At the time of these recordings, John Lewis was still in the process of developing the unique concept of MJQ as a jazz chamber group, for which he often scored even the bass and drum parts.
Every track of this pioneering early phase exemplifies how Lewis, to quote Andre Francis, turned four musicians into ‘a sensitive instrument which vibrates in the same universe of sound, achieving a communion unique in the world of jazz.’
Meet the Piano Prince of New Orleans.
Davell Crawford, grandson of R&B pioneer James ‘Sugarboy’ Crawford who penned the New Orleans classic, ‘Jock-A-Mo,’ arrives with My Gift to You, a sensational and eclectic record that manages to pay tribute not only to the Southern church culture which nurtured his talents from a young age, but to the many artists and genres that have influenced his decades-long career. My Gift to You opens with the explosive ‘Creole Man,’ a pulsating original that celebrates Louisiana and its vibrant heritage. To pay homage to another fabled character of the South, Crawford enlisted blues… Continue reading
“Some people speak of dreaming in color. I’d say I dream in jazz and wake the next morning with lyrics and arrangements in my head. Here – in front of microphone and behind a pen – sharing those dreams with others – is where I feel most at home.”
Eugenie Jones first appeared on the jazz scene in Seattle, WA. Audiences raved over her sound and described her uniquely sultry voice as one that they could listen to all night.
“I never imagined myself growing up and someday singing before audiences. My undergrad and graduate degrees are in business and… Continue reading
Mack Avenue Records is proud to present the scintillating debut release by the Mack Avenue SuperBand, an all-star ensemble comprising many of the label’s most acclaimed artists. Live From The Detroit Jazz Festival – 2012, set for September 3 release, documents the SuperBand’s unveiling at the 33rd annual edition of the Motor City label’s hometown jazz festival last Labor Day weekend. The SuperBand will reassemble at the upcoming 34th Annual Detroit Jazz Festival on Labor Day weekend 2013.
The Mack Avenue SuperBand is a fiery, celebratory conglomeration, the sort of chemistry experiment whose success is predicated on its combustibility. The… Continue reading
Songs For My Father: George Colligan Plays the Music of Horace Silver Performance at 7:00PM George Colligan, piano Nicole Glover, tenor saxophone David Valdez, alto saxophone Chris Higgins, bass Chris Brown, drums Tickets: $15
Diane Marino is an artist worthy of your attention, for her ability to combine the talents of a swinging pianist, a vocalist that communicates with feeling and warmth, and an arranger who can package the music in a fresh and intriguing manner that can grab your interest. In today s diffuse musical world, with remotely varied styles that lack a concise emphasis on melody and the classic forms, it s important to have a lively presentation of the great standards to keep these great songs invigorating and in the moment. This album from Diane Marino serves those purposes well.
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On her landmark new album New Yor-Uba: 30 Years – A Musical Celebration of Cuba in America, pianist / composer / vocalist Michele Rosewoman pushes the envelope at the outer limits of jazz improvisation while keeping firmly rooted in both jazz and centuries-old Afro-Cuban folkloric tradition.
Widely credited as being one of the first composers to synthesize sacred Cuban folkloric music with a thoroughly contemporary jazz concept, Rosewoman’s magnum opus, double-cd set – the debut album released on her own Advance Dance Disques label – is the realization of a distinctive creative vision thirty years in the making. Through a… Continue reading
Praising a previous incarnation of Steve Swallows quintet, The Times of London described the band as near a perfect display of small-group jazz robust yet exquisitely poised.
The description holds true for the latest edition of the bassists quintet and its album Into the Woodwork. Swallow leads the group including his longtime partner in music and life, Carla Bley, on organ in multi-hued performances of a dozen original compositions from his pen.
Recorded in the south of France, the album accommodates atmospheric grace and loping grooves, wry humor and understated virtuosity. Hushed opener Sad Old Candle reveals the subtle beauties… Continue reading
Jean Baylor, formerly one-half of the 90s R&B duo Zhané, has embarked on a musical journey that is a testament to her faith, artistry and lifestyle. Baylor has solidified herself as an independent force to take note of wearing many hats as a wife, businesswoman, producer, writer and vocalist.
In 2007 the Jersey native reemerged with a solo effort entitled “Testimony: My Life Story”. As a collaborative effort with husband and producer Marcus Baylor the project was released on her independent imprint Be A Light — an initiative co-owned with her husband. The album boasts a fusion of ballads and… Continue reading
This project was inspired by an arrangement of Walk On By I did a few years ago. I arranged the song as a jazz waltz, and it was well received. I decided it would be fun to create an album of similar material – songs that were very popular when they were first released, and had memorable melodies. The songs have melodies people can usually sing a fragment of, even after years of not having listened to the music.
Like memorable TV jingles, the melodies seem to stay with people. I have wondered about why certain melodies have this power,… Continue reading