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Chris Connor

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Chris Connor has won every conceivable critical and popular accolade in her half century reign as one of the most gifted and distinctive vocalists in jazz history. Born in 1927 in Kansas City, Missouri, Connor studied clarinet, but her career direction was clear at an early age. “I always knew I wanted to be a singer,” she said, “I never wanted to be anything else.” After completing her schooling, she took a secretarial job while commuting on weekends to the University of Missouri to perform with a Stan Kenton-influenced college jazz band. An admirer of Kenton singers Anita O’Day and June Christy, Connor recalls, “I had my sights set on singing with Kenton.” Frustrated by the lack of vocal musical opportunities in her hometown, Connor pulled up stakes and headed east in 1949

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Singers: Fay Victor, Anita O'Day, Kurt Elling and More

Read "Singers:  Fay Victor, Anita O'Day, Kurt Elling and More" reviewed by Jerome Wilson


This show features vocalists as both band leaders and featured performers with other musicians. In the first category, there are Fay Victor and Anita O'Day among others. In the second, we have Kurt Elling with the Charlie Hunter Quartet and Becca Stevens with Ambrose Akinmusire plus several more. Playlist Henry Threadgill Sextett “I Can't ...

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

New All Star Compilation To Benefit The Musician's Emergency Fund, Live Oscar Peterson and Remembering Margo Guryan

Read "New All Star Compilation To Benefit The Musician's Emergency Fund, Live Oscar Peterson  and Remembering Margo Guryan" reviewed by Mary Foster Conklin


This broadcast presents a 1987 Oscar Peterson concert recording, a benefit for the Jazz Foundation's Musician's Emergency Fund, new releases from Alex Hamburger, Kristen R. Bromley plus a single from Janis Ian, with birthday shoutouts to Nioka Workman, Holli Ross, Johnny Mercer, Diana Krall, Sheila Jordan and more. In the first hour, a remembrance for singer/songwriter ...

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Article: Take Five With...

Take Five with Will Lyle

Read "Take Five with Will Lyle" reviewed by AAJ Staff


Meet Will Lyle Born in Southern California, Will began studying cello when he was three and also played drums, guitar, piano and percussion, taking up the electric bass at the age of 12. “I had aspirations to become a producer and I originally went to Berklee for musical production, but during my freshman year I heard ...

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Article: Album Review

Stan Kenton and His Orchestra: In a Lighter Vein

Read "In a Lighter Vein" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Stan Kenton was a man of many moods, as was his intrepid and popular orchestra, which endured until his passing in August 1979 and whose renown is kept alive even today by the Stan Kenton Legacy Orchestra. Kenton dons his carefree hat on In a Lighter Vein, an assortment of straight-ahead themes from the orchestra's jazz ...

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

New Releases and a Celebration of Joni Mitchell

Read "New Releases and a Celebration of Joni Mitchell" reviewed by Mary Foster Conklin


The autumn harvest of new releases continues with recordings by Alan Broadbent, Brandi Disterheft, Joel Ross, The Royal Bopsters, Mary Halvorson's Code Girl, Richard Baratta, Ian Hendrickson-Smith, Rebecca Hennessy, Tom Oren and Fred Hersch, with birthday shoutouts to Lauren Henderson, Sarah Jerrom, Kurt Elling, Patricia Barber, Kitty Margolis, Chris Connor and as always, Joni Mitchell. Thanks ...

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Article: Multiple Reviews

Two Twin-Tenor Duos

Read "Two Twin-Tenor Duos" reviewed by Jerome Wilson


The idea of two tenor saxophonists playing together has a long, storied history in jazz through pairings like Dexter Gordon and Wardell Gray, Gene Ammons and Sonny Stitt, and Zoot Sims and Al Cohn. Such duos have become harder to find in recent years but here are two newer examples. Jeff Rupert / ...

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Article: Profile

The Very Singular Mr. Ran Blake

Read "The Very Singular Mr. Ran Blake" reviewed by Duncan Heining


There have been few American composers and musicians, with the ability to encapsulate their country's music in all its racial and ethnic complexity. We might perhaps point to Aaron Copland, Leonard Bernstein, Charles Ives and perhaps, in their own distaff ways, Harry Partch and Steve Reich. In jazz, their number is fewer still--Duke Ellington and George ...

Album

Connor Sings — Kenton Swings

Label: Sounds of Yesteryear
Released: 2019
Track listing: Theme: Artistry in Rhythm; Jeepers Creepers; Everything Happens to Me (short version); There Will Never Be Another You; You’re Mine You; I Only Have Eyes for You; September in the Rain; Lullaby in Rhythm; All About Ronnie; Love Me or Leave Me; If I Should Lose You; Tenderly; I’ll Remember April; Taking a Chance on Love; Everything Happens to Me (long version); I Get a Kick Out of You; Don’t Worry ‘Bout Me; Stan Speaks About Chris; Darn That Dream; Artistry in Rhythm.

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Article: Album Review

Allegra Levy: Looking at the Moon

Read "Looking at the Moon" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi


L'hanno già fatto Frank Sinatra e Mel Tormè ma non è vietato riprovarci, deve aver pensato Allegra Levy. Giunta al terzo disco, la giovane cantante statunitense esplora un repertorio di canzoni che si riferiscono alla luna, nel titolo e/o nel testo. Sono trascorsi più di cinquant'anni da Moonlingt Sinatra e Swingin' On The Moon (quest'ultimo ne ...


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