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News: Video / DVD

New Videos: Dave Pell Octet

New Videos: Dave Pell Octet

Between 1943 and 1947, tenor saxophonist Dave Pell started out recording with big bands led by Bobby Sherwood, Tony Pastor and Bob Crosby. Then in late '47, he joined the Les Brown Orchestra, where he remained until 1955. In '53, Dave began recording with an octet he formed made up of Brown bandmates. Here's what Dave ...

News: Video / DVD

Sonny Stitt and Oscar Peterson

Sonny Stitt and Oscar Peterson

I love Oscar Peterson's playing. I'm just never crazy about his tempos. As the leader on recording sessions with his trio or quartet, Peterson tended to take songs excruciatingly slow or erratically fast. I'm not sure why Verve and Pablo producer Norman Granz never bothered to mention this to him over a dinner or from the ...

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News: Video / DVD

Bill Evans in Rochester, N.Y., 1977

Bill Evans in Rochester, N.Y., 1977

Over the weekend, pianist Dave Thompson sent along a link to a recently uploaded, hour-long video of the Bill Evans Trio in concert in 1977. While the person who uploaded it thought the performance took place in Boston, it actually was held at the Eastman Theatre in Rochester, N.Y. Based on my additional research, Evans performed ...

News: Interview

Interview: Lucy Yeghiazaryan

Interview: Lucy Yeghiazaryan

I discovered Lucy Yeghiazaryan by accident a month or so ago. I was flying through Facebook before turning in for the night and there she was, singing away. I was most struck by her 1950s phrasing. She clearly had done quite a bit of intensive listening. I also was curious about her Armenian past and how ...

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News: Video / DVD

Pharoah Sanders: Promises

Pharoah Sanders: Promises

Even when Pharoah Sanders plays up-tempo, he sounds as if he's playing a ballad. That's because the tenor saxophonist, known for his deeply spiritual approach, is always in a meditative state when creating. Sanders began playing jazz in 1961, when he moved to New York from Oakland, Calif. Born Farrell Sanders in Little Rock, Ark., he ...

News: Recording

Dr. Lonnie Smith: Breathe

Dr. Lonnie Smith: Breathe

Twelve years ago, Ira Gitler introduced me to Lonnie Smith. We were sitting at New York's Jazz Standard listening to the music during the Jazz Journalists Association awards annual gala. As the three of us sat there, I told Lonnie how much I dug his heavy groove albums from the 1960s and '70s—particularly Think! and Turning ...

News: Recording

Sarah Moule: Stormy Emotions

Sarah Moule: Stormy Emotions

Back in February 2014, I posted the following: “If many of today's jazz musicians and singers lack anything, it's curiosity. Talent they've got, but a deep interest in the past beyond what they already know seems alien to their approach... What's hurting the music isn't a lack of venues or long solos. It's a lack of ...

News: Recording

Mancio & Broadbent: Quiet Is the Star

Mancio & Broadbent: Quiet Is the Star

One of the most astonishing albums of the year is Quiet Is the Star, by vocalist Georgia Mancio and pianist Alan Broadbent. Released on Friday, the album is remarkable on several levels. For one, all of the songs are originals, with heartfelt words by Georgia poured over deeply personal melodies by Alan. For another, the collaboration ...

News: Obituary

Bertrand Tavernier (1941-2021)

Bertrand Tavernier (1941-2021)

Bertrand Tavernier, a French filmmaker who directed A Sunday in the Country, Life and Nothing But and, most notably, Round Midnight, a poetic film starring tenor saxophonist Dexter Gordon and patterned after the last years of Bud Powell and Lester Young, died in Sainte-Maxime, France, on March 25. He was 79. Produced by Irwin Winkler and ...

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News: TV / Film

Barney Wilen and Kenny Dorham

Barney Wilen and Kenny Dorham

Jazz and French movies were a natural fit in 1950s. The most famous soundtrack is Miles Davis's Ascenseur Pour L'echafaud (Elevator to the Gallows), recorded in Paris in December 1957 with Davis (tp), Barney Wilen (ts), Rene Urtreger (p), Pierre Michelot (b) and Kenny Clarke (d). Almost as well known is Les Liaisons Dangereuses 1960 (Dangerous ...


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