Articles | Popular | Future

RADIO

Famous Jazz Mothers And Their Young

Read "Famous Jazz Mothers And Their Young" reviewed by Mary Foster Conklin

The Mothers Day broadcast included new releases from Molly Hammer, Mary Stallings, Vivian Sessoms and Lisa Maxwell, with birthday shout outs to Carla Bley in the first hour, Mary Lou Williams in the second hour, plus vocalists Judi Silvano, John Proulx, Barb Jungr and trumpeter Nadje Noordhuis, among others, plus cuts from some famous jazz mothers and their musical offspring. Playlist Champian Fulton “Blues Etude" from The Stylings of Champian (Champian Records) 00:00 Molly Hammer “New Blowtop Blues" ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Carla Bley's Trio at the Jazz Standard

Read "Carla Bley's Trio at the Jazz Standard" reviewed by Akinfe Fatou

Carla Bley's Trio Jazz Standard New York, NY March 19, 2019 Carla Bley is extraordinary, savvy, and enigmatic. The Guggenheim Fellow (1972), German Jazz Trophy winner ("A Life of Jazz"—2009), 5-time GRAMMY-nominee and NEA Jazz Master (2015) was joined by her spouse Steve Swallow on electric bass and Andy Sheppard on saxophone at the Jazz Standard for an evening of transfigurations, reinvigorated ensembles, and recherche improvisations underscored by fascinating idiosyncracies. A renowned bandleader, ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Carla Bley Trio at Dazzle

Read "Carla Bley Trio at Dazzle" reviewed by Geoff Anderson

Carla Bley Trio Dazzle Denver, CO March 24, 2019 At age 82, Carla Bley has been around. But not everywhere. Remarkably, her two nights at Dazzle last weekend marked her first appearances in Colorado as a performer. Still, the depth and scope of her past music-making is unmatched by most musicians on the scene today. She thinks of herself primarily as a composer and in that role has written for big band, ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Carla Bley Trio at Dazzle Jazz

Read "Carla Bley Trio at Dazzle Jazz" reviewed by Tyran Grillo

Carla Bley Trio Dazzle Jazz Denver, Colorado March 24, 2019 Pianist Carla Bley drew an equilateral triangle with electric bassist Steve Swallow and saxophonist Andy Sheppard at Dazzle Jazz in Denver. The trio showed the true meaning of democracy, unafraid to temper every glint of brightness with a hint of shadow. As within a handcrafted watch, each gear and spring worked in concert: remove one part and the whole mechanism would cease to ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Like A Jazz Machine 2017

Read "Like A Jazz Machine 2017" reviewed by Ian Patterson

Like A Jazz Machine Centre Culturel Regionel Opderschmelz Dudelange, Luxembourg May 25-28, 2017 Size, as Like A Jazz Machine knows, isn't everything. The audience in the Centre Culturel Regionel Opderschmelz amounts to just four seated rows downstairs, with a small standing section to the rear, and ten rows of seats upstairs. Yet this intimate setting is the arena for an international jazz program that would be the envy of much bigger towns ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Big Ears Festival 2017

Read "Big Ears Festival 2017" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

Big Ears Festival Knoxville, TN March 23-26, 2017 Knoxville's Big Ears Festival expanded to a full four days this year, giving it more time to go its expected merry, eclectic way. In a break with usual practice, there was no official Composer in Residence. That distinction could have gone to Gavin Bryars (with four concerts of his music)--or possibly Carla Bley (two concerts), Meredith Monk (two performances), or Henry Threadgill (who won the Pulitzer Prize for ...

INTERVIEWS

Carla Bley: Shoe Leather, Mystery & Moxie

Read "Carla Bley: Shoe Leather, Mystery & Moxie" reviewed by Ian Patterson

With the passing of time. That's roughly how the title of Carla Bley's second trio album for ECM translates. Bley turned eighty a few months before the release of Andando el Tiempo but the passing years, if anything, have sharpened her composer's claws and whetted her playing appetite, judging by the music on this, her third collaboration with Steve Swallow and Andy Sheppard following the live album Songs With Legs (Watt, 1994) and Trios (ECM, 2013). While most ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Carla Bley: Andando el Tiempo

Read "Carla Bley: Andando el Tiempo" reviewed by John Kelman

A few months shy of three years following the release of Trios (ECM, 2013), composer/keyboardist and NEA Jazz Master Carla Bley returns with Andando el Tiempo, an album of largely introspective music that shares much with its predecessor, but also acts as a flip side of the same coin. Like Trios, Andando el Tiempo was recorded in Lugano, Italy (albeit in two different rooms) and brings back the same trio that first appeared on 1994's Songs With Legs ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Tribute to Carla Bley: Mandala Octet and Mandala Orchestra

Read "Tribute to Carla Bley: Mandala Octet and Mandala Orchestra" reviewed by Harry S. Pariser

Mandala Octet and Mandala Orchestra SFJAZZ San Francisco, CA June 5, 2015 Steve McQuarry had an epiphany last December. While on the phone with Karen Mantler, daughter of eminent avant-garde jazz composer Carla Bley, McQuarry realized that he would like to play some of her tunes onstage, and Mantler offered to send him the charts. A package containing the charts duly arrived, and McQuarry went about assembling a big band. The results ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Carla Bley / Andy Sheppard / Steve Swallow: Trios

Read "Trios" reviewed by Sammy Stein

In Lugano, Switzerland in 2012, pianist Carla Bley, saxophonist Andy Sheppard and bassist Steve Swallow were recorded, and the result is Trios (EMC 2013). This CD is atmospheric and energised. Included are new versions of Bley's original “Utviklingssang" ( “Development Song"), “Vashkar" and the suites “Les Trois Lagons" , “Wildlife," and “The Girl Who Cried Champagne." It marks Bley's departure from the ECM distributed WATT label which has been her platform for the past 40 years, and her first recording ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Carla Bley / Andy Sheppard / Steve Swallow: Trios

Read "Trios" reviewed by John Kelman

In a career more defined by memorable compositions than instrumental acumen, it's easy to forget that Carla Bley may not be the most virtuosic pianist on the planet, but she's a far more than capable one, as evidenced on duo recordings like Are We There Yet? (Watt, 1999), with life partner/bassist Steve Swallow, and Songs With Legs (WATT, 1995), a trio date with longtime collaborator, saxophonist Andy Sheppard--also heard in Bley's larger ensemble of Appearing Nightly (Watt/ECM, 2008) and quartet ...

BOOK REVIEWS

Amy C. Beal: Carla Bley

Read "Amy C. Beal: Carla Bley" reviewed by Chris May

Carla Bley Amy C. Beal Softcover, 114 pages University of Illinois Press ISBN: 9780252078187 2011 Remarkably, this is the first detailed, published study of the career and music of Carla Bley, the distinguished composer, keyboardist, band leader and activist. It is the seventh volume in the University of Illinois' American Composers series, following studies of Lou Harrison, John Cage, Dudley Buck, William Grant Still, Rudolf Friml and Elliott Carter. ...


Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.