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Kenny Clarke

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Kenny Clarke (born Kenneth Clarke Spearman, later aka, Liaqat Ali Salaam, on January 9, 1914 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-died January 26, 1985 in Paris, France) was a jazz drummer and an early innovator of the bebop style of drumming. As the house drummer at Minton's Playhouse in the early 1940's, he participated in the after hours jams that led to the birth of Be-Bop, which in turn lead to modern jazz. He is credited with creating the modern role of the ride cymbal as the primary timekeeper. Before, drummers kept time on the high-hat and snare drum ("digging coal", Clarke called it) with heavy support from the bass drum

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Article: Interview

Franco Ambrosetti: Busy Businessman, Exquisite Artist

Read "Franco Ambrosetti: Busy Businessman, Exquisite Artist" reviewed by R.J. DeLuke


Franco Ambrosetti, a horn player from Switzerland, has a unique perspective on music and art. Because his vantage point is different than many musicians, having held the position as CEO of a significant company in Europe. He plays trumpet and flugelhorn with a rich tone and an approach that has matured over time, shifting from a ...

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Article: In Pictures

Seeing Jazz: The Photography of Luciano Rossetti

Read "Seeing Jazz: The Photography of Luciano Rossetti" reviewed by Karl Ackermann


As a jazz venue, the mid-town Manhattan club Royal Roost had a short life span. The Royal Roost opened in 1948, but the jazz scene had moved past it less than two years later. In Greenwich Village, twenty-five-year-old photographer Herman Leonard had just opened his first photography studio to the south. A bebop fan, he was ...

3

Article: Radio

A Tribute to Bobby Few

Read "A Tribute to Bobby Few" reviewed by Bob Osborne


A tribute to pianist, composer and improviser Bobby Few, who died in January 2021 aged 85. Whilst not well known outside of the jazz world he has a CV which many would envy working with some of the leading names in the business. There is music featured from across his career and impressive discography.

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Article: Interview

Brian Jackson: Winter In America Pt. 2

Read "Brian Jackson: Winter In America Pt. 2" reviewed by Chris May


As Gil Scott-Heron's songwriting and performing partner during the 1970s, keyboardist, composer and arranger Brian Jackson was co-author of some of the most galvanising liberation music of the era. Inhabiting the intersection of jazz, soul and spoken word, Jackson and Scott-Heron, who met while they were both students at Lincoln University, were a team from Pieces ...

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Article: Album Review

Charlie Parker: Be Bop Live

Read "Be Bop Live" reviewed by Mark Corroto


The name of the record label is ezz-thetics, which was also a composition by George Russell and an album of the same name (which featured Eric Dolphy) released by Riverside Records in 1961. Maybe a better moniker for the label is “Lest We Forget." Not that we could ever abandon Charlie Parker, but today when streaming ...

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Guitar Gods & Goddesses: An Alternative Top Ten Albums

Read "Guitar Gods & Goddesses: An Alternative Top Ten Albums" reviewed by Chris May


Although it has been present in jazz since the 1920s, when it was routinely used in rhythm sections, as a solo instrument the guitar struggled to make itself heard--literally--until the second half of the 1930s, when reliable pick-ups and portable amplifiers became available. Foremost among the pioneers of the electrified instrument was Charlie Christian, a member ...

News: Birthday

Jazz Musician of the Day: Kenny Clarke

Jazz Musician of the Day: Kenny Clarke

All About Jazz is celebrating Kenny Clarke's birthday today! Kenny Clarke (born Kenneth Clarke Spearman, later aka, Liaqat Ali Salaam, on January 9, 1914 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-died January 26, 1985 in Paris, France) was a jazz drummer and an early innovator of the bebop style of drumming. As the house drummer at Minton's Playhouse in the ...

48

Article: Building a Jazz Library

Thelonious Monk: An Alternative Top Ten Albums Of Deep And Staggering Genius

Read "Thelonious Monk: An Alternative Top Ten Albums Of Deep And Staggering Genius" reviewed by Chris May


Thelonious Monk's position in cultural history grows in stature with each passing year and every new generation. Lionised by jazz fans and a continuing influence on musicians, Monk in 2020 is also held to be a hero by the hip hop movement. While his music no longer has the power to shock that it once possessed, ...

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Article: Building a Jazz Library

Charlie Parker: Ten High Flying Albums Of Paradigm Shifting Genius

Read "Charlie Parker: Ten High Flying Albums Of Paradigm Shifting Genius" reviewed by Chris May


Born in Kansas City, Kansas in 1920, and brought up across the state line in anything-goes, jazz-friendly Kansas City, Missouri, controlled from the mid 1920s to the late 1930s by the spectacularly corrupt politician Tom Prendergast, alto saxophonist Charlie Parker lived fast and hard and passed in 1955, aged only 34 years. A founding father of ...


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