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Pharoah Sanders

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Pharoah Sanders possesses one of the most distinctive tenor saxophone sounds in jazz. Harmonically rich and heavy with overtones, Sanders' sound can be as raw and abrasive as it is possible for a saxophonist to produce. Yet, Sanders is highly regarded to the point of reverence by a great many jazz fans. Although he made his name with expressionistic, nearly anarchic free jazz in John Coltrane's late ensembles of the mid-'60s, Sanders' later music is guided by more graceful concerns. The hallmarks of Sanders' playing at that time were naked aggression and unrestrained passion. In the yearsafter Coltrane's death, however, Sanders explored other, somewhat gentler and perhaps more cerebral avenues — without, it should be added, sacrificing any of the intensity that defined his work as an apprentice to Coltrane. Pharoah Sanders (his given name, Ferrell Sanders) was born into a musical family

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

Ben Sidran At 79: Simplicity Will Get You In The End

Read "Ben Sidran At 79: Simplicity Will Get You In The End" reviewed by Leo Sidran


For the fourth year in a row, I talked to my dad, musician/producer/journalist/philosopher Ben Sidran in honor of his birthday. This time he's turning 79 and we consider the sociological implications of mowing the lawn, Donald Fagen's solo recordings, the significance of the 1960s in popular culture today, Pharoah Sanders album Pharoah's First (ESP), interviews he ...

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Article: Album Review

Szun Waves: Earth Patterns

Read "Earth Patterns" reviewed by Gareth Thompson


The second Szun Waves album, New Hymn To Freedom (The Leaf Label, 2018), was a critical smash that united fans of Radiohead and Pharoah Sanders alike. Media types drowned in a torrent of adjectives such as gleaming, sparkling and rippling, as if the combo of brass and electronics could produce anything else. Unless, of course, it ...

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Article: Radio & Podcasts

A Mix Of New And Old

Read "A Mix Of New And Old" reviewed by Bob Osborne


This week a mix of brand new releases and classic recordings. There are fascinating new albums from Gard Nilssen, Steve Tibbetts, Daniel Carter with Evan Strauss, 5-Track, and Sheridan Riley, Alex Fournier, Trevor Watts & Liam Genocky, and, Brian Eaton. I also have some older releases from Elvin Jones, Pharoah Sanders, Clifford Jordan, Maria Schneider and ...

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Article: Album Review

Katalyst: Jazz Is Dead 13

Read "Jazz Is Dead 13" reviewed by Chris May


Drab graphic design aside, the semiology of the Jazz Is Dead label promises good things. The name itself suggests music that is the opposite of dead--something vibrant, inventive, of its time--while the label's co-founders, producers Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Adrian Younge, are active in the struggle for universal social justice. On top of that, Muhammad was ...

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Article: Interview

Meeco: Keeping It Real

Read "Meeco: Keeping It Real" reviewed by Chris May


The Berlin-based producer and composer Meeco has a niche but devoted following, built up over a series of romantically inclined and elegant albums released between 2009 and 2014. The discs, which have pronounced Latin flavours, are Amargo Mel (Connector, 2009), Perfume E Caricias (Connector, 2010), Beauty Of The Night (Connector, 2012) and Souvenirs Of Love (Double ...

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Article: In Pictures

Kamasi Washington, Trombone Shorty and George Clinton Kickoff a New Season of Outdoor Music

Read "Kamasi Washington, Trombone Shorty and George Clinton Kickoff a New Season of Outdoor Music" reviewed by Dave Kaufman


The jny: New York City summer music season kicked off with a series of extravagant concerts that turned out large crowds to the BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn in Prospect Park and Central Park SummerStage presentations. The comfortable temperatures and low humidity created perfect conditions for outdoor events. Perhaps, the crowds were also buoyed by a collective sense ...

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Article: Album Review

The Paxton / Spangler Septet: Ugqozi

Read "Ugqozi" reviewed by Chris May


Ugqozi is a celebration of modern, urban African music, especially that from South Africa, with which co-leaders trombonist John “Tbone" Paxton and percussionist RJ Spangler have been in love for decades. It is also an affirmation of the vibrant Detroit scene of which the multi-generational Paxton / Spangler Septet is a part. Actually, ...

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Article: Album Review

Nduduzo Makhathini: In The Spirit Of Ntu

Read "In The Spirit Of Ntu" reviewed by Chris May


There are strong links between London's alternative jazz scene and the parallel and burgeoning one in South Africa. A case in point is the connection between South African pianist Nduduzo Makhathini and British tenor saxophonist and clarinetist Shabaka Hutchings. Makhathini and Hutchings' similar ages and overlapping, cosmologically informed takes on jazz meant they were ...

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Article: Live Review

Cheltenham Jazz Festival 2022

Read "Cheltenham Jazz Festival 2022" reviewed by Peter Jones


Cheltenham Jazz Festival Cheltenham, UK April 27-May 2, 2022 A prosperous Eighteenth Century spa town in the Cotswolds, chic Cheltenham is famed for its annual festivals, which now cover everything from horse racing to science. Taking place over six days leading up to the early May bank holiday weekend, its jazz festival ...


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