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Curtis Counce

Born in Kansas City, Counce studied violin and tuba early on before settling on the string bass. He went on the road when he was 16, playing with the Nat Towles Band in Omaha. After some freelancing, Counce moved to Los Angeles in 1945, working with Johnny Otis and making his recording debut the following year with Lester Young. During the ‘50’s he was a key member of the West Coast jazz scene, recording as a sideman with Shelly Manne, Lyle Murphy, Teddy Charles, Clifford Brown, and many others. In 1956, Counce organized a quintet comprised of trumpeter Jack Sheldon, tenor saxophonist Harold Land, pianist Carl Perkins, and drummer Frank Butler

Chet Baker: An Alternative Top Ten Albums To Get Lost In

Read "Chet Baker: An Alternative Top Ten Albums To Get Lost In" reviewed by Chris May

Chet Baker was born to a farmer's daughter and a hard-drinking, weed-smoking singer and guitarist in a Western Swing band in Yale, Oklahoma in 1929. Like many Okies, the family fared badly during the Great Depression but did a little better after moving to Glendale, California in 1939. Largely self-taught as a trumpeter, Baker honed his ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

XY Quartet: Orbite

Read "Orbite" reviewed by Giuseppe Segala

La musica apparecchiata in questo Orbite, ultimo lavoro dell'XY Quartet pubblicato dalla raffinata etichetta autogestita nusica.org, si ispira all'epopea dei viaggi nello spazio. Ne sono evidente conferma i titoli dei brani, che propongono il nome di mitici cosmonauti protagonisti di storiche imprese spaziali, come i sovietici “Titov," “Gagarin," “Valentina Tereškova," “Vladimir Komarov," gli statunitensi “John Glenn," ...

ARTICLE: MULTIPLE REVIEWS

I classici Xanadu - Seconda parte

Read "I classici Xanadu - Seconda parte" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi

In questo nuovo blocco di riedizioni Xanadu, pubblicate dalla Elemental, dopo la puntata dedicata ai sassofonisti, ci occupiamo soprattutto di pianisti, ovviamente legati alla scuola bop secondo le preferenze stilistiche del produttore Don Schlitten: Kenny Drew, Dolo Coker e Barry Harris. Questi non sono leader in tutti i dischi ma il loro contributo è sempre centrale. ...

Bob Cooper: Four Classic Albums

Read "Bob Cooper: Four Classic Albums" reviewed by David Rickert

Bob Cooper was one of the greats of the fifties West Coast scene. He was a formidable improviser whose proficiency on multiple instruments made him highly sought after for studio work, and was also a talented arranger whose had plenty of work in the studio on both big band and small group recordings. However, he seldom ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Brian Groder Trio: Reflexology

Read "Reflexology" reviewed by Alberto Bazzurro

È curioso che fra i tredici nomi che circumnavigano la pianta del piede che campeggia in copertina non compaia quello di Shorty Rogers. Se dovessimo infatti trovare un ipotetico progenitore di questo disco (e questo trio) il primo nome che ci verrebbe in mente sarebbe proprio quello del trombettista californiano (in realtà nativo del Massachusetts), idealmente ...

ARTICLE: RECORD LABEL PROFILE

Cuneiform Records: Growing Progressive Music for 27 Years

Read "Cuneiform Records: Growing Progressive Music for 27 Years" reviewed by Mark Redlefsen

Twenty seven years is a long time for a niche progressive music label such as Cuneiform Records not just to survive, but to remain inventive and, in the best sense, ambitious. Steve Feigenbaum founded Cuneiform back in 1984, and with his wife, Joyce, runs it from Silver Springs, Maryland. Hosting bands such as Universe Zero, digging ...

ARTICLE: BIG BAND REPORT

"Modern Sounds," or: Running a Marathon in Full Body Armor

Read ""Modern Sounds," or: Running a Marathon in Full Body Armor" reviewed by Jack Bowers

From October 19-25 Betty and I were at the Los Angeles Marriott Airport Hotel to attend Modern Sounds, the L.A. Jazz Institute's four-day salute to West Coast jazz, followed by a day-long tribute to Stan Kenton on the hundredth anniversary of the legendary bandleader's birth. We arrived a day early to be primed and ready for ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Free Fall: Gray Scale

Read "Gray Scale" reviewed by Charles Walker

For years now, multi-reed instrumentalist Ken Vandermark has been a consistent, if idiosyncratic, devotee of the jazz canon. Musically coming of age in the internet era, however, his taste reflects the widespread availability of previously neglected recordings and the resulting reorientation of what exactly that canon includes. Explicit dedication of Vandermark 5 tracks to Curtis Counce ...

NEWS: RADIO

Goin' Up: Space Age Jazz

Playing your bass in outer space? Getting some Martians to groove to a West Coast beat? Landing your orchestra on a distant planet? This week on Night Lights it's “Space Age Jazz"—the story of how some 1950s and 60s jazz adventurers were influenced by the Cold War race for space, with music from Duke Ellington, Sun ...


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