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Ran Blake & Jeanne Lee: The Newest Sound You Never Heard

Read "The Newest Sound You Never Heard" reviewed by Jerome Wilson

Pianist Ran Blake has developed a reputation over the years for recording duets with vocalists, including in recent times, Sara Serpa, Dominique Eade and Christine Correa. That began back in 1961 when he released The Newest Sound Around (RCA), a remarkable set of duets with singer Jeanne Lee. The duo toured together occasionally in subsequent years but never released another recording until You Stepped Out Of A Dream (Owl) in 1989. Now here comes a new and very welcome discovery, ...

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Ran Blake / Christine Correa: Streaming

Read "Streaming" reviewed by Jerome Wilson

Pianist Ran Blake has been known for his duo work with vocalists dating back to his 1962 collaboration with Jeanne Lee, The Newest Sound Around (RCA Victor). In recent years, he has been working with three individualistic singers, Sara Serpa, Dominique Eade and Christine Correa. The year 2017 brought a session of folk songs and soundtrack music with Eade, the excellent Town And Country (Sunnyside Records). This time it's Correa's turn in a program of mostly jazz and pop standards. ...

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Ran Blake & Christine Correa: Streaming

Read "Streaming" reviewed by Gareth Thompson

Back in 1946, Ran Blake watched The Spiral Staircase and was rather freaked. This classic chiller's opening scene shows a silent film flickering whilst a woman accompanies the visuals on piano. Blake later composed his own piano sketches for each character and wrote fan letters to the entire cast. His only reply came from Carlton, the housekeeper's sleepy bulldog, via a paw print autograph. Blake also claims a childhood interest in Irish ghost stories and church spirituals. Thus ...

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Ran Blake: Ghost Tones: Portraits of George Russell

Read "Ghost Tones: Portraits of George Russell" reviewed by Jakob Baekgaard

Sometimes an album can haunt you. It can be a companion that follows you through life. In the liner notes for the album: Ghost Tones: Portraits of George Russell (A-Side Records, 2015), pianist and composer Ran Blake reveals his love for composer and bandleader George Russell's album Jazz Workshop (RCA-Victor, 1957): “I listened to it so much that I wore out several copies, each time having to revisit the record store to replace it." Blake's love for ...

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Ran Blake: Ghost Tones: Portraits of George Russell

Read "Ghost Tones: Portraits of George Russell" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

Pianist/composer Ran Blake presents a loving tribute to his late colleague George Russell in a diverse program anchored by his sensitive piano playing. Blake and Russell taught together at the New England Conservatory for many years. Russell was immensely influential as a modal jazz theorist, but Blake loves his compositions above all. He interprets several of them here, along with some of his own and a few biographically relevant standards. The set opens and closes with solo piano ...

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Ran Blake: Ghost Tones: Portraits of George Russell

Read "Ghost Tones: Portraits of George Russell" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

At eighty years of age, pianist Ran Blake has shaped an impressive and multifaceted legacy: four decades of mentoring students at the New England Conservatory; helping shape a new genre of music, Third Stream, the marriage of the jazz and classical worlds; his teaming with the lady vocalists--Jeanne Lee, Christine Correa, Sara Serpa, Dominque Eade; numerous solo piano recordings, and a handful-plus of tribute sets, honoring icons like Thelonious Monk, Horace Silver, Duke Ellington, Sarah Vaughn. Ghost Tones ...

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Ran Blake: Plays Solo Piano

Read "Plays Solo Piano" reviewed by Mark Corroto

ESP Disk's 50th anniversary reissue series continues to unearth valuable documents from the history of cutting edge music. Back in the 1960s, when jazz was becoming marginalized as popular music and disenfranchised by the rise of rock-and-roll, ESP chose to eliminate musical classifications that pigeonholed creative music. The label released music by Albert Ayler and Gato Barbieri at the same time it was producing The Fugs and Pearls Before Swine. This re-release of pianist Ran Blake's Plays Solo ...

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At the Corner: Ran Blake / Sara Serpa / Christine Correa

Read "At the Corner: Ran Blake / Sara Serpa / Christine Correa" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

The common element between Sara Serpa's Aurora and Christine Correa's Down Here Below is obviously pianist Ran Blake. Enigmatic to a fault, Blake has made a potent name for himself among improvised music enthusiasts. Blake is an intellectual amalgam of pianists Thelonious Monk and Martial Solal distilled to a dissonant essence. A long time professor at the New England Conservatory, Blake has taken many under his tutelage, specifically singers, beginning with Jeanne Lee on The Newest Sound ...

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Ran Blake and Christine Correa: Down Here Below

Read "Down Here Below" reviewed by Hrayr Attarian

Starting with the inimitable Jeanne Lee, pianist Ran Blake has been collaborating with adventurous vocalists for half a century. These are singers who are not satisfied by merely parroting the old repertoire in the same tried and true, but also musty and tired way. These are musicians whose vocal cords command close listening, as is the case with the Mumbai-born and New York-based Christine Correa. This Abbey Lincoln tribute, Down Here Below, is the third time Correa ...

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Ran Blake: Vilnius Noir

Read "Vilnius Noir" reviewed by John Sharpe

Although recorded in concert in a church in the Lithuanian capital, Vilnius Noir has the feel of eavesdropping on a late night conversation between two old friends who don't need to say very much for the other to grasp the intended meaning. Although guitarist David “Knife" Fabris hails from a different generation than pianist composer Ran Blake, they share a sophisticated approach to the material at hand in this set of duos and solos. They met at the New England ...

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Ran Blake / Christine Correa: Out of the Shadows

Read "Out of the Shadows" reviewed by Raul d'Gama Rose

The spectacular second coupling of pianist Ran Blake and vocalist Christine Correa, Out of the Shadows is one of the most extraordinary albums of 2010. Both are wonderful storytellers in their own right. Music appears to flow and gush and foam through Blake's body, breaking in waves from his hands and fingertips as they flutter and fly and splash across the keyboard of the piano. As this happens, each note and phrase and metaphor tells a story like a film ...

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Ran Blake & Anthony Braxton: A Memory Of Vienna

Read "A Memory Of Vienna" reviewed by Troy Collins

On November 19, 1988, a few days before the Cool Noir music festival in Vienna, composer Franz Koglmann finished recording Orte Der Geometrie (Hatart) with his Pipetet a couple hours earlier than expected. A number of high profile artists and musicians were in attendance for the festival, so efforts were made to utilize the remaining pre-paid studio time. Pianist Ran Blake was on hand, as a special guest of the Pipetet, and composer/multi-instrumentalist Anthony Braxton had just stopped by the ...


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