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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Ray Charles Orchestra: Ray Charles Orchestra: Zurich 1961-Swiss Radio Days Jazz Series, Vol. 41

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We generally take it for granted now, but Ray Charles' trademark blend of jazz, gospel, R&B and soul in a large ensemble or orchestral setting was a unique sound mastered by few artists when this 1961 set was recorded. Number 41 in the Montreux Jazz Label's Swiss Radio Days Jazz Series, Zurich 1961 is a historical and musical treasure which might have been better recorded but could not have been better performed. Zurich 1961 reaches crackling, up-tempo jazz ...

TAKE FIVE WITH...

Take Five with Maurice Brown

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About Maurice Brown Maurice “Mobetta" Brown's talent orbits him simultaneously through three worlds: contemporary jazz, blues-rock and cutting edge hip hop. He's a mastermind as a trumpeter, composer, arranger, and producer. When Maurice picks up his horn, his soulful melodies soar into a rarefied space that uniquely marries be-bop to hip-hop and rock, producing his own distinctive sound. Constant evolution drives him. His intuitive vision lights a fire under traditional jazz, adds sonic brass to rock ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Ray Charles Orchestra: Ray Charles Orchestra: Zurich 1961-Swiss Radio Days Jazz Series, Vol. 41

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1961 was a classic jazz vintage for Ray Charles. That was the year he delivered unto us Genius + Soul = Jazz (Impulse!, 1961), and the year he took Europe by storm with a big band in tow. He was in good voice and spirits, he had top quality charts in his book--a good number from the pen of Quincy Jones--and he had a talent-filled band that included trumpeter Marcus Belgrave, trombonist Dicky Wells, alto saxophonist Hank Crawford, and tenor ...

THE VINYL POST

Ray Charles: The Atlantic Years in Mono

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Hot on the heels of their highly-touted vinyl project featuring the Atlantic sides of John Coltrane in mono, Rhino hits the vaults again for a comparable set that mines the work of Ray Charles in some of his earliest recorded works. A similar thread runs through both projects. A heavyweight box serves as a fashionable slipcover for the albums, which themselves sport glossy front covers. Mastering was done by John Webber and the albums were pressed in Germany, presumably at ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Thelma Houston at the Catalina Jazz Club

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Thelma Houston and Taalam Acey Catalina Jazz Club Los Angeles, CA April 29, 2016 It was a beautiful starry night. The weather was just right. Perfect for a stroll down Sunset Boulevard in the heart of Hollywood. I took a short cut walking from the Walk of Fame as I made my way to the Catalina Jazz Club, one of L.A.'s premiere jazz venues. I heard about a specialty show, Motown, Memories ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Allen Toussaint: American Tunes

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The mighty river of American songs flows in many different directions: blues, gospel, jazz and funk are part of the muddy water that makes up the music. Pianist, composer, arranger and record producer, Allen Toussaint, who sadly passed away in 2015, was an important part of the ongoing legacy of American music. He was one of the architects of New Orleans R & B, but his musical horizon was much broader than just a single genre. More ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Allen Toussaint: American Tunes

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When it comes to the jny: New Orleans sound and its purveyors, drummers may be the most integral, but the most celebrated are perhaps the pianists. Longhair, Booker, Rebbenack, Cleary, and even Fats Domino are all acknowledged to be in that pantheon. And certainly the name Toussaint has long been counted among them as well but, outside of New Orleans, more so by those in the know than the general public. This is partly because throughout his career, Toussaint's preferred ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

The Blind Boys of Alabama: Spirit Of The Century and Higher Ground

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The experience of spiritual jubilation has taken The Blind Boys of Alabama far and wide from their southern roots. For over seventy years they have maintained their unwavering commitment to only sing in praise and service of the Lord, and they have succeeded on that. They take their role as guardians and bearers of the gospel tradition so serious, that it has been their solitary mission. Having recorded over sixty albums since their beginning as glee club singers at the ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Jasmine Power: Stories and Rhymes EP

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There's something wonderful about watching a major talent emerge blinking into the harsh spotlight of the public gaze for the first time. Of course, some find the experience so traumatic that they are never heard of again, others are unlucky finding themselves in the clutches of the unprincipled sharks that inhabit the arts every bit as much as, say, investment banking. On the strength of “Stories and Rhymes," the classy debut release from Lake District born, Welsh bred, singer Jasmine ...


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