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ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Big Joe & The Dynaflows: Rockhouse Party

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Big Joe Maher, a veritable institution in our nation's capitol, has been active in Washington's jazz and blues scene since the 1980s, when he put together his own combo and also began drumming for former Powerhouse guitarist Tom Principato's blues band.

But it wasn't until he recorded his own debut, “Good Rockin' Daddy," in ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Bobby Broom: Soul Fingers

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A thematic sequel to his 2007 release, Song and Dance, Bobby Broom's Soul Fingers is a deep-pile take on late 1960s--early 1970s pop, with Broom in his best Wes Montgomery vein, giving new soul-jazz life to one-time chart hits.

And yet, it's also a break from Song and Dance because Broom has changed his ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

David Virelles: Igbó Alákọrin

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Maybe the most unexpected delight of 2018, avant-garde pianist David Virelles has released an utterly dyed-in-the-wool homage to his birthplace of Santiago de Cuba.

Completely different from any other recording he's done to this point, this unreconstructed slice of midcentury Cuban music is so completely steeped in tradition, and Virelles' playing is so gorgeously virtuosic, ...

ARTICLE: BOOK REVIEWS

Alligator founder provides blues fans insider look at running of label

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Bitten By the Blues: The Alligator Records Story
Bruce Iglauer with Patrick A. Roberts
338 Pages
ISBN: 9780226129907
University of Chicago Press
2018

Bruce Iglauer's autobiographical history of Alligator Records is, in many ways, a story about technological change as much as it is about music.

Yet, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Brad Goode: That's Right!

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With a fat, rich tone somewhere between French classical trumpeter Maurice André and the flugelhorn of Chuck Mangione, Brad Goode has the ultimate calling card for a jazz player: An immediately recognizable sound. The fact that he's also got an upper register to rival Maynard Ferguson makes Goode one of the most underknown of jazz players. ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Various Artists: Putumayo Presents: Ska Around the World

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For casual fans and newcomers to the music of Jamaica (a growing number, given the popularity of the BBC / France 2 TV mystery series Death in Paradise and its Jamaican-infused soundtrack), the definitions of ska vs. reggae are likely too obscure to worry about. Much as only hardcore jazz fans worry about drilling into the ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Dawg Yawp: Doubles, Vol. 1

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jny: Cincinnati's folk-rock duo Dawg Yawp is rolling out their new music in a series of two-song singles that they are calling “Doubles." (And why did nobody think of that bit of marketing genius in the heyday of the 45?)

Their first such set shows a nice progression from their 2016 self-titled full-length release, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Braxton Brothers: Higher

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It's interesting how certain musical styles become punching bags for the critics. Disco grew out of R&B and funk in the mid-1970s--yet by 1979 it was so despised in many quarters that the Chicago White Sox had a near-riot on their hands when they opened Comiskey Park for “Disco Demolition Night" during a double-header against the ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Rich Halley 3: The Literature

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Tenor saxophonist Rich Halley decided, according to the liner notes, to make his twenty-first recording an all-covers collection. The title of the recording, he writes, comes from his thought that if “literature" connotes a body of work in classical music, then why not in jazz as well--and so he's collected a dozen of the songs that ...

Helen Sung: Celebrating Monk

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The first weekend in April will see the opening of a monthlong, three-venue celebration of Thelonious Monk at Jazz at Lincoln Center, the third installment of their annual Monk festival.

It all starts Thursday evening (April 5) with Chick Corea sitting in for three nights with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton ...