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ARTICLE: BOOK REVIEWS

As Serious As Your Life: Black Music And The Free Jazz Revolution 1957-1977

Read "As Serious As Your Life: Black Music And The Free Jazz Revolution 1957-1977" reviewed by Ian Patterson

As Serious As Your Life: Black Music And The Free-Jazz Revolution, 1957-1977
Val Wilmer
408 Pages
ISBN: 978 1 78816 071 1
Serpent's Tail
2018

First published in 1977, journalist, author and black music historian Val Wilmer's As Serious As Your Life... makes a welcome print return at a ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Vuma Levin: Musical Painting

Read "Vuma Levin: Musical Painting" reviewed by Seton Hawkins

South African guitarist and composer Vuma Levin has been receiving significant accolades in local and international circles, and it's easy to see why. A thoughtful, intelligent improviser and bandleader, Levin is also a highly thought-provoking composer, one intent on exploring the music's role in commenting on and shaping societal discourse.

Indeed, with last year's ...

Massimo Colombo: Powell To The People

Read "Powell To The People" reviewed by Jim Worsley

Powell To The People could certainly be heard as a tribute to jazz pianist Bud Powell. It could just as easily be heard as an introduction to the legend's iconic music. It fulfills both categories with the emotion and virtuosity Powell exuded in his playing.

Powell pioneered a new era of post swing bebop ...

Variospheres: Live in Solothurn

Read "Live in Solothurn" reviewed by Ian Patterson

When Tomasz Stańko's first classic quintet came to the natural end of its road in 1973, with all its members looking for new directions in music, violinist Zbigniew Seifert embarked on a solo career that saw him record a number of albums with very different line-ups. In fact, bar a brief period at the end of ...

Michael Feinberg: Whatever Possessed Me

Read "Whatever Possessed Me" reviewed by Don Phipps

Tribute bands are glowingly appreciated by fans of great rock acts; perhaps it's time jazz fans got with it! Michael Feinberg's Whatever Possessed Me is a dedication to the works and sound of John Coltrane and his classic quartet with McCoy Tyner, Jimmy Garrison, and Elvin Jones. The performances on this album are so good, one ...

Azar Lawrence: Elementals

Read "Elementals" reviewed by Chris May

Azar Lawrence sounds more like John Coltrane than John Coltrane ever did. Well, almost. Mid-period Coltrane that is, post Atlantic Records and the sheets of sound, when Coltrane starting to record for Impulse with producer Bob Thiele. The closeness of the resemblance is longstanding and uncanny, but it has not been a cynical pose designed to ...

Electric Squeezebox Orchestra: The Falling Dream

Read "The Falling Dream" reviewed by Jack Bowers

No, the San Francisco-based Electric Squeezebox Orchestra does not come with accordions attached. It does, however, come with a well-developed eye for harmony and rhythm, an inflexible group dynamic and a number of perceptive soloists, all of which serve to make the ensemble's second album, The Falling Dream, a pleasure to hear.

The ...

ARTICLE: CATCHING UP WITH

Charles McPherson: The Man and His Muse

Read "Charles McPherson: The Man and His Muse" reviewed by Joan Gannij

Acclaimed alto saxophone wizard Charles McPherson has a new muse: his 25-year-old daughter Camille, a premier dancer with the San Diego Ballet, where he also serves as composer-in-residence these days. McPherson was a young father in his twenties, with three children from a first marriage. Thirty years up the road, after marrying the lovely Lynn, a ...

James Weidman: Spiritual Impressions

Read "Spiritual Impressions" reviewed by Jerome Wilson

There is a long tradition of using traditional African-American spirituals as a basis for jazz explorations, but that is rarely done in one session with the breadth of approaches James Weidman uses on Spiritual Impressions. From the loping reggae beat on “Didn't My Lord Deliver Daniel" to the New Orleans rumba rhythm on “No Hiding Place," ...

Wayne Escoffery: Vortex

Read "Vortex" reviewed by Luigi Sforza

Non vi sono dubbi sulla natura di quest'ultima fatica discografica del tenor sassofonista Wayne Escoffery (londinese di nascita e newyorkese di adozione): si tratta di un progetto che declina senza remore alcuni paradigmi sonori intrinseci alla musicalità di John Coltrane.

Il suono muscolare, incisivo, quasi palpabile del sassofono di Escoffery funge da guida per ...