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John Wiitala

John Wiitala has worked with some of the greatest names in jazz, including Joe Henderson, Junior Cook, Charlie Rouse, James Moody, Bud Shank, and Cecil Payne. He has toured with Richie Cole, Arturo Sandoval, Shorty Rogers, and Jessica Williams, and has played at jazz festivals around the world, including Monterey, North Sea, Montreux, Detriot, and JVC/Concord. His recording credits include work with Scott Hamilton, Jessica Williams, Mark Levine, as well as Anton Schwartz.

One Note At A Time

Label: Wide Hive Records
Released: 2020
Track listing: Days of Haze; Dusk; Brother Todd; Bell Song; One Note at a Time (I Cry Creativity); Full House; The Growing Place; Shaker Funk; When You Went Away.

Porter Plays Frishberg: Unsung

Label: Heavywood Records
Released: 2020
Track listing: Snowbound; Listen Here; I'm Hip; Heart's Desire; I Want to Be a Sideman; You Are There; Dear Departed Past; Wheelers and Dealers; Little Did I Dream; Peel Me a Grape; Do You Miss New York?; Zanzibar

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Matt Renzi: Arm-Sized Legging

Read "Arm-Sized Legging" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Arm-Sized Legging, saxophonist Matt Renzi's sixth album as leader, features his Cello Quartet, basically a piano-less jazz trio with cello added, for what purpose it is hard to ascertain. Cellos aren't normally associated with jazz—as some would argue, for good reason—and this session does little to further their cause. Yes, the cello does add another “voice," ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Randy Porter Trio: Porter Plays Frishberg: Unsung

Read "Porter Plays Frishberg: Unsung" reviewed by Paul Rauch

Pianist/composer/lyricist Dave Frishberg may not be a household name in the world of jazz, but those in the know, musicians and listeners alike, appreciate the often whimsical artist. His works are associated with an “A" list of vocalists, including Blossom Dearie, Rosemary Clooney, Anita O'Day, Shirley Horn and Diana Krall. The 87-year old Frishberg now resides ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Erik Jekabson Sextet III: One Note At A Time

Read "One Note At A Time" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

By the time One Note At A Time's first two songs have finished, it's been made abundantly clear that trumpeter Erik Jekabson appreciates a groove as much as he values space. The opener—"Days of Haze"—provides an introductory shot of adrenaline in the form of a tight, funk-framed blues, and “Dusk," in contrast, looks to open vistas, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Adam Shulman Sextet: Full Tilt

Read "Full Tilt" reviewed by Jack Bowers

In music, as in life, not every new voice is worth hearing. Here's one that is. Full Tilt, the fifth CD by San Francisco-born and based pianist Adam Shulman's sextet, is a throwback to those halcyon days when bop was king and giants like Diz, Bird, Miles, Max Roach, Hank Mobley, Benny Golson, Horace Silver, Wardell ...

NEWS: EVENT

Producer Orrin Keepnews To Be Honored At A Memorial Concert At Yoshi's, Oakland, Nov. 29

Producer Orrin Keepnews To Be Honored At A Memorial Concert At Yoshi's, Oakland, Nov. 29

When Orrin Keepnews passed away at his El Cerrito home on March 1, the day before his 92nd birthday, he left behind an unparalleled legacy as a jazz producer, advocate, and entrepreneur. Keepnews’s brilliant career spanned more than 60 years, during which time he founded three forward-thinking labels (Riverside, Milestone, Landmark) and produced hundreds of major ...

ARTICLE: EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Anya Malkiel: From the Heart

Read "Anya Malkiel: From the Heart" reviewed by Geannine Reid

Anya Malkiel is a Bay Area-based vocalist who grew up in a musical environment in the former Soviet Union. Jazz was taboo, but would nevertheless become a vital part of her life. Malkiel states, “It was always the human voice that drove my musical aspirations." After leaving for the United States in 1990, she shared a ...


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