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Musician

James Spaulding

Born:

James Spaulding, has established his reputation as a masterful soloist for ensemble performances, and for many years was among the busier sidemen for Blue Note Records. An exceptional saxophonist and flutist, he is one of the many fine artists to come out James has worked with Sun Ra, Freddie Hubbard, Max Roach, and more...of the Indianapolis, Indiana area. James is a modernist, with solid roots in classical jazz; his saxophone style is an extension of the Charlie Parker influence, but his overall concept incorporates much of the broad jazz saxophone heritage. Spaulding's musical training started early, as he came from a musical family in his place of birth Indiana (his father was a professional musician who played the guitar and led his own big band, traveling throughout the country)

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Horace Silver: His Only Mistake Was To Smile

Read "Horace Silver: His Only Mistake Was To Smile" reviewed by Chris May


In his sleeve note for the audio restored Horace Silver album Live New York Revisited (ezz-thetics, 2022), British writer Brian Morton cut to the chase. “[Silver]'s only mistake," he wrote, “was to smile while he was playing... a challenge to the notion that jazz should be deadly serious and played with a pained rictus."

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Sun Ra: Ten Great AfroFuturist Albums

Read "Sun Ra: Ten Great AfroFuturist Albums" reviewed by Chris May


With one hundred and twenty five albums to his name, not including reissues, any attempt to compile a Sun Ra Top Ten is a pretty ludicrous endeavour. There is simply too much great music from which to choose and way too much to put to one side. So the honour roll which follows should be regarded ...

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Wayne Shorter: An Essential Top Ten Albums

Read "Wayne Shorter: An Essential Top Ten Albums" reviewed by Chris May


At the start of September 2021, trumpeter Terence Blanchard released Absence (Blue Note), dedicated to saxophonist and composer Wayne Shorter, who for health reasons had recently been obliged to retire from performing, at least temporarily. Some people celebrating their eighty-eighth birthday, as Shorter did the previous month, might not welcome being the dedicatee of an album ...

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Hanksgiving - A Tribute to Hank Mobley - Companion Mixtape

Read "Hanksgiving - A Tribute to Hank Mobley - Companion Mixtape" reviewed by Ludovico Granvassu


This mixtape is a fun-filled companion to the two parts of our show “Hanksgiving -A Tribute to Hank Mobley," giving even more insight in the legacy of Hank Mobley as a saxophonist and composer through some of his gems and some of the best renditions of his tunes. [Listen to Part 1 and Part 2]

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Hanksgiving - A Tribute to Hank Mobley - Part 2

Read "Hanksgiving - A Tribute to Hank Mobley - Part 2" reviewed by Ludovico Granvassu


This year our seasonal Hanksgiving episodes celebrates a musician that is a cult figure in the world of saxophonists and fans of the Blue Note catalogue, saxophonist and composer Hank Mobley. The show features a mix of Hank Mobley's tuens and renditions of his work by peers that were attracted by his brand of jazz firmly ...

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Pharoah Sanders: An Alternative Top Ten Albums To Feed Your Head

Read "Pharoah Sanders: An Alternative Top Ten Albums To Feed Your Head" reviewed by Chris May


Fellow tenor-wielding sonic adventurer Albert Ayler famously described his own and Pharoah Sanders' relationships with their mentor John Coltrane thus: “Trane was the Father, Pharoah was the Son, I am the Holy Ghost." The epigram goes some way to capturing the scorched-earth ferocity of much, though not all, of Sanders' music in the 1960s. But Ayler ...

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Muse Records: Ten Smoking Hot Albums

Read "Muse Records: Ten Smoking Hot Albums" reviewed by Chris May


Alone among the other great jazz labels of the 1960s and 1970s—Blue Note, Prestige, Riverside, Impulse!, Strata-East and Atlantic—Joe Fields' Muse is rarely anthologised, written about or otherwise celebrated. Yet like its peers, Muse was prolific, releasing over 200 premium-grade albums during the 1970s, its most active decade, alone. This relative obscurity is ...

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Article: Take Five With...

Take Five with Mark Wade

Read "Take Five with Mark Wade" reviewed by Mark Wade


Meet Mark Wade Voted one of the top bassists of 2016, 2018, and 2019 in the prestigious Downbeat Magazine Reader's Poll, Mark Wade has been active in the NYC area for over 20 years. His debut album Event Horizon (2015) and follow up release Moving Day (2018) received international acclaim, and Moving Day was picked as ...


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