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Musician

John Ellis

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The gifted, versatile saxophonist/clarinetist/composer John Ellis occupies an imaginary (and extremely imaginative) space directly between the celebratory, welcoming spirit of New Orleans and the edgy, frantic streets of New York City. Both as the leader of his own eclectic projects and as an in-demand sideman for a mind-boggling number and variety of artists, Ellis expresses a keen intellect and easy virtuosity while maintaining a mischievous gleam in his eye and never letting tongue stray far from cheek. That combination is best showcased in Ellis’ eccentric combo Double-Wide, which recently released its third album, Charm, on Ellis’ own Parade Light Records

Album

Breathe

Label: Blue Note Records
Released: 2021
Track listing: Why Can’t We Live Together; Bright Eyes; Too Damn Hot; Track 9; World Weeps; Pilgrimage; Epistrophy; Sunshine Superman.

Album

New York Nowhere

Label: Redefinition Music
Released: 2021
Track listing: Reflections on the Hudson, Dreaming in Place, Somewhere on Houston, New York Nights, Celso, Wine Cooler Heads Prevail, New York Nights (revisited).

2

Article: Radio

Covid Chronicles, Vol. 1: Reunion Episode

Read "Covid Chronicles, Vol. 1: Reunion Episode" reviewed by Leo Sidran


In March 2020, just as the world was closing under the advancing cloud of Covid 19, I spoke to a handful of musician friends from around the world to hear how they were doing and to explore some of the pressing questions around the shutdown and the arts.One year later, I check in with ...

1

Article: Album Review

Dr. Lonnie Smith: Breathe

Read "Breathe" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi


Nel nuovo album di Dr.Lonnie Smith, appena uscito per la Blue Note, non c'è solo il traboccante groove del suo trio. Per il 75mo compleanno dell'organista Hammond, il produttore Don Was ha fatto le cose in grande, pubblicando la registrazione di una una serata allo Jazz Standard (a New York nel 2017) con un organico strumentale ...

18

Article: Year in Review

2020: The Year in Jazz

Read "2020: The Year in Jazz" reviewed by Ken Franckling


The COVID-19 pandemic put the jazz world in a tailspin, just like the world at large, in 2020. And there is plenty of uncertainty going into the new year about what “new normal: might emerge from the darkness. International Jazz Day, like so many other things, became an online virtual event this time around. Pianist Keith ...

Album

Racing a Butterfly

Label: Bjurecords
Released: 2020
Track listing: Triangular Waves; Racing a Butterfly; Parallel Flying Part 1; Parallel Flying Part 2; Butterfly Interlude; Dancing Butterflies; Cluster; Reworking of a Butterfly; Butterflies Too.

23

Article: Interview

Matthew Halsall: A New Dawn

Read "Matthew Halsall: A New Dawn" reviewed by Chris May


After five years without the release of any newly recorded material, the British trumpeter and composer Matthew Halsall has returned in winter 2020 with a fresh new band and a sparkling new album, Salute To The Sun, on his Gondwana Records label. It is more than good to have him and his music back.

1

Article: Multiple Reviews

Roundup Time

Read "Roundup Time" reviewed by Jerome Wilson


Although the coronavirus has brought live music to a virtual standstill, recorded jazz has continued to pour out over the last few months. Here is a roundup of several recent releases that deserve some attention. Troy Roberts Stuff I Heard Toy Robot Music 2020 Troy Roberts goes ...

9

Article: Album Review

Anne Mette Iversen Quartet + 1: Racing a Butterfly

Read "Racing a Butterfly" reviewed by Friedrich Kunzmann


A working collective since 2002, Anne Mette Iversen's quartet—saxophonist John Ellis, pianist Danny Grissett, drummer Otis Brown III and Iversen herself on bass—has developed a unique musical language, which transcends typical stigmas of the genre and demonstrates a special sense of light-footedness in navigating through the different bars and meters, all the while evading the self-indulgent. ...


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