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ALBUM REVIEWS

Abdullah Ibrahim: Dream Time

Read "Dream Time" reviewed by Chris May

Stream-of-consciousness solo-piano recitals come in as many shades as jazz itself. At one extreme are Keith Jarrett's messianic epics. At another are Abdullah Ibrahim's less flashy but deeper outings. Ibrahim's style is about substance, space and subtlety. He says more by doing less. Duke Ellington and Thelonious Monk, after all, were his formative influences. Dream Time was recorded in March 2019 at the Hirzinger Concert Hall in Sölinhuben, in the foothills of the German Alps where Ibrahim ...

INTERVIEWS

Abdullah Ibrahim: The Sound of the Universe

Read "Abdullah Ibrahim: The Sound of the Universe" reviewed by Mackenzie Horne

Abdullah Ibrahim's cosmology informs his art. While some might look upon him as an overseer at the crossroads between new and old, the tempered pianist stands as a sage, painting swirling rhythms that resemble the spheres of the universe with his compositions. He continues to combine ancient wisdom with the tones of the future; formation and reformation are one and the same for him. He roots his musical practice within tradition, composing with an ethos based on cycles.

ALBUM REVIEWS

Abdullah Ibrahim: The Balance

Read "The Balance" reviewed by Chris May

Abdullah Ibrahim's discography goes back sixty years, and although there are longer periods between his releases than there used to be, Ibrahim has retained all his grit and jubilance. The pianist and composer continues to make gloriously uplifting music steeped in its South African roots, in a style which still carries echoes of his formative overseas influences, {{m: Duke Ellington and Thelonious Monk. The Balance, which is Ibrahim's first new album in four years, will delight anyone who ...

RADIO

Joey D Came To Town, Abdullah’s A Winner & More

Read "Joey D Came To Town, Abdullah’s A Winner & More" reviewed by Marc Cohn

Three features for you this week. Joey DeFrancesco wowed Baton Rouge on Wednesday, November 28th at the Manship Theatre in Baton Rouge; we warmed up the crowd on Gifts and Messages with DrJazz's request list. Pianist Abdullah Ibrahim is a 2019 NEA Jazz Masters Award winner, and we spotlight his Penguin Guide 'Core Collection' recording, Yarona. And we also spotlight Charlie Christian with Benny Goodman from the 25th ASCAP anniversary concert @ Carnegie Hall in 1939. Of course, there's much, ...

RADIO

Jazz in Exile, Part Two

Read "Jazz in Exile, Part Two" reviewed by Seton Hawkins

South Africa's Jazz enters a period of exile following the Sharpeville Massacre. In Part Two of Jazz in Exile, we'll examine more closely the artists who leave South Africa for Europe, learn about their stories, and hear their music. Playlist Blue Notes “Ntyilo Ntyilo" from Blue Notes for Johnny (Ogun Records) 01:49 Brotherhood of Breath “Mra" from Brotherhood of Breath (Repertoire Records) 09:45 Johnny Dyani “Radebe" from Witchdoctor's Son (Steeplechase Records) 16:15 Louis Moholo-Moholo “Ithi Gqi" from Spirits Rejoice! (Ogun ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Abdullah Ibrahim at the Michigan Theater

Read "Abdullah Ibrahim at the Michigan Theater" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

Abdullah Ibrahim & Ekaya Michigan Theater A Tribute to the Jazz Epistles Ann Arbor, Michigan April 13, 2018 Back in the fall of 2015, the University Musical Society had the rare opportunity to present the legendary South African pianist Abdullah Ibrahim in one of his rare U.S. appearances. So when UMS announced last spring that Ibrahim would again return to Ann Arbor for their 2017-2018 season, it was cause for celebration. Upping the ante ...

LIVE REVIEWS

The Jazz Epistles featuring Abdullah Ibrahim & Ekaya at The Town Hall

Read "The Jazz Epistles featuring Abdullah Ibrahim & Ekaya at The Town Hall" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

The Jazz Epistles featuring Abdullah Ibrahim & Ekaya The Town Hall New York, NY April 27, 2017 There are rare instances when a musical message for the times manages to transcend its place, evolving into a message for all time. Such is the case with The Jazz Epistles, the first black South African band to embrace and advance the sounds of modern jazz. Back in 1959, a collection of that country's ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Abdullah Ibrahim in Stunning Recital at the 30th Annual Oslo Jazz Festival

Read "Abdullah Ibrahim in Stunning Recital at the 30th Annual Oslo Jazz Festival" reviewed by John Ephland

Abdullah Ibrahim Universitetets Aula 30th Annual Oslo Jazz Festival Oslo, Norway August 16, 2016 Alternately rhapsodic and episodic, pianist/composer Abdullah Ibrahim filled the airs of the 500- seat Universitetets Aula with melody upon melody, all of it improvised yet seemingly composed. The occasion was the 30th annual Oslo Jazz Festival, August 14-20, and Ibrahim was going it alone, a scheduled trio performance canceled due to rumors of a terrorist ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Abullah Ibrahim at SFJAZZ

Read "Abullah Ibrahim at SFJAZZ" reviewed by Harry S. Pariser

Abdullah Ibrahim SFJAZZ San Francisco, CA April 29-30, 2016 At 81, pianist Abdullah Ibrahim, is still going strong, something he proved during a remarkable tour-de-force performance which spanned four nights at SFJAZZ in San Francisco. For the first two evenings (Thursday and Friday), Ibrahim appeared in the company of his Mukashi Trio. For these nights, Ibrahim brought together bassist, cellist, and composer Noah Jackson, a jny: Detroit native, and Cleave Guyton Jr. who ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Abdullah Ibrahim at The National Concert Hall, Dublin

Read "Abdullah Ibrahim at The National Concert Hall, Dublin" reviewed by Ian Patterson

Abdullah Ibrahim National Concert Hall jny:Dublin, Ireland March 4, 2016 South African pianist Abdullah Ibrahim is showing few signs of a diminished appetite for the road, despite turning eighty one this past November. A short UK tour precedes a string of US dates and there are already gigs in the diary for 2017. This one-off Irish show at the National Concert Hall presented Ibrahim solo, a context he has repeatedly explored during his ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Abdullah Ibrahim & Ekaya at the Michigan Theater

Read "Abdullah Ibrahim & Ekaya at the Michigan Theater" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

Abdullah Ibrahim & Ekaya Michigan Theater University Musical Society 22nd Annual Jazz Series Ann Arbor, Michigan October 21, 2015 The opportunities to hear some of the remaining jazz legends outside of their home environs are becoming increasingly rare these days. In the case of pianist Abdullah Ibrahim, it is downright miraculous that this international icon left his home in Cape Town to make a rare stateside appearance. Add to that the fact that he ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Abdullah Ibrahim: The Song Is My Story

Read "The Song Is My Story" reviewed by James Nadal

Blessed is the artist who has reached the zenith of his craft, and endured to reap the rewards, becoming the wise elder reflecting upon a lifetime of creative accomplishment. Having left an impressive body of work, he still greets the dawn with exuberance and optimism. Pianist Abdullah Ibrahim is such an artist. As a consummate and dedicated musician, he blazed a trail from the tumultuous townships of Capetown, South Africa to the premier concert halls of the world, and remains ...


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