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

ALBUM REVIEW

Sir Roland Hanna: Colors from a Giant's Kit

Read "Colors from a Giant's Kit" reviewed by Raul d'Gama Rose

This 1990s recording, produced by William Sorin, a loving fan of pianist Sir Roland Hanna is a riveting one. Featuring the maestro alone, playing what must have been some of his favorite charts, was carefully thought out. And though it does not come with too many of Hanna's own compositions it does--like Jaki Byard's fable recordings, Sunshine of My Soul--Live at the Keystone Korner (HighNote, 2007) and its companion volume, A Matter of Black and White--Live at the Keystone Korner, ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Sir Roland Hanna: Colors From A Giant's Kit

Read "Colors From A Giant's Kit" reviewed by Greg Simmons

Sir Roland Hanna (1932--2002) recorded a series of undated solo piano sessions for IPO founder Bill Soren, some of which are now released as Colors From A Giant's Kit. Vault finds--those undiscovered recordings that have been made, shelved and largely unheard for decades--can be some of the most entertaining recordings in jazz. How marvelous to listen to a new album that has never been heard by the masses until long after the artist is passed, like a specter from the ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Sir Roland Hanna: Colors From A Giant's Kit

Read "Colors From A Giant's Kit" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

When an artist passes on, the true fans mourn and the record companies often search through their vaults to try to capitalize on their passing. This often results in hastily compiled collections of music, or the surfacing of sub-par recordings that weren't released for obvious reasons when the artist was still around. That's not the case with this top-shelf solo recording from Sir Roland Hanna. Shortly before his death, the pianist had entered into a fruitful recording partnership with Bill ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Sir Roland Hanna: Tributaries: Reflections On Tommy Flanagan

Read "Tributaries: Reflections On Tommy Flanagan" reviewed by Jim Santella

Recorded in June 2002, Sir Roland Hanna’s solo piano tribute to the memory of Tommy Flanagan brings a message of love. They both came up through Detroit, and they shared similar career paths. Good friends, one had served as Ella Fitzgerald’s music director, while the other accompanied Sarah Vaughan as her musical director. Hanna recorded this tribute to his old friend, who had passed away on November 16, 2001. Several months after this recording had been finished, however, Hanna became ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Sir Roland Hanna & Carrie Smith: I've Got a Right to Sing the Blues: The Songs of Harold Arlen

Read "I've Got a Right to Sing the Blues: The Songs of Harold Arlen" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Three types of creative authority that each spring from the same muse characterize this disc. First is the vocal authority of Carrie Smith. Second is the piano talent of the late Sir Roland Hanna. And finally, third is the lyric prowess of Harold Arlen.

A blues singer with a jazz singer's soul, Carrie Smith's conversational style and masculine sense of humor are a commanding presence on I've Got A Right. No better is this illustrated than on “Blues ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Sir Roland Hanna: Everything I Love

Read "Everything I Love" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Detroit native Roland Pembrooks Hanna (b. 2/10/1932; d. 11/13/2002) began his professional career in 1958 when he joined Benny Goodman’s band for a concert in Belgium. The conservatoire-trained pianist provided his services to Sarah Vaughan, Al Hibbler, Carmen McRae, the Thad Jones-Mel Lewis Orchestra and Charles Mingus. In 1970, President William Tubman of Liberia honored Hanna with knighthood for humanitarian services — henceforth, Sir Roland Hanna.

Sir Roland Hanna belonged to a rarified group of pianists which includes ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Sir Roland Hanna: Everything I Love

Read "Everything I Love" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Pianist Roland Pembrooks Hanna was born on February 10, 1932 in Detroit, Michigan and passed away on November 13, 2002 at the age of 70. He began his professional career in 1958, when he joined Benny Goodman’s band for a concert in Belgium. He was conservatoire trained and provided his services to Sarah Vaughan, Al Hibbler, Carmen McRae, the Thad Jones-Mel Lewis Orchestra and Charles Mingus. In 1970, President William Tubman of Liberia honored Hanna with Knighthood in 1970 for ...


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