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Ken Dryden

Ken has collected jazz for over three decades and been a jazz journalist since 1988.

About Me

I started collecting jazz records while attending Tulane University in the early 1970s. Since I was already a history buff (and majoring in it as well), research was something I also enjoyed. After graduating in 1976 and earning my MBA at the University of Georgia the following year, I eventually wound up in Chattanooga, where I began a 15-year stint on WUTC-FM hosting Timeless Jazz in 1987. In early 1988, I began reviewing jazz, writing for various publications including Cadence, The Jazz Link, Letter From Evans, and the Chattanooga Times Free Press. Between 1998-2012, I was a regular contributor to All Music Guide, writing thousands of jazz reviews for their website, along with reviews of rock, bluegrass and classical recordings and a few biographies. In 2005, I also became a regular contributor to Coda, The New York City Jazz Record and Hot House (NY). I began writing for All About Jazz in 2000, creating the Ask Ken column to answer recording related questions and trying to help folks find out of print LPs and CDs, finally ending the column 3 years later because I couldn't keep up with the volume of requests. I also jointly edited the late lamented All About Jazz Trivia Quiz with Alex Henderson, which ended only because of AAJ's frustration with the purchased program utilized by the quiz. I also contributed annual reviews of the IAJE Conference to All About Jazz, along with occasional CD and concert reviews, label profiles and interviews, some of which initially were written for the All About Jazz-New York newspaper. A few years ago I took a hiatus from All About Jazz, but now that I'm retired from my radio career, I'm considering a relaunch of Not For Sale and contributing a few reviews and articles, too. My new baby for All About Jazz is Not For Sale, a column which enables me to review non-commercial broadcasts of live and studio jazz which has never appeared on CD or LP. Since 1977, I have recorded hundreds of shows, including Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz, Jazzset, Four Queens Jazz Night From Las Vegas, Jazz Alive!, the American Jazz Radio Festival, Jazz From Lincoln Center, Jazz at the Manchester Craftsmen's Guild, Vintage Jazz at the Vineyard, Riverwalk: Live From the Landing, along with occasional broadcasts of music from festivals in Chicago, Detroit, Caramoor and elsewhere. I'm still working on compiling a comprehensive list; not to mention transferring my first 27 years of cassettes to CDRs. My hope is that Not For Sale will encourage record labels to track down and release music mentioned in the column (believe it or not, before I could start work on my second Not For Sale column, I was asked by Concord Records to writer liner notes for a portion of a concert I had recorded off NPR over 20 years earlier). Complete personnel, song titles, composers, plus dates of recording and broadcast (the latter when known) are also included. Artists are encouraged to get in touch with me if they don't have a copy of the recording or have additional information, comments, etc. I have already dubbed CDs for a number of musicians in my collection. Every once in awhile, I get an opportunity to write liner notes. The CDs include: Oscar Peterson Plays Duke Ellington (Pablo) Joe Pass: Meditation-Live at Yoshi's (Pablo) Wes Montgomery: The Best of Wes Montgomery (Riverside) Jaki Byard Quartet with Joe Farrell: The Last From Lennie's (Prestige) Mel Torme, Gerry Mulligan & George Shearing: The Classic Concert Live (Concord) BED (Becky Kilgore, Eddie Erickson & Dan Barrett) Watch Out! (Blue Swing) Jimmy Ponder: Somebody's Child (HighNote) Lorraine Feather: Language (Jazzed Media) Jeff Barone: Open Up (Jazzed Media) Leslie Pintchik: Quartets (Ambient) Joe Lee Wilson & Jimmy Ponder: Come and See (Explore) Joe Lee Wilson: The Shadow (Explore) N. Glenn Davis Quintet w/Phil Woods: Come Right In (Jazzed Media) Arlyn Valencia: Secret Love (jbQ Media) I also write press bios. If you need a bio or liner notes, drop me a line, using the subject: liner notes/press bio. Regarding my current "Listening to Now" list: CDs aren't necessarily heard in the order listed. Assigned CDs and long favorite artists take priority. Once posted, I will try to get to a specific disc as soon as possible! I'm always looking for LPs or CDs and usually have some current and out-of-print things on hand for trading. If you're interested in learning more, drop me a line, using "Trade List" for the subject. I'm also interested in trading broadcast (not commercially issued) recordings, including the ones I've featured in my Not For Sale column. I current have over 1000 listed on line and many more not yet added to my list. Email me drop me a line for a list or link to my online collection. Don't forget to watch out every April 1st for April Fool's reviews and articles!

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