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Don Was


Was was born in Detroit, Michigan. He graduated from Oak Park High School in the Detroit suburb of Oak Park, then attended the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor but dropped out after the first year. A journeyman musician, he grew up listening to the Detroit blues sound and the jazz music of John Coltrane and Miles Davis. Using the stage name "Don Was", he formed the group Was (Not Was) with school friend David Weiss (David Was). The group found commercial success in the 1980s—releasing four albums and logging several hit records. A jazz/R&B album of Hank Williams covers, "Forever's A Long, Long Time" was released in 1997, under the name Orquestra Was


Ace - 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition (2CD)

Label: Rhino
Released: 2023
Track listing: CD 1: Greatest Story Ever Told; Black-Throated Wind; Walk In The Sunshine; Playing In The Band; Looks Like Rain; Mexicali Blues; One More Saturday Night; Cassidy. CD 2: Greatest Story Ever Told; Black- Throated Wind; Walk In The Sunshine; Playing In The Band; Looks Like Rain; Mexicali Blues Intro; Mexicali Blues; One More Saturday Night; Cassidy.


Article: Album Review

Johnathan Blake: Passage

Read "Passage" reviewed by Dave Linn

The drummer Johnathan Blake was born in Philadelphia in 1976. His father was the esteemed jazz violinist and educator John Blake Jr. who played in many diverse settings, (most notably Archie Shepp and McCoy Tyner), before releasing seven albums under his name. He died in 2014. Blake (the son) began studying music at a young age, ...


Article: Catching Up With

Makaya McCraven: In The Moment to In These Times

Read "Makaya McCraven: In The Moment to In These Times" reviewed by Rob Garratt

Makaya McCraven needs a coffee--fast. It's 4pm and he's crashing. It will be his third of the day. His first caffeine hit, consumed on stage six hours earlier, was a chemical necessity; McCraven was drinking at a nearby Irish pub until the early hours and nearly missed his early morning panel talk appearance alongside fellow percussion ...


Article: Album Review

Kendrick Scott: Corridors

Read "Corridors" reviewed by Chris May

Some of the press releases coming out of Blue Note's Los Angeles HQ since the pandemic have been ripe for inclusion in British satirical magazine Private Eye's Desperate Marketing column. In this, the Eye prints particularly egregious, or just plain laughable, attempts by publicists to hook-up what they are selling with headline news events, or to ...


Article: Album Review

Bob Weir: Ace - 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition (2CD)

Read "Ace - 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition (2CD)" reviewed by Doug Collette

Befitting its heady milestone date, the title of Bob Weir's initial solo album, Ace, carries multiple meanings. First of all, it was the Grateful Dead guitarist, vocalist & songwriter's nickname at the time of its gestation and completion (his bawdy persona as such mirrored in the ultra-suave pose on the inside photo as well as the ...


Article: Radio & Podcasts

Dave McMurray

Read "Dave McMurray" reviewed by Lawrence Peryer

Saxophonist Dave McMurray stops by Spotlight On to talk about his career, the music scene in his native Detroit, his long history with musician, producer and executive Don Was, his work and relationship with Geri Allen and more. McMurray has performed with a stunning roster of legendary musicians, including B.B. King, Nancy Wilson]}, {{m: Herbie Hancock, ...


Article: Year in Review

2022: The Year in Jazz

Read "2022: The Year in Jazz" reviewed by Ken Franckling

Current events impacted the jazz world in significant ways throughout 2022. In its third year, the coronavirus pandemic continued to lurk in some settings, while others recovered in robust fashion. Russia's war on Ukraine was felt by musicians and triggered an outpouring of support for its victims. Initiatives to ensure greater equity in jazz advanced. The ...


Article: Interview

Joe Lovano: Cleveland's Ultimate Jazz Titan

Read "Joe Lovano: Cleveland's Ultimate Jazz Titan" reviewed by Matthew Alec

Friday, June 24th, 2022, saxophonist Joe Lovano's group Sound Prints (alongside trumpeter and co-leader Dave Douglas) delivered a tour de force performance to spellbound audience members at the historic Mimi Ohio Theatre in Playhouse Square as a part of Cleveland's annual Tri-C JazzFest. Seasoned group interplay between drummer Rudy Royston, bassist Matt Penman, and pianist Leo ...


Article: Album Review

Elvin Jones: Revival: Live At Pookie’s Pub

Read "Revival: Live At Pookie’s Pub" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic

No matter your format of choice—the deluxe 180g 3-LP set, streaming, or a 2-CD package--there is some serious, late '60s hard bop soul-searching happening on this eye-opening, mind-expanding, previously unreleased Revival: Live at Pookie's Pub. Elvin Jones cleared the cobwebs just two weeks after John Coltrane's passing and the resounding end to the classic ...


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