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Michael Kanan

Michael Kanan hails from Boston, Massachusetts where he first began to play the piano at age 7. He started improvising at the keyboard early on, and by age 10 he was listening to jazz. His first instructor was pianist Harvey Diamond, a student of jazz innovator Lennie Tristano. During his years at Boston College, Michael had the opportunity to perform with several jazz greats including Tal Farlow, Lee Konitz, Al Cohn, and Alan Dawson. After graduating college and doing some freelance work around Boston, he moved to New York in 1991 to study with another Tristano student, the pianist Sal Mosca. He established himself in New York, playing and recording with Kurt Rosenwinkel, Mark Turner, and Jorge Rossy, among others

ARTICLE: THE JAZZ LIFE

How to Play a Tin Whistle Like Michael Brecker

Read "How to Play a Tin Whistle Like Michael Brecker" reviewed by Peter Rubie

I was talking to a musician friend of mine the other day, asking her how her move from Brooklyn to Forrest Hills was going. She said, “I love it! I love the neighborhood and best of all, musically, I'm not running any more jam sessions at the moment, just doing gigs—and practicing! It's great."

ARTICLE: IN PICTURES

Jane Monheit at The American Theatre

Read "Jane Monheit at The American Theatre" reviewed by Mark Robbins

Vocalist Jane Monheit surprised both the audience and the management at The American Theatre in Hampton, Virginia with her first holiday show of the season on November 30. Though her interpretations of the Great American Songbook and torch songs were missed, Monheit and her trio— pianist Michael Kanan, bassist Neal Miner, and drummer Joe Strasser—still moved ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Doron Tirosh: Simply Because It's Winter

Read "Simply Because It's Winter" reviewed by David A. Orthmann

Drummer/composer Doron Tirosh's Simply Because It's Winter brings to mind the adage “good things come in small packages." The six tracks comprise a coherent piece of work in twenty-five minutes of running time. Along with pianist Michael Kanan and bassist Neal Miner, Tirosh achieves a kind of courtly, non-doctrinaire bebop essence. It's jazz that doesn't need ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Sam Braysher: Golden Earrings

Read "Golden Earrings" reviewed by Bruce Lindsay

Mostly these days aspiring jazz musicians hear the songs of the American Songbook as “jazz standards," their melodies taken as jumping-off points for improvisational flights of fancy that move the tunes far beyond their earlier incarnations as pop tunes or Broadway showstoppers. It's a distinction that the young English altoist Sam Braysher makes in the liner ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Jane Monheit: The Songbook Sessions: Ella Fitzgerald

Read "The Songbook Sessions: Ella Fitzgerald" reviewed by Edward Blanco

Long Island native and vocalist Jane Monheit pays tribute to Ella Fitzgerald, one of the most enduring jazz singers in history and a very influential figure in Monheit's own musical career. The singer had long thought about recording a homage project to Fitzgerald and on The Songbook Sessions: Ella Fitzgerald, Monheit finally accomplishes this releasing the ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Abigail Riccards: Every Little Star

Read "Every Little Star" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Abigail Riccards may not be known yet but Jane Monheit is, and on Riccard's Every Little Star, the famous jazz chanteur is both a mentor and co-producer. The Chicago-based Riccards began appearing in New York City in the early 2000s, garnering a good deal of critical attention from her live performances and her debut recording, When ...

ARTICLE: TAKE FIVE WITH...

Take Five With Scott McLemore

Read "Take Five With Scott McLemore" reviewed by Scott McLemore

Meet Scott McLemore: Born in Norfolk, Virginia in 1973, Scott McLemore spent over a decade in New York where he was equally at home playing in the trios of saxophonist Tony Malaby, guitarist Ben Monder, pianist Michael Kanan and George Colligan. Although he is best known for his work with Icelandic pianist Sunna Gunnlaugs ...


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