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MUSICIAN Born:

Randy Napoleon

Guitarist Randy Napoleon is a performer, arranger and composer who currently tours with Freddy Cole and is on the faculty of the University of Michigan’s Department of Jazz and Contemporary Improvisation in the School of Music, Theatre and Dance. Previously, he toured with Benny Green, the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra and Michael Buble.

Napoleon arranged Cole’s last three albums, including Cole's Grammy-nominated 2010 release, Freddy Cole Sings for Mr. B, and Cole’s 2011 and 2012 releases Talk to Me and This and That. In addition to backing the best, he composes and arranges for his own bands, an organ trio, a quartet with piano, and a three-horn sextet that includes organ, drums, trumpet, tenor sax and trombone

ARTICLE: RADIO

Yonder Come the Blues - Happy Birthday to Dorothy Donegan, Ma Rainey and Ella Fitzgerald

Read "Yonder Come the Blues - Happy Birthday to Dorothy Donegan, Ma Rainey and Ella Fitzgerald" reviewed by Mary Foster Conklin

The final broadcast of Jazz Appreciation Month includes new releases from vocalist Lauren Henderson and the JC Hopkins Biggish Band, with birthday shout-outs to pianist Dorothy Donegan (pictured), Mother of the Blues Ma Rainey and legendary vocalist Ella Fitzgerald. Thanks for your continued support and please support these artists and their music. Playlist Dorothy ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

Randy Napoleon, Dave Brubeck, Troy Roberts and More

Read "Randy Napoleon, Dave Brubeck, Troy Roberts and More" reviewed by Joe Dimino

This episode features a number of artists interviewed by host Joe Dimino. We begin with guitarist Randy Napoleon and his mentor Donald Walden. Then, we look into the music of Canadian cat Eric St-Laurent and we profile Australian-born saxophonist Troy Roberts . Finally, we pay our respects to the great Lyle Mays and his contributions to ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

Jazz Goes to the Movies and Valentine's Day Singles

Read "Jazz Goes to the Movies and Valentine's Day Singles" reviewed by Mary Foster Conklin

This week we feature new releases from The Coachella Valley Trio, trumpeter Rachel Therrien, pianists Lisa Hilton and Carol Albert, vocalists Robin McKelle, Kaylé Brecher, and Raquel Cepeda, plus Valentine's Day singles from Sue Maskaleris and Cynthia Scott, with birthday shout outs to Carole King, Michika Fukumori and Carmen Staaf, among others. There are also plenty ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Randy Napoleon: Common Tones

Read "Common Tones" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Randy Napoleon may represent the new school of Detroit guitar players emerging from the lineage of Kenny Burrell and (Motown) Funk Brothers Dennis Coffey and Joe Messina, but his approach and sound on Common Tones are old school for sure. His fifth set as a leader (on the Detroit Music Factory label) collaborates across four generations ...

ARTICLE: FROM THE INSIDE OUT

Back in the Day, Around the World

Read "Back in the Day, Around the World" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Brooklyn Funk Essentials Stay Good Dorado Records 2019 Back in the day, jazz bands like Roy Ayers' Ubiquity and soul bands like the Ohio Players played more than jazz and soul. Jazz and soul were their main ingredient, but only one ingredient among others stirred in ...

Common Tones

Label: Detroit Music Factory
Released: 2019
Track listing: Wouldn't It Be Nice; Common Tones; You've Got To Hang On; I Married An Angel; Saber Rattle; How It Might Have Been; Where It Ends; The Song Is You; Signed Dizzy, With Love; Bakin'; If DW Were Here; Mr. Smith; Lessons Learned.

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEWS

Monty Alexander at the Avalon Theater

Read "Monty Alexander at the Avalon Theater" reviewed by Geno Thackara

Monty Alexander and Friends The Avalon Theater Easton, MD August 31, 2019 “Ten years," Monty Alexander wryly observed at the center-stage microphone with a disbelieving shake of the head. “Ten years of this festival, and 75 years as me." It was a celebration of multiple anniversaries at the weekend-long Labor Day ...

Meet Andrew Rothman

Read "Meet Andrew Rothman" reviewed by Tessa Souter and Andrea Wolper

Lawyer, audiophile, lifelong arts enthusiast, our newest Super Fan's life plan was to be a classical pianist, until college took him in another direction. But it was two “major epiphanies" (the first time he heard Miles Davis and, later, Bill Evans) that turned him into a jazz Super Fan--such a Super Fan, in fact, that he ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Dexter Payne: All Things, All Beings

Read "Dexter Payne: All Things, All Beings" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Clarinet, harmonica and saxophonist, composer and bandleader and musical globetrotter Dexter Payne is the type of musician who is most often categorized as “difficult to categorize." Profoundly influenced by physical and spiritual journeys through the cultures of America, the Middle East, Africa and Brazil, Payne's recorded output checks off every box from Mississippi delta blues to ...


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