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James Brandon Lewis

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Visionary composer and tenor saxophonist James Brandon Lewis’s bravest, yet most palpable artistic feat, Days Of FreeMan, opens with a poignant and profound introductory monologue from a maternal sage. She says, “The best thing of living is living who you are. You can’t be somebody else; you gotta be what God gave you to be and who you are. You look in the mirror and see yourself and say ‘I’m James Brandon Lewis.”’Next, bass and drums congeal around the sapphire melodic motif of “Brother 1976,” recalling one of those jazzy jewel-like hooks from a 1990s Native Tongue hip-hop jam

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Festival Season: From Newport to the North Sea

Read "Festival Season: From Newport to the North Sea" reviewed by David Brown


This week, a survey of recordings from jazz festivals past and present: Newport Jazz Festival in Rhode Island, Montreux Jazz Festival & Jazz Festival Willisau in Switzerland, Montreal International Jazz Festival, Essen Jazz Festival in West Germany, Festival of Improvised Music in France, East-West Festival in Nuremberg Germany, and the North Sea Jazz Festival in the ...

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Article: In Pictures

Vision Festival 2022

Read "Vision Festival 2022" reviewed by Luciano Rossetti


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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Gebhard Ullmann’s Das Kondensat, Reza Askari, David Murray, Albert Ayler & Gauci Music

Read "Gebhard Ullmann’s Das Kondensat, Reza Askari, David Murray, Albert Ayler & Gauci Music" reviewed by Maurice Hogue


The heavyweights are front and center this time out. You'll hear tracks from new releases by German multi-reedist Gebhard Ullmann & Das Kondensat, Stephen Gauci's Live At Scholes Street Studio series, David Murray's Brave New World Trio with Brandon Lopez and Hamid Drake, Daniel Carter & The Telepathic Band, Ingrid Laubrock and Andy Milne plus two ...

Article: Album Review

Kirk Knuffke Trio: Gravity without Airs

Read "Gravity without Airs" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi


«Mi interessa fare della bella musica--dice il cornettista Kirk Knuffke--Anche se questa è in forma libera e d'avanguardia voglio che arrivi al cuore delle persone. Mi piace suonare veloce, forte e alto ma la bellezza è sempre al primo posto, anche se non in forme preziose. Può esserlo anche in modo ruvido». Sono ...

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Article: Festivals Talking

Moers Festival Interviews: Max Johnson

Read "Moers Festival Interviews: Max Johnson" reviewed by Martin Longley


New York bassist Max Johnson has embarked on a European tour with his trio, in the run-up to the release of their new album Orbit Of Sound (Unbroken Sounds, 2022). They are playing crucial venues such as Roskam in Brussels and The Loft in Cologne, doubtless climaxing at the Moers Festival, also in Germany (3rd-6th June). ...

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Michael Formanek, Lopez/Laubrock/Rainey & Piotr Damasiewicz

Read "Michael Formanek, Lopez/Laubrock/Rainey & Piotr Damasiewicz" reviewed by Maurice Hogue


This episode of OMJ is packed with great improvisers and musical explorers. The much-respected bassist Michael Formanek found the isolation of the pandemic gave him time to look at music a little differently, and the result was an exploration of what he calls palindromic music. That's the basis for his new release with his Drome Trio, ...

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Article: History of Jazz

Groove Town: Buffalo Jazz And Its Legacy - Historical Insights

Read "Groove Town: Buffalo Jazz And Its Legacy - Historical Insights" reviewed by Barbara Ina Frenz


From early on, Buffalo attracted musicians as a place to live and pursue their artistic endeavors—and they were excellent ones: Lil Hardin Armstrong, Jimmie Lunceford, Pete Johnson, and Stuff Smith. Dodo Greene, two masters of polyrhythm, Frankie Dunlop and Clarence Becton, as well as pianist and bassist Wade Legge grew up here. Two distinctive voices on ...

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Tomas Fujiwara's Triple Double, MOTDTK & UMO Helsinki Jazz Orchestra

Read "Tomas Fujiwara's Triple Double, MOTDTK & UMO Helsinki Jazz Orchestra" reviewed by Maurice Hogue


Tomas Fujiwara's one of the most respected drummers in the creative scene, and his new release with Triple Double reinforces that. March is a must-have for 2022. The UMO Helsinki Jazz Orchestra is the leading large ensemble, and their new Last Dance is a gem too. One of the hottest people around is saxophonist James Brandon ...

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Article: In Pictures

Sons d'Hiver 2022, William Parker "Trail Of Tears - A Continuum 1492-2022"

Read "Sons d'Hiver 2022, William Parker "Trail Of Tears - A Continuum 1492-2022"" reviewed by Luciano Rossetti



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