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ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Chris Madsen: Bonfire

Read "Bonfire" reviewed by Peter Hoetjes

The winds of change have been blowing over the record business for over two decades, altering the ways in which consumers listen to music. With the rise of internet-based services such as Spotify and YouTube, the prospect of an expensive trip to the recording studio has soured for many jazz musicians. Despite the fact that the ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Daniel Bruce: Earthshine

Read "Earthshine" reviewed by Friedrich Kunzmann

In the ever-growing scene of jazz-guitar today it is getting harder to distinguish oneself from the rest of the crowd. When taking a look around current stirrings in jazz, the guitar seems to be experiencing a renaissance as the main vehicle in the genre-new formations with the instrument at their core emerging all over the globe. ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Dan Bruce's Beta Collective: Earthshine

Read "Earthshine" reviewed by Troy Dostert

On the first listen, it's easy to fall under the sway of the sweetness of Dan Bruce's silky guitar tone, only to miss the substance at the heart of his music. Just as similar guitarists like Ben Monder or Kurt Rosenwinkel possess a generous, accessible sound with an exploratory edge, Bruce brings a finely-polished technique that ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Alyssa Allgood: Out Of The Blue

Read "Out Of The Blue" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

Chicago vocalist Alyssa Allgood devotes her first full length album to an unexpected source: the classic hard bop repertoire of Blue Note Records. The label is mainly known for instrumental jazz, and all of these selections were originally instrumental. This presents no problem for Allgood, who demonstrates equal facility scatting, singing wordless vocalise, and writing lyrics ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

New Standard Jazz Orchestra: Waltz About Nothing

Read "Waltz About Nothing" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Any orchestra that professes to establish a new standard had better be able to back that up. Happily for the listener, on its debut recording, Waltz About Nothing, Chicago's New Standard Jazz Orchestra can--and does. In a little more than two years, the NSJO has arisen as a worthy successor to one of the more exemplary ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Bob Lark and his Alumni Big Band: Sweet Return

Read "Sweet Return" reviewed by Edward Blanco

Trumpeter/educator and big band leader Bob Lark, reunites his Alumni Big Band after their critically acclaimed debut Reunion (Jazzed Media 2012), produced some of the best Jazz orchestrations in the business. Sweet Return is the group's encore performance, their return engagement, their audacious follow up and another masterful stroke by leader Lark. This Alumni band is ...

Pointing Fingers... And Naming Names

Read "Pointing Fingers... And Naming Names" reviewed by Jack Bowers

As the countdown continues toward the last Big Band Report in June, the time has come to point fingers and name names--in other words, to compile a short list of contemporary jazz musicians who have risen above the norm to help make life more pleasurable for one devoted listener. These are, mind you, personal choices, and ...

ARTICLE: BIG BAND REPORT

In Tune or Not in Tune... That Is the Question

Read "In Tune or Not in Tune... That Is the Question" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Suppose a month goes by, you have a column to publish, but nothing has happened that's worth writing about. What do you do then? Read on, as the question is about to be answered.

A while back there was a discussion at a Stan Kenton web site (Kentonia) about musicians or groups of ...

ARTICLE: BIG BAND REPORT

"Lone Wolf" Finds Plenty to Chew On

Read ""Lone Wolf" Finds Plenty to Chew On" reviewed by Jack Bowers

With Betty sidelined by a bad cough, it was up to me to seek out local jazz events in February, and I managed to find a couple of pretty good ones, starting February 7 at the University of New Mexico's Keller Hall where SuperSax New Mexico performed for the third time in Albuquerque. As you may ...

Bob Lark Alumni Band / Bob Curnow / JazzMN Big Band

Read "Bob Lark Alumni Band / Bob Curnow / JazzMN Big Band" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Bob Lark and His Alumni Big Band

Reunion

Jazzed Media

2012

As director for more than two decades of DePaul University's superb Jazz Ensemble, trumpeter Bob Lark has seen an endless parade of outstanding musicians pass through the ranks, which makes the first-ever Reunion of his Alumni Big Band a ...