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DVD/Film Reviews

DVD/FILM REVIEWS

Rolling Stone: Stories From The Edge - 50 Years of Defining Culture

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Rolling Stone: Stories From The Edge: 50 Years of Defining Culture Shout Factory 2018 In its two DVD's, six-chapters and four hours-plus total running time (which might well have been twice that length to be truly comprehensive_, Stories From the Edge ostensibly (and fitfully) covers history also laid out in the coffee table book 50 Years of Rolling Stone: The Music, Politics And People That Shaped Our Culture (Harry N. Abrams, 2017) and, to a slightly ...

DVD/FILM REVIEWS

The US Festival 1982: The US Generation

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Various Artists The US Festival 1982 MVD Entertainment Group 2018 By title alone, The US Festival of 1982 might seem light years removed from the abiding fascination with festivals now pervading our culture. But if director Glenn Aveni's ninety-minutes plus documentary proves anything, it's that this event founded and sponsored by Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak presaged the sophisticated multi-media presentations of such events today. The scrupulous depiction of the evolution of the festival ...

DVD/FILM REVIEWS

Lajos Dudas: Ein Künstlerportrait

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Lajos Dudas Lajos Dudas--Ein Künstlerportrait Stadt Neuss Kulturamt 2018 The German city of Neuss honors an adopted son with this three-part video project (under the auspices of the Culture Department of City Neuss (GER)). German/Hungarian clarinetist Lajos Dudas has made his home there since 1973, leaving the freelance life to teach at the Neuss School of Music. Dudas had been performing in rock and jazz, as well as a featured classical soloist. But his true ...

DVD/FILM REVIEWS

Open Land: Meeting John Abercrombie

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John Abercrombie Open Land: Meeting John AbercrombieMusic Heritage Productions / ECM Records2018 It's almost a year to the day since the world lost John Abercrombie and, for many of his fans, that loss remains something still deeply and palpably felt. A guitarist who managed to be instantly recognizable without relying on many of the signatures that help identify most guitarists--certain approaches to phrasing and melody and specific tonal approaches amongst them--Abercrombie may not have garnered ...

DVD/FILM REVIEWS

Open Land: Meeting John Abercrombie

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John Abercrombie Open Land: Meeting John Abercrombie Music Heritage Productions / ECM Records 2018 Named after John Abercrombie's 1999 ECM album of the same name (by his trio with organist Dan Wall and drummer Adam Nussbaum, plus guests trumpeter Kenny Wheeler, violinist Mark Feldman and saxophonist Joe Lovano), Open Land finds the guitarist late in his career. Much of the ninety minute run time shows him talking about his life as a jazz guitarist and ...

DVD/FILM REVIEWS

BANG! The Bert Berns Story

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BANG! The Bert Berns Story Abramorama 2018 BANG! The Bert Berns Story compares favorably to The Terry Kath Experience (FilmRise, 2017), not just in the elevated quality of its conception and execution, but in its authorship by an offspring of the subject. Just as the Chicago guitarist's daughter, Michelle Sinclair, helmed the documentary she produced and directed in homage to her late father, this feature is the result of exhaustive research and collation by the late ...

DVD/FILM REVIEWS

Still On The Run: The Jeff Beck Story

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Jeff Beck Still On The Run: The Jeff Beck Story Eagle Vision 2018 Unlike its decidedly idiosyncratic subject, Still On The Run: The Jeff Beck Story is a wholly conventional piece of video work focusing almost exclusively on the musical progression of the British guitar hero. It may be intended less for devoted fans than those more casual musiclovers who've had their curiosity piqued about what of the man's done and how he's done it ...

DVD/FILM REVIEWS

Eric Clapton: Life In 12 Bars

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Eric Clapton Eric Clapton: Life in 12 Bars Eagle Vision 2018 There's a point right near the end of Lili Fini Zanuck's film devoted to Eric Clapton where the archetypal guitar hero makes a solemn statement regarding the profound importance of music in his life. His declaration strikes an unusually resounding chord because it points up, with eye-opening clarity, how much the man's musical endeavors are a secondary theme to his personal travails in Life ...

DVD/FILM REVIEWS

Randy Brecker Quintet: Live at Sweet Basil 1988

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Randy Brecker Quintet Live at Sweet Basil 1988 MVDvisual2018 Culled from direct-to-two-track digital recordings made on three of Randy Brecker's potent six-night 1988 run at New York City's Sweet Basil, and featuring a particularly top-drawer quintet of musical friends old and new, the original 1989 LP/CD release of Live at Sweet Basil (GNP Crescendo in North America, Sonet elsewhere) has long been out of print. That the original version featured seven broad-ranging Brecker compositions, performed ...

DVD/FILM REVIEWS

Jazz Ambassadors: Representing A Segregated America During The Cold War

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Jazz Ambassadors THIRTEEN Productions 2018 Here, long overdue, is a comprehensive documentary about the legendary jazz musicians in the 1950s who served as “cultural ambassadors" under the aegis of the U.S. State Department, touring Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Soviet Union. The film comes sixty years after the fact. As Americans continue to mourn the loss of Tom Brokaw's “Greatest Generation" of WW II soldiers and their families, we jazz fans also grieve the passing of ...