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BOOK REVIEWS

Where the Dark and the Light Folks Meet

Read "Where the Dark and the Light Folks Meet" reviewed by Daniel Kassell

Where the Dark and the Light Folks Meet Randall Sandke Hardcover; 288 pages ISBN: 0-8108-6652-8 Scarecrow Press 2010In Where the Dark and the Light Folks Meet, musician and author Randall Sandke tackles the stubborn and controversial question of whether jazz is the product of an insulated African-American environment, shut off from the rest of society by strictures of segregation and discrimination; or whether it is more properly understood ...

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Creator vs. Interpretor

Read "Creator vs. Interpretor" reviewed by AAJ Staff

By Randy Sandke We've all heard the saying that “Jazz is America's classical music." Implicit in this notion is the belief that jazz is equally worthy of respect, admiration and support as any 'serious' music. Over the past few decades, jazz has indeed found a greater degree of prestige, academic interest and corporate sponsorship than at any time before. But there's a downside to this parallel between jazz and classical music. Jazz seems headed towards the ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Randy Sandke: Unconventional Wisdom

Read "Unconventional Wisdom" reviewed by Francis Lo Kee

Listening to a tune like “Chega de Saudade," the ninth tune on trumpeter Randy Sandke's Unconventional Wisdom, there's the feeling that this quartet session is from a recorded concert: the honest, joyous drive of the rhythm section, the trumpet singing Jobim's melody and the guitar supporting it with clear harmonies that are rhythmically in sync. Yet, this turns out to be a well thought-out program of tunes that benefits from the pristine sound quality obtained in a studio environment.

ALBUM REVIEWS

Randy Sandke and the Metatonal Big Band: The Subway Ballet

Read "The Subway Ballet" reviewed by Ken Dryden

Trumpeter Randy Sandke, considered a mainstream jazz stylist, reveals another side on this release, compiled from two sessions recorded about fifteen years apart. The Subway Ballet is a wild suite scored for big band (substituting vibes and xylophone for piano) that utilizes a metatonal harmonic approach, frequently sounding like snippets of music written for a suspense movie. Key centers are often fleeting, though most of the charts seem tightly scored. Sandke's compositions fit his individual titles perfectly; ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Randy Sandke: Outside In, The Mystic Trumpeter, Trumpet after Dark

Read "Randy Sandke: Outside In, The Mystic Trumpeter, Trumpet after Dark" reviewed by Andrew Velez

Randy Sandke Outside In Evening Star Records 2005

The pleasures of Outside In should come as no surprise to anyone familiar with trumpeter Randy Sandke. Adventurous and forward thinking, he also incorporates the best of traditional jazz. The opener, “Ganjan, is an opportunity for him and bandmates Wycliffe Gordon, Marty Ehrlich, Ken Peplowski, Scott Robinson, Uri Caine, Greg Cohen and Dennis Mackrel (Howard Alden guests on one tune) to conjure up some 21st century ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Randy Sandke and the Metatonal Band: The Mystic Trumpeter

Read "The Mystic Trumpeter" reviewed by Michael P. Gladstone

Trumpeter and composer Randy Sandke has recorded 22 albums as a leader since 1985 and has appeared on countless others in largely a mainstream and postwar swing setting, and of late he has dabbled in outside jazz. The Mystic Trumpeter may be Sandke's most ambitious effort to date. The album is presented as “metatonal" music, which is a term that Sandke uses to describe how his compositions use harmonies that are derived in a way that hasn't yet been integrated ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

The Randy Sandke Quartet: Trumpet After Dark

Read "Trumpet After Dark" reviewed by Michael P. Gladstone

There is much to admire in this album, subtitled Jazz In A Meditative Mood. Trumpeter Randy Sandke has been actively recording since 1985, largely in a postwar swing and mainstream style, although Mainstream Meets the New Music, his 2002 venture into free jazz, raised some eyebrows and garnered new fans. Sandke is comfortable working in a “jazz with strings" setting, and his arrangements here are quite attractive. Many of these selections recall the albums that cornetist Ruby Braff made under ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Randy Sandke: Cliffhanger

Read "Cliffhanger" reviewed by Dr. Judith Schlesinger

This is the perfect CD for the Scrooges in your life who insist that “jazz is dead." From the incandescent opener to the racing finish, it's a crackling, masterful, joyous set of classic jazz playing – not a big surprise given the folks involved. Randy Sandke is one of the best trumpeters around. With great tone and chops, he swings hard and clean, also stepping up to deliver a beautiful ballad (as in the glorious “What's New," with its occasional ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Randy Sandke and the Inside Out Jazz Collective: Mainstream Meets the New Music

Read "Mainstream Meets the New Music" reviewed by Dave Nathan

Nagel Heyer does something very interesting with this album by putting togther musicians from two schools of jazz. There's the more traditional swing, classic jazz of leader Randy Sandke, Scott Robinson and Ken Peplowski combing efforts with the decidedly modern group of players headed by Marty Ehrlich, Ray Anderson and Uri Caine.

The result is some decidedly different mix of sounds laid down on the same tracks. This is apparent right from the outset with “Like I Said" ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Randy Sandke and the New York All Stars: The Re-Discovered Louis and Bix

Read "The Re-Discovered Louis and Bix" reviewed by Dave Nathan

It's obvious from the outset that this album is a labor of love by co-producers George Avakian and Randy Sandke, as well as the very talented musicians who come together on this set. Putting together the album required a good deal of tenacious research, the almost coincidental getting together of individuals who had like minds about the wonderful material, the willingness of the German (shame on the US record companies) label Nagel Heyer to record and release the material, and ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Randy Sandke: Awakening

Read "Awakening" reviewed by Robert Spencer

Awakening is a release from Concord's classical division, Concerto, and does it ever sound like one. It isn't quite “Wynton plays Handel," but here trumpeter Randy Sandke fronts the Bulgarian National Symphony (Ljubomir Denev, conductor) in a program of mostly originals (plus a little Ellingtonia) played by what sounds like a full orchestra. The orchestra is a bit generous with the brass and winds, to be sure, but the overall sound is as full – as gigantic – as in ...


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