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ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Jay Thomas with the Oliver Groenewald NewNet: I Always Knew

Read "I Always Knew" reviewed by Jack Bowers

There aren't many jazz musicians who play both brass and woodwinds, fewer still who play them as well as the veteran Seattle-based virtuoso Jay Thomas (the word “virtuoso" is used with due care). On I Always Knew, recorded in January 2018 with German-born trumpeter / arranger Oliver Groenewald's NewNet, Thomas traverses the ballad form on a ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Brad Goode: That's Right!

Read "That's Right!" reviewed by Nicholas F. Mondello

The first collaboration between trumpeter Brad Goode and saxophonist Ernie Watts is a case study in superior musicianship and improvisation. It also illustrates how two frontline performers and their supporting band can achieve excellence as a creative ensemble.

The kickoff, “Half Moon," an original from pianist Adrean Farrugia, is reminiscent of the popular ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

John Fedchock Quartet: Reminiscence

Read "Reminiscence" reviewed by Jack Bowers

After recording his quartet's splendid album Fluidity (Summit Records 2015), trombonist John Fedchock realized he had enough unused material in hand from that delightful concert date to consider releasing a second album. The more he listened to the music that hadn't made the cut on Fluidity, the more Fedchock was convinced that a second album not ...

ARTICLE: BAILEY'S BUNDLES

Ten Artists: February 2019

Read "Ten Artists: February 2019" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Cecilia Bartoli
Antonio Vivaldi
Decca
2018

2019 marks the thirtieth anniversary of mezzo-soprano Cecilia Bartoli recording for Decca, her label for the duration of her career. Bartoli's first recording was Rossini's Il Barbiere di Siviglia (London/Decca, 1989) opposite famous baritone Leo Nucci. My own introduction to Bartoli was through her Mozart ...

ARTICLE: BAILEY'S BUNDLES

Seven Women (Plus Three) 2018 – Part XI

Read "Seven Women (Plus Three) 2018 – Part XI" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Kris Adams
We Should Have Danced
Self Produced
2018

There is a special significance to Kris Adams's release We Should Have Danced. The recording features Adam's original lyrics with arrangements by pianist Tim Ray, of compositions of the late Steve Prosser, Adams' former husband and Berklee College of Music professor. ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Jay Thomas with the Oliver Groenewald Newnet: I Always Knew

Read "I Always Knew" reviewed by Paul Rauch

Jay Thomas has lived the jazz life. He has endured, overcome, and continued to artistically thrive through all the ruminations of a path chosen by few. While much of his life may form a parallel story to those of many, Thomas' version, his personal adjunct to its litany, is a story of artistic triumph that opened ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Frank Kimbrough: Monk's Dreams

Read "Monk's Dreams" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer

Thelonious Monk, though controversial in his time, was a brilliant, innovative pianist and composer with a unique way of conceiving the music that was yet remarkably simpatico with standard forms. Many of his compositions (they are much more than “tunes," though I'll use that word here as shorthand) have become a regular part of the jazz ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Jorge Nila: Tenor Time (tribute to the Tenor Masters)

Read "Tenor Time (tribute to the Tenor Masters)" reviewed by Chris Mosey

The four participants on this album all hail from Omaha, Nebraska. Not a town that springs readily to mind in the history of jazz. Although, as drummer Dana Murray, recalls: “In the ballroom days everyone came through--Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Dinah Washington--the list goes on."

But it is the friendship and ...

ARTICLE: UNDER THE RADAR

Big in Japan: A History of Jazz in the Land of the Rising Sun, Part 1

Read "Big in Japan: A History of Jazz in the Land of the Rising Sun, Part 1" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Part 1 | Part 2

The music market in Japan--second only to the U.S. in terms of revenue--generates more than two-billion dollars in sales annually. Enthusiasts and collectors of jazz recordings had long ago discovered that Japan's robust music scene, and the now virtual accessibility to products have made the country a go-to resource for ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Sam Braysher: Golden Earrings

Read "Golden Earrings" reviewed by Bruce Lindsay

Mostly these days aspiring jazz musicians hear the songs of the American Songbook as “jazz standards," their melodies taken as jumping-off points for improvisational flights of fancy that move the tunes far beyond their earlier incarnations as pop tunes or Broadway showstoppers. It's a distinction that the young English altoist Sam Braysher makes in the liner ...