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The Black Swan: A History of Race Records

Read "The Black Swan: A History of Race Records" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Montgomery, Alabama native Perry Bradford was an African-American composer and vaudeville musician when he approached General Phonograph Company, Director of Artists, Fred Hagar in 1920. Bradford was pitching Mamie Smith, a relatively unfamiliar pianist and singer from Cincinnati, Ohio, and Hagar agreed to a two-side recording deal. Widely regarded as a blues singer, Smith more frequently ...

ARTICLE: LIVE FROM NEW YORK

Matthew Shipp, Marc Ribot, Dorado Schmitt & Randy Weston

Read "Matthew Shipp, Marc Ribot, Dorado Schmitt & Randy Weston" reviewed by Martin Longley

The Matthew Shipp Trio
Dizzy's Club
November 3, 2014

It's not often that a hero of New York's alternative downtown improvising scene ventures uptown to play a mainline jazz club. It's even more of a rarity for a Dizzy's set to consist of a single long piece. In fact, ...

Sonny Landreth: Elemental Journey

Read "Sonny Landreth: Elemental Journey" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Sonny Landreth
Elemental Journey
Landfall Records
2012

How did we arrive at the phenomenon that is guitarist Sonny Landreth?

In his autobiography, Father of the Blues: An Autobiography (Da Capo Press, 1969), African American composer W. C. Handy detailed his experience of sleeping on the train platform in ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Bob Greene: St. Peter Street Strutters

Read "St. Peter Street Strutters" reviewed by Jerry D'Souza

Back in December 1964, pianist Bob Greene, cornetist Ernie Carson, tubaist Shorty Johnson and banjoist Steve Larner went into the studio to record this set of New Orleans tunes. The music was played by groups larger than a quartet, but size did not matter; the four filled the music with a sense of tradition that has ...

ARTICLE: BOOK REVIEWS

Ellington Uptown: Duke Ellington, James P. Johnson, and the Birth of Concert Jazz

Read "Ellington Uptown: Duke Ellington, James P. Johnson, and the Birth of Concert Jazz" reviewed by David Rickert

Ellington Uptown: Duke Ellington, James P. Johnson, and the Birth of Concert Jazz
James Howland
Hardcover; 360 pages
ISBN: 978-0-472-11605-8
University of Michigan Press
2009



Ellington Uptown addresses the development of concert jazz, a largely neglected style that emerged near the beginning of the ...

NEWS: BOOK / MAGAZINE

Blues Capitalist W. C. Handy

Blues Capitalist W. C. Handy

If Beale Street could talk, it would say, Who the hell is the guy depicted in that big statue by the entrance to the park?

W. C. Handy, once so famous as the Father of the Blues that he was memorialized with a bronze monument in Memphis, is not nearly as well known today to ...