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Joel Harrison

As guitarist, composer and vocalist, Washington D.C. native Joel Harrison resists categorization: jazz, African and Indian, contemporary classical, blues and rock all have a place in his unique approach. Remarking on his eclectic approach All About Jazz concluded that “Harrison’s ability to integrate renders irrelevant the identification of his sources in compositions that range from edgy angularity to sheer beauty…he dispenses with boundaries and creates his own mélange that’s as timeless as it is thoroughly modern." Harrison graduated from Bard College with a BA in composition and performance in 1980 studying with Joan Tower; in the ensuing years he worked privately with Allaudin Mathieu, Charlie Banacos, Ali Akbar Khan and others

ARTICLE: RADIO

R.I.P. McCoy Tyner and Jon Christensen

Read "R.I.P. McCoy Tyner and Jon Christensen" reviewed by Maurice Hogue

As social distancing becomes the norm in this new world, filling the spaces with music seems like a great idea to keep people together. Two musicians whose careers did exactly that are recognized in the last part of this week's episode: pianist McCoy Tyner and drummer Jon Christensen, both of whom passed in recent weeks. They ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

Kirk Knuffke, Rick Countryman & Lakecia Benjamin

Read "Kirk Knuffke, Rick Countryman & Lakecia Benjamin" reviewed by Maurice Hogue

Saxophonist Ohad Talmor's new release, Long Forms, with his Newsreel sextet has just been released by Intakt Records and it's a must-listen; strong playing by some of the best musicians around, complicated but highly interesting tunes and arrangements, and a fully realized project. Another saxophonist, Rick Countryman, plies his trade in Manila in The Philippines now ...

ARTICLE: YEAR IN REVIEW

John Kelman's Best Releases of 2019

Read "John Kelman's Best Releases of 2019" reviewed by John Kelman

Well, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome continues to be a challenge, as it has been since mid-2014. 2019 represents, in fact, the worst year when it comes to the actual number of articles written. Still, I've been finding an increasingly satisfying niche in the arena of in-depth, detailed and extensive/exhaustive (exhausting, for you as much as I!!) articles. ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

Gordon Grdina, Karl Berger & Jason Kao Hwang, Byron Asher & Colin Hinton

Read "Gordon Grdina, Karl Berger & Jason Kao Hwang, Byron Asher & Colin Hinton" reviewed by Maurice Hogue

Vancouver's Gordon Grdina is masterfully adept at guitar and oud, so that flexibility leads to many possibilities for playing opportunities, from jazz and improv settings to his world music group, Haram. This episode finds Grdina opening things up with music from two very recent recordings: Skin and Bones (with Matthew Shipp and Mark Helias) and Cooper's ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

“Bass-ic" Strokes for Discerning Folks

Read "“Bass-ic" Strokes for Discerning Folks" reviewed by Maurice Hogue

The double bass is rather well-represented in this show. New recordings featuring some great bassists as leaders come from Miles Perkin, Benjamin Hedquist, and Andrew Schiller, while other recordings feature Mario Pavone, Ville Rauhala with Hot Heros, Brett Hirst with Phil Slater, Brad Jones with Tenor Triage, Matt Brewer with Steve Lehman, Giovanni Maier with Cene ...

NEWS: RECORDING

Master Drummer Jason Harnell Breaks New Ground With Experimental CD And Multimedia Experience, Total Harnage

Master Drummer Jason Harnell Breaks New Ground With Experimental CD And Multimedia Experience, Total Harnage

When Jason Harnell was six years old, his father, Grammy winning composer and arranger Joe Harnell, invited Louie Bellson to their house to hear the budding prodigy play. After playing a 15-minute solo, the legendary drummer handed the sticks to Jason and said, “Your turn.” When Jason finished, an impressed Bellson gave the boy his drum ...

ARTICLE: IN PICTURES

Freihofer Jazz Festival 2019

Read "Freihofer Jazz Festival 2019" reviewed by Rudolph Lu

The 42nd Annual Freihofer Jazz Festival in Saratoga Springs, NY was held from June 28-20, 2019 at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. The broad spectrum of jazz was well represented. Well over 25 artists performed. There was an unofficial opening on the 28th held at the Caffe Lena, a venue located in Saratoga Springs ...

Angel Band: Free Country Vol. 3

Label: HighNote Records
Released: 2018
Track listing: America the Beautiful; Jerusalem Ridge; Ring of Fire; 900 Miles; We Shall Rise; Angel Band; My Epitaph; Osage Stomp; Wichita Lineman; Go Rest High on That Mountain; Lost Indian; Blue Eyes Cryin' in the Rain.

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Joel Harrison: Angel Band: Free Country Vol. 3

Read "Angel Band: Free Country Vol. 3" reviewed by Peter J. Hoetjes

Possessed of restless creativity and a desire not to repeat himself, guitarist/vocalist Joel Harrison took a 14-year hiatus between albums in his Free Country series to release over a dozen other efforts before returning with Angel Band: Free Country Volume 3. Building on the foundation set by the first two albums, he recruits a few returning ...


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