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Musician

Billy Eckstine

Born:

By the time he reached his peak popularity in 1950, he rivaled Frank Sinatra as the country's most popular vocalist. In fact he was dubbed "the sepia Sinatra," although he was known most often as "Mr. B." Billy Eckstine was a smooth singer also noted as a premier jazz bandleader in the 1940s, gathering many of the performers in the innovative bebop style into a unique large band. Born William Clarence Eckstein in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in 1914, Eckstine had the spelling of his name changed early in his career by a club owner. The family moved to Washington, D.C. Eckstine's parents stressed education, and he graduated from Washington's Armstrong High School

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Classic Jazz, Past and Present

Read "Classic Jazz, Past and Present" reviewed by Jerome Wilson


From May 2021, a show of all pre-bebop classic jazz, performed by musicians from that era as well as more recent players. Some of the performers on the show are Ethel Waters, Artie Shaw, Manhattan Transfer, Maryann Price, Louis Armstrong and Turk Murphy with Lord Buckley. Playlist Henry Threadgill Sextett “I Can't Wait Till ...

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Article: History of Jazz

Banding Together Against Segregation in Los Angeles

Read "Banding Together Against Segregation in Los Angeles" reviewed by Eve Goldberg


Once upon a time, jazz musicians in jny: Los Angeles led a groundbreaking struggle for racial justice and economic opportunity that sent ripples of change across the country. Most of us are aware of the seminal names and events of the civil rights era: Rosa Parks spearheading the Montgomery bus boycott; Martin Luther King ...

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Article: History of Jazz

Groove Town: Buffalo Jazz And Its Legacy - Historical Insights

Read "Groove Town: Buffalo Jazz And Its Legacy - Historical Insights" reviewed by Barbara Ina Frenz


From early on, Buffalo attracted musicians as a place to live and pursue their artistic endeavors—and they were excellent ones: Lil Hardin Armstrong, Jimmie Lunceford, Pete Johnson, and Stuff Smith. Dodo Greene, two masters of polyrhythm, Frankie Dunlop and Clarence Becton, as well as pianist and bassist Wade Legge grew up here. Two distinctive voices on ...

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Article: Album Review

Chuck Anderson: Spontaneity

Read "Spontaneity" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer


For those who don't know, Chuck Anderson is a jazz guitarist, composer, and educator based in the Philadelphia area for many years. He studied with Dennis Sandole, went on to be the staff guitarist at the Latin Casino in Cherry Hill, NJ followed by a tour of duty at the Valley Forge Music Fair in Devon, ...

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Mark Murphy: An Essential Top Ten Albums

Read "Mark Murphy: An Essential Top Ten Albums" reviewed by Peter Jones


Revered by jazz singers the world over, Mark Murphy is barely known to the general public--which is curious, since he enjoyed a recording career that lasted more than half a century, made 48 albums in his lifetime, and played thousands of gigs with hundreds of musicians from Norway to Australia. A notoriously mercurial and secretive character, ...

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Article: Profile

Erroll Garner: 100th Birthday Anniversary Of The Immortal Swinging Maestro Of Jazz Piano

Read "Erroll Garner: 100th Birthday Anniversary Of The Immortal Swinging Maestro Of Jazz Piano" reviewed by Doug Hall


The hundredth birthday of the legendary and brilliant virtuoso Erroll Garner is being marked by tributes including The Erroll Garner Project, which has released additional recordings and a remastering of existing recordings by the swing maestro of jazz piano. His popularity as an in-demand international performer and his landmark record Concert by the Sea (Columbia, 1955) ...

News: Video / DVD

Billy Eckstine's Ballads 1947-1951

Billy Eckstine's Ballads 1947-1951

In 1947, vocalist Billy Eckstine became a solo performer, much the way Frank Sinatra had in 1942. Signing with MGM, Eckstine played to the young female market that dreamed of love. At first marketed to the Black urban market, Eckstine on MGM crossed over to the pop charts, racking up 18 hits between 1947 and '51. ...

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

John Coltrane: An Alternative Top Ten Albums

Read "John Coltrane: An Alternative Top Ten Albums" reviewed by Chris May


Miles Davis once said that you could recite the history of jazz in just four words: Louis Armstrong, Charlie Parker. To that you need to add two more: John Coltrane. A giant during his lifetime, Coltrane continues to shape jazz and inspire musicians decades after he passed. No other player has come remotely close to eclipsing ...

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Article: SoCal Jazz

Chick Corea: In The Present Tense

Read "Chick Corea: In The Present Tense" reviewed by Jim Worsley


This article was originally published at All About Jazz on November 12, 2020. RIP, Chick. What can you say about music icon Chick Corea that hasn't already been said? His past, his career has been honored, dissected, and revered. As it should be. A composer and pianist of unparalleled skills and accomplishments, Corea's place ...


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