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Charlie Parker: Now's The Time

Read "Now's The Time" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

In the pantheon of jazz saxophonists, Charlie Parker has been among the most transformational of artists, despite not living nearly long enough to fulfill his potential. Parker's lifetime, as a principal architect of bebop, and a self-destructive force, has been documented ad nauseam but his music continues to significantly influence new generations. Since Parker's death in 1955, an unprecedented two-hundred albums of his music have been released, very few containing newly discovered material; it's a testament to his enduring legacy. ...

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Marcus Miller: A Night in Monte Carlo

Read "A Night in Monte Carlo" reviewed by Chuck Koton

It's been more than four years since James Brown, the “hardest working man in show business," departed this Earth for an ethereal stage, time enough to anoint a successor. Bassist Marcus Miller deserves consideration--a tribute that would, no doubt, put a smile on the face of the Godfather of Soul. After all, a typical year for the virtuosic bassist includes months of global touring (he just returned from a tour that took him to five continents, featuring his unforgettable '80s ...

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Bireli Lagrene Trio: Gypsy Trio

Read "Gypsy Trio" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer

While his playing reflects diverse influences, guitarist Biréli Lagrène clearly comes out of the gypsy tradition of Django Reinhardt, whose 100th birthday is being celebrated in 2010. Gypsy Trio captures the feeling of Reinhardt's musical era, with some tunes, rhythms, and the atmosphere of a lively Paris nightclub between the two world wars--energetic and fun, but equally contemplative on lovely ballads, including Lagrène's “Sir F.D," and The Beatles' “Something." Lagrène plays with strong feeling, sometimes reminiscent of Charlie Byrd's acoustic ...

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Jean-Michel Pilc: True Story

Read "True Story" reviewed by Raul d'Gama Rose

There are few pianists in any realm of music as expressive, and with such extraordinary touch and dynamics, as Jean-Michel Pilc. He is also so enormously inventive that he might be perhaps one of very, very few pianists to inhabit the same rarefied atmosphere as Bill Evans. And that is only half the story. To Pilc, the piano is not another instrument; it is an extension of the human voice. It whispers sensuously and provocatively, babbling on with excited chatter ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Ahmad Jamal: A Quiet Time

Read "Ahmad Jamal: A Quiet Time" reviewed by Ian Patterson

Ahmad JamalA Quiet TimeDreyfus Records2010 Always reluctant to go into the studio unless he has material he is thoroughly satisfied with, pianist Ahmad Jamal's A Quiet Time could be considered as a follow-up to It's Magic (Dreyfus Records, 2008), given the relatively short period between the two releases. Stylistically, it is similar, with Jamal leading a habitual trio augmented with percussion through a set of (mostly) originals, a couple of which have ...

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Jean-Michel Pilc: True Story

Read "True Story" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Jean-Michel Pilc has yet to achieve a US prominence that compares to his fellow French jazz pianists, the late Michel Petrucciani and Algerian-born Martial Solal. While both of the latter musicians are frequently cited for their lightning-fast delivery, Pilc shares their agility as well as a finely honed ear for lyricism. But ultimately, Pilc is a different kind of player, interpreter and personality. He counters his own expressive side with a particular state of off-kilter playing that doesn't necessarily allow ...

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Jean-Michel Pilc: True Story

Read "True Story" reviewed by Joel Roberts

Paris-born pianist Jean-Michel Pilc continues his impressive series of Dreyfus Jazz releases with True Story, his first album since 2006's New Dreams and the debut effort for his exciting new trio featuring respected veteran drummer Billy Hart and talented Russian-born bassist Boris Kozlov. The 49-year-old Pilc, a resident of New York for the past 15 years, is a self-taught musician whose varied experience includes playing with masters like Roy Haynes, Michael Brecker and Dave Liebman, among many others, as well ...


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