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Musician

Jimmy Knepper

Born:

Jimmy Knepper, a jazz trombonist best known for his productive but stormy association with Charles Mingus. Over the course of a career that began when he was in his teens, Mr. Knepper was a featured soloist in countless bands, big and small. But his reputation as one of the most original trombonists of his generation rests largely on the music he made with Mingus from 1957 to 1962. Mr. Knepper's distinctively gruff sound and loose-limbed phrasing were essential elements in some of the most celebrated albums by Mingus, the great bassist and composer, including ''The Clown,'' ''Tijuana Moods'' and ''Mingus Ah Um.'' The jazz critic Leonard Feather wrote that Mr

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Article: Album Review

Charles Mingus: Charles Mingus Presents Charles Mingus To Pre Bird Revisited

Read "Charles Mingus Presents Charles Mingus To Pre Bird Revisited" reviewed by Chris May


In his liner notes for Charles Mingus Presents Charles Mingus To Pre Bird Revisited, Bill Shoemaker sets out the context in which the two featured albums should be considered. He observes that so enormous was Charles Mingus' artistic vision that no two (or perhaps three) albums can encompass its totality. How true that is, even of ...

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Bill Evans: Ten Essential Sideman Albums

Read "Bill Evans: Ten Essential Sideman Albums" reviewed by Chris May


Bill Evans attracts a special sort of fan. Clinically obsessive is a reasonable description. While far from undiscerning, we find something, usually plenty, to enjoy in every record Evans played on. And we want them all in our collection. Evans' hardcore fans include practically every musician who played with him. Eddie Gomez, his ...

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Charles Mingus: An Essential Top Ten Albums

Read "Charles Mingus: An Essential Top Ten Albums" reviewed by Chris May


Charles Mingus was rarely a happy man and yet his music possessed a power to uplift listeners unlike that of most other composer / bandleaders before or after him. It still has that power in 2021, four decades after his passing and on the eve of his hundredth anniversary in 2022. In his personal life, too, ...

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Article: Under the Radar

The Rebel Festival

Read "The Rebel Festival" reviewed by Karl Ackermann


On the morning of July 4, 1960, there were more than a few signs of the mayhem that had taken place the night before in Newport, Rhode Island. Newport's Millionaires Row woke up to broken store windows, overturned vehicles, and storm drains clogged with garbage and beer bottles. One-hundred-eighty-two people, mostly young, New England college students ...

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Article: The Jazz Life

My Early Years With Bill Evans, Part 3

Read "My Early Years With Bill Evans, Part 3" reviewed by Chuck Israels


Bassist and composer, Chuck Israels was raised in a musical family. Paul Robeson, Pete Seeger and The Weavers were visitors to his home and the appearance of Louis Armstrong's All Stars in a concert series produced by his parents in 1948 gave Chuck his first opportunity to meet and hear jazz musicians. Chuck studied the cello ...

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Article: The Jazz Life

My Early Years with Bill Evans, Part 2

Read "My Early Years with Bill Evans, Part 2" reviewed by Chuck Israels


Bassist and composer Chuck Israels was raised in a musical family. He studied the cello and played guitar in junior high school. Later musical training took place at Indian Hill, a summer workshop in the arts directed by his parents, and at the High School of Performing Arts in New York City. A year at Massachusetts ...

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Article: Album Review

Stan Kenton and His Orchestra: A Kenton Trilogy, Part 1: Dance Time

Read "A Kenton Trilogy, Part 1: Dance Time" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Better late than never. Having already appraised Part 2 of Sounds of Yesteryear's three-part salute to the Stan Kenton Orchestra, it seemed only proper that the same should be done (albeit out of order) for Part 1 (and Part 3 as well, whenever it is released). Unlike Part 2, which is devoted to the artistry of ...

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Article: Multiple Reviews

Vintage Dolphy

Read "Vintage Dolphy" reviewed by Duncan Heining


Vintage Dolphy appeared originally in 1986/7 on both vinyl and CD. Featuring recordings from three separate live performances from Eric Dolphy, two at Carnegie Hall, both with his own quartet and in two 'third stream' settings devised by Gunther Schuller, the album provided intriguing insights into Dolphy's improvisational skills and approach. Were this not enough, the ...

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Article: Album Review

Stan Kenton and His Orchestra: Jazz Journey

Read "Jazz Journey" reviewed by Jack Bowers


For those who thought that reissues of albums by the Stan Kenton Orchestra had faded away as the well ran dry, think again: from Sounds of Yesteryear comes a welcome and invigorating Jazz Journey, traversing half a dozen concerts by the superb Kenton Orchestra that consist for the most part of unissued material from the years ...


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