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Daily articles carefully curated by the All About Jazz staff. Read our popular and future articles.

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mike Holober and the Gotham Jazz Orchestra: Hiding Out

Read "Hiding Out" reviewed by Jerome Wilson

Mike Holober is a celebrated composer and arranger who has worked for ensembles like the Westchester Jazz Orchestra in New York and the WDR and HR Big Bands in Germany. He is also the leader and founder of the Gotham Jazz Orchestra which here makes its first appearance on record in ten years. Holober makes this return a fruitful one, coming up with a 2CD set featuring two long suites, both with themes involving American landscapes. The first ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mike Holober and the Gotham Jazz Orchestra: Hiding Out

Read "Hiding Out" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Mike Holober has been Hiding Out rather openly for the past ten years or so, waiting for the proper time to gather together his world-class Gotham Jazz Orchestra and record for the first time since 2009's widely acclaimed album Quake (Sunnyside), in which his picturesque compositions and arrangements were compared favorably to those of Duke Ellington and Gil Evans, to name only two. In the interim, Holober has hardly been sitting on his hands, serving time as director of New ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mike Holober and the Gotham Jazz Orchestra: Hiding Out

Read "Hiding Out" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

If musical polymath Mike Holober is hiding out, he's doing it in plain sight. Constantly in demand, his work as a pianist, conductor, arranger and composer has drawn plenty of attention. In the past 15 years alone he has served as the Artistic Director and Conductor of the Westchester Jazz Orchestra (from 2007-2013), the Associate Guest Conductor of the hr-Bigband (from 2011-2015), and the Associate Director of the BMI Jazz Composer's Workshop (from 2007-2015). In that same stretch of time, ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mike Holober and the Gotham Jazz Orchestra: Hiding Out

Read "Hiding Out" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Mike Holober's background as a classical pianist and conductor is just one thing that sets Hiding Out apart from the current crop of big band releases. Holober has worked in a variety of settings from solo, duo, and quintet to large ensembles. Two previous recordings with his Gotham Jazz Orchestra were the critically acclaimed Thought Trains (Sons of Sound Records, 2004) and Quake (Sunnyside Records, 2009), comprised of covers and original Holober compositions. On the ambitious double-disc Hiding Out, Holober ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mike Holober: Balancing Act

Read "Balancing Act" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

Pianist/composer Mike Holober has had an active career with big bands (including HR Big Band Frankfurt, WDR Big Band Cologne, Stockholm Jazz Orchestra, and the Westchester Jazz Orchestra in the U.S.). So he brings a refined approach to the composing and arranging on this octet recording. He set himself an ambitious goal: to feature a vocalist, but as another frontline instrument rather than the primary focus. “I wanted to use a singer and lyrics in extended form compositions--not wrapped up ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mike Holober: Balancing Act

Read "Balancing Act" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Conceptualizing and creating music is a delicate balancing act, leaving composers to strive for symmetry between head and heart, reasoning and intuition, and structure and freedom. Who better to understand that than Mike Holober? Whether penning a piece or playing piano, Holober has always shown himself to be mindful of the need to find harmony between those and other opposing principles. It's his ability to do so that, in large part, has made him such a hot commodity in the ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Mike Holober & The Gotham Jazz Orchestra: Quake

Read "Quake" reviewed by Elliott Simon

Duke Ellington's legacy is alive and well with pianist Mike Holober and The Gotham Jazz Orchestra. Holober makes use of the increased musical scope that 17 pieces give him to weave compositional strength within a sound that sways more than swings. Some of the finest jazzers New York City has to offer join Holober for this session. Their individual talents are certainly showcased but the strength of this release is how Holober fits them all together to ...


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