Jazz

3:24am

Wed September 5, 2012
Around the Nation

The Strange Story Of The Man Behind 'Strange Fruit'

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 3:37 pm

Abel Meeropol watches as his sons, Robert and Michael, play with a train set.
Courtesy of Robert and Michael Meeropol

One of Billie Holiday's most iconic songs is "Strange Fruit," a haunting protest against the inhumanity of racism. Many people know that the man who wrote the song was inspired by a photograph of a lynching. But they might not realize that he's also tied to another watershed moment in America's history.

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6:27pm

Tue September 4, 2012
A Blog Supreme

The Drummer Who Blows Bubbles At Gigs

Matt Wilson.
Courtesy of the artist

Two bubbles found they had rainbows on their curves.
They flickered out saying:
"It was worth being a bubble just to have held that rainbow thirty seconds."

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6:10pm

Tue September 4, 2012
World Cafe

Antibalas On World Cafe

Originally published on Wed September 5, 2012 10:23 am

Antibalas.
Courtesy of Marina Abadjieff

Sometimes known as the Antibalas Afrobeat Orchestra, the New York band Antibalas — which means "bulletproof" in Spanish — is a large group of talented musicians who play rhythm-intensive Afrobeat music. In a seven-year stretch, Antibalas has released four albums and withstood a five-year hiatus in which several members worked on the Broadway musical FELA!

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12:03pm

Mon September 3, 2012
Music Reviews

Miguel Zenon And Laurent Coq Play 'Hopscotch'

Originally published on Mon September 3, 2012 2:57 pm

Miguel Zenon.
Courtesy of the artist

The new quartet album by alto saxophonist Miguel Zenón and pianist Laurent Coq is called Rayuela, which means "hopscotch." It's named for Julio Cortázar's novel, the fragmented tale of a wandering bohemian and his social circles in Parisian exile, as well as back home in Buenos Aires.

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6:03am

Mon September 3, 2012
A Blog Supreme

A Work Song For Labor Day

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 5:12 pm

There's something about the melodies of the great hard bop tunes — they unfurl with a certain sonic poetry. They're taut and neat, the ledgers of ragged syncopations all balanced out. Every repetition feels necessary, every variation opens up a new universe of possibilities, every chord change is the exact right movement.

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4:14pm

Fri August 31, 2012
Music

Luciana Souza: From Bossa Nova To Chet Baker

Originally published on Fri August 31, 2012 7:38 pm

Luciana Souza has two new albums out, Duos III and The Book of Chet.
Courtesy of the artist

Brazilian singer Luciana Souza has worked in many genres, from jazz and bossa nova to classical music and even, as a small child, commercial jingles. A graduate of Berklee and the New England Conservatory of Music, Souza has been nominated for four Grammys and worked at a prolific pace. In fact, she's just released two albums of covers, Duos III and The Book of Chet; the latter finds her covering the works of Chet Baker.

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2:46pm

Fri August 31, 2012
World Cafe

Cassandra Wilson On World Cafe

Cassandra Wilson.
Courtesy of the artist

A pioneer who muddies the waters separating jazz, blues, country, soul and rock, Cassandra Wilson possesses a beautiful voice and more than three decades of musical experience. The two-time Grammy winner began her career with the M-base collective, but found success as a solo jazz singer.

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1:48pm

Fri August 31, 2012
A Blog Supreme

Around The Jazz Internet: Aug. 31, 2012

Drummer Jimmy Cobb plays at the 2012 Heineken Jazzaldia, the international jazz festival in San Sebastian, Spain.
Rafa Rivas AFP/Getty Images

Next Wednesday: Matt Wilson's Arts and Crafts Live at the Village Vanguard. But first, these news:

  • Larry Blumenfeld, a very good writer, has a new jazz blog up at the ARTINFO.com site.
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2:24pm

Thu August 30, 2012
Mom And Dad's Record Collection

Cole Porter Scores An Interracial Couple's Highs And Lows

Originally published on Thu August 30, 2012 6:09 pm

Cole Porter's "Begin the Beguine," a favorite song of listener Melanie Cowart's parents, became a fitting symbol for their relationship.
Sasha Getty Images

As summer winds down, All Things Considered is winding down its series "Mom and Dad's Record Collection."

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3:28pm

Wed August 29, 2012
A Blog Supreme

Detroit's Jazz 'Patriarch' Improvised A Teaching Career

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 5:12 pm

Marcus Belgrave will be featured at this weekend's Detroit Jazz Festival.
Courtesy of the artist

There's a lot of astounding information in this comprehensive profile of trumpeter Marcus Belgrave, "the reigning patriarch of Detroit jazz." After touring with Ray Charles for years, and getting opportunities with Max Roach and Charles Mingus, Belgrave opted not to stick it out in New York like many musicians of his caliber. Instead, he chose Detroit, where he's been since 1963.

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