Articles by Jakob Baekgaard

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

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Album Review

Various Artists: The Harry Smith B-Sides

Read "The Harry Smith B-Sides" reviewed by Jakob Baekgaard


An anthology of music is a mirror of the world. It says something about a specific time, a place, a genre, a label, or the life story of an artist. But in a few rare cases, an anthology can also help shape a musical landscape. In that sense, it becomes a musical map that not only draws the lines of the past, but also leads the way into the future. Released in 1952, Harry Smith's Anthology of American Folk Music ...

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Album Review

Various Artists: Excavated Shellac: An Alternate History of the World's Music

Read "Excavated Shellac: An Alternate History of the World's Music" reviewed by Jakob Baekgaard


Every audio medium has its champions from CD oldies to tape hipsters and lossless purists, but those who like to play big discs with a needle instead of a laser should not be lumped into such a vulgar category as vinyl revivalists. It's both a question of material and size, and true afficionados prefer the fragile format of 78s made of shellac. One of them is Jonathan Ward, who runs the sound blog Excavated Shellac, posting rare ...

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Multiple Reviews

The Art of ILK

Read "The Art of ILK" reviewed by Jakob Baekgaard


Formed in 2007, ILK (an abbreviation of Independent Label of København) is an artist-run label based in Copenhagen, encompassing a collective of 21 adventurous musicians. They started out as the young rebels of the Danish jazz scene but have become the established pioneers of the new Danish avantgarde. If you think of the avantgarde as an island of likeminded musicians then the great achievement of ILK is that the label has blurred the boundaries between high art, academic research, popular ...

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Album Review

John Lee Hooker: John Lee Hooker: Documenting the Sensation Recordings 1949-1952

Read "John Lee Hooker: Documenting the Sensation Recordings 1949-1952" reviewed by Jakob Baekgaard


Sam Phillips of Sun Records fame had an ear for musicians who stood out. He liked artists who were different, and he recognized the earth-shaking potential of John Lee Hooker's “Boogie Chillen,'" an early blueprint, it could be argued, for the rock 'n' roll sound pioneered by Sun. Phillips didn't get the chance to bring Hooker to Sun, but instead he found another unique blues personality to record, Howlin' Wolf, and the rest is history. Blues history ...

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Album Review

Tim Stine Trio: Fresh Demons

Read "Fresh Demons" reviewed by Jakob Baekgaard


There was a time when making progression with jazz guitar meant plugging in. Charlie Christian did this and took jazz guitar playing to a new level. But these days, the most radical thing a jazz guitarist can do is to plug out and play acoustically. While an endless number of electric guitarists explore a rock-oriented approach with plenty of effects, there are far fewer people who take the chance of playing with the naked honesty of an acoustic instrument. Mikkel ...

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Multiple Reviews

The Funky Side of Sonorama

Read "The Funky Side of Sonorama" reviewed by Jakob Baekgaard


If you look up “funk" in the New Grove Dictionary of Jazz, you get the following definition: “A style of black American popular music which developed in the mid-1960s out of soul music. It is characterized above all else by complex, interlocking, syncopated rhythmic patterns in duple meter." As suggested in the quote, funk can be a genre, but it can also be an element in music that has focus on repeated rhythm. Prince got to the core of the ...

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Film Review

Voice of the Eagle: The Enigma of Robbie Basho

Read "Voice of the Eagle: The Enigma of Robbie Basho" reviewed by Jakob Baekgaard


Voice of the Eagle: The Enigma of Robbie Basho A film by Liam Barker Liam Barker Film Production2015/2019 Acoustic guitar music wouldn't be the same without the pioneering effort of John Fahey, but If Fahey became the face of what he dubbed American Primitive music, a genre of advanced acoustic guitar music influenced by country-blues, Robbie Basho was just as important in opening the vista of guitar playing. Whereas Fahey's hero was country-blues guitarist, Charlie ...


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