Articles

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

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Album Review

Walter Smith III: In Common 2

Read "In Common 2" reviewed by Paul Rauch


The musical paths of saxophonist/composer Walter Smith III and guitarist/composer Matthew Stevens have crossed on many occasions over the years, touring and recording together in their respective bands and those of Esperanza Spalding, Ambrose Akinmusire, Terence Blanchard, Dave Douglas and Terri Lynne Carrington. They first recorded together in 2017, convening a stellar band to interpret original compositions written for the session. In Common (Whirlwind, 2018) was well received for its original sound and spontaneity. They've reconvened for In ...

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Take Five With...

Take Five With Walter Smith III

Read "Take Five With Walter Smith III" reviewed by Walter Smith III


Meet Walter Smith III: From a young age, Walter began taking music very seriously. “My first gig was playing at a McDonalds in Houston with another saxophonist. I took a solo on “Blue Bossa." It was terrible. People clapped, and I figured if I could get away with that and get applause, how could I fail?" Although it may appear Smith is a new voice on the scene, he is widely recognized as an adept performer, ...

1

Radio

New Sounds - Walter Smith III, John Escreet and Maisha

Read "New Sounds - Walter Smith III, John Escreet and Maisha" reviewed by Bob Osborne


Demonstrating the wide variety of music in the jazz world recent releases from Walter Smith, John Escreet and Maisha are featured on this show. With other material, old and new, in between, there is mixed bag of styles, and, sounds on display. Playlist Walter Smith III “Ask Me Now" from Twio (Whirlwind) 00:00 John Escreet “Broken Justice (Kalief)" from Learn to Live (Blue Room Music) 07:01 Al McLean & Azar Lawrence “Simone" from Conduit (Intofocus) 16:06 Maisha ...

12

Album Review

Walter Smith III: Twio

Read "Twio" reviewed by Phil Barnes


The awareness of an audience or home listener is a key rite of passage in the creative development of an artist. Its something that usually becomes an issue as a performer moves beyond that initial creative surge of their early work, that build-up of compositions that led to initial success and attention has been exhausted and audience expectations have grown. So Walter Smith III's decision to revisit classic jazz tunes on this collection was not one that initially quickened the ...

6

Album Review

Walter Smith III: Twio

Read "Twio" reviewed by Roger Farbey


The unashamedly retro cover art of Twio accurately signposts the content of this imaginative album's track selection of jazz classics and standards. The only exception to this programme is Walter Smith III's original composition “Contrafact," chordally based on “Like Someone In Love" but given a 5/4 makeover. This involves the twin tenors of Smith and guest Joshua Redman opening the number in unison and progressing to an effervescent treatment adopted throughout the choruses. The two tracks teaming-up Smith and Redman ...

7

Interview

Walter Smith III: Jazz Explorer

Read "Walter Smith III: Jazz Explorer" reviewed by R.J. DeLuke


Walter Smith stands straight when he raises his tenor sax to his mouth to embark on a solo, or play enthralling, serpentine, contrapuntal lines in unison with band mates like Ambrose Akinmusire. [Check out “Confessions To My Unborn Daughter" from Akinmusire's When the Heart Emerges Glistening.] It's a muscular sound that emerged from his horn. Authoritative. More than that, his improvisational path when he solos is unfettered and unpredictable. He's praised by his peers as a saxophonist who ...

24

Album Review

Walter Smith III: Still Casual

Read "Still Casual" reviewed by Mark F. Turner


There are countless musicians who perform but few that can make their instruments breathe as melodically as saxophonist Walter Smith III. In the opening track “Foretold You" from his release Still Casual, it's as if his horn is an extension of his thoughts and will--notes burning, graceful and flowing like a stream of ideas. Yet with these obvious abilities Smith is a diligent craftsman whose arduous schedule includes education, tours, and performances within a rotation of rising jazz leaders that ...


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