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MUSICIAN Born:

Wes Montgomery

Born in Indianapolis, Indiana, United States (where he also died of a heart attack in 1968), Montgomery came from a musical family, in which his brothers, Monk (string bass and electric bass) and Buddy (vibraphone, and piano), were jazz performers. Although Wes was not skilled at reading music, he could learn complex melodies and riffs by ear. Montgomery started learning guitar in his late teens, listening to and learning recordings of his idol, the guitarist Charlie Christian. Along with the use of octaves (playing the same note on two strings one octave apart) for which he is widely known, Montgomery was also an excellent "single-line" or "single-note" player, and was very influential in the use of block chords in his solos

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Dave Stryker: Blue Soul

Read "Blue Soul" reviewed by Jerome Wilson

Germany's WDR Big Band has welcomed a great variety of musicians such as Fred Hersch, Michel Camilo, Ambrose Akinmusire and Jimmy Heath as guest soloists over the years. On this occasion they provide an invigorating backdrop for the springy and soulful guitar of Dave Stryker. The set list on this CD finds Stryker and ...

NEWS: VIDEO / DVD

YouTubers Dig Wes Montgomery

YouTubers Dig Wes Montgomery

In 2019, I posted on YouTube clips of students working out on transcriptions by guitarist Barry Galbraith. In 2018, I did the same with piano students playing Red Garland. Yesterday, I stumbled onto videos of guitar students playing Wes Montgomery. Here are eight videos plus a cover by a professional trio: Here's Audrey playing Four on ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Kurt Rosenwinkel Trio: Angels Around

Read "Angels Around" reviewed by Geno Thackara

However much Kurt Rosenwinkel has audaciously wandered away from familiar tracks in his career, the spirit of jazz has always stayed central to his roots and his playing. For every surprising exploration such as the electronic Heartcore (Verve, 2003) or the richly dense Caipi (Heartcore, 2017), there's been a relatively straightforward jam or standards date for ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

Uberjamming with John Scofield

Read "Uberjamming with John Scofield" reviewed by Mike Brannon

From the 1995-2003 archive: This article first appeared at All About Jazz in March 2002. “Uberjam." Literally: “over all jam," translates to 'groove above all' on this true band effort, Scofield's latest recorded outing. You'll likely see this title described as anything from groove...techno...ambient...world...trance... to acid...and back again, but like MMW, it's unique in ...

Riverside Records: An Alternative Top Ten

Read "Riverside Records: An Alternative Top Ten" reviewed by Chris May

From 1953, when it was set up, to 1964, when it was acquired by ABC, Riverside Records rivalled Blue Note and Prestige as one of the leading independent jazz labels based in New York City. The founders of all three labels were jazz fans who operated on slim margins and became producers partly because they enjoyed ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEW

Jimmy Cobb: We're Remembering U

Read "Jimmy Cobb: We're Remembering U" reviewed by Scott H. Thompson

Drummer Jimmy Cobb was a 91-year old NEA Jazz Master who was (until recently) still playing hard and keeping the groove with his trio consisting of Tadataka Unno on piano and Paolo Benedettini on drums. Remembering U (his 12th album as a leader and first release on his own Jimmy Cobb World label) was released in ...

ARTICLE: REASSESSING

Piano

Read "Piano" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey

Following his debut as a leader on, Wynton Kelly: New Faces -New Sounds (Blue Note, 1951), pianist Kelly surfaced again some seven years later, this time on Riverside Records, with the simply titled Piano. The length of time between leader recordings is a testament to the pianist's value in a supporting role for artists like Dinah ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Jocelyn Gould: Elegant Traveler

Read "Elegant Traveler" reviewed by Dan McClenaghan

Guitarist Jocelyn Gould opens her debut album, Elegant Wanderer, with a cooker: Cole Porter's “It's All Right With Me." The tune is artfully arranged for quartet—piano and guitar with bass and drums—and Gould displays some serious chops. She has soaked up the influences of Wes Montgomery, Grant Green, Kenny Burrell and Joe Pass, and she wears ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Rob Luft: Life Is The Dancer

Read "Life Is The Dancer" reviewed by Chris May

British guitarist Rob Luft's debut album, Riser (Edition, 2017), was greeted with huge acclaim. Some observers likened his arrival to the emergence of Wes Montgomery or Pat Metheny. The music world is used to hyperbole, but for once the praise is justified. For anyone yet to hear Luft, a useful yardstick is the pianist Bill Evans: ...


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