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Carmen Staaf

'Winner of the festival's piano competition last year, Staaf could have earned a small slot on the program on the strength of her technique alone. What stood out, though, were her compositions, particularly the fanciful "Merry Go Round," and her trio's fresh interpretation of Denzil Best's "45 Degree Angle," a Williams favorite.' - David Malitz, The Washington Post (review of the 2010 Mary Lou Williams Women in Jazz Festival opening night concert at the Kennedy Center). 'Next to take the stage was Carmen Staaf, winner of the 2009 Mary Lou Williams Pianist Competition. Performing with a trio, Staaf presented a mix of original compositions and pieces somehow related to Williams. For each, Staaf provided a detailed explanation of its origins, adding a heartfelt explanation of her respect for William's music and generosity of spirit. Equally sincere in her playing, Staaf delivered clearly articulated ideas, particularly on her own well-structured original compositions

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Dan Blake: Da Fé

Read "Da Fé" reviewed by Mark Corroto

Saxophonist-composer Dan Blake's Da Fé ("of faith"), a meditation on our world in crisis, may have taken, as a starting point, the lyrics to Lou Reed's “Busload Of Faith" from the über-cynical New York (Sire, 1989) recording, “You can depend on cruelty / crudity of thought and sound / You can depend on the worst always ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

New Releases From Yoko Miwa and Dave Stryker Plus A Valentines Salute to Blanche Calloway

Read "New Releases From Yoko Miwa and Dave Stryker Plus A Valentines Salute to Blanche Calloway" reviewed by Mary Foster Conklin

This Valentines Day broadcast includes new releases from pianist Yoko Miwa, vocalists Ada Bird Wolfe, Valentina Marino, Laila Biali and guitarist Dave Stryker, plus birthday shout outs to Blanche Calloway, Carmen Staaf and Sharel Cassity, among others. Also remembered was vocalist and educator Carol Fredette. Thanks for your continued support. Please help all of these fine ...

TRACK OF THE DAY

Samba de Beach

Album:
By
Label: SteepleChase Records
Released: 2020
Duration: 4:13

ARTICLE: YEAR IN REVIEW

2020: The Year in Jazz

Read "2020: The Year in Jazz" reviewed by Ken Franckling

The COVID-19 pandemic put the jazz world in a tailspin, just like the world at large, in 2020. And there is plenty of uncertainty going into the new year about what “new normal: might emerge from the darkness. International Jazz Day, like so many other things, became an online virtual event this time around. Pianist Keith ...

ONA

Label: Self Produced
Released: 2020
Track listing: ONA; The Resistance; Pachamama; Set Free; You Taught Me; Teardrop; Cassandra; He Said She Said; Animal Instinct; Everybody Wants to Rule the World.

All Wandering Hearts

Label: Dot Time Records
Released: 2020
Track listing: Make It Flood; The Way Home; I Would Die 4 U; Overdrive Mind; What a Wonderful World; Gold; Sugar Spun Girl; Rock Bottom; Lullabye; Send Me on My Way.

Lose My Number

Label: SteepleChase Records
Released: 2020
Track listing: Samba De Beach; Livin' Small; Tiffany; Strictly Ballroom; C. J.; Dover Beach; Ukulele Tune; Zephyr; Lose My Number.

I Never Saw Another Butterfly

Label: Fractamodi Records
Released: 2020
Track listing: Dear Pavel; The Butterfly; Dear Franta; Home/The Old House; The Garden; Dear Alena; I’d Like to Go Alone/Ani Ma’amin; Tears; Dear Anonymous; On a Sunny Evening; Birdsong/Butterfly Reprise.

ARTICLE: CATCHING UP WITH

Allison Miller: Driving the Balance

Read "Allison Miller: Driving the Balance" reviewed by John Pietaro

Allison Miller sits at the vintage Camco drumkit in her Brooklyn home, playing post-bop over a rolling samba. Within the shimmer of an age-darkened cymbal, she switches from sticks to brushes, filling the room with the shush of summer rain, then a sudden hailstorm as her arms, aerial, traverse snare, tom-toms and cymbals in a blurring, ...


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