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Gene Ammons

Born:

Eugene "Jug" Ammons was a jazz tenor saxophone player, and the son of boogie-woogie pianist Albert Ammons. Ammons began to gain recognition when he went on the road with trumpeter King Kolax band in 1943, at the age of 18. He became a member of the Billy Eckstine and Woody Herman bands in 1944 and 1949 respectively, and then in 1950 formed a duet with Sonny Stitt. His later career was interrupted by two prison sentences for narcotics possession, the first from 1958 to 1960, the second from 1962 to 1969. Ammons and Von Freeman were the founders of the Chicago School of tenor saxophone. His style of playing showed influences from Lester Young as well as Ben Webster

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Article: Album Review

Ben Goldberg: Everything Happens To Be.

Read "Everything Happens To Be." reviewed by John Chacona


The music of Ben Goldberg seems to come from a place outside of time--or maybe it comes from several times simultaneously. Maybe it's the instruments he chooses; while the clarinet family has been on the comeback trail in jazz for a quarter century, it's a sound that invariably invokes the New Orleans of a century ago. ...

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Article: Interview

Adam Kahan: Capturing the Essence of Jazz in a Film

Read "Adam Kahan: Capturing the Essence of Jazz in a Film" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer


Too many are the documentaries produced and directed in a formulaic way using archival clips, photos, and hastily staged interviews that are intended to make a series of facts evident and bring out a few key points. At their best, they give a reasonably realistic illustrated depiction of people, places, and things. That is why a ...

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News: Birthday

Jazz Musician of the Day: Gene Ammons

Jazz Musician of the Day: Gene Ammons

All About Jazz is celebrating Gene Ammons' birthday today! Eugene “Jug" Ammons was a jazz tenor saxophonist, and the son of boogie-woogie pianist Albert Ammons. Ammons began to gain recognition when he went on the road with trumpeter King Kolax band in 1943, at the age of 18. He became a member of the Billy Eckstine ...

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

John Coltrane: An Alternative Top Ten Albums

Read "John Coltrane: An Alternative Top Ten Albums" reviewed by Chris May


Miles Davis once said that you could recite the history of jazz in just four words: Louis Armstrong, Charlie Parker. To that you need to add two more: John Coltrane. A giant during his lifetime, Coltrane continues to shape jazz and inspire musicians decades after he passed. No other player has come remotely close to eclipsing ...

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Article: Film Review

Buster Williams: Bass to Infinity

Read "Buster Williams: Bass to Infinity" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer


Buster Williams: Bass to Infinity Director: Adam Kahan Distributor or Film Company USA: 90 minutes Premier Date: Nov. 12, 2019 This is an exceptional jazz film that most likely would have made its way into art theaters around the world were it not that four months after its premier in ...

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Article: Album Review

Chad Lefkowitz-Brown: Quartet Sessions

Read "Quartet Sessions" reviewed by Jack Bowers


The Quartet Sessions (there are two of them) mark the eighth recording as leader by New York-based tenor saxophonist Chad Lefkowitz-Brown, an heir-apparent to an acclaimed dynasty of hard-boppers whose monarchs include Dexter Gordon, Wardell Gray, Gene Ammons, Charlie Rouse, Hank Mobley, Sonny Rollins and their peers, and embraces such contemporaries as Eric Alexander, Don Menza ...

News: Video / DVD

Gene Ammons' Ballads (1950-'53)

Gene Ammons' Ballads (1950-'53)

Jazz has a long history of tenor saxophone pairings. The list includes Al Cohn and Zoot Sims, Eddie “Lockjaw" Davis and Johnny Griffin, and Dexter Gordon and Wardell Gray. Such duos initially began as improvisational battles, which were popular in clubs and then on recordings. My favorite tenor duelists were Gene “Jug" Ammons and Sonny Stitt. ...

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Yusef Lateef: An Alternative Top Ten Albums Blowing Cultural Nationalism Out Of The Water

Read "Yusef Lateef: An Alternative Top Ten Albums Blowing Cultural Nationalism Out Of The Water" reviewed by Chris May


A pioneer of global and modal jazz, the multi-instrumentalist and composer Yusef Lateef is only beginning to have his importance in the history of the music properly acknowledged. After languishing off-catalogue for decades, much of his output is being made available once more. A treasure trove of great jazz is out there waiting to be rediscovered. ...

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Article: Radio

Last Dance (for Now)

Read "Last Dance (for Now)" reviewed by Marc Cohn


So, this is our “last dance" at least for now, and we hope to have new Gifts & Messages shows in 2021. As many of you know, even this is only a two-hour show, it's almost a full-time job, with listening to new/old music, selecting tunes, doing the program-specific research and lots of reading, in addition ...


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