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Frank Foster

Born September 23, 1928 in Cincinnati, Ohio, Frank Benjamin Foster III began his long musical career at age eleven, when he took up the clarinet. Two years later he began playing alto saxophone, advancing technically to the point of performing with local dance bands at age 14. He began to compose and arrange at 15, and led his own 12- piece band while still only a senior in high school. Foster attended Wilberforce University, then left for Detroit in 1949 (with trumpeter Snooky Young) where he played with such local musicians as Wardell Gray. Upon finishing his military service in 1953, Foster joined Count Basie's big band (replacing Eddie Lockjaw Davis) on the recommendation of Ernie Wilkins

ARTICLE: UNDER THE RADAR

Jazz in the Time of Pandemic

Read "Jazz in the Time of Pandemic" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

The first week of April 2020: images crystalized the daily news reports; a dystopian Times Square; Piazza Navona in Rome, emptied of tourists, Barcelona's Basílica de la Sagrada Família standing like an abstract ruin, makeshift morgues in hospital parking lots. The jazz world is small but still a microcosm of society with interdependencies that run deep. ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

John Lamkin: Transitions

Read "Transitions" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Dr. John R. Lamkin, II has dedicated much of his career to bringing music to students and the community while recording little, so his many Mid-Atlantic fans will welcome Transitions, his first release in decades. His only prior album was Hot (Self-Produced, 1984), where the trumpeter wrote all but one composition. As Director of Bands and ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEWS

The Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia with Joey DeFrancesco at the Kimmel Center

Read "The Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia with Joey DeFrancesco at the Kimmel Center" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer

The Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia with Joey DeFrancesco Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts Philadelphia, PA June 1, 2019 The Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia (JOP), under the leadership of trumpeter Terell Stafford, has produced a series of action-packed concerts at the Kimmel Center, featuring special guest artists, all ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Vanessa Rubin: The Dream Is You: Vanessa Rubin Sings Tadd Dameron

Read "The Dream Is You: Vanessa Rubin Sings Tadd Dameron" reviewed by Jerome Wilson

Tadd Dameron is regarded as the great romantic of bebop-era jazz composers, a writer with a talent for creating smooth, memorable melodies that could evoke real emotion. Most of his works are known mainly as instrumentals but Vanessa Rubin has compiled lyrics written for some of his tunes, had new lyrics written for others and even ...

ARTICLE: PROFILES

Sonny Buxton: Strayhorn’s Last Drummer, A Radio Master Class Mid-Day Saturdays

Read "Sonny Buxton: Strayhorn’s Last Drummer, A Radio Master Class Mid-Day Saturdays" reviewed by Arthur R George

Sociologist, anthropologist, historian: storyteller, raconteur, entrepreneur and griot, in the guise of a deejay. Registrar, dean, professor: The jazz class of Sonny Buxton is barely concealed as entertainment within his weekly radio program every Saturday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Pacific time on San Francisco Bay Area FM station KCSM 91.1, streaming live on kcsm.org.

ARTICLE: BAILEY'S BUNDLES

Ten Artists: February 2019

Read "Ten Artists: February 2019" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Cecilia Bartoli Antonio Vivaldi Decca 2018 2019 marks the thirtieth anniversary of mezzo-soprano Cecilia Bartoli recording for Decca, her label for the duration of her career. Bartoli's first recording was Rossini's Il Barbiere di Siviglia (London/Decca, 1989) opposite famous baritone Leo Nucci. My own introduction to Bartoli was through her Mozart ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

Blue Note 50th Anniversaries: January 1969 & More

Read "Blue Note 50th Anniversaries: January 1969 & More" reviewed by Marc Cohn

We celebrate Blue Note 50th anniversary recordings from Frank Foster (material never formally released until a CD reissue of Manhattan Fever), Lonnie Smith and Horace Silver. Certamente, there's more--including a 75th anniversary salute to sides by clarinetist Edmond Hall with Red Norvo and Teddy Wilson, and a 78 rpm recording of Blue Note 5 by Earl ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Val Wilmer: Dues And Testimony

Read "Val Wilmer: Dues And Testimony" reviewed by Ian Patterson

Free-jazz, which marked the first revolution in jazz since bebop, and, some might say, the most significant revolution in the entire history of the music, was controversial and divisive. Still today, over half a century later, free-jazz is sometimes dismissed out of hand as just so much noise, or worse, finds itself simply airbrushed from the ...

ARTICLE: UNDER THE RADAR

Blue Highways and Sweet Music: The Territory Bands, Part II

Read "Blue Highways and Sweet Music: The Territory Bands, Part II" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Part 1 | Part 2 Part 1 of Blue Highways and Sweet Music: The Territory Bands looked at the roots, drivers and challenges of the travelling groups who brought jazz music to the non-urban areas of the Southern Plains, through one-night-stands, in often impromptu venues. A black phenomenon, often misappropriated by white musicians, promoters, ...


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