Jazz

5:02pm

Sun September 29, 2013
Music Interviews

Vijay Iyer On Learning From War

Originally published on Sun September 29, 2013 6:30 pm

For three years, jazz musician Vijay Iyer has worked with poet and performer Mike Ladd to set the words of war veterans to music. The resulting album, released earlier this month, is called Holding It Down: The Veterans' Dreams Project.
Jimmy Katz Courtesy of the artist

5:37am

Sun September 29, 2013
A Blog Supreme

The Jazz Documentarian Who Won The Lottery

Originally published on Sun September 29, 2013 8:51 pm

Vocalist Brianna Thomas and Michael Mwenso sang a duet of "Don't Blame Me" for the web series Capsulocity.
Courtesy of Capsulocity

5:25am

Sat September 28, 2013
Music News

'If It Swings': An Asian-American Jazzman's Pioneering Career

Originally published on Sat September 28, 2013 11:16 am

Gabe Baltazar (fourth from left) at New York City's Birdland Club in 1962, with members of Stan Kenton's band and the Count Basie Orchestra. The photo, from Baltazar's collection, is signed by Kenton (fourth from from right) and trumpeter Harry "Sweets" Edison (second from right).
Courtesy of Gabe Baltazar

Saxophonist Gabe Baltazar got his big break after Stan Kenton heard him playing in a college band and invited him to join his Orchestra in 1960.

"One of my biggest highlights in Stan's band was being featured on a beautiful standard tune called 'Stairway to the Stars,'" the 83-year-old Baltazar says. "He liked that tune, and he thought it would be my signature song. And throughout my career, four years with the band, I was featured on that and it was just great."

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12:24pm

Fri September 27, 2013
Song Travels

Johnny Mathis On 'Song Travels'

Originally published on Sat September 28, 2013 4:57 am

Johnny Mathis.
Jeff Dunas Courtesy of the artist

Singer Johnny Mathis started out with a string of hits in the 1950s and quickly became a household name. A two-time inductee into the Grammy Hall of Fame, Mathis has one of the most popular albums of all time with Johnny's Greatest Hits, which spent almost 10 years on the Billboard Top Albums chart.

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10:33am

Fri September 27, 2013
Marian McPartland's Piano Jazz

Eliane Elias On Piano Jazz

Eliane Elias.
Tom LeGoff Courtesy of the artist

On this Piano Jazz from 2008, Eliane Elias performs a set of tunes distinctly dedicated to the music of the late Bill Evans. She performs Evans' tunes "For Nanette," "I Love My Wife," and "B Minor Waltz," and duets with Marian McPartland on two early Bill Evans favorites: "Autumn Leaves" and "Alone Together."

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4:44pm

Wed September 25, 2013
Live At The Village Vanguard

Ravi Coltrane Quartet: Live At The Village Vanguard

Originally published on Fri June 20, 2014 10:10 am

Ravi Coltrane.
John Rogers for NPR johnrogersnyc.com

After releasing his latest album, last year's Spirit Fiction, saxophonist Ravi Coltrane put his decade-old quartet on hiatus, and has now assembled a new group. Had John Coltrane lived to see his son grow up, he might have told Ravi about how his own "classic quartet" broke up; he'd begun to incorporate new voices (including Ravi's mother Alice Coltrane) by the time his new band recorded live at the Village Vanguard in 1966.

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12:02pm

Wed September 25, 2013
The Record

Vijay Iyer, Jeremy Denk Win MacArthur Genius Grants

Vijay Iyer and Jeremy Denk are 2013 MacArthur fellows.
Courtesy of the artist

2:46pm

Tue September 24, 2013
A Blog Supreme

In New Afro-Cuban Music, Ancient Tradition Meets Future Shock

Michele Rosewoman (bottom right) is joined by batá percussionists in performance with her New Yor-Uba Ensemble in 2013.
Tom Ehrlich Courtesy of the artist

In Henry Dumas' short story "Will the Circle Be Unbroken?" three "afro-horns" have been forged from a rare metal found only in Africa and South America. One rests in a European museum; a second one is believed to be somewhere on the west coast of Mexico among a tribe of Indians; and a third is owned by Probe, a jazz musician. When Probe finally plays the afro-horn in public, the sound is devastatingly powerful.

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8:03am

Sat September 21, 2013
Tiny Desk Concerts

The Cristina Pato Trio: Tiny Desk Concert

Originally published on Mon December 23, 2013 6:09 pm

Cristina Pato Trio performs a Tiny Desk Concert in June 2013.
Hayley Bartels NPR

After nearly a decade spent living in the city, Cristina Pato is a full-fledged New Yorker. But her first home is the place where Spain meets the Celtic world: Galicia.

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7:46am

Fri September 20, 2013
A Blog Supreme

Opera Star Jessye Norman Picks Her Favorite Jazz Singers

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 11:06 am

In a conversation aired on WBGO, Jessye Norman credits the study of jazz with her understanding of song interpretation.
Carol Friedman Courtesy of the artist

Jessye Norman's commanding soprano voice makes her the quintessential operatic diva for many listeners. But she frequently draws inspirations from jazz: She ranks singers like Billie Holiday, Mabel Mercer and Sarah Vaughan high on her list of influences.

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