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Musician

Jack Bowers

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Article: Album Review

Steve Knight: Persistence

Read "Persistence" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Yet another guitar-led trio, this one by Kansas-born, Chicago-based Steve Knight who also writes in the manner of one of his role models, George Benson (Knight composed seven of the album's dozen numbers including two versions of “Sharps Disposal"). Although the recording's title refers in part to the eighteen months it took Knight to write the ...

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Article: Album Review

Meridian Odyssey: Earthshine

Read "Earthshine" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Meridian Odyssey is a sextet comprising young musicians from the improbable jazz territory of Big Lake, Alaska, and Earthshine is their second recording together, with trumpeter Noah Halpern having been added to the quintet since the ensemble's 2021 debut album, Second Wave. On Earthshine, there are nine original compositions by members of the group, two of ...

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Article: Album Review

Springbok: Involutions

Read "Involutions" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Involutions is the fifth recording by Springbok, a quartet based in France and led by organist Matthieu Marthouret. Its other members are trumpeter Julien Alour, saxophonist Robby Marshall and drummer Thomas Delor. According to Marthouret, the reunion embodies and amplifies elements of its previous albums: the fun of playing, optimism, a sense of collectivism, the notion ...

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Article: Album Review

Billy Drummond and Freedom of Ideas: Valse Sinistre

Read "Valse Sinistre" reviewed by Jack Bowers


As one of the world's foremost jazz drummers, Billy Drummond manages to keep busy--so much so that Valse Sinistre, recorded in November 2021, is his first album as leader in more than twenty-five years, following the critically acclaimed Dubai from 1996. This time around, Drummond is at the helm of his Freedom of Ideas quartet: Micah ...

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Article: Album Review

Eyal Vilner Big Band: The Jam!

Read "The Jam!" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Simply leading a big band in 2022 is cause for celebration. Leading a big band as sharp and talented as Eyal Vilner's New York- based ensemble is cause for far more than that. Vilner, an Israeli-born composer, arranger and woodwind specialist, formed the band in 2008, one year after arriving in New York City. He has ...

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Article: Album Review

The Jazz Professors: Blues and Cubes

Read "Blues and Cubes" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Yes, the Florida-based Jazz Professors, as befits the name, are smart—but don't let that throw you. They also swing in the best jazz tradition, even though their fourth album, Blues and Cubes, was inspired by the art of Pablo Picasso. Unlike Picasso's works, however, there is scant abstraction here; the Professors embody far more bop than ...

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Article: Album Review

Brian Landrus: Red List

Read "Red List" reviewed by Jack Bowers


No matter how one receives his music, there is no doubt that woodwind specialist Brian Landrus' heart is in the right place. Red List, his eleventh album as leader, is dedicated to the preservation of Earth's endangered animal species. Landrus names thirteen, at least five of which--the kakapo, Malayan tiger, gharial, vaquita and Javan rhino--are all ...

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Article: Album Review

The Burton/McPherson Trio: The Summit Rock Session at Seneca Village

Read "The Summit Rock Session at Seneca Village" reviewed by Jack Bowers


The Burton/McPherson Trio consists of tenor saxophonist Abraham Burton, drummer Eric McPherson and bassist Dezron Douglas. Why it isn't called the Burton/McPherson/Douglas Trio is anyone's guess; the hope is that bassist Douglas' feelings weren't too badly hurt by the omission. He may have found solace in the outer jacket's addendum, “Featuring Dezron Douglas." In any case, ...

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Article: Album Review

Felipe Salles: Tiyo's Songs Of Life

Read "Tiyo's Songs Of Life" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Talk about remarkable origins; the music on Tiyo's Songs of Life, performed by tenor saxophonist Felipe Salles' quartet, was written by Tiyo Attallah Salah-El while he was serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole in a Pennsylvania prison. In spite of his circumstances, Salah-El never lost his love for life, an upbeat frame of ...


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