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Musician

Chuck Berry

Born:

Inspired by the electrified Delta blues of Muddy Waters, the wild showmanship of T-Bone Walker and Guitar Slim, the smooth crooning of Nat “King” Cole, and the storytelling of Hank Williams, Chuck Berry scrambled his influences and came out with a concoction that was uniquely his own. The screaming, overdriven guitar intro to “Maybelline,” Berry’s Chess Records debut, tells the story, walloped with the power of the blues, honed to perfection. Berry’s Chess sides sound fully formed, solid, the raw power of a band of incredible musicians led by a true musical visionary. Even today, they come howling out of speakers like pure energy. Loose, swinging, grooving, Berry’s songs are nearly perfect. The classics he penned are too many to mention

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Article: Live Review

Jazz At Juan-Les-Pins Festival 2022

Read "Jazz At Juan-Les-Pins Festival 2022" reviewed by Martin McFie


Pinède Gould Jazz à Juan Festival Juan les Pins, South of France July 6-19 2022 Juan-les-Pins is an elegant beach town near Antibes, in the South of France. The stage is set on the Mediterranean sea shore, surrounded by pine trees and sandy beaches. There is no backdrop, so the ...

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Article: Album Review

The Rolling Stones: El Mocambo 1977

Read "El Mocambo 1977" reviewed by Doug Collette


The die-cut design of the double-CD cover for the Rolling Stones' El Mocambo 1977 mitigates at least to some degree the borderline amateurish cover art. But reversing the pink and blue covers of the twenty-page booklet inside the dual-fold package achieves a greater end than simply altering the simplistic cosmetics; its extraction also reveals a Paul ...

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Article: Jazz Fiction

Interruptions On A Christmas Eve

Read "Interruptions On A Christmas Eve" reviewed by Arthur R George


The small restaurant and occasional music bistro was closed for Christmas Eve. Its owner Ernie DiVitale had darkened the room. There was light enough, from the Christmas tree in the corner and spilling in from a lamp over the prep area in the kitchen, to relax with his wife Veronica at a back table over cappuccini ...

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Article: Album Review

Norah Jones: I Dream of Christmas

Read "I Dream of Christmas" reviewed by Jim Trageser


With Tony Bennett's retirement, the mantle of legitimate straight-ahead pop crooners is now firmly in the hands of subsequent generations: Harry Connick, Jr., Diana Krall and Norah Jones. Not pure jazz singers, of which there are numerous stellar examples, these singers are more in the Bennett-Sinatra-Fitzgerald mold, bringing a jazz sensibility to pop music.

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Article: Album Review

Grateful Dead: Grateful Dead (Skull & Roses)

Read "Grateful Dead (Skull & Roses)" reviewed by Doug Collette


Grateful Dead, the second album of concert recordings released by the iconic band for Warner Brothers Records, resides squarely in the sweet spot between the expansive likes of its corollary, Live Dead (Warner Bros., 1969) and the economical studio recordings this group issued in between, Workingman's Dead (Warner Bros., 1970) and American Beauty (Warner Bros., 1970). ...

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Article: Film Review

The Rolling Stones: A Bigger Bang: Live on Copacabana Beach DVD/CD

Read "The Rolling Stones: A Bigger Bang: Live on Copacabana Beach DVD/CD" reviewed by Doug Collette


Rolling Stones A Bigger Bang: Live on Copacabana Beach UME/Mercury Studios/Rolling Stones Records 2021 Rolling Stones concerts have been synonymous with spectacle since the Seventies, but never more so than in recent years, especially in the case of their free concerts as documented on A Bigger Bang: Live on Copacabana Beach. ...

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Article: So You Don't Like Jazz

Top Ten Kennedy Center Musical Moments

Read "Top Ten Kennedy Center Musical Moments" reviewed by Alan Bryson


It's a good bet that most of us have heard people say they don't like jazz, or even worse, drop the H-bomb: “I hate jazz." If you choose to engage them, the key is to tread lightly and tailor an approach that considers their tastes and sensibilities. This So You Don't Like Jazz column explores ways ...

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Article: Film Review

Ronnie Wood: Somebody Up There Likes Me

Read "Ronnie Wood:  Somebody Up There Likes Me" reviewed by Doug Collette


Ronnie Wood Somebody Up There Likes Me Eagle Rock Entertainment 2020 The colloquialism from which the Ronnie Wood video documentary takes its title, Somebody Up There Likes Me, might well also reference the high-profile musicians with whom he's collaborated over the course of a remarkably enduring career: Jeff Beck, Rod ...

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Article: Multiple Reviews

Ronnie Wood and Mike Zito: Tributes to Chuck Berry - Playin' Guitar Like Ringin' a Bell

Read "Ronnie Wood and Mike Zito: Tributes to Chuck Berry - Playin' Guitar Like Ringin' a Bell" reviewed by Doug Collette


Chuck Berry should be revered as one of American history's great storytellers. His depictions of people ("Johnny B. Goode"), places ("Memphis Tennessee) and things ("Rock and Roll Music") carried a vivid attention to detail further distinguished by the author's immediately recognizable electric guitar sound: marrying the blues with country music Berry set himself apart from forebears ...


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