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Dan McClenaghan's Best Releases Of 2016

Read "Dan McClenaghan's Best Releases Of 2016" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

The music keeps moving forward, evolving to higher levels. My search for the best jazz recordings of 2016 led me to these marvelous CDs.

Wadada Leo Smith
America's National Parks
Cuneiform Records

Trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith has attempted in, the new millennium, to create his magnum opus. He may have succeeded ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Clay Giberson: Pastures

Read "Pastures" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

Pianist Clay Giberson has a fifteen year resume of fine recordings on Seattle's Origin Records label. The discs are, for the most part, solo and trio outings, with the trio sets appearing under his own name or that of his long-standing Upper Left Trio. Some examples: Spaceton's Approach, (2008), and Minga Minga (2015) as Clay Giberson; ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Clay Giberson: Minga Minga

Read "Minga Minga" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

From the mouth of his young daughter came the four playful syllables that don't mean a thing in the adult world, but Portland, Oregon-based pianist Clay Giberson took the idea--and the momentous event of the birth of his child--and went into the studio to record solo, every day for two weeks. The result is Minga Minga. ...

NEWS: RECORDING

Pianist Alan Blackman Releases "Alone Together - The 2 Piano Project"

Pianist Alan Blackman Releases "Alone Together - The 2 Piano Project"

Announcing the release of exciting new album from Baltimore pianist Alan Blackman. Four years ago he started a two piano series at Howard Community College in Columbia, Maryland as a way to bring in some of his favorite pianists and explore this unique format. This recording features two tracks by four different piano players; Vardan Ovsepian, Clay Giberson, Harry ...

Upper Left Trio: Ulternative

Read "Ulternative" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

Portland, Oregon's Upper Left Trio has been together nearly a decade. The group began its recording journey on Origin Records in 2003 with Cycling. Ulternative is the trio's fourth recording for the label, and continues to push its music forward.

The piano trio has, since pianist Bill Evans' late 1950s/early 1960s recordings with bassist Scott ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Clay Giberson: Spaceton's Approach

Read "Spaceton's Approach" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

There's much to be said for holding a band together over the course of years and performances and album/CD releases, honing the familiarity, comfort level and the intricacies of interplay. Think of the two great Miles Davis Quintets, or Keith Jarrett's Standards Trio.

There's also a lot to be said for the one-off affairs, the ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Clay Giberson: Aiming True, Volume 1

Read "Aiming True, Volume 1" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Clay Giberson last crossed my radar playing with the Upper Room Trio on last year's well-received Cycling . His current release, Aiming True, Volume 1, is a solo piano excursion into moody, nocturnal climes. Is this jazz? Is this New Age? Does this belong on Hearts of Space ? Affirmative to all three. Labels are not ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Clay Giberson: Aiming True

Read "Aiming True" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

On his solo piano effort Aiming True, Clay Giberson is like a poet, center stage, naked, voicing deep personal musings; or a singer, a cappella, seeking truths with the rhythm of the syllables, the rise and fall of intonations in a world seemingly indifferent to the search. Just Clay Giberson, two hands and a piano, and ...

Clay Giberson: Upper Road

Read "Upper Road" reviewed by Paul West

Like a lot of seasoned, contemporary jazz pianists, Clay Giberson creates music that just about always works, but always works its most magic when it takes chances and breaks free from tradition. It’s not so much a problem in contemporary jazz as it is an ever-so-slightly unfulfilled promise: it’s music that is fine, damn fine even, ...