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Jimmy Blanton

In his short tenure with Duke Ellington, Jimmy Blanton became the first great double bass virtuoso in jazz. Blanton had both the technique and the fine tone to take this style of playing to higher levels. Blanton took the bass, which had previously been used only to keep time and lay down a basic harmonic foundation, to a new dimension where it became an instrument capable of horn-like solos. Blanton truly turned the musical world onto the possibilities of using the bass as a melodic instrument, both bowed and plucked. His uniqueness lay not only in what he played, but how he played. His influence on generations of bassists has been monumental. James "Jimmy" Blanton was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee in October of 1918

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Ben Flocks: Mask of the Muse

Read "Mask of the Muse" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi

Ogni tanto nel mondo del jazz emerge un sax tenore orientato al vintage. Predilige le ballad, che sviluppa con timbro caldo e suadente, privilegiando la bellezza melodica con malinconica seduzione. Mi vengono in mente quegli album degli anni cinquanta e sessanta con due innamorati fotografati al chiaro di luna: una musica leggera con accenti ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEW

Charleston Jazz Orchestra at the Charleston Music Hall

Read "Charleston Jazz Orchestra at the Charleston Music Hall" reviewed by Martin McFie

Charleston Jazz Orchestra Charleston Music Hall Ellington at Newport 1956 Charleston, SC February 15, 2020 Duke Ellington's performance at the Newport Jazz festival in 1956 was the most important of his long career. After thirty years at the top of his profession, over a thousand tunes composed together with Billy ...

ARTICLE: PROFILE

Jeff Chambers' Chosen Alternative: The Therapies of Tijuana

Read "Jeff Chambers' Chosen Alternative: The Therapies of Tijuana" reviewed by Arthur R George

Jeff Chambers, long a go-to jny: San Francisco Bay Area bassist, looked at death closely and decided it was not yet his time. In 2017 his medical chart revealed Stage IV prostate cancer, commonly and fearfully an endgame diagnosis. Prostate cancer affects African-American men with almost twice the frequency as other races, and is almost twice ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

Beyond Category - Duke Ellington in the 1930s (1931 - 1940)

Read "Beyond Category - Duke Ellington in the 1930s (1931 - 1940)" reviewed by Russell Perry

In the last hour, we heard Count Basie emerge as an exciting new voice from Kansas City. In this hour, we return to New York to follow Duke Ellington's innovative path through the 1930s as he experiments with longer musical forms while building one of his greatest bands featuring tenor player Ben Webster and bassist Jimmy ...

ARTICLE: YEAR IN REVIEW

2018: The Year in Jazz

Read "2018: The Year in Jazz" reviewed by Ken Franckling

The year 2018 was a busy one for the jazz world. The genre's version of the #MeToo movement resulted in a new Code of Conduct and other efforts to make the music workplace more equitable. International Jazz Day brought its biggest stage to St. Petersburg, Russia. The Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz, which ran a high-profile ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEW

New York Nights At Birdland Theater And Mezzrow

Read "New York Nights At Birdland Theater And Mezzrow" reviewed by Martin McFie

On West 44th street in midtown Manhattan, Johnny Valenti recently inaugurated the new Birdland Theater, which has been built downstairs, below his Birdland club. The seating is arranged with two chairs at each round table, the rearmost of which are high tops, ensuring a clear view of the well lit stage from every table in the ...

ARTICLE: UNDER THE RADAR

Blue Highways and Sweet Music: The Territory Bands, Part II

Read "Blue Highways and Sweet Music: The Territory Bands, Part II" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

Part 1 | Part 2 Part 1 of Blue Highways and Sweet Music: The Territory Bands looked at the roots, drivers and challenges of the travelling groups who brought jazz music to the non-urban areas of the Southern Plains, through one-night-stands, in often impromptu venues. A black phenomenon, often misappropriated by white musicians, promoters, ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

David Finck: The Bass, Scatting Offenses, and the Back Hoe

Read "David Finck: The Bass, Scatting Offenses, and the Back Hoe" reviewed by Dr. Judith Schlesinger

David Finck is not only a first-call bassist with a long resume of high-profile recordings and gigs, but he's one of the most versatile musicians on any instrument. Finck has been in the studio, touring, and/or sharing the world's greatest stages with everyone from Andre Previn to Ivan Lins, Woody Herman to Natalie Cole and Kenny ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

Erik Friedlander: A Little Cello?

Read "Erik Friedlander: A Little Cello?" reviewed by Ian Patterson

Normally lumped into the 'miscellaneous instruments' category of jazz awards, the cello has been something of a bit player in the colorful history of jazz. That said, today there are arguably more cellists in jazz and contemporary improvised music--and some extraordinary ones at that--than ever before. One of the best known cellists is undoubtedly Erik Friedlander, ...


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