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Michael Abene

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Michael Abene is a composer, arranger, keyboard player and record producer and as of 2004 was Musical Director-Principal Arranger/Composer of the WDR Radio Big Band of Cologne, Germany considered by many one of the great big bands in Europe. In November, 2011 Michael accepted the position of Professor of Ensemble Conducting at the KUG Jazz Institute in Graz, Austria. Michael also served as the Associate Music Director of the BMI Jazz Composers Workshop and an Associate Professor of Jazz Composition at Manhattan School of Music. Michael produced the Grammy winning projects “Digital Duke” featuring the Duke Ellington Orchestra and “The GRP All-Star Big Band-All Blues.” He also produced the Grammy nominated “The GRP All-Star Big Band” and “The GRP All-Star Big Band Live” and received nominations in the arranging category for all three big band recordings

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Article: Interview

Emiliano Sampaio: Rising Transatlantic Star

Read "Emiliano Sampaio: Rising Transatlantic Star" reviewed by Kurt Ellenberger


In 2013, I was awarded a Fulbright scholarship to teach and to work on a research project at the Kunstuniversität Graz ("University of the Arts in Graz"). I taught a first-year course in jazz theory that was really a delight. These students were already extremely accomplished performers and composers. About half of the class was comprised ...

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Article: Radio

Weather Report & Hazel Scott

Read "Weather Report & Hazel Scott" reviewed by Joe Dimino


During this era of jazz quarantine, innovation and consistency has been alive for all musicians. One band doing just that is The Greyboy Allstars. They kick off the 677th Episode of Neon Jazz. We also profile a host of 2020 releases from the likes of Walt Wagner and Luques Curtis. Finally, we pay our respects to ...

1

Article: Album Review

Kayle Brecher: Kayleidoscope

Read "Kayleidoscope" reviewed by Geannine Reid


Vocalist, composer, and stylist Kaylé Brecher has long been a part of the jazz fabric. A Summa Cum Laude graduate of Temple University with a double major in performance and composition/arranging, Brecher has long been a member of the BMI Jazz Composers' Workshop in New York City. Her private studies include tutelage by Jim McNeely and ...

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News: Performance / Tour

Jelgavas Big Band Brings Latvian Music Arranged By American Pianist Michael Abene to DC on October 4th

Jelgavas Big Band Brings Latvian Music Arranged By American Pianist Michael Abene to DC on October 4th

On October 4, 2019, Latvia is presenting a jazz concert by the Jelgava Big Band at the Organization of American States on the on the Occasion of 130 years since the First International Conference of American States and in anticipation of the 25th anniversary in 2020 since Latvia is a Permanent Observer at the OAS. Venue ...

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Article: Multiple Reviews

Big Band tedesche in gran spolvero

Read "Big Band tedesche in gran spolvero" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi


Da almeno trent'anni in Germania operano alcune delle migliori orchestre mainstream d'Europa, ormai famose per le collaborazioni coi massimi jazzisti contemporanei. Tra i vari collettivi, la NDR Big Band di Amburgo e la WDR Big Band di Colonia si collocano oggi ai vertici internazionali, sapendo coniugare alta professionalità tecnica a doti di flessibilità, fantasia e apertura ...

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Article: Lyrics

I nuovi orchestratori - 2: Kyle Saulnier - Rob Mazurek

Read "I nuovi orchestratori - 2: Kyle Saulnier - Rob Mazurek" reviewed by Angelo Leonardi


Parliamo ancora di orchestre e arrangiatori [per leggere la prima puntata di questo approfondimento -clicca qui. Tralasciando per il momento di considerare i contributi più innovativi della scena europea (tra cui spiccano la Vienna Art Orchestra e l'Italian Instabile Orchestra) dopo la stagione del Free la ricerca d'avanguardia statunitense non si è fermata. Purtroppo ...

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Article: Album Review

Idan Santhaus: There You Are

Read "There You Are" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky


This debut release from composer/multi-reedist Idan Santhaus was a long time coming. There You Are actually started to take shape in April of 2008, when four of these tracks were recorded with a solid sixteen piece band, but that was just the beginning. It took three more years for Santhaus to get back into the studio ...

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Article: Interview

New York Voices: Keeping the Vocal Jazz Flame Burning

Read "New York Voices: Keeping the Vocal Jazz Flame Burning" reviewed by R.J. DeLuke


Kim Nazarian went to college in upstate New York for acting, with dreams of the Broadway stage. Some 25 years later, she's enjoying a career that has taken her to stages around the globe--but as a singer. Not just a singer, but one of four that makes up New York Voices, a group that has won ...

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Article: Album Review

New York Voices: New York Voices Live with The WDR Big Band Cologne

Read "New York Voices Live with The WDR Big Band Cologne" reviewed by Edward Blanco


The Grammy Award-winning vocal group New York Voices celebrates its 25th anniversary presenting their first full live album with New York Voices Live offering a collection of past favorites and brand new arrangements from the principal arranger-conductor renowned pianist/arranger Michael Abene. A live recording from a May 2008 concert at the Kolner Philharmonie in Cologne, Germany ...


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