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Jon Hendricks

Jon Hendricks is not only one of the world's favorite jazz vocalists, but is widely considered to be the "Father of Vocalese", the greatest innovator of the art form. Vocalese is the art of setting lyrics to recorded jazz instrumental standards (such as the big band arrangements of Duke Ellington and Count Basie), then arranging voices to sing the parts of the instruments. Thus is created an entirely new form of the work, one that tells a lyrically interesting story while retaining the integrity of the music. Hendricks is the only person many jazz greats have allowed to lyricize their music, for no one writes hipper, wittier, or more touching words, while extracting from a tune the emotions intended by the composer, more sympathetically than Hendricks. For his work as a lyricist, jazz critic and historian Leonard Feather called him the "Poet Laureate of Jazz" while Time dubbed him the "James Joyce of Jive."

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

Joe Farnsworth: Friends In High Places

Read "Joe Farnsworth: Friends In High Places" reviewed by R.J. DeLuke

Joe Farnsworth is one of the top jazz drummers working today, with a resume that includes some of the absolute greats. His muscular swing and precise timekeeping have been attractive to employers like Wynton Marsalis, Diana Krall, McCoy Tyner, George Coleman, Pharoah Sanders, Eric Alexander, Benny Golson and many more. He likes to say ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

Rah! Rah!: Claire Daly's Tribute to Rahsaan Roland Kirk and Other New Releases

Read "Rah! Rah!: Claire Daly's Tribute to Rahsaan Roland Kirk and Other New Releases" reviewed by Mary Foster Conklin

A bounty of new releases this week from saxophonist Claire Daly, harmonicist Hermine Deurloo, Thelonious Monk (newly discovered live performance), the Mike Melito Dino Losito Quartet, plus vocalists Simone Kopmajer, Sandra Marlowe and Sarah Moule, along with birthday shoutouts to Norma Winstone, Rebecca Kilgore, Lara Driscoll, Isabel Crespo, Leonard Cohen, John Coltrane and more. Thanks for ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

JC Hopkins Biggish Band: New York Moment

Read "New York Moment" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

On New York Moment, pianist JC Hopkins and his twelve-piece Biggish Band tend to a flame that's been burning since prior to World War II, the sound of large dance bands (with and without vocalists) who moved audiences with both sophistication and swing. Hopkins' Moment rotates Vanisha-Arleen Gould, Joy Hanson, Nico Sarbanes (who also plays trumpet), ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

Danny Scher: Back To School With Thelonious Monk

Read "Danny Scher: Back To School With Thelonious Monk" reviewed by Lawrence Peryer

A high-stakes election season. Streets filled with rage and protest. Cries for racial justice and equity. The latest news from summer 2020? Of course, but that also describes the American Scene in the summer of 1968, when a high school student in Palo Alto, California, first got the idea to book Thelonious Monk to play his ...

Places in Space, in Time

Read "Places in Space, in Time" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Abraham Inc. Together We Stand Table Pounding Music 2019 “Ever since I formed Klezmer Madness! in the mid 1990's I've been exploring the possibilities of adding funk, jazz, and lately hip-hop influences to klezmer," explains David Krakauer, an expert clarinet voice in jazz, klezmer and classical ...

Frank Sinatra: Myth, Reality and a Critic Standing in Line at Arby’s

Read "Frank Sinatra: Myth, Reality and a Critic Standing in Line at Arby’s" reviewed by Steve Provizer

The mere act of re-releasing a 1960 Frank Sinatra album speaks to the fact that his name still creates ripples when tossed into the cultural pond; still has the power to inspire a reaction when other other vocal stars of yore have receded into distant memory. An ocean of ink has been spilled in portraits and ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

September Birthday Salutes

Read "September Birthday Salutes" reviewed by Marc Cohn

September birthdays this week on G&M! Pianists: Gene Harris, Horace Silver, Onaje Allan Gumbs & Bud Powell; organists Jack McDuff & Akiko Tsuruga; guitarist Peter Bernstein; reeds (lots of 'em!) Art Pepper, Tony Dagradi, Julian “Cannonball" Adderley, Bob Reynolds, Gary Bartz, Ken Vandermark, Oliver Lake & John Coltrane; drummers Matt Wilson & Elvin Jones; trumpeter Fats ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Alex Hendriksen: / Fabian Gisler: The Song Is You

Read "The Song Is You" reviewed by Mark Corroto

Try as you might, you can't help but sing along, I got to get my old tuxedo pressed/I got to sew a button on my vest/'Cause tonight I gotta look my best, yeah/Lulu's back in town. Saxophonist Alex Hendriksen and bassist Fabian Gisler's rendition of “Lulu's Back in Town" may take you back to Leon Redbone's ...

ARTICLE: MULTIPLE REVIEWS

La nicchia del canto jazz maschile

Read "La nicchia del canto jazz maschile" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi

A eccezione di pochi nomi--in particolare Kurt Elling, Gregory Porter, Bobby McFerrin e il veterano Tony Bennett--il canto jazz maschile è nettamente sottoesposto rispetto a quello femminile. Esempi eclatanti di questo sono stati Jon Hendricks e Mark Murphy, scomparsi di recente senza aver avuto la considerazione che meritavano. Allan Harris e Fred Farell ...


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