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Johnny Hartman

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John Maurice Hartman was a critically acclaimed baritone jazz singer who specialized in ballads. Born in Louisiana but raised in Chicago, he began singing and playing the piano by age eight. In 1940, Hartman graduated from DuSable High School where he studied music under Walter Dyett before receiving a scholarship to Chicago Musical College. He sang as an Army private during WWII but his first professional work came in September 1946 when he won a singing contest awarding him a one-week engagement with Earl Hines at Chicago's El Grotto nightclub. Seeing potential in the singer, Hines hired him for the next year

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Jose James Makes Music For 'Party And Politics'

Read "Jose James Makes Music For 'Party And Politics'" reviewed by Leo Sidran


Singer Jose James has been a consistent and insistent musical presence ever since he released his first album, The Dreamer in 2008 on British dj Gilles Peterson's newly formed Brownswood Recordings label. Since then he's made a dozen albums, recorded for iconic record labels like Impulse! and Blue Note, and eventually formed his own label Rainbow ...

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Out to Lunch Tribute, Nancy Wilson, Ella Fitzgerald

Read "Out to Lunch Tribute, Nancy Wilson, Ella Fitzgerald" reviewed by David Brown


This week we celebrate the recording anniversary of Eric Dolphy's Out to Lunch. We'll pay tribute by playing tracks from the LP as recorded by Vandermark 5, Orchestre National De Jazz, James Newton, The Lounge Lizards and Eric Dolphy himself. A vocal set will follow featuring big band era vocalists Antia O'Day, Helen Humes and Ella ...

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Article: Take Five With...

Take Five with Tubist Jim Shearer

Read "Take Five with Tubist Jim Shearer" reviewed by AAJ Staff


Meet Jim Shearer Jim Shearer was born in Water Valley, Mississippi, in 1964. His family owned the local newspaper, The North Mississippi Herald, from 1943-2004, and his father was an active musician on the side, playing jazz saxophone and serving as Minister of Music at the family church (but never at the same time!). After spending ...

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Article: Rising Stars

Introducing Vocalist Tyreek McDole

Read "Introducing Vocalist Tyreek McDole" reviewed by Sanford Josephson


This article previously appeared in Jersey Jazz Magazine. In 2018, Tyreek McDole, a student at the Osceola County School for the Arts in Kissimmee, FL, was playing classical percussion for a performance of the 1987 Stephen Sondheim/James Lapine musical, Into the Woods. “During rehearsal," he recalled, “one of the actors got sick. I had ...

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Article: Interview

Ryan Oliver: Zigging With A Jazz Maestro, His Secrets and Wisdom

Read "Ryan Oliver: Zigging With A Jazz Maestro, His Secrets and Wisdom" reviewed by Kerilie McDowall


Tenor saxophonist Ryan Oliver of Canada's The Cookers Quintet, is no stranger to the art of touring the globe. For years he was an integral part of The Shuffle Demons, an adored Toronto jazz saxophone group known for their mid-'80s hit single, “Spadina Bus," written in humorous reference to the Toronto Transit Commission's ...

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Article: Album Review

Jonathan Karrant: Eclectic

Read "Eclectic" reviewed by Dave Linn


Born and raised at the foothills of the Ozarks in the old western town of Fort Smith, Arkansas east of the Arkansas River, Jonathan Karrant fell under the influence of his artistic mother. As a child, it is said he sang for hours every day, making his public debut at the age of seven at his ...

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Article: Book Review

Philadelphia Jazz

Read "Philadelphia Jazz" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer


Philadelphia Jazz Suzanne Cloud and Diane Turner 127 pages ISBN 978-1-4671-0784-6 Images of America Arcadia Publishing 2022 Philadelphia longs to be known as a jazz town, a city distinguished by its major contribution to the jazz legacy. There is a good ...

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Article: Album Review

Bill Mays Trio: Autumn Serenade

Read "Autumn Serenade" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky


In Autumn Serenade, Bill Mays gifts us a bountiful harvest of seasonally-bound beauties. This 40th leader date from the eminent pianist finds him fronting a trio with two longtime colleagues--bassist Dean Johnson and drummer Ron Vincent--and welcoming vocalist Judy Kirtley and producer/guitarist Matt Balitsaris for guest appearances on a single track. Together, all parties join up ...

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Article: Album Review

Randal Despommier: A Midsummer Odyssey

Read "A Midsummer Odyssey" reviewed by Mark Corroto


If it was possible to fall in love with a set of music, Randal Despommier's A Midsummer Odyssey might be the one. The backstory to this recording begins in Perugia, Italy in 2005, where the American saxophonist heard the composition “Danny's Dream," by the Swedish saxophonist Lars Gullin (1928--1976). He was captivated by the music performed ...


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