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Ran Blake

In a career that now spans five decades, pianist Ran Blake has created a unique niche in improvised music as an artist and educator. With a characteristic mix of spontaneous solos, modern classical tonalities, the great American blues and gospel traditions, and themes from classic Film Noir, Blake’s singular sound has earned a dedicated following all over the world. His dual musical legacy includes more than 30 albums on some of the world’s finest jazz labels, as well nearly 30 years as a groundbreaking educator at Boston’s New England Conservatory. Blake first discovered the dark, image laden and complex character driven films that would so influence his music at age 12 when he first saw Robert Siodmak’s Spiral Staircase

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Frank Carlberg/Gabriel Bolaños: Charity and Love

Read "Charity and Love" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

While Frank Carlberg certainly rises to great heights in large-group settings, some of the pianist's most absorbing and thought-provoking work has been built around the intimacy of the duo. Whether we're talking about intrigue-laced meetings with fellow Finn (and drumming great) Klaus Suonsaari, a ballad set featuring tenor saxophonist Noah Preminger, some two-piano play with Ran ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

François Lana Trio: Cathédrale

Read "Cathédrale" reviewed by Troy Dostert

The title of Swiss-based pianist François Lana's latest release, Cathédrale, carries a two-fold significance. Its most obvious reference is to transcendence, something Lana affirms in the liner notes: “Music is a form of spirituality," but it can also be a reference to the sophisticated architectural approach Lana brings to his art. Not only the music, but ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

Frank Kimbrough: Changing the Contexts, Keeping It Fresh

Read "Frank Kimbrough: Changing the Contexts, Keeping It Fresh" reviewed by Wayne Zade

From the 1995-2003 archive: This article first appeared at All About Jazz in September 2002. Frank Kimbrough is one of the most versatile and innovative pianists in jazz on the New York and national scenes. He has been the pianist in the Maria Schneider jazz orchestra and has recorded seven albums under his own ...

Gray Moon

Label: Red Piano Records
Released: 2020
Track listing: Vradiazi; Bebopper; El Cant Dels Ocells; Take The A Train; Pinky; Dr Mabuse; Round Midnight; Gunther's Magic Row; Stratusphunk; Wish I Could Talk To You Baby; Vanguard; Memphis; No More; Tea For Two; Short Life Of Barbara Monk; Mood Indigo.

Northern Noir

Label: SteepleChase Records
Released: 2020
Track listing: Strange Fruit; Dr. Mabuse The Gambler; The Spiral Staircase; Midnight Sun; The Wild One; For George; Pannonica; Judy; Of The Little North Wind; For Wayne; I Should Care; Laura; There's Been A Change; For Kenny; Vertigo; Streetcar Named Desire; Throw It Away; Strange Fruit.

When Soft Rains Fall

Label: Red Piano Records
Released: 2020
Track listing: I'm A Fool To Want You; For Heaven's Sake; The Day Lady Died; You've Changed; You Don't Know What Love Is; The End Of A Love Affair; For All We Know; Big Stuff; I Get Along Without You Very Well; Violets For Your Furs; Lady Sings The Blues; But Beautiful; Glad To Be Unhappy; I'll Be Around; It's Easy To Remember.

ARTICLE: YEAR IN REVIEW

John Pietaro's "Test" Of 2020

Read "John Pietaro's "Test" Of 2020" reviewed by John Pietaro

It would be a fool's errand in a covid-damaged society to attempt a peaceably gathered year's end “Best of" list, in jazz or any other genre or medium. But artists of jazz and all avant gardes have been especially susceptible to the considerable financial ebbing and health concerns of this period. Discussing this concept with my ...

ARTICLE: MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Ran Blake: Gray Moon, When Soft Rains Fall and Northern Noir

Read "Ran Blake: Gray Moon, When Soft Rains Fall and Northern Noir" reviewed by John Ephland

I'm a sucker for musical duets. Duets that make me feel like I'm in the same room with the two of them. Here we have three recent releases with the iconoclastic, legendary Ran Blake, now 83, in what is his most typical setting. Yes, to hear Blake paired up like this is to hear ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEW

Rope Trio: omaggio a Charlie Haden

Read "Rope Trio: omaggio a Charlie Haden" reviewed by Giuseppe Segala

TrentinoInJazz, Ai Confini ed Oltre--The Art of the Trio Sala Falconetto, Palazzo Geremia Trento 22.10.2020 Il Rope Trio, con Fabrizio Puglisi al pianoforte, Stefano Senni al contrabbasso e Zeno De Rossi alla batteria, vanta ormai una rodata esperienza, partita nel 2002 e scandita da due registrazioni, Have You Met Miss Bates?, ...


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