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Catching Up With

Learn about what your favorite artist is up to...

CATCHING UP WITH

Trombonist Wayne Wallace racking up Grammy nods with distinctive record label

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Usually when a musician starts a record label, it's with no intent beyond releasing his own music. Not so with San Francisco-based trombonist Wayne Wallace. Since forming Patois Records (Motto: “Promoting improvisation") more than a decade ago, Wallace has used the label as a vehicle to promote both his own Latin jazz work and music of fellow free spirits performing everything from salsa to big-band jazz. Along the way, the label has picked up a handful of Grammy nominations, including ...

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John Scofield: Jazz Inspires You To Try Something Different

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In a career that has spanned over several decades with releases that have encompassed various types of musical styles and sounds, guitarist John Scofield has always managed to emphasize the importance of melody by building fragments of hummable tunes around musically abstract compositions. His record Country for Old Men (Impulse!, 2016)--the title is a play on the Coen brothers film No Country for Old Men--is comprised of classic country songs, where he pays tribute to songwriters including George Jones, Hank ...

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Hristo Vitchev: Charting His Own Way

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Hristo Vitchev isn't a typical guitar hero. Supremely fluent with his instrument, the prolific composer and performer would rather communicate than show off complex technique. His albums and concerts are full of gorgeously understated performances that leave just the right amount of room for the musicians to support each other and the audience to fill in the blanks. Maybe it was inevitable that Vitchev would take an idiosyncratic approach to jazz, given the twisted route he took to ...

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Dmitri Matheny: Flugelhorn Evangelist

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The flugelhorn can be a difficult mistress. Players may find themselves endlessly explaining the differences between their axe and the trumpet, why their instrument seldom sounds like Miles Davis in a bad mood and why most horn players treat it as a specialty tool. But when someone with the authority of bebop legend and flugelhorn champion Art Farmer, tells you stick with something, you tend to listen. Dmitri Matheny, one of Farmer's last private students and his most ...

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Jane Monheit and her Muses...

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When vocalist Jane Monheit blew the music community's hair back with her debut recording Never Never Land (N-Coded Music) in 2000, she was 22-years old, beautiful, sensual, soon-to-be-married and talented with chops to spare. By 2016, Monheit had released nine additional studio recordings, including the well-received Come Dream With Me (N-Coded Music, 2001) and Surrender (Concord, 2007). Her most recent recording Songbook Sessions: Ella Fitzgerald (Emerald City Records, 2016) elevates her to a class by herself. All About ...

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Natacha Atlas: A Myriad of Possibilities

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Belgian singer Natacha Atlas' music sits on the brink between two cultures: Western and Eastern. She uses this meeting of sounds to create something unique that takes the best from both worlds. Atlas began her career with Transglobal Underground, a world music and electronic dance fusion act with whom she recorded four albums. The group's unorthodox approach received widespread acclaim and served as a catalyst for furthering fusion between world music sounds and Western electronic dance music. When she left ...

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Ben Monder: Amorphous Music

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Ben Monder is a guitarist with a singular and influential voice. While he has received a great acclaim for his multifaceted work and unparalleled technical facility, Monder has also demonstrated remarkable breadth both as a bandleader and composer. His debut album for ECM Amorphae is a kind of a movie for one's ears. Amorphae consists of a set of beautiful compositions that orchestrate kind of sounds beyond the imagination. Monder's distinctive guitars create a wide range of colors, dynamics and ...

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My Life With Orrin Keepnews

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The prolific record producer and label founder Orrin Keepnews passed away at his El Cerrito CA home on March 1,2015, a day before his 92nd birthday. The November 2015 memorial and benefit concert was a time for friends and family to come together to celebrate his full life and acclaimed 60 year recording industry career. His illustrious history includes working with and nurturing jazz giants like Thelonious Monk, Bill Evans, Julian “Cannonball" Adderley, McCoy Tyner, Mulgrew Miller and much more. ...

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Maria Schneider on "The Thompson Fields"

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Maria Schneider is one of the most influential artists on the international jazz scene. Her open minded approach has led her to become a referent as a composer without being tagged to a specific genre. In the jazz panorama, she receives recognition for her impeccable, beautiful and meaningful compositions as well as for her passionate and determined work as a conductor of her orchestra. The Thompson Fields (ArtistShare, 2015) marks the first Maria Schneider Orchestra release in eight years. With ...


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