Featured Jazz Articles

INTERVIEW

David Torn: Making Records, Film Composition, and Working With David Bowie

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Experimental guitarist, looper, songwriter, improviser, session guitarist, film composer, record producer, mixer...David Torn is all of those things. He is constantly on the move, looking forward to the next thing. He was last interviewed for All About Jazz in 2007 ("David Torn: A Lifetime Of Improvisation In Non-Improvisational Settings“). Our conversation mostly ranged over his many activities in the ten years since then. Asked about researching his playing history, and the Wikipedia article in particular: The ...

PROFILES

Courtney Pine: Standing on the Shoulders of Giants

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Courtney Pine didn't pick up his beloved tenor saxophone for more than a decade, until an album exploring the black British experience demanded it. The multi-instrumentalist eschewed the horn on the likes of Europa, House of Legends and Song (The Ballad Book), his two-hander with pianist Zoe Rahman. “I spoke to Sonny Rollins about five years ago at a concert, and I asked him, 'Why don't you play loads of instruments, like John Coltrane?' What he said was, ...

INTERVIEW

Rufus Reid: Composer, Educator, Bassist, Gait Keeper… And Prophet

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Rufus Reid doesn't play standards, as much as he is the standard, a well of knowledge and wisdom that this bassist was fortunate to sit down with one afternoon. All About Jazz: When you did the Elizabeth Catlett album/project, it seemed that the beauty of her work inspired you, but am I wrong in my observation that her work could also be considered somewhat “Afrocentric?" How much of that inspired you, The Afro- American/African culture? How much has ...

PROFILES

Denys Baptiste: Making the Late Trane Accessible

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Even the most avowed John Coltrane disciples among us would admit to grappling with some of the albums he released in the couple of years before his death--the likes of Ascension, Sun Ship and Om. And we weren't alone. His long-time drummer, Elvin Jones, told Downbeat magazine, “At times I couldn't hear what I was doing--matter of fact, I couldn't hear what anybody was doing. All I could hear was a lot of noise." Evidently British saxophonist Denys ...

LIVE REVIEWS

European Jazz Conference 2017

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European Jazz Conference 2017 Cankarjev dom jny: Ljubljana, Slovenia September 21-24, 2017 The snow-capped mountains flanking Ljubljana form a natural border between Slovenia and Italy and provided a picturesque backdrop to the 4th annual European Jazz Conference. For the record two hundred and twenty conference attendees [Europe Jazz Network members and guests] the sun shone and the air was cool. The handsome Slovenian capital, with its bicycle-friendly, litter-free streets felt serene as tourists strolled ...

UNDER THE RADAR

Culture Clubs: A History of the U.S. Jazz Clubs, Part I: New Orleans and Chicago

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Marching bands, ragtime music, and the blues, were all well-entrenched and spreading up the Mississippi River Valley from New Orleans at the beginning of the twentieth century. Dixieland was the popular music staple and with the all-white Original Dixieland Jass Band recording the first jazz side, “Livery Stable Blues," in 1917, an original musical language was validated. By the early 1920s, that group was moving away from the early form of jazz, settling into contented and bland dance music. But ...

GENIUS GUIDE TO JAZZ

Jazz Lovers Series: Hugh Hefner

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If, for some reason, one were to make a list of the most famous and influential lovers of Our Music, one would find it a Sisyphean task. Jazz lovers come in all shapes and sizes, and from all walks of life. One would find us well represented across the entire spectrum of society, from sports to entertainment to politics and then back to sports because frankly, I've had enough politics for one lifetime lately. But then.

LIVE REVIEWS

Monterey Jazz Festival 2017

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Monterey Jazz Festival Monterey, CA September 15-17, 2017 A Feast of Tributes, to Itself, Included The distinctly stunning California outpost that is Monterey has been in the news, and making cultural history, in various ways this year. Over the summer, the 50th anniversary of the Monterey Pop Festival was duly noted and feted with a special commemorative festival. Over in the realm of the tube (the New, Improved TV landscape), the dramatic ...

Dr. Cornel West: A Real-Life Superhero

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This column focuses on the lives of people searching for and finding a human connection inspired by the life and music of the legendary saxophonist John Coltrane. Trane was a spiritual, gifted jazz musician dedicated to loving people through his heart which exquisitely came out of his instrument. I have come to discover that there are presently many people who are influenced by him even decades after his passing. This column will make an attempt at answering the question: “How ...


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