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Carla Bley


Carla Bley was born in Oakland, California in 1936. Her father Emil Borg, a piano teacher and church organist, began giving her music lessons when she was three years old and she was soon playing at church functions. But her musical education ended at the age of eight. Her formal education stopped entirely when she dropped out of high school after completing the tenth grade. During her adolescence Carla was drawn to jazz and moved to New York City to be closer to the musicians she admired. She resumed her musical education by working as a cigarette girl at the notorious Birdland jazz club, where she was able to hear the greatest jazz musicians of the day


Article: Album Review

Carla Bley Big Band: Appearing Nightly

Read "Appearing Nightly" reviewed by Budd Kopman

Appearing Nightly conflates four of the most delightful things in the world--being in a jazz club with white tablecloths and a martini listening to live music played but a few feet away, a big band cooking on stage, the music being played harkening back to jazz of the 1950s, and finally that music refracted through the ...


Article: Album Review

Carla Bley Big Band: Appearing Nightly

Read "Appearing Nightly" reviewed by John Kelman

It's been five years since Carla Bley last worked with a big band on the politically motivated Looking for America (Watt, 2003). In the intervening years, the composer/bandleader has focused on small ensemble work with The Lost Chords (2004), and a follow-up encounter with trumpeter Paolo Fresu on The Lost Chords Find Paolo Fresu (2007), both ...


Article: Extended Analysis

Carla Bley Big Band: Appearing Nightly

Read "Carla Bley Big Band:  Appearing Nightly" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Carla Bley Big Band Appearing Nightly WATT 2008 Bandleader and musical provocateur Carla Bley is the Hector Berlioz of jazz. Her command of her large ensembles is complete and potent. Her composition, arrangement, and adaptation are intelligent with a sophisticated sense of humor. A superb pianist, Bley's true ...


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