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Musician

Al Hibbler

Born:

A distinctive baritone singer who came into prominence with the Duke Ellington Orchestra in the 1940s, and scored a hit later with his version of the song "Unchained Melody." Albert Hibbler was born in August of 1915 in the little town of Tyro, Mississippi. In 1927 his family moved to Little Rock, Arkansas, and Hibbler who had been born blind studied music at the Conservatory for the Blind in that city and sang with his church choir. He first vocalized with local territory bands in Arkansas and Oklahoma such as Dub Jenkins. In 1942 he won a talent contest in Memphis, and was asked to join the band of Kansas City pianist Jay McShann which included future jazz legend Charlie Parker

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Rahsaan Roland Kirk: An Alternative Top Ten Albums Guaranteed To Bend Your Head

Read "Rahsaan Roland Kirk: An Alternative Top Ten Albums Guaranteed To Bend Your Head" reviewed by Chris May


Jazz musicians are rarely called shamanistic but the description fits Rahsaan Roland Kirk precisely. Clad in black leather trousers and heavy duty shades (he was blind from the age of two), a truckload of strange looking horns strung round his neck—two or three of which he often played simultaneously--twisting, shaking and otherwise contorting his body, stamping ...

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Article: Album Review

Catherine Russell: Bring It Back

Read "Bring It Back" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey


New York City vocalist Catherine Russell is the brilliant eutection of two bright tones. Her father, the late Luis Russell, collaborated with Louis Armstrong as his bandleader and arranger. Russell's mother was the inestimable Carline Ray who concluded her seven decade career with her debut as a leader Vocal Sides (Self Produced, 2013) before passing away ...

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Article: Live Review

2013 Tri-C JazzFest: Cleveland, OH, April 19 - 27, 2013

Read "2013 Tri-C JazzFest: Cleveland, OH, April 19 - 27, 2013" reviewed by Matt Marshall


34th Annual Tri-C JazzFest ClevelandCleveland, OHApril 19-April 27, 2013There was a determined effort by Tri-C JazzFest Managing Director Terri Pontremoli to give this year's event more of a festival atmosphere than it has perhaps enjoyed in years past. For starters, many of the outlying venues, such as the East Cleveland library, a regular ...

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Article: Hardly Strictly Jazz

Sun Ra: The Eternal Myth Revealed Vol. 1

Read "Sun Ra: The Eternal Myth Revealed Vol. 1" reviewed by Skip Heller


Author's note: Michael Ricci has ordained me with the power to come to you once a month and throw a little information your way. A lot of great music falls through the cracks, often enough because the people who make it don't live comfortably in some nice categorical box. If you're someone who prefers music to ...

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News: Recording

Al Hibbler: Holding a Thrill

Al Hibbler: Holding a Thrill

Before Sam Cooke, before Clyde McPhatter, before Ray Charles and before Earl Coleman there was Al Hibbler. Blind from birth, Hibbler began his recording career in 1942 with Jay McShann's band, when Charlie Parker was in the reed section. Then in 1943, he joined Duke Ellington, a tenure that lasted until 1950. A dispute with Ellington ...

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Article: Book Excerpts

George Russell: The Story of an American Composer

Read "George Russell: The Story of an American Composer" reviewed by Duncan Heining


This article, adapted by the author, appears in Chapter 4 of George Russell: The Story of an American Composer, by Duncan Heining (Scarecrow Press, 2010). New York, NY It was May 1945, the war was still on, Bebop was at its height in New York and George Russell and his two ...

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Article: Highly Opinionated

Roswell Rudd: The Musical Magus Turns 75

Read "Roswell Rudd: The Musical Magus Turns 75" reviewed by Raul d'Gama Rose


"Years ago it would have seemed an impossible dream to get to record with this musical magus, but here we are... and what a thrill!" class="f-right">--Charlie Kohlhase, From liner notes to Eventuality: The Charlie Kohlhase Quintet Plays the Music of Roswell Rudd (Nada, 2001) I see him suddenly as if in a ...

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Article: Interview

Giacomo Gates: An Unconventional Backstory

Read "Giacomo Gates: An Unconventional Backstory" reviewed by Sean Dietrich


Giacomo Gates brings a rich, full-bodied timbre to the vocal jazz table. His pure vocalese approach has earned him lauds among critics, who hail him a champion artist in the modern jazz genre. He's been performing alongside the most recognized artists in the industry, using only his voice to produce a broad range of spectral color. ...

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Article: Extended Analysis

Sonny Rollins: Vol. 1

Read "Sonny Rollins: Vol. 1" reviewed by Matt Marshall


Sonny Rollins Vol. 1 Blue Note / Music Matters 2009 (1956) Often lost and forgotten in the mix of spectacular albums saxophonist Sonny Rollins made for the Prestige label in 1956 (including “all-time" sets Saxophone Colossus and Tenor Madness) and his second Blue Note effort, Sonny Rollins Vol. 2 (1957), ...


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