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November Birthday Salutes

Read "November Birthday Salutes" reviewed by Marc Cohn

It's time to celebrate November birthdays! Among the worthies, we also celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Phil Woods recording Alive and Well in Paris, which was slated for release on Impulse! in the States, but never released here; there must be a story about this, but I'm in the dark. It is an absolutely stunning session. In addition to our celebrants in the track list, we salute bassist Sam Jones, pianist Joe Bushkin and Ellington collaborator Billy Strayhorn. Enjoy ...

REDISCOVERY

The Phil Woods Six: Live from the Showboat

Read "The Phil Woods Six: Live from the Showboat" reviewed by John Kelman

The Phil Woods SixLive from the ShowboatSony Music Japan2015 (1977) With the sad passing of Phil Woods on September 29, 2015, what better way to honor the career of this alto (and occasionally soprano) saxophone giant with the Rediscovery of a live album that, long out of print--and previously only available on CD in a truncated, single-disc edition that excised some of its most exhilarating moments--has finally seen the light of day in its entirety ...

CATCHING UP WITH

Phil Woods: 1931-2015

Read "Phil Woods: 1931-2015" reviewed by AAJ Staff

In memory of NEA Jazz Master, Phil Woods. This article was previously published in November 2002. All About Jazz: Looking back on the almost three decade history of your Quintet, one question springs immediately to mind. You've had the same rhythm section of Steve Gilmore on bass and Bill Goodwin on drums ever since you formed the band back in the early 1970s. Most jazz musicians end up hopping around from group to group constantly. So how have ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Phil Woods & the Festival Orchestra: New Celebration

Read "New Celebration" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Any album with the renowned Phil Woods leading a big band (or jazz orchestra) is cause for celebration, especially so when he has written all but one of the charts and takes the bulk of the alto solos. More than fifteen years have passed since Woods last recorded with the COTA Festival Orchestra from his home precinct in Delaware Gap, PA, and that earlier album (Celebration!, Concord 4770) was nominated for a Grammy Award. This New Celebration, Woods' second recording ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Phil Woods: Right To Swing

Read "Right To Swing" reviewed by Edward Blanco

Alto saxophonist great Phil Woods and trumpeter/educator Dr. Bob Lark have a long history of recording together producing notable outings like Live at the Jazz Showcase (Jazzed Media, 2009) and In Her Eyes (Jazzed Media, 2006)--both with The Bob Lark / Phil Woods Quintet. The saxophonist association with Lark and the DePaul University bands has also resulted in three previous albums all with the DePaul University Jazz Ensemble. Right To Swing is now their fourth album together combining performances from ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Phil Woods and Bill Mays: Woods & Mays

Read "Woods & Mays" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Putting two musicians of this caliber in a room and recording the results is a surefire recipe for success. Pianist Bill Mays and saxophone icon Phil Woods have little to prove at this point in their respective careers and their music isn't about defying expectations. Both men, on the contrary, carry the reputations that they do because they live up to the very expectations that surround them. On this duo set, Woods and Mays engage in classy conversation that flow ...

PROFILES

Phil Woods: Philology

Read "Phil Woods: Philology" reviewed by George Kanzler

When pianist Jim McNeely replaced Hal Galper in the Phil Woods Quintet in 1990 it was the current winner--repeating in 1991--of the Downbeat Readers Poll as top jazz small group. But, as McNeely remembers, his first days with the alto saxophonist's band included a benefit concert for the local volunteer fire department in Delaware Water Gap, Penn. (where Woods has lived since 1974), a cancelled jazz club gig and playing at the wedding of Woods' friend. “Well," Woods ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Phil Woods: Ballads & Blues, Live at the Jazz Showcase, The Children's Suite

Read "Phil Woods: Ballads & Blues, Live at the Jazz Showcase, The Children's Suite" reviewed by Greg Thomas

Phil Woods Quintet Ballads & Blues Venus Records 2009 The Bob Lark/Phil Woods Quintet Live at the Jazz Showcase Jazzed Media 2009 Phil Woods The Children's Suite Jazzed Media 2009 Alto saxophonist Phil Woods is a consummate musician whose mastery of improvisation is second to none. ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Phil Woods: The Children's Suite

Read "The Children's Suite" reviewed by Andrew Velez

Well of course. NEA Jazz Master Phil Woods' The Children's Suite, inspired by the verses of A.A. Milne. Woods has been widely and wildly prolific throughout his career since his early small group days as a teenager, blowing ebulliently with Jimmy Raney and George Wallington, so it should be no surprise that he's created musical settings for these beloved poems from Now We Are Six, featuring Christopher Robin and his imaginary friend Pooh. Along with an industrial-strength orchestra, he's joined ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Phil Woods: American Songbook II & Swingchronicity

Read "Phil Woods: American Songbook II & Swingchronicity" reviewed by George Kanzler

Phil Woods American Songbook II Kind of Blue 2007 Phil Woods / DePaul University Jazz Ensemble Swingchronicity Jazzed Media 2007

More than other surviving members of the jazz generation that emerged during the primacy of bebop, alto saxophonist Phil Woods reflects the boppers' love of melody. That side of Bird, who ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Phil Woods / DePaul University Jazz Ensemble: Swingchronicity

Read "Swingchronicity" reviewed by Edward Blanco

Not your average university jazz band or your typical recording of oft-heard standards, Swingchronicity represents a musical collaboration between one of the finest university jazz bands in the country and a jazz legend. Under the direction of Bob Lark, trumpeter and Director of Jazz Studies at DePaul University in Chicago, the DePaul University Jazz Ensemble is heard live at Chicago's Jazz Showcase with special guest, world-renowned alto great Phil Woods.

Producing an unbelievable sound for a college level ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Phil Woods / DePaul University Jazz Ensemble: Swingchronicity

Read "Swingchronicity" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Nothing is perfect, so the saying goes, and thus it follows that one can, in theory, always find something to disparage or take issue with in any work of art or piece of music. While that may be true, on a scale of one to ten, Swingchronicity warrants at least an eleven. This is, after all, Phil Woods, one of the world's greatest living jazz musicians, weaving his incomparable magic in a breathtaking concert performance at Chicago's Jazz Showcase with ...


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