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Articles by Paul Rauch

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Chuck Deardorf: Perception

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Before the tech revolution that has ushered in an era of unprecedented growth and global recognition, the city of Seattle was a bit of an outpost in the world of jazz. Since the 1920s, the city has enjoyed a vibrant and innovative jazz scene, often resulting in local musicians backing major international touring artists. The emerald city has spawned such renowned jazz icons as Quincy Jones, Ray Charles, Larry Coryell and Ernestine Anderson as well. In the 1970s ...

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Elsa Nilsson & Jon Cowherd: After Us

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The music of Swedish/American flutist and composer Elsa Nilsson is widely influenced, interconnecting and transcending cultural boundaries from Sweden, to northern Europe, through the heart of American jazz, and stretching south to the sounds of Rio de Janeiro. She willfully takes the leap from one musical outpost to another without compromise, along the way finding interesting and original space to be uniquely herself. This leads to some unconventional aspects of her approach and where the music ultimately travels. She dares ...

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Chuck Deardorf: Hanging On To The Groove

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Bassist Chuck Deardorf has gained a reputation for virtuosity and professionalism over a career that has thus far spanned 40 years. He has been the first call bassist in Seattle for most of his career, playing with some of the most renowned musicians in the history of jazz. For many years, despite having a prolific local jazz scene, the now burgeoning city of Seattle was considered a remote outpost in the jazz world. Many touring musicians would arrive on the ...

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Jovino Santos Neto Quinteto: Por Causa De Voce

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Brazilian pianist/composer Jovino Santos Neto came to the United Startes in 1993, and settled in the city of Seattle. He had visited the city while on tour with the legendary Brazilian musician/composer Hermeto Pascoal, and identified with the physical beauty and cultural landscape of the Pacific Northwest. No matter his global location, Santos Neto is not only a remarkable musician and composer, he is as well the caretaker, or curator of the compositions of the visionary Pascoal. Through his own ...

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Jay Thomas with the Oliver Groenewald Newnet: I Always Knew

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Jay Thomas has lived the jazz life. He has endured, overcome, and continued to artistically thrive through all the ruminations of a path chosen by few. While much of his life may form a parallel story to those of many, Thomas' version, his personal adjunct to its litany, is a story of artistic triumph that opened doors seldom walked through. It is a musical legacy in Seattle, unmatched in the colorful history of jazz in his hometown, documented by a ...

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Jay Thomas: We Always Knew

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Legacy is a fleeting notion. It is incomprehensible in real time when a career hits high points, when certain doors open to quantitative opportunity. Jay Thomas can tell you a thing or two about that, based on his own personal experience as a jazz artist over half a century. His story includes playing on the Seattle scene as a teenager, leading to opportunities hampered by among other things, drug addiction. It is as well a story of overcoming those obstacles ...

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Thomas Marriott: Romance Language

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Trumpeter Thomas Marriott has established his jazz credentials over the years through a collection of beautifully inspired and well received albums on the Origin Records label. His formidable chops, extensive vocabulary, respect for tradition and penchant for musical adventurism has put him into the conversation concerning the top practitioners of his instrument in modern times. Marriott has the rare ability to look deeply into the matter at hand, whether it be through interpretation of classic repertoire, or performing his deeply ...

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LaVon Hardison: There Will Be Trouble

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Vocalist LaVon Hardison has been garnering recognition for her work on stage and in the studio in and around Seattle for several years. Named Jazz Vocalist of the Year in 2017 by Earshot Jazz in Seattle, Hardison 's acclaim is largely relegated to the dynamic and innovative jazz scene in the Pacific Northwest. With a soulful sound rooted in her upbringing in the Baptist church, Hardison made her mark in theatre, before venturing into jazz stylings. Her strength ...

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Randy Halberstadt: Open Heart

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Seattle based pianist Randy Halberstadt has been a major figure on the jazz scene in the Pacific Northwest for several decades, applying his talents as a pianist, composer, educator, and author. He has four previous releases as a leader, most recently with Flash Point (Origin, 2010). So yes, it has been some time since we last heard from the multidimensional pianist. In the meantime, Halberstadt has garnered a reputation as an accompanist for jazz vocalists, most notably with ...

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Andrew Rathbun: Atwood Suites

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The mingling of jazz music and poetry is not a new concept. It has always been an amiable, yet at times, uncomfortable fit. From a verse standpoint, it is in many ways liberating. While most vocalized lyrics and spoken word forms rely on rhyme to speak to cadence and rhythm, free verse poetry liberates the narrative from the confinements of structure, and much like an improvising instrumentalist, takes spoken language into a intertwining duality with the melody within harmonic dimension. ...

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Johnaye Kendrick: Flying

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Once, maybe twice in a generation, a singer enters the world of jazz and captivates the genre so dominated by jazz instrumentalists. There are qualities in the voice, delivery, the exquisite phrasing, and inexhaustible ability to deliver a narrative in such a way that expresses the jazz and blues tradition in a special and personal way. Johnaye Kendrick is one of those singers. Upon graduating from the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz, then sequestered at Loyola University in New Orleans, ...

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Ben Markley Quartet: Basic Economy

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Pianist/composer Ben Markley has enough jazz pedigree to draw interest from jazz fans on an international level. After all, he has performed with such notables as Brian Lynch, Terell Stafford, and Eddie Henderson. His work on the jazz scene in Denver is well regarded, as is his work as Director of Jazz Studies at the University of Wyoming in Laramie, not what one would call a hotbed of jazz music. It was Markley's most recent recording Clockwise: The ...