman

With Blues For Zarathustra, pianist Ron Thomas returns to an area of interest that has always been a part of his musical life, but which has not be emphasized or recorded recently. What he presents, with his long time playing partner, bassist Paul Klinefelter, is a straight-ahead set where simplicity, delicate intensity, constant interplay and a fertile imagination rule. Those who have followed Thomas' output, including his solo works, 17 Solo Improvisation (Vectordisc, 2006) and Wings of ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Ron Thomas: 17 Solo Piano Improvisations

Read "17 Solo Piano Improvisations" reviewed by Budd Kopman

Music is the language of sound, of vibrations; and hence, at a basic level, of physics. The history of Western music is an effort to understand and control how these vibrations interact and relate to each other, always with an ear towards how they affect the listener. Music's emotional affect on us is its greatest mystery. Pianist Ron Thomas' 17 Solo Piano Improvisations is an exploration of certain features of the music of Franz Liszt, as they ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Ron Thomas: Wings of the Morning

Read "Wings of the Morning" reviewed by Budd Kopman

Pianist Ron Thomas has led an extremely interesting life, musically and otherwise, and it is distilled into the lovely and intense set of pieces on Wings of the Morning, originally recorded in 1978, and now reissued on CD. Training from a young age to be a concert pianist, Thomas eventually realized that the rigors and mindset necessary for that kind of musical life were not his forte, and he turned to composition, studying with many famous people ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Ron Thomas/John Swana/Joe Mullen: Cycles

Read "Cycles" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

Many jazz pianists have a grounding in the classical side of music. Ron Thomas's anchoring may be deeper there than most. His back-to-back piano trio outings, Doloroso (Art of Life Records, 2006) and Music in Three Parts (Art of Life Records, 2006), explored some very alluring, loose sound shapes shaded by his classical side in a quite accessible way--gorgeous recordings, both.

A trip to the pianist/composer's website and an exploration of his eloquent and extensive ramblings is quite a strange ...