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Tommy Flanagan

Rarely has such unanimously unstinting praise been bestowed on a less self-congratulatory recipient. As genial and matter-of-fact off the stand as he is fiercely individual at the keys, Tommy Flanagan handles his world class ranking with an equanimity, a modesty, an easy friendliness not always associated with the psychic burden of being Number One. Perhaps because almost instant early recognition by his peers and the universal affection in which he has been held by them over the years has made for a warm and artistically rewarding roost in the jazz jungle for Tommy Flanagan. Or perhaps it is owing to his wholesome origins, as one of six children of an upwardly striving, musically enthusiastic family in Detroit. Whatever, Flanagan made his professional debut in 1945 at age 15, joining forces with fellow Motor City budding heavyweights Milt Jackson, Thad Jones, Elvin Jones and Kenny Burrell, playing clubs like the Bluebird, Detroit’s renowned jazz room

Drummers as Bandleaders: An Alternative Top Ten Albums

Read "Drummers as Bandleaders: An Alternative Top Ten Albums" reviewed by Chris May

Drummers have been key members of every band which has changed the course of jazz history, from Max Roach with Charlie Parker to Elvin Jones with John Coltrane and onwards. Yet drummers have been the leaders of a surprisingly small proportion of landmark bands themselves. Chick Webb in the 1920s was the first of the few. ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Eldar Djangirov: Rhapsodize

Read "Rhapsodize" reviewed by Mike Jurkovic

Eldar Djangirov... None other than Dave Brubeck declared him a genius. Dr. Billy Taylor called his music a “brilliantly complex discipline." So, when inevitably asked who the masters of their craft may or may not be, does Eldar Djangirov immediately roll off anyone's tongue? More than likely not. And, with more than a handful ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Mal Waldron: Free At Last

Read "Free At Last" reviewed by Karl Ackermann

The sensitivity reflected in much of Mal Waldron's music was a deep aspect of his psyche. The Harlem-born pianist, who died in Brussels, Belgium, in 2002, worked downtown with saxophonist Ike Quebec at Café Society in the early 1950s and went on to record on several Charles Mingus recordings including Pithecanthropus Erectus (Atlantic), Jazz Composers Workshop ...

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: INTERVIEW

Richie Beirach: Indelible Memories and Thought-Provoking Reflections on a Life in Jazz, Part 2

Read "Richie Beirach: Indelible Memories and Thought-Provoking Reflections on a Life in Jazz, Part 2" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer

Part 1 | Part 2 Richie Beirach hovers somewhat mysteriously in the pantheon of the great modern jazz pianists. Some of the others in that category from his generation (coming up in the 1960s/'70s), like Herbie Hancock, Keith Jarrett, Chick Corea, and Kenny Barron have greater celebrity, but Beirach easily qualifies alongside them as ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

Richie Beirach: Indelible Memories and Thought-Provoking Reflections on a Life in Jazz, Part 1

Read "Richie Beirach: Indelible Memories and Thought-Provoking Reflections on a Life in Jazz, Part 1" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer

Part 1 | Part 2 Richie Beirach hovers somewhat mysteriously in the pantheon of the great modern jazz pianists. Some of the others in that category from his generation (coming up in the 1960s/'70s), like Herbie Hancock, Keith Jarrett, Chick Corea, and Kenny Barron have greater celebrity, but Beirach easily qualifies alongside them as ...

ARTICLE: MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Resonance Records: The Art of the Sampler

Read "Resonance Records: The Art of the Sampler" reviewed by Geno Thackara

Resonance Records is a refreshing success story in the modern jazz world, still happily defying the norms of the streaming age with unflagging class and style. Even familiar listeners can lose sight of what a catalogue of material they've gathered, which is where 2019's handful of budget samplers come in. Co-president Zev Feldman declares that he's ...

ARTICLE: PROFILE

Jeff Chambers' Chosen Alternative: The Therapies of Tijuana

Read "Jeff Chambers' Chosen Alternative: The Therapies of Tijuana" reviewed by Arthur R George

Jeff Chambers, long a go-to jny: San Francisco Bay Area bassist, looked at death closely and decided it was not yet his time. In 2017 his medical chart revealed Stage IV prostate cancer, commonly and fearfully an endgame diagnosis. Prostate cancer affects African-American men with almost twice the frequency as other races, and is almost twice ...

Coltrane 58: The Prestige Recordings

Read "Coltrane 58: The Prestige Recordings" reviewed by C. Andrew Hovan

Some fifty-two years since his death, the shadow of John Coltrane looms large in the minds of many jazz fans and musicians. Over the past few years this has been aided and abetted by the fact that his music continues to be repackaged. In the case of last year's Both Directions at Once, some previously unissued ...


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