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Jay Beckenstein


Jay Beckenstein (born in Brooklyn, New York) is a saxophone player, smooth jazz artist and together with Jeremy Wall founded Spyro Gyra. He also owned a studio in New York that was called BearTracks Studios. He also played the saxophone solo on American progressive metal band Dream Theater's "Another Day", from the album Images and Words and single version of song "Through her Eyes", from the album Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes from a Memory. He also played a solo part in "Take Away My Pain" on the live album Once in a Livetime as well as "Another Day" during the performance of Metropolis 2000: Scenes from New York. Jay's mother was an opera singer and his father's love of jazz introduced him to Charlie Parker and Lester Young when he was a baby

Article: Live Review

Spyro Gyra al Roma Jazz Festival 2022

Read "Spyro Gyra al Roma Jazz Festival 2022" reviewed by Mario Calvitti

Spyro Gyra Roma Jazz Festival 2022 Auditorium Roma 12.11.2022 Pochi gruppi, e non solo in ambito jazzistico, possono vantare una carriera altrettanto lunga di quella degli Spyro Gyra, che si avvicinano ai cinquant'anni di attività, iniziata nel 1974 con la fondazione della band da parte del sassofonista Jay Beckenstein ...


Article: Live Review

Jazzkaar 2017

Read "Jazzkaar 2017" reviewed by Martin Longley

Jazzkaar 2017 Tallinn, Estonia April 21-30, 2017 Jazzkaar covers most territories. This exceptional 10-day festival presents the best players on the indigenous Estonian scene, imports big-name acts from the USA, and also invites some choice artists from around the rest of Europe. Some shows represent jazz in mainstream mode, whilst ...


Article: Album Review

Spyro Gyra: The Rhinebeck Sessions

Read "The Rhinebeck Sessions" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

In 2014, the Buffalo, NY band Spyro Gyra will celebrate its 40th anniversary. Indeed, a remarkable feat. Well-known for cross- pollinating contemporary jazz with jazz-fusion, the musicians merge an amenable game plan with engaging melodies and largely buoyant grooves amid a sense of bravado, stemming from their formidable chops and intense improv segments. The group locks ...


A Foreign Affair

Label: Amherst Records
Released: 2012
Track listing: 1. Caribe; 2. Khuda; 3. Sweet Ole Thang'; 4. Falling Walls; 5. Shinjuku; 6. Chileno Boys; 7. Samba for Two; 8. Canção de Ninar; 9. Antigua; 10. Last Call; 11. Dancing on Table Mountain.

Article: Album Review

Spyro Gyra: A Foreign Affair

Read "A Foreign Affair" reviewed by AAJ Italy Staff

Odori caraibici, jazz in senso ampio e soluzioni vagamente pop: sono questi gli elementi che caratterizzano il nuovo lavoro targato Spyro Gyra, caratteristiche che ne hanno segnato - con risultati alterni - l'intera carriera. A Foreign Affair è un contenitore dove trova posto una musica a volte trascurabile, come testimoniato dall'iniziale “Caribe," ma altre volte più ...


News: Recording

Saxophonist Peter MacDonough releases Latin-flavored homage to The Wizard of Oz

(Sydney, Australia)—It would seem fitting that a tribute album to The Wizard of Oz would be by a man from Oz. But don't peg The Woo: A Latin Jazz Suite for Soprano Saxophone as some novelty item. Saxophonist Peter MacDonough has reinterpreted songs from the 1939 film in an Afro-Cuban and Afro-Brazilian context. The Wizard of ...


Article: Take Five With...

Take Five with Jay Beckenstein

Read "Take Five with Jay Beckenstein" reviewed by Mark Scoop Malinowski

Status: Jazz artist. Founding member of the group Spyro Gyra. DOB: May 14, 1951 In: Brooklyn, N.Y. First Jazz Memory: “I met Cannonball Adderley when I was 12. He did a school performance around where I lived and I was just blown away." Inspirations: “The greats of jazz. ...


Article: Album Review

Sarah Manning: Dandelion Clock

Read "Dandelion Clock" reviewed by Woodrow Wilkins

It may take years of listening before a music enthusiast can identify the sound of a musician, distinct and separate from others who play the same instrument. David Sanborn, Bob Mintzer and Jay Beckenstein are just a few examples of saxophonists whose voices are easily distinguished. Sarah Manning hopes to join their ranks. Manning ...


Article: Album Review

Paul Taylor: Burnin'

Read "Burnin'" reviewed by Woodrow Wilkins

It's refreshing when a contemporary artists steps outside the box and revisits an old style of music. Even more so when it's not simply a collection of covers. Paul Taylor scores with Burnin'. A native of Denver and a musical product of the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, Taylor began developing his saxophone skills at ...


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