Articles

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

HISTORY OF JAZZ

Leo Smith and New Dalta Ahkri

Read "Leo Smith and New Dalta Ahkri" reviewed by Daniel Barbiero

Coming to New England: Emerson, Ives and Brown When trumpeter/composer Leo Smith returned to the United States after having spent 1969-1970 in Europe, he settled not in New York, as most jazz musicians might be expected to do, or even in jny: Chicago, where he'd spent a fruitful several years in the 1960s. Instead, he chose to settle in jny: New Haven, Connecticut.New Haven at the time was, as it largely still is, an economically straitened, post-industrial college ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Wadada Leo Smith / Sabu Toyozumi: Burning Meditation

Read "Burning Meditation" reviewed by John Sharpe

The Japanese concept of ma—a celebration of the space between things—is one to which trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith can readily subscribe. Space and silence are as important as sound in his conception. The weight given to the pauses between phrases stands out on this live recording from 1994 with Japanese drummer Sabu Toyozumi, which forms another winning installment in the Chap Chap series of archival recordings from Japan which see the light of day thanks to licensing to the Lithuanian ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Wadada Leo Smith: Rosa Parks: Pure Love

Read "Rosa Parks: Pure Love" reviewed by Jerome Wilson

Wadada Leo Smith has been on a roll in the 2010s, recording and composing in several formats, including ambitious, long-form works such as the Pulitzer-nominated Ten Freedom Summers (Cuneiform, 2012,) which dealt mostly with the history of race relations in America. His latest work concentrates on one specific figure mentioned in that suite, Rosa Parks, the woman whose defiance of racial segregation laws in Montgomery, Alabama triggered a bus boycott that helped spark the civil rights movement from the mid ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Wadada Leo Smith: Rosa Parks: Pure Love. An Oratorio of Seven Songs

Read "Rosa Parks: Pure Love. An Oratorio of Seven Songs" reviewed by John Sharpe

Trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith's prolonged late career flowering shows no sign of abating with the creation of yet another epic work, following on the heels of his monumental Ten Freedom Summers (Cuneiform, 2012), Great Lakes Suite (TUM, 2014) and America's National Parks (Cuneiform, 2016). For his inspiration he takes the story of Rosa Parks, one of the heroines of the US Civil Rights Movement, famed for her role in the pioneering 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott, and draws on it as ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Wadada Leo Smith: Rosa Parks: Pure Love. An Oratorio of Seven Songs

Read "Rosa Parks: Pure Love. An Oratorio of Seven Songs" reviewed by Doug Hall

Acclaimed trumpeter, multi-instrumentalist, composer, and educator Wadada Leo Smith has released an oratorio of seven songs inspired by the iconic civil rights leader Rosa Parks. In his own words, Rosa Parks: Pure Love. An Oratorio of Seven Songs is “concerned with ideas of freedom, liberty and justice, a meditation centered around the civil rights movement." Looking at Smith's more than 50 years of creative and artistic vision, this release is yet another inspired organic musical direction that has established him ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Wadada Leo Smith: Rosa Parks: Pure Love

Read "Rosa Parks: Pure Love" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Like several exceptional modern era composers from Ornette Coleman to John Zorn to Tyshawn Sorey, the “jazz" appellation has only anecdotal application to the latter-day calling of Wadada Leo Smith as a composer. On his previous Cuneiform releases Ten Freedom Summers (2012) and America's National Parks (2016), Smith worked with an ear toward confronting injustice and raising social awareness of issues that share a broad platform. He continues in that vein with Rosa Parks: Pure Love , subtitled “An Oratorio ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Wadada Leo Smith: Najwa

Read "Najwa" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Trumpet player Wadada Leo Smith is one of the few musicians remaining from the original, founding generation of Chicago's legendary Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians. But he has hardly rested since; Smith's Ten Freedom Summers (2012, Cuneiform) was a finalist for the 2013 Pulitzer Prize in Music; in 2017, Smith swept the Downbeat Critics' Poll for Trumpeter, Artist, and Album (America's National Parks, [Cuneiform]) of the Year, and he was named Musician of the Year by the Jazz ...


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