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Classic Jazz Records: There’s an App for That

A new app by Concord Music Group makes it easier than ever for Spotify users to stream classic jazz albums. It’s called Stylus, and it sure looks promising. The app’s album library contains over 1,200 titles from Concord’s family of record labels, including Concord Records, Concord Jazz, Stax, Fantasy, Hear Music, Milestone, Riverside, Specialty, Telarc, … Continue reading

Remembering Johnny Smith

Johnny Smith, the guitarist whose legato phrases became hallmarks of 1950s cool jazz, died of natural causes on June 11 in his home in Colorado. He was 90 years old. Smith, born June 25 in Birmingham, Alabama, taught himself to play guitar at the age of 13. After a brief stint in the Air Force … Continue reading

Kenny Burrell: How vs. When

Kenny Burrell is a fixture on the Los Angeles jazz scene. As the Director of Jazz Studies at UCLA, he serves as the resident expert on all things Duke Ellington, and has even coined a phrase, “Ellingtonia,” to describe his in-depth study of Ellington lore. Oh, and if you didn’t already know, he’s an incredibly … Continue reading

Rites Of Swing: Jazz And Stravinsky : A Blog Supreme : NPR

A great article about how Igor Stravinsky’s “Rites of Spring” became a jazz standard. From NPR’s A Blog Supreme. Rites Of Swing: Jazz And Stravinsky : A Blog Supreme : NPR.

Most Popular Jam Session Tunes

I was invited to a jam session the other day by my friend Nick, a bass player. He wanted me to come over and help him work on some standards. Normally, I’d be all in for a good-old-fashioned jam session, but this one came with a catch. He wanted me to bring my guitar, an … Continue reading

Frank Sinatra Jr. at Coconut Creek Casino — Concert Review

You can also read this review and see more photos on the Broward Palm Beach New Times County Grind music blog. Last night at the Seminole Casino in Coconut Creek, about 1,200 people filed into the Pavilion Theater to get a good look at the offspring of Ol’ Blue Eyes, Frank Sinatra Jr. Some, like … Continue reading

Album Review: Roy Haynes — Roy-Alty

Playful and dynamic, pensive and serene, Roy Haynes’s new album, Roy-Alty, is a glowing example of the veteran jazz drummer’s remarkable talent. Backed by musicians, Jaleel Shaw on alto sax, Martin Berjerano on piano, and David Wong on bass, Haynes proves that he is a strong and supportive group leader, guiding his band through 10 … Continue reading

Album Review: Avishai Cohen — Seven Seas

Israeli bassist Avishai Cohen offers us an inspired new album with Seven Seas. A founding member of Chick Corea’s sextet, Origin, Cohen proves once again that he is a talented and visionary composer, delivering 12 lingeringly evocative tunes, all of which resonate with a sort of mystical elation and spiritual bliss. Cohen’s compositions draw heavily … Continue reading

Short Story Review — Sonny’s Blues by James Baldwin

James Baldwin was one of the most brilliant and influential writers of the mid-20th century. Of his many accomplishments, I consider his most prominent to be his contribution to the genre of literature known as Jazz Fiction. It can hardly be denied that jazz music plays a crucial role Baldwin’s short stories, essays, and novels, but I think the … Continue reading

Concert Review: Roy Hargrove – Village Vanguard

If there’s one image that can summarize Roy Hargrove’s show at the Village Vanguard Saturday night, one enduring symbol that can capture the talented horn-man’s approach to music, art, and life – it’s got to be his pants. Those pants – a pair of three-quarter length cut off suit pants – were on full display … Continue reading