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ARTICLE: BIG BAND REPORT

Los Angeles Jazz Institute Festival "Big Band Spectacular" 2017, Part 1-4

Read "Los Angeles Jazz Institute Festival "Big Band Spectacular" 2017, Part 1-4" reviewed by Simon Pilbrow

Los Angeles Jazz Institute Festival Big Band Spectacular
LAX Westin Hotel
Los Angeles, CA
May 24-28, 2017

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4

Organised by Ken Poston, head of the Los Angeles Jazz Institute (LAJI), and advertised as the “Largest Big ...

A Big Band Spectacular? You Bet Your Brass!

Read "A Big Band Spectacular? You Bet Your Brass!" reviewed by Jack Bowers

On May 23, Betty and I flew to jny: Los Angeles to attend the L.A. Jazz Institute's semi-annual ode to swinging, this one labeled Big Band Spectacular and slated for Thursday through Sunday, May 25-28. We rearranged our schedule to arrive a day early, even before Wednesday's “bonus" event, to attend the funeral of a longtime ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Mike Barone Big Band: La Fiesta

Read "La Fiesta" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Mike Barone has been writing outstanding big-band arrangements for more than half a century. After listening to La Fiesta, Barone's ninth album as leader of the Los Angeles-based Mike Barone Big Band (counting Live at Donte's, recorded back in 1968), the logical question arises: does Barone ever run short of resourceful ideas? To which the obvious ...

NEWS: RECORDING

Mike Barone: Hollywood, 1968-'69

Mike Barone: Hollywood, 1968-'69

Based on the flood of emails I received this week, readers seem to get a kick out of my big band posts—particularly when I write about superb recordings that they may have missed. Today I'm going to tell you about two albums led by Mike Barone recorded in late 1968 and early 1969 that are out ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Bill Mays: Inventions, Conventions and Dimensions

Read "Bill Mays: Inventions, Conventions and Dimensions" reviewed by Dr. Judith Schlesinger

This title is more than a rhyme: it's an attempt to capture some of the legendary versatility of pianist Bill Mays. “Inventions" refers to his unprecedented, working jazz trio of piano, trumpet, and cello. “Conventions" is a nod to his invaluable contribution to the annual meeting of the International Society of Bassists (in 2013, he played ...

ARTICLE: BIG BAND REPORT

Swingin' on a Riff . . . Hangin' by a Thread?

Read "Swingin' on a Riff . . . Hangin' by a Thread?" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Betty and I returned to Albuquerque on Memorial Day after attending Swingin' on a Riff, the latest in a series of marvelous semi-annual events presented by Ken Poston and the Los Angeles Jazz Institute for more than twenty years at venues in and around L.A. This one was held May 23-26 at the Los Angeles Marriott ...

Pointing Fingers... And Naming Names

Read "Pointing Fingers... And Naming Names" reviewed by Jack Bowers

As the countdown continues toward the last Big Band Report in June, the time has come to point fingers and name names--in other words, to compile a short list of contemporary jazz musicians who have risen above the norm to help make life more pleasurable for one devoted listener. These are, mind you, personal choices, and ...

ARTICLE: BIG BAND REPORT

In Tune or Not in Tune... That Is the Question

Read "In Tune or Not in Tune... That Is the Question" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Suppose a month goes by, you have a column to publish, but nothing has happened that's worth writing about. What do you do then? Read on, as the question is about to be answered.

A while back there was a discussion at a Stan Kenton web site (Kentonia) about musicians or groups of ...

ARTICLE: BIG BAND REPORT

"Lone Wolf" Finds Plenty to Chew On

Read ""Lone Wolf" Finds Plenty to Chew On" reviewed by Jack Bowers

With Betty sidelined by a bad cough, it was up to me to seek out local jazz events in February, and I managed to find a couple of pretty good ones, starting February 7 at the University of New Mexico's Keller Hall where SuperSax New Mexico performed for the third time in Albuquerque. As you may ...

ARTICLE: BIG BAND REPORT

Buddy Rich: In a Zone of His Own

Read "Buddy Rich: In a Zone of His Own" reviewed by Jack Bowers

One of the channels that came with my Dish Network package is Classic Arts Showcase, which is a treasure trove of film clips documenting classical, ballet, folk, pop and other forms of music that one is unlikely to see anywhere else (although some footage is presumably available on YouTube, which more and more seems to encompass ...