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ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Rick Lawn: The Evolution of Big Band Sounds in America

Read "Rick Lawn: The Evolution of Big Band Sounds in America" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer

From the latter part of the Jazz Age through the Swing Era, big bands dominated the jazz scene and a large part of the entertainment industry. After World War II, their fortunes declined, but their music soared to new heights, spurred on by innovative leaders, instrumentalists, and very importantly, the composers/arrangers who worked behind the scenes ...

ARTICLE: HISTORY OF JAZZ

Chet Baker’s Singing: A Cultural Shift

Read "Chet Baker’s Singing: A Cultural Shift" reviewed by Steve Provizer

We think of the 1950's as a time of relative social conformity, but in fact, there were significant cultural shifts happening. For one, male stereotypes were being unpacked and to some degree, unfrozen. Where once films and music gave us male characters that were either hyper-macho or limp-wristedly homosexual, male characters and performers who showed emotional ...

ARTICLE: UNDER THE RADAR

Blue Highways and Sweet Music: The Territory Bands, Part II

Read "Blue Highways and Sweet Music: The Territory Bands, Part II" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Part 1 | Part 2

Part 1 of Blue Highways and Sweet Music: The Territory Bands looked at the roots, drivers and challenges of the travelling groups who brought jazz music to the non-urban areas of the Southern Plains, through one-night-stands, in often impromptu venues. A black phenomenon, often misappropriated by white musicians, promoters, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Joe Smith & The Spicy Pickles: Gin & Moonlight

Read "Gin & Moonlight" reviewed by James Nadal

Long before jazz became a spectator event, it was dance music. The big bands that played swing made their reputations on being able to flood the floor with dancers. Joe Smith & The Spicy Pickles are on a mission to bring back those days, and Gin & Moonlight has them on the right track. Formed in ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEWS

European Jazz Conference 2016

Read "European Jazz Conference 2016" reviewed by Ian Patterson

European Jazz Conference 2016
National Forum of Music
jny: Wroclaw, Poland
September 22-25, 2016

We have two ears and only one mouth so perhaps we should listen more than we speak. This old maxim is often credited to Hellenistic philosopher Zeno of Citrium, though who's to say he ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Jim Ridl: Opening Doors in the Big Apple

Read "Jim Ridl: Opening Doors in the Big Apple" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer

Something fresh and vital is in the air when a truly creative musician is about to release a new album. Jim Ridl's Door in a Field: Volume II: Songs of the Green River, an independent release, is full of surprises and rich in musical ideas. The album is set to be released in early Fall, and ...

ARTICLE: BOOK EXCERPTS

On Highway 61: Music, Race, and the Evolution of Cultural Freedom

Read "On Highway 61: Music, Race, and the Evolution of Cultural Freedom" reviewed by Dennis McNally

The following is an excerpt from the “Spirituals to Swing" chapter of On Highway 61: Music, Race, and the Evolution of Cultural Freedom by Dennis McNally (Counterpoint Press, Berkeley, 2014).

Danny Barker, who in the 1930s was Cab Calloway's guitarist, told a particularly revealing story of working at the Nest Club, a Harlem ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Yusef Lateef's Secret Garden

Read "Yusef Lateef's Secret Garden" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

This interview was originally published in February 2000.

Yusef Lateef will tell you--politely, firmly, insistently, frequently--that he does not play jazz.

He was born Bill Evans in Chattanooga (TN), but grew up in Detroit a tenor saxophone student who in the 1940s worked and studied alongside the likes of Roy Eldridge, Dizzy ...

NEWS: RADIO

Swingin' On A V-Disc This Week On Riverwalk Jazz

Swingin' On A V-Disc This Week On Riverwalk Jazz

This week on Riverwalk Jazz it's the story of the V-Disc, a WWII morale-boosting recording initiative that created novel collaborations between jazz artists of the era. By September 1945, total production reached 4.5 million records. By the end of the program, it is estimated that more than 8 million V-Discs were distributed. The Jim Cullum Jazz ...

NEWS: OBITUARY

Jazz Master Hank Jones Passes Away

Jazz Master Hank Jones Passes Away

Hank Jones, pianist and jazz legend, beloved husband of Theodosia, dear uncle to his nieces and nephews across the country, friend to music, inspiration to countless musicians, died May 16, 2010 in New York City, after a brief illness. He was 91 years old, and would have been 92 on July 31st. Jones' longtime manager and Justin ...