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Stacey Kent: The Changing Lights

Read "The Changing Lights" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Stacey Kent's voice operates at the intersection of knowingness and innocence. She delivers every song with finesse, balancing a sense of wide-eyed wonderment with soft-handed confidence. Perhaps that's why she's been able to build such an enormous fan base since starting her singing career and showing up on listener's radars near the turn of the century. ...

ARTICLE: CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Stacey Kent: The Changing Lights

Read "The Changing Lights" reviewed by Bruce Lindsay

Stacey Kent is a jazz success story--not just in terms of her talent, but also in terms of her international popularity, with her previous three albums clocking up a total of over 500,000 sales. What makes her so successful? The Changing Lights, her tenth album, demonstrates all of the qualities.

There's the material, a mix ...

Nathan Haines: The Poet's Embrace

Read "The Poet's Embrace" reviewed by Bruce Lindsay

The spiritual jazz path is not noted for being an easy option, but over the years it's proved to be one of the most rewarding choices, for both musician and listener. Much of the music on The Poet's Embrace suggests that tenor saxophonist Nathan Haines has traveled at least some way along that path in creating ...

ARTICLE: BEST OF / YEAR END

Chris May's Best Releases of 2012

Read "Chris May's Best Releases of 2012" reviewed by Chris May

Christian Scott

aTunde Adjuah

Concord Records

In 1959, when Whitney Balliett, the New Yorker's jazz critic, published a collection of his columns, he titled the book The Sound of Surprise. The promise of the unexpected, wrote Balliett, was jazz's most precious quality. In a year which went on to include the release of ...

Rahsaan Roland Kirk: Spirits Up Above - The Atlantic Years 1965-1976

Read "Rahsaan Roland Kirk: Spirits Up Above - The Atlantic Years 1965-1976" reviewed by Chris May

Rahsaan Roland Kirk

Spirits Up Above: The Atlantic Years 1965-1976

Warner Jazz

2012

He was as funky as singer James Brown. With three horns in his mouth, he sounded like the entire JB reed section. And onstage, with a truckload of instruments around his neck, he was the hardest working man in ...

Astor Piazzolla and Manos Hadjidakis: L'Ultime Concert

Read "Astor Piazzolla and Manos Hadjidakis: L'Ultime Concert" reviewed by Chris May

Astor Piazzolla and Manos Hadjidakis

L'Ultime Concert

Warner Jazz

2012

Astor Piazzolla's international breakthrough albums, Tango: Zero Hour and The Rough Dancer And The Cyclical Night (Nonesuch, 1986 and 1991), were made with small groups, with which the bandoneonist and composer is still most commonly associated outside Argentina. But Piazzolla also wrote ...

Various Artists: The Leopard Lounge Box Set

Read "Various Artists: The Leopard Lounge Box Set" reviewed by Chris May

Various Artists

The Leopard Lounge Box Set

Warner Jazz

2012

If you enjoy the TV series Mad Men, you are going to love The Leopard Lounge Box Set. Probably.

You need to go know what you are getting into. Should you be offended by the thought of guitarist Barney Kessel hanging ...

Nino Rota: Collector Nino Rota

Read "Nino Rota: Collector Nino Rota" reviewed by Chris May

Nino Rota

Collector Nino Rota

Warner Jazz

2012

Nino Rota was a composer who stretched the imagination, though he was not, by any stretch of the imagination, a jazz composer. Classically trained, at the Milan conservatoire and Rome's Santa Cecilia academy, Rota composed ten operas, five ballets and a great amount of ...

Dexter Gordon: American Classic

Read "American Classic" reviewed by Chris May

Reissued as part of the Warner Jazz Elektra Masters series, tenor saxophonist Dexter Gordon's American Classic was originally released in 1982. It was part of a late-period American renaissance enjoyed by Gordon, who, after 15 years in Europe, had made a much lauded return to the New York club scene in the mid 1970s. Gordon's renaissance ...

Ray Charles: Original Album Series

Read "Ray Charles: Original Album Series" reviewed by Chris May

Ray Charles
Original Album Series
Warner/Rhino
2010 (1957-61)



Singer and pianist Ray Charles' period with Atlantic Records, from 1953 to 1960, which is the subject of Warner/Rhino's Original Album Series, was the most exciting in Charles' long and well documented career. Preceding the country music years which began ...