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Malachi Thompson


Malachi Thompson is a composer, band leader, trumpet soloist, artist, teacher and arts activist. Born in Princeton, Kentucky on August 21, 1949, Thompson's jazz roots are on Chicago's South Side. In 1968, he joined the influential Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM) playing the music of Henry Threadgill and Richard Muhal Abrams. He also became a member of Dr. M.L. King's Operation Breadbasket Orchestra, the musical arm of SCLC in 1968, working for civil rights for African Americans. In 1974, after completing work for a degree in Music Composition, Thompson was encouraged to move to NYC by jazz legend Art Blakey


Article: Interview

A Conversation with Amiri Baraka

Read "A Conversation with Amiri Baraka" reviewed by Lazaro Vega

From the 1995-2003 archive: This article first appeared at All About Jazz in November 1999. All About Jazz: I'm just really happy to see that in the last year or so you've become a much more public figure outside of academia through the recording with Hugh Ragin, Afternoon in Harlem on Justin-time, that When ...


Article: Album Review

George Freeman/Chico Freeman: All In The Family

Read "All In The Family" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

There are few things more quintessentially “Chicago" in jazz than the Freeman family. Tenor titan Von Freeman ruled the roost in The Windy City decade after decade until his death in 2012; his brother, George Freeman, played with everybody from saxophonist Charlie Parker to organist Shirley Scott; his other brother, the late Eldridge “Bruz" Freeman, was ...


Article: Album Review

Ari Brown: Groove Awakening

Read "Groove Awakening" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi

Erede della grande tradizione sassofonistica di Chicago, il settantenne Ari Brown pubblica il suo quarto album da leader confermando gli aspetti chiave del suo stile: timbro magniloquente e ricco di sfumature, fraseggio fluente, marcato senso del blues, viva energia con cui sostiene lunghi e rapsodici assoli. Nel suo strumento si rinnova lo spirito ecumenico, ...


Article: Album Review

Harrison Bankhead Quartet: Velvet Blue

Read "Velvet Blue" reviewed by Mark Corroto

Harrison Bankhead's time has come. The Advancement of Creative Music (AACM) is on a roll with the release of Velvet Blue. For decades, the bassist has been the bedrock upon which great Chicago jazz has been built. He was the foundation for legendary players like Fred Anderson, Von Freeman, Roscoe Mitchell, Muhal Richard Abrams, and Malachi ...


Article: Album Review

Oliver Lake: Makin' It

Read "Makin' It" reviewed by Hrayr Attarian

Changing a few elements of a well known musical format may be all that is needed to create a new and fresh sound. Makin' It, Oliver Lake has taken the old saxophone organ trio popularized in the 1950s by the likes of Ike Quebec and made it into a new vehicle for 21st ...


Blue Jazz

Label: Delmark Records
Released: 2004
Track listing: 1 Black Metropolis 9:12 2 The Panther 6:50 3 Jaaz Revelations 5:35 4 Genesis/Rebirth 10:39 5 Po' Little Louie 3:43 6 Get on the Train 4:14 7 Blues for a Saint Called Louis 5:50 8 Blue Jazz 8:30 9 Footprints 9:19 10 Mud Hole 4:31


Article: Megaphone

Malachi Thompson: The Evolution of Jazz and the Survival of Our Democratic Society

Read "Malachi Thompson: The Evolution of Jazz and the Survival of Our Democratic Society" reviewed by AAJ Staff

By Malachi Thompson I've written about jazz as a model for American democracy before, but only in passing. However, in light of voting rights issues that arose during the 2000 presidential election, the events surrounding the 9/11 attacks and what's most important - our government's response to those events - it dawned upon me that “Now's ...


Article: Album Review

Malachi Thompson & Africa Brass: Blue Jazz

Read "Blue Jazz" reviewed by Jeff Stockton

Malachi Thompson's Africa Brass project embodies all the variety and complexity of his Chicago home base: the urban experience of African Americans transplanted from the rural south; the blending of blues and jazz as musicians stepped out of juke joints and onto the stages of supper clubs; the respect for tradition tempered by the desire for ...


Blue Jazz

Label: Delmark Records
Released: 2003
Track listing: Black Metropolis/ The Panther/ Jaaz Revelations/ Genesis/Rebirth/ Po


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