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Percy Mayfield

If Percy Mayfield had done no more than compose “Please Send Me Someone to Love,” he would merit a decent footnote in the history of popular music. A classically proportioned 32-bar blues-ballad with a deceptively simple melody and a lyric that subtly links an individual's yearning for affection with the troubled state of the world, Mayfield's song has been a favorite of saloon-bar singers for the past half-century. Singer-songwriter Percy Mayfield was known as "Poet Laureate of the Blues," and his widely recorded compositions, have become standards in American popular music. Born in Minden, Louisiana, Mayfield wrote poems as a boy and set them to music, but because his mother didn't approve of blues, he sang only in church

ARTICLE: REASSESSING

Red Garland's Piano

Read "Red Garland's Piano" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Pianist Red Garland follows up his debut recording A Garland of Red (Prestige, 1956) with what might be his finest statement leading a jazz trio, Red Garland's Piano. Garland continues his association with bassist Paul Chambers and drummer Art Taylor forming his most durable rhythm section, and one that would record with him on ten of ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Cory Weeds Little Big Band: Explosion

Read "Explosion" reviewed by Jack Bowers

The size and makeup of a “little big band" depend above all on what the leader has in mind. In this case, leader Cory Weeds patterned his ensemble (four brass, four reeds, three rhythm) after similar groups led by tenor saxophonists Eddie “Lockjaw" Davis and Gene Ammons, and what he had in mind was a mid-sized ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Cory Weeds Little Big Band: Explosion

Read "Explosion" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Renaissance Man Cory Weeds has the Midas Touch. Since attaining Vancouver-local escape velocity with his Cellar Jazz Club and then his record label with the same imprint, the musical entrepreneur has parlayed his notice worldwide with excellent recordings of himself and other noted artists. Weeds' Cellar Jazz focus is what would be defined as an “Arbors ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Earl MacDonald: Open Borders

Read "Open Borders" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Open Borders brings to the fore Canadian-born pianist Earl MacDonald's burnished tentet in a program that consists of eleven sunlit and swinging themes, five of which were composed by the leader. Besides writing, MacDonald did most of the arranging, and he excels in both arenas, as he does on piano (most notably on the standards “Blame ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Earl MacDonald: Open Borders

Read "Open Borders" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic

Not many piano led ensembles finds the pianist laying as far back in the musical dialogue as Earl MacDonald, who doesn't come anywhere near an extended solo until “Miles Apart" and Percy Mayfield's Ray Charles blow- out “Hit The Road Jack" (tracks five and six respectively). But that's just fine given that MacDonald has charted the ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Ray Charles Orchestra: Ray Charles Orchestra: Zurich 1961-Swiss Radio Days Jazz Series, Vol. 41

Read "Ray Charles Orchestra: Zurich 1961-Swiss Radio Days Jazz Series, Vol. 41" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

We generally take it for granted now, but Ray Charles' trademark blend of jazz, gospel, R&B and soul in a large ensemble or orchestral setting was a unique sound mastered by few artists when this 1961 set was recorded. Number 41 in the Montreux Jazz Label's Swiss Radio Days Jazz Series, Zurich 1961 is a historical ...

ARTICLE: FROM THE INSIDE OUT

Sometimes Jazz Takes Guts

Read "Sometimes Jazz Takes Guts" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Brownout Brownout Presents Brown Sabbath II Ubiquity Records 2016 Brownout bandleader and guitarist Adrian Quesada listened to a lot of different music, including blood-curdling heavy metal monsters Black Sabbath, while growing up in South Texas. Even while creating original music more reflective of their Mexican and American funk, ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEW

Marina Crouse At The Sound Room

Read "Marina Crouse At The Sound Room" reviewed by Walter Atkins

Marina Crouse The Sound Room First Time Out Oakland, CA January 30, 2016 Talented East Bay vocalist Marina Crouse and her superb band lit up the intimate Sound Room with her distinctive brand of rhythm and blues on this chilly Saturday evening. The night was filled with a soulful blend ...

ARTICLE: MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Uno sguardo alla chitarra nel jazz contemporaneo

Read "Uno sguardo alla chitarra nel jazz contemporaneo" reviewed by Mario Calvitti

La chitarra è ormai da decenni uno degli strumenti più popolari e diffusi nel jazz; tanti sono stati, e sono tuttora, gli interpreti di questo strumento, protagonisti di un suo progressivo affrancamento dalle iniziali convenzioni per arrivare a renderlo sempre più libero e trasversale, al servizio di una maggiore e completa espressività del musicista che lo ...


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