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Cedar Walton

For over 25 years, pianist Cedar Walton has enjoyed an uptempo career, which never seems to slow down. Maintaining a non-stop itinerary, Walton has accompanied a litany of Jazz greats while also fronting his own successful groups. Born January 17, 1934 in Dallas, Texas, Walton set his sights on a career in music at an early age. An after- hours gig at the Denver Club introduced him to notable musicians like Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie and John Coltrane, who would sit in with Walton's group when they passed through town.

From there, Walton ventured to New York and began to work locally with Lou Donaldson, Gigi Gryce, Sonny Rollins and Kenny Dorham before landing his first touring job with J.J. Johnson. Soon after, the pianist made his recording debut backing Kenny Dorham on the Riverside album Kenny Dorham Sings. He also made two records with J.J. Johnson' s group on Columbia Records before joining the Art Farmer/Benny Golson Jazztet, a group he toured and recorded with for two years. Walton's next major musical association was with Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers. During his three years tenure with Blakey, Walton stepped forward a composer, contributing originals like Mosaic and The Promised Land to the group's recordings for the Blue Note and Riverside labels.

Drummers as Bandleaders: An Alternative Top Ten Albums

Read "Drummers as Bandleaders: An Alternative Top Ten Albums" reviewed by Chris May

Drummers have been key members of every band which has changed the course of jazz history, from Max Roach with Charlie Parker to Elvin Jones with John Coltrane and onwards. Yet drummers have been the leaders of a surprisingly small proportion of landmark bands themselves. Chick Webb in the 1920s was the first of the few. ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

The TNEK Jazz Quintet: Plays the Music of Sam Jones

Read "Plays the Music of Sam Jones" reviewed by Jack Bowers

The late Sam Jones is mainly remembered as an earnest craftsman whose perceptive bass lines undergirded the likes of Cannonball Adderley, Oscar Peterson, Cedar Walton, Barry Harris, Kenny Dorham, Bobby Timmons, Bill Evans and a host of other jazz masters. Jones, however, had another special albeit lesser-known talent, one that is addressed here, almost forty years ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Art Blakey: Just Coolin'

Read "Just Coolin'" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic

Great moments play all over Just Coolin', the new archival Blue Note Art Blakey release from 1959, recorded at Rudy Van Gelder's studio with Lee Morgan, Bobby Timmons and Jymie Merritt. For a bit of history, let's just point out that Hank Mobley was returning to the tenor chair he held from 1951-56, but which had ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Ian Shaw, Iain Ballamy, Jamie Safir: What's New

Read "What's New" reviewed by Chris May

What's new? Not the dozen songs on this enchanting trio album. Most of them have been around for well over fifty years and people will likely still be enjoying them in another fifty. The composers include Duke Ellington, Richard Rodgers, Burt Bacharach, Jimmy Van Heusen, Michel Legrand and Leonard Bernstein. Musically sophisticated and lyrically literate, the ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Hank Mobley: The Complete Hank Mobley Blue Note Sessions 1963-70

Read "The Complete Hank Mobley Blue Note Sessions 1963-70" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

The music world has changed considerably since Michael Cuscuna and Charlie Lourie founded their boutique reissue label Mosaic Records back in 1983. From its inception, vinyl was still the preferred format, shortly to be overtaken by the popularity of the compact disc. At the cusp of vinyl's recent resurgence, Mosaic briefly got back into that format ...

ARTICLE: YEAR IN REVIEW

2019: Striking A Balance In Review, Part 2

Read "2019: Striking A Balance In Review, Part 2" reviewed by Henning Bolte

Part 1 | Part 2This is the second part of an article that looks back and reflects on experiences with live music in 2019. This part deals with a musician's legacy (Ornette Coleman) and continues with an examination of artistic developments and dynamics in the jazz field in a festival (Jazzfest Berlin) and related ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Emmet Cohen: Masters Legacy Series Volume 4: Emmet Cohen Featuring George Coleman

Read "Masters Legacy Series Volume 4: Emmet Cohen Featuring George Coleman" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic

So here we are, nearly knocking on the door to February 2020, and we're listening to the second of Emmet Cohen's two entrancing, late 2019 releases: Masters Legacy Series Vol. 4 Emmet Cohen featuring George Coleman--a good harbinger for the new year. And heaven knows we could use a boatload of good harbingers these exhausting days. ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Emmet Cohen: Master Legacy Series Volume 3 Featuring Benny Golson & Albert "Tootie" Heath

Read "Master Legacy Series Volume 3 Featuring Benny Golson & Albert "Tootie" Heath" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic

Set aside for the moment that the combined age of the elders here is 174 years. Emmet Cohen's Masters Legacy Series Volume 3 Featuring Benny Golson & Albert “Tootie" Heath is not only a mouthful of a title, but also irascibly and irrepressibly old school. It's as if Cohen, in his youthful (29) zeal and zest ...


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