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MUSICIAN Born:

Count Basie

Bill Basie studied music with his mother as a child and played piano in early childhood. He picked up the basics of early ragtime from some of the great Harlem pianists and studied organ informally with Fats Waller. He made his professional debut as an accompanist for vaudeville acts and replaced Waller in an act called Katie Crippen and her Kids. He also worked with June Clark and Sonny Greer who was later to become Duke Ellington’s drummer. It was while traveling with the Gonzel White vaudeville show that Basie became stranded in Kansas City when the outfit suddenly broke up. He played at a silent movie house for a while and then became a member of the Walter Page Blue Devils in 1928 and ’29

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

Chuck Granata: On Sinatra, The Beach Boys, and Johnny Mandel

Read "Chuck Granata: On Sinatra, The Beach Boys, and Johnny Mandel" reviewed by Nicholas F. Mondello

Chuck Granata is a record and radio producer, author, music historian and archivist. He has written four books on music and sound recording: Sessions with Sinatra: Frank Sinatra and the Art of Recording (Chicago Review Press, A Capella Books, 1999), Wouldn't it be Nice: Brian Wilson and the Making of the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds (Chicago ...

Bob Thiele's Flying Dutchman Records: Ten High Altitude Albums

Read "Bob Thiele's Flying Dutchman Records: Ten High Altitude Albums" reviewed by Chris May

Bob Thiele is best remembered for his years as the artistic director and house producer of Impulse!. He took over from founder producer Creed Taylor in 1961 and stayed with the label until 1969, when he left to run his own Flying Dutchman Records. Thiele's tenure at Impulse! was its most glorious period, when Thiele curated ...

ARTICLE: SOCAL JAZZ

Frank Tiberi: The Thundering is Still Heard

Read "Frank Tiberi: The Thundering is Still Heard" reviewed by Jim Worsley

The term “ninety-two years young" is a bit cliché, but if the shoe fits (oops, another cliché). Saxophonist Frank Tiberi (pictured above playing with saxophonist and long time friend George Garzone to the left) spoke with the verve and energy of a much younger man. He got excited, as if being back in the moment, when ...

ARTICLE: WHAT IS JAZZ?

The Touch of Your Lips, Part III: The Essential Touch in Jazz Piano

Read "The Touch of Your Lips, Part III: The Essential Touch in Jazz Piano" reviewed by Kurt Ellenberger

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 It would be nice and tidy if the development of tone color as a primary in jazz piano matched its development in the other instruments, but that is not the case. From early on in jazz's history, composers and bandleaders like Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Cab ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

Field Trip To The Vault!

Read "Field Trip To The Vault!" reviewed by Marc Cohn

After a dose of 21st century music from Dave Allen, Pat Metheny and Aziza, we continue to celebrate the life of Sonny Rollins with tracks from his last session for Prestige in 1956. Then it's deep into the vault for two 78rpm recreations from Charlie Parker (on tenor) with Miles & Erroll Garner's trio from the ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

David Sanborn: Night Music and Beyond with Hal Willner

Read "David Sanborn: Night Music and Beyond with Hal Willner" reviewed by Ludovico Granvassu

Could you imagine tuning in to national network TV today and finding a 60-minute weekly music show focusing on forward-looking musicians driven by a desire to push the envelope rather than to “entertain?" A music show sponsored by a beer company, on top of that? It's hard to believe today. But for two seasons at the ...

ARTICLE: UNDER THE RADAR

The Archive of Contemporary Music

Read "The Archive of Contemporary Music" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

In Lower Manhattan, sits a musical gold mine. It's the motherlode of recorded music though the small, brightly colored sign above a grey steel door provides only a cryptic clue. The dusty window display of rare 78 RPM records, broken into erratic pie charts serves as a vestige of the past and a cautionary tale about ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

Avant-Retro or Retro-Avant? Part I

Read "Avant-Retro or Retro-Avant? Part I" reviewed by Ludovico Granvassu

Rigid categories are not what music should be about. This week we focus on music that some may file under “retro" but is performed by musicians that are often labelled “avant," it may not sound exactly how Count Basie and the Kansas City 7 or Fess Williams and the Royal Flush Orchestra would have played, but ...

ARTICLE: HIGHLY OPINIONATED

Craft Recording's "Chet" is a Rare Win for Baker

Read "Craft Recording's "Chet" is a Rare Win for Baker" reviewed by Patrick Burnette

"There's a little white cat out here who's going to eat you up." —Charlie Parker (to Miles Davis) Chet Baker and Miles Davis. Two trumpet players born three years apart. Both unusually handsome and slight of build. Both lacking, as trumpeters, the qualities most often associated with those brass alphas of the jazz ...


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