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George Gruntz

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George Gruntz was a Swiss jazz pianist, organist, harpsichordist, keyboardist and composer known for the George Gruntz Concert Big Band, and his work with artists such as Phil Woods, Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Don Cherry, Chet Baker, Art Farmer, Dexter Gordon, Johnny Griffin and Mel Lewis. Gruntz, who was born in Basle, Switzerland, was also an accomplished arranger and composer, having been commissioned by many orchestras and symphonies. From 1972 to 1994 he served as artistic director for the JazzFest Berlin.

Article: Interview

Intervista a Franco Ambrosetti

Read "Intervista a Franco Ambrosetti" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi


Il 2019 è stato un anno significativo per il trombettista svizzero Franco Ambrosetti. In aprile è stato pubblicato il suo libro autobiografico “La scelta di non scegliere" mentre da poche settimane è uscito Long Waves, il suo ventottesimo disco da leader con un cast stellare comprendente John Scofield, Uri Caine, Scott Colley e Jack DeJohnette.

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Article: Album Review

Franco Ambrosetti: Long Waves

Read "Long Waves" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky


Trumpeter Franco Ambrosetti is a master of both glow and go aesthetics. With a warm and burnished tone, lines giving off circumfluent suggestions in their whorling beauty, an eye on motion and expansion, and a strong sense of swing, he's content to take the fast lane or simply take his time. And with more than 50 ...

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Article: Album Review

Various Artists: Nicola Conte presents Cosmic Forest: The Spiritual Sounds of MPS

Read "Nicola Conte presents Cosmic Forest: The Spiritual Sounds of MPS" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki


A labor of love, Cosmic Forest was compiled by Italian musician, producer and DJ Nicola Conte to both revisit and present to a new audience Conte's favorite “spiritual jazz" recordings from MPS Records' 1965--'75 catalog. Eight of these thirteen pieces came from albums released as part of the MPS label's mid-1970s “Jazz Meets the World" series ...

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Article: Album Review

Various Artists: Nicola Conte presents Cosmic Forest: The Spiritual Sounds of MPS

Read "Nicola Conte presents Cosmic Forest: The Spiritual Sounds of MPS" reviewed by Chris May


The description “spiritual jazz" means different things to different people. It was first applied to the predominantly African American style platformed by the Strata-East and Muse labels in the early and mid 1970s. The tag was not introduced until a decade later, and a better one would have been “cultural jazz," despite the tautology--for although every ...

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Article: Extended Analysis

Naima/Live in Berlin

Read "Naima/Live in Berlin" reviewed by Duncan Heining


Saxophonist Alan Skidmore has worked in many, many different settings during a career that stretches back to the early sixties with Alexis Korner--one of the three 'Fathers of British Blues" (paternity disputed!). That career has included recordings with John Mayall and Eric Clapton, Georgie Fame, Sonny Boy Williamson, Stan Tracey, Mike Westbrook, Mike Gibbs, the Walker ...

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Article: Album Review

Django Bates: The Study of Touch

Read "The Study of Touch" reviewed by Vincenzo Roggero


Folletto imprevedibile e difficilmente etichettabile della scena creativa britannica -salta con disinvoltura da lavori orchestrali al piano solo, da composizioni per il teatro e per il cinema a commissioni di musica sinfonica, da collaborazioni con Tim Berne e Bill Bruford a quelle con George Russell e George Gruntz -Django Bates è stato elemento propulsivo fondamentale nella ...

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Article: Interview

John Riley: Inspiring Innovation

Read "John Riley: Inspiring Innovation" reviewed by Ben Scholz


Foremost an innovator, John Riley has always been a “drummer's drummer" in the world of straight-ahead jazz. With nearly a hundred recordings, a dozen videos, and five books under his belt, Riley is a veritable font of knowledge in the bebop realm. In this article, we take a look back at some of his musical endeavors ...

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Article: Extended Analysis

Maria Baptist: Music for Jazz Orchestra

Read "Maria Baptist: Music for Jazz Orchestra" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Like it or not, a new wave of young composer / arrangers has surfaced, scrupulously guiding big bands into heretofore uncharted waters, now and then smooth, at other times choppy, but always intriguing and inspired. Maria Schneider, George Gruntz, Jim McNeely and Carla Bley were among the pacesetters, followed in short order by such (relative) newcomers ...

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Article: Big Band Report

Buddy Rich: In a Zone of His Own

Read "Buddy Rich: In a Zone of His Own" reviewed by Jack Bowers


One of the channels that came with my Dish Network package is Classic Arts Showcase, which is a treasure trove of film clips documenting classical, ballet, folk, pop and other forms of music that one is unlikely to see anywhere else (although some footage is presumably available on YouTube, which more and more seems to encompass ...


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