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

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Gretchen Parlato: Live in NYC

Read "Live in NYC" reviewed by Dr. Judith Schlesinger

In the ever-growing crowd of jazz vocalists, Gretchen Parlato increasingly stands out for her unique sound and musicality. She has been criticized by those who think she should sing “bigger," move around more, and open her eyes when she performs. But she has held to her own meditative style, which includes encouraging her bands to have spontaneous, passionate, and personally-expressive conversations, rather than being obedient supporters that she unilaterally “leads." This is all very evident on Live in NYC, which ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Gretchen Parlato: Live in NYC

Read "Live in NYC" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Live in NYC is vocalist Gretchen Parlato's eagerly awaited live recording and follow-up to 2011's excellent The Lost And Found (Obliqsound). Gretchen Parlato (Obliqsound, 2006) and 2011's In A Dream (Obliqsound) round out her catalog as a leader. That said, Parlato has been much more busy than would be indicated by her four recordings in eight years. She has appeared on some 70-plus recordings from Kenny Barron's The Traveler (Emarcy, 2006) to Esperanza Spalding's Esperanza (Concord Music Group, 2008) to ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Gretchen Parlato: The Lost and Found

Read "The Lost and Found" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Gretchen Parlato is emerging as the most important jazz singer since Cassandra Wilson. Her vocal approach is so unique and her repertoire so eclectic that she stands to create a jazz vocal genre unto herself. After placing first in the 2004 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Vocals Competition, Parlato released her eponymous debut, self-produced, in 2005. Warmly received, she followed her freshman effort up in 2009 with In a Dream (Obliqsound), her critical gravity growing. And those are ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Gretchen Parlato: The Lost And Found

Read "The Lost And Found" reviewed by Wilbert Sostre

Despite being completely different singers, there's a lot to connect Gretchen Parlato with the legendary Billie Holiday. Holiday was a singer with a phrasing deeply rooted in the blues, while Parlato is a jazz singer with the modern influences of R&B and pop music, but what draws them together is the uniqueness of their respective styles. Neither has the greatest vocal range, but the originality and pure feeling of their voices is what has set them apart from any other ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Gretchen Parlato: The Lost and Found

Read "The Lost and Found" reviewed by A. Lienhard

Gretchen Parlato's much anticipated third release, The Lost and Found, secures her position as the leading vocalist in New York's under-40 jazz scene. On this 15-track program, Parlato and producer Robert Glasper blend musical styles like so many cocktails. They purposefully demonstrate that hip-hop has a quiet side, that you needn't be from Brazil to play its music, and that a mere whisper can incite goose bumps. The album opens with an update of the Simply Red ...

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Max Wild: Tamba

Read "Tamba" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Alto saxophonist Max Wild's Tamba, his ObliqSound debut, combines classic musical themes and devices from Zimbabwe and South Africa with illuminating arrangements and improvisations from contemporary jazz. “My connection to Zimbabwean music defines me. Once I stopped trying to sound like a 'jazz' musician and let my inspiration come out freely, I was able to let my diverse influences create something that was personal to me. My music," Wild once reflected. “It's up to the critics what they want to ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Gretchen Parlato: In A Dream

Read "In A Dream" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Vocalist Gretchen Parlato is part Bobby McFerrin, part Theo Bleckmann, and David Binney. All men, yes. Parlato's voice is light as an apparition, ethereal and implied. She is fond of vocal gymnastics as is McFerrin. She shares a sense of humor in art with Bleckmann and a musical adventurousness with Binney. In A Dream is the recording Chet Baker would have made, had he been a woman. Both vocalists share an opaqueness in an otherwise transparent instrument. ...


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