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2018: The Year in Jazz

Read "2018: The Year in Jazz" reviewed by Ken Franckling

The year 2018 was a busy one for the jazz world. The genre's version of the #MeToo movement resulted in a new Code of Conduct and other efforts to make the music workplace more equitable. International Jazz Day brought its biggest stage to St. Petersburg, Russia. The Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz, which ran a high-profile ...


The Early Years of Sonny Stitt in Saginaw, Michigan

Read "The Early Years of Sonny Stitt in Saginaw, Michigan" reviewed by Dustin Mallory

As one of most recorded saxophonists of his generation, Sonny Stitt made more than 100 albums under his own name. He also performed as a sideman with the likes of Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, and Art Blakey. Despite the breadth of recorded work he left behind, Sonny Stitt's upbringing in Saginaw, Michigan is less well-documented. The ...


Detroit Bop Quintet: Two Birds

Read "Two Birds" reviewed by Mark Corroto

On December 21st 1947 Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, Duke Jordan, Tommy Potter, and Max Roach recorded four Parker compositions for Savoy at United Sound Systems recording studio in Detroit, Michigan. Parker's Quintet was in town for two weeks, performing and backing Sarah Vaughan at the El Sino Club. It appears that Parker hustled to lay down ...


Sonny Rollins + Thelonious Monk

Sonny Rollins + Thelonious Monk

One of jazz's big turning points came on October 25, 1954, when Sonny Rollins altered the direction of the tenor saxophone at Rudy Van Gelder's studio in his parents' Hackensack, N.J., house. The session for Prestige featured Sonny, Thelonious Monk on piano, Tommy Potter on bass and Art Taylor on drums. Up until then, Sonny's sound ...


Ornette Coleman: This is Our Music

Read "Ornette Coleman: This is Our Music" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Ornette ColemanThis is Our MusicAtlantic1961 This is Our Music is the militantly expressed jumping-off point for alto saxophonist Ornette Coleman on the way to the epochal Free Jazz: A Collective Improvisation (Atlantic, 1961). Coleman picks up exactly where he left off on Change of the Century and never ...


Ornette Coleman: Something Else!!!!

Read "Ornette Coleman: Something Else!!!!" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Ornette ColemanSomething Else!!!!Contemporary2011 (1958) Robert Louis Stevenson noted that, “The mark of a good action is that it appears inevitable in retrospect." The middle-to-late 1950s in jazz were populated with several “good actions," all considered inevitable evolutionary reactions to earlier genre, specifically swing and bebop--the latter the ...


Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Sonny Rollins: Celebrating Prestige's 60th Anniversary

Read "Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Sonny Rollins: Celebrating Prestige's 60th Anniversary" reviewed by Chris May

In fall 2009, the Prestige label is celebrating its 60th Anniversary with a series of compilations and remasters. In October, the Side Steps box set was released, chronicling saxophonist John Coltrane's sideman legacy with the label. In November, there's a compilation of sessions recorded by trumpeter Miles Davis with saxophonist Sonny Rollins, The Classic Prestige Sessions ...


Duke Jordan: In Copenhagen

Read "In Copenhagen" reviewed by Chris Mosey

Irving Stanley “Duke" Jordan, pianist in legendary altoist Charlie Parker's classic quintet, recorded this solo album late in life. It shows he had lost none of the qualities that led Bird to pick him to take part--along with trumpeter Miles Davis, bassist Tommy Potter and drummer Max Roach--in such landmark recordings as “Bird of Paradise," “Dewey ...

Queens: Home of Jazz and Flushing Town Hall

Read "Queens: Home of Jazz and Flushing Town Hall" reviewed by Greg Thomas

When most people think of jazz in New York City, Manhattan readily comes to mind. The “East Coast" stride piano style was developed in Harlem, where venues such as the Savoy Ballroom, Small's Paradise, the Cotton Club and Minton's Playhouse presented the big bands and small groups of jazz lore. 52nd Street became known for its ...


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