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Johnny Hodges

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"Never the world's most highly animated showman or greatest stage personality, but a tone so beautiful it sometimes brought tears to the eyes, this was Johnny Hodges. Because of this great loss, our band will never sound the same. Johnny Hodges sometimes sounded beautiful, sometimes romantic, and sometimes people spoke of his tone as being sensuous. With the exception of a year or so, almost his entire career was with us. So far as our wonderful listening audience was concerned, there was a great feeling of expectancy when they looked up and saw Johnny Hodges sitting in the middle of the saxophone section, in the front row. I am glad and thankful that I had the privilege of presenting Johnny Hodges for forty years, night after night

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Saxophone Colossi: An Alternative Top Ten Banging Albums

Read "Saxophone  Colossi: An Alternative Top Ten Banging Albums" reviewed by Chris May


Miles Davis once said you could tell the history of jazz in four words: Louis Armstrong, Charlie Parker. You might want to add John Coltrane, you might even want to add Davis. But however you cut it, saxophones and trumpets have been the flag bearers of the music. Trumpets got things rolling and saxophones came into ...

7

Article: Album Review

Meroli: Notturni

Read "Notturni" reviewed by Chris May


Jazz has a great track record when it comes to film scores. Standouts include Miles Davis' soundtrack for Louis Malle's Ascenseur Pour L'échafaud (1958), Charles Mingus' for John Cassavetes' Shadows (1959) and Krzysztof Komeda's for Roman Polanski's Knife In The Water (1962). There are dozens more, particularly from the 1950s and 1960s, before rock became the ...

7

Article: Album Review

Veronica Swift: This Bitter Earth

Read "This Bitter Earth" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey


It seems jazz vocalist Veronica Swift has been in the music business all of her life, and for good reason: There is the well documented fact that she is the daughter of jazz pianist Hod O'Brien and singer Stephanie Nakasian, and she debuted on record at nine years old with Veronica's House of Jazz (SNOB, 2004). ...

7

Article: Interview

Benjamin Koppel: Curiosity Won't Kill This Cat

Read "Benjamin Koppel: Curiosity Won't Kill This Cat" reviewed by R.J. DeLuke


Benjamin Koppel is an extraordinary Danish musician from an illustrious music family. He is all about music—of just about any kind. He's always absorbing it, discovering what there is to derive from it. A kind of restless desire to explore envelops him. He simplifies it in his own words: he's curious. It comes naturally to him. ...

4

Article: Album Review

Jason Whatley: On the Beak

Read "On the Beak" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan


If Australia is “The Land Down Under," then Tasmania could be called “The Land Way Down Under,' a thumbprint of a main island cut adrift from the southern hemisphere's one country continent about 12,000 years ago, at the end of the last ice age, to sit off the south western corner of the state of Victoria, ...

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 ...

15

Article: History of Jazz

Charlie Parker: In Praise of Bird on His 100th Birthday!

Read "Charlie Parker: In Praise of Bird on His 100th Birthday!" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer


A hundred years ago, on August 29, 1920, soon after jazz was born, Charlie Parker came into this world, and in the 35 years of a life cut short by addictions and impulse-driven living, he changed the face of the music. His innovations as one of the creators of bebop and his stunning sound and virtuosic ...

1

News: Video / DVD

Videos: Three Ellington Reeds

Videos: Three Ellington Reeds

Duke Ellington was a tonal impressionist. Each musician in his band had two functions—to be able to play and to have a special sound. Taken as a whole, his orchestral pieces were like canvases, with different hues layered on top of each other. Here are three of Ellington's top saxophonists on solo showcases, providing an opportunity ...

20

Article: Radio

Paul Gonsalves @ 100 And More July Birthdays

Read "Paul Gonsalves @ 100 And More July Birthdays" reviewed by Marc Cohn


Time to celebrate July birthdays! Among the living, David Sanborn @ 75, pianist Mark Soskin, trumpeter Theo Croker, Kenny Burrell and Ahmad Jamal @ 90! We celebrate the saxophonists: Paul Gonsalves @ 100 and Hank Mobley @ 90. Along the way, birthday salutes to Philly Joe Jones, Lee Morgan, Charlie Christian, pianist Billy Taylor and Johnny ...


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