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Benny Carter

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Benny Carter's long career was consistently characterized by high musical achievement, and he developed a unique and readily identifiable style as both an alto saxophonist and an arranger. He was able to double on trumpet and was also proficient on clarinet, piano, and trombone. His saxophone playing was pure-toned, fluid, and flawlessly phrased. One of the trademark sounds of his arrangements was four saxophones harmonizing one of his swooping melodies as if they were one instrument improvising. He also created the big-band model of contending brass and reed sections, anticipated harmonic trends that would later appear in bebop, and transformed a clunky Western notion of musical time into something more buoyant and fresh. Benjamin Lester Carter was born on August 8, 1907, in New York City and grew up in tManhattan (near Lincoln Center). He took piano lessons from his mother as a young boy, but his musical heroes were trumpeters like his cousin, Theodore Bennett, and Bubber Miley, who played with Duke Ellington

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News: Obituary

Margie Evans, Iconic And Sophisticated Queen Of The Blues, Dies At 81

Margie Evans, Iconic And Sophisticated Queen Of The Blues, Dies At 81

Margie Evans, a legendary, international Blues and Gospel entertainer, songwriter, music producer, actress, music historian, community activist and motivational spokeswoman, who broke barriers for African American female Blues performers with poise, dignity and sophistication, died on March 19, 2021. In addition to her musicianship, Evans is noted as an activist for parity in music education as ...

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Article: Profile

Roy McCurdy: From Cannonball to the Rochester Music Hall of Fame

Read "Roy McCurdy: From Cannonball to the Rochester Music Hall of Fame" reviewed by Scott Gudell


When we placed a call from New York to Los Angeles in the early part of 2021, the articulate and vibrant drummer Roy McCurdy answered and quickly connected us back to the 1950s. He told us about his hometown of jny: Rochester, New York, his early days performing with Chuck Mangione and Gap Mangione and how ...

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Article: Interview

Benjamin Koppel: Curiosity Won't Kill This Cat

Read "Benjamin Koppel: Curiosity Won't Kill This Cat" reviewed by R.J. DeLuke


Benjamin Koppel is an extraordinary Danish musician from an illustrious music family. He is all about music—of just about any kind. He's always absorbing it, discovering what there is to derive from it. A kind of restless desire to explore envelops him. He simplifies it in his own words: he's curious. It comes naturally to him. ...

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Article: Book Review

This Is Bop: Jon Hendricks And The Art Of Vocal Jazz

Read "This Is Bop: Jon Hendricks And The Art Of Vocal Jazz" reviewed by Ian Patterson


This Is Bop: Jon Hendricks And The Art Of Vocal Jazz Peter Jones 263 Pages ISBN: 978 1 78179 874 4 Equinox Publishing 2020 Few are the jazz singers accorded the fanfare usually reserved for the music's great instrumentalists. Jon Hendricks was one, taking scat and vocalese to unprecedented ...

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Article: Radio

Donald Byrd & Lou Donaldson

Read "Donald Byrd & Lou Donaldson" reviewed by Joe Dimino


In honor of the new jazz book Sittin' In by Jeff Gold, we dedicate an entire hour to the music of the 1940s and 1950s. The hour begins with Charlie Parker and ends with Dizzy Gillespie. In between those titans, we profile a huge swath of jazz music and hear from the author about the book, ...

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Article: Interview

Meet Kenny Barron

Read "Meet Kenny Barron" reviewed by Craig Jolley


From the 1995-2003 archive: This article first appeared at All About Jazz in March 2001. Jazz Education I recently retired from Rutgers University. Right now I teach piano one day a week at Manhattan School of Music. In September I'll be teaching at the new jazz program at Julliard. I've taught David Sanchez and ...

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Article: Radio

Listeners’ Favorites

Read "Listeners’ Favorites" reviewed by Marc Cohn


This week (drum roll....), it's listeners' favorites from shows 431 to 440. From classic jazz to today's music, our listeners have discerning and eclectic taste—never forgetting the blues and funk. Enjoy the show! Playlist Don Braden, Karl Latham “Grover Miles" from Big Funk Live (Creative Perspective) 00:00 Grant Green “Let The Music Take ...

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Article: History of Jazz

Charlie Parker: In Praise of Bird on His 100th Birthday!

Read "Charlie Parker: In Praise of Bird on His 100th Birthday!" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer


A hundred years ago, on August 29, 1920, soon after jazz was born, Charlie Parker came into this world, and in the 35 years of a life cut short by addictions and impulse-driven living, he changed the face of the music. His innovations as one of the creators of bebop and his stunning sound and virtuosic ...

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Article: Album Review

Kenny Kotwitz & the L.A. Jazz Quintet: When Lights Are Low

Read "When Lights Are Low" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Imagine the following conversation: “Hi, my name is Kenny Kotwitz. I'm an accordionist and I want to record a centennial tribute to Art van Damme. Would you care to join me?" Okay, it probably didn't go down quite like that but the premise, in these days of rap, heavy metal, acid rock, new wave, bubblegum pop, ...


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