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Stan Kenton: Back to Balboa

Stan Kenton: Back to Balboa

Back in the early 1980s, I headed out to Los Angeles to visit a friend in Huntington Beach for a few days. For the summer trip—my first to the L.A. area—I packed my Sony Walkman and a bunch of West Coast jazz cassettes. The tapes weren't to entertain. My motive was more anthropological. I wanted to ...

Talent, Tenacity, Tequila & a Tale of Two Texas Teenagers

Read "Talent, Tenacity, Tequila & a Tale of Two Texas Teenagers" reviewed by Alan Bryson

Train to Nowhere “Train to Nowhere" by Dave Dupree was the aptly named single released by Challenge Records on January 15, 1958. Newly founded by Gene Autrey, “The Singing Cowboy" of Hollywood fame, the jny: Los Angeles based label was looking to land its first hit record. The single itself was on the road to “nowhere" ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

The Songbooks (1950 - 1959)

Read "The Songbooks (1950 - 1959)" reviewed by Russell Perry

Songs from what came to be known as the Great American Songbook, have been part of jazz perhaps since The Original Dixieland Jazz Band began recording Irving Berlin compositions. In the 1940s, singer Lee Wiley recorded several collections of 78s, known as “albums"--a name that stuck into the LP era, focused on the work of individual ...

ARTICLE: THE JAZZ LIFE

Scenes from a life in Jazz

Read "Scenes from a life in Jazz" reviewed by Duncan Lamont

Part 1 | Part 2 About the author Duncan Lamont is one of the UK's musical treasures. I've known who he is for years, but finally through a friend, got to meet and play with him only this year (2018) at The Pizza Express in Soho, London. Sammy Cahn, the legendary lyricist, said about ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Alan Broadbent: Intimate Reflections on a Passion for Jazz

Read "Alan Broadbent: Intimate Reflections on a Passion for Jazz" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer

Pianist, composer, and arranger Alan Broadbent doesn't just “dig" jazz. He has a deep and enduring passion for it. Growing up in mid- 20th-century New Zealand, he quickly went beyond piano lessons to reading musical scores and learning jazz standards. Then, when the Dave Brubeck Quartet came to his relatively isolated hometown of Auckland, his love ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Stan Kenton Orchestra: Mellophonium Memoirs

Read "Mellophonium Memoirs" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Among bandleader Stan Kenton's many ensembles, surely none has given rise to as many differences of opinion--pro and con--as the Mellophonium Orchestra of the early 1960s. Audiences generally loved the warm and inviting sound of the mellophonium, residing in a nether region between trumpet and trombone; musicians, on the other hand--both those who played the mellophonium ...

Art Pepper: The Art Pepper Quartet

Read "The Art Pepper Quartet" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Omnivore Records has struck up a dandy relationship with Laurie Pepper and the Art Pepper Estate, resulting in an impressive discography, that when coupled with Laurie Pepper's own Widow's Taste Records, has provided fans many hours of previously unreleased music. First released by the label was the 2015 Neon Art Series: Volume 1, Volume 2, and ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Stan Kenton Orchestra / BYU Synthesis Big Band: A Kenton Celebration

Read "A Kenton Celebration" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Fasten your seat belts, Kenton fans. Just when you feared the once-overflowing wellspring of material from the Stan Kenton Orchestra's archives may have run dry, along comes Tantara Productions with this jet-propelled and emphatically pleasurable two-disc set, the first half of which reclaims a long-lost concert date recorded in February 1959 at Brigham Young University, a ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Laura Dickinson: One for My Baby: To Frank Sinatra with Love

Read "One for My Baby: To Frank Sinatra with Love" reviewed by Edward Blanco

Paying homage to the Chairman of the Board is never quite an easy thing to do, but vocalist Laura Dickinson takes on this challenge and delivers one of the best tributes to the crooner on her astonishing debut album One for My Baby, To Frank Sinatra with Love. Influenced by the sound early on in her ...

Allison Neale: I Wished on the Moon

Read "I Wished on the Moon" reviewed by Jack Bowers

There was a time, roughly half a century ago, when West Coast jazz was seen as the hippest music on the planet, its leading lights known and praised far and wide for espousing a brand of “cool jazz" that stood in stark contrast to its more heated East Coast counterpart. Much like any other trend, the ...


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