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ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Marcus Miller: A Night in Monte-Carlo

Read "A Night in Monte-Carlo" reviewed by Woodrow Wilkins

He's the man in the porkpie hat. Bassist, composer, arranger and producer Marcus Miller matches classical with jazz on A Night in Monte-Carlo, featuring L'Orchestre Philharmonique De Monte-Carlo. Miller, a two-time Grammy Award-winner, has a diverse and vast discography as a leader, producer and sideman. Among his numerous credits are work with Miles Davis, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Luther Hughes / Cannonball-Coltrane Project: Things Are Getting Better

Read "Things Are Getting Better" reviewed by Woodrow Wilkins

Match the stylings of two of the most revered jazz saxophonists, and you're likely to come up with The Cannonball-Coltrane Project. This five-piece ensemble pays homage to Julian “Cannonball" Adderley and John Coltrane. Bassist Luther Hughes says the idea came to him as he was listening to The Cannonball Adderley Quintet in Chicago (Mercury, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Bill O'Connell: Rhapsody in Blue

Read "Rhapsody in Blue" reviewed by Woodrow Wilkins

Don't let the title, Rhapsody in Blue, fool you. Pianist Bill O'Connell isn't doing an album-length tribute to Gershwin. The title song is just one of three covers in this ten-track set; he rest are O'Connell originals. “Monk's Cha-Cha" features alto saxophonist Steve Slagle. Dave Samuels follows O'Connell with a solo. Bassist Luques Curtis, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Dan Block: From His World To Mine: Dan Block Plays The Music Of Duke Ellington

Read "From His World To Mine: Dan Block Plays The Music Of Duke Ellington" reviewed by Woodrow Wilkins

Stevie Wonder referred to him as “the king of all"--him, being Duke Ellington, a master bandleader from the golden era of big band jazz. Dan Block pays tribute to Sir Duke with From His World to Mine. Block is a saxophonist, clarinetist and composer who has associated with such artists as Clark Terry, Linda ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Ben Wolfe Quintet: Live at Smalls

Read "Live at Smalls" reviewed by Woodrow Wilkins

In New York City, there's a popular venue known as Smalls Jazz Club. The Ben Wolfe Quintet introduces a series of performance recordings, simply titled Smalls Live. A Baltimore native, Wolfe's professional associations include Wynton Marsalis, Harry Connick Jr. and Diana Krall. He is currently a faculty member at Julliard School of Music, Jazz ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Toph-E & The Pussycats: No Ordinary Day

Read "No Ordinary Day" reviewed by Woodrow Wilkins

Toph-E & The Pussycats is a contemporary band with old-school ideas. Its repertoire combines jazz, funk and R&B properties. For No Ordinary Day, those elements are augmented by hints of Brazilian and Latin rhythms. Part of the group's name comes from a variation of drummer Christopher Parker's nickname, “Toph." Collectively, the group's members bring ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Henry Brun and the Latin Playerz: 20th Anniversary

Read "20th Anniversary" reviewed by Woodrow Wilkins

A collector's edition is only as good as the source material. In the case of Henry Brun and the Latin Playerz, the source is an eclectic representation of their work. Brun, a native of the Bronx born to Puerto Rican parents, plays congas and a variety of other percussion instruments. His career includes an ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Negroni's Trio: Just Three

Read "Just Three" reviewed by Woodrow Wilkins

One way to keep a piano-led trio from sounding like so many others is to write original music for the group. Another is to take a page out of Jose Negroni's playbook, splitting time between acoustic and electric pianos. The Puerto Rican composer/pianist taught for 16 years at the Island's Music Conservatory. After moving ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Andy Farber and His Orchestra: This Could Be the Start of Something Big

Read "This Could Be the Start of Something Big" reviewed by Woodrow Wilkins

It's like strutting down memory lane. Andy Farber and His Orchestra present 14 big band pieces with This Could Be the Start of Something Big. A product of Long Island, Farber grew up listening to Art Blakey and Miles Davis. He began attending jazz workshops at the age of 10 and developed into a ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Colin Dean: Shiwasu

Read "Shiwasu" reviewed by Woodrow Wilkins

"It's so relaxing," says the person introduced to a type of jazz found to be pleasing, palatable--and inoffensive. The challenge for an artist is to create ambient music that can be accepted by those unfamiliar with jazz, without putting others to sleep. Acoustic bassist Colin Dean makes it happen with Shiwasu. Dean was born ...


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