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THELONIOUS MONK Monk's Music Album Cover Monk's Music
THELONIOUS MONK
4.81 | 14 ratings
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LOUIS ARMSTRONG Louis Armstrong Plays W.C. Handy Album Cover Louis Armstrong Plays W.C. Handy
LOUIS ARMSTRONG
4.91 | 5 ratings
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THELONIOUS MONK Misterioso Album Cover Misterioso
THELONIOUS MONK
4.94 | 4 ratings
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CHARLIE PARKER Bird And Diz (aka The Genius Of Charlie Parker #4 aka Une Rencontre Historique) Album Cover Bird And Diz (aka The Genius Of Charlie Parker #4 aka Une Rencontre Historique)
CHARLIE PARKER
4.92 | 4 ratings
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SONNY STITT Constellation Album Cover Constellation
SONNY STITT
5.00 | 3 ratings
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CAB CALLOWAY Hi De Hi De Ho Album Cover Hi De Hi De Ho
CAB CALLOWAY
5.00 | 3 ratings
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FRANK SINATRA Watertown Album Cover Watertown
FRANK SINATRA
4.91 | 4 ratings
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ROBERTA FLACK First Take Album Cover First Take
ROBERTA FLACK
5.00 | 2 ratings
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DIANA KRALL The Girl in the Other Room Album Cover The Girl in the Other Room
DIANA KRALL
5.00 | 2 ratings
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SONNY STITT Tune-Up! Album Cover Tune-Up!
SONNY STITT
5.00 | 2 ratings
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BEN WEBSTER The Consummate Artistry of Ben Webster (aka King Of The Tenors) Album Cover The Consummate Artistry of Ben Webster (aka King Of The Tenors)
BEN WEBSTER
5.00 | 2 ratings
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ARTURO SANDOVAL Swingin' Album Cover Swingin'
ARTURO SANDOVAL
5.00 | 2 ratings
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Studio Konzert
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The Music of Gary Lindsay: Are We Still Dreaming
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SOUTH FLORIDA JAZZ ORCHESTRA
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The Book of Longing
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LUCIANA SOUZA
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Jazzing 8: Vol. 1
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SANT ANDREU JAZZ BAND
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Gene Krupa Quartet Live 1966
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GENE KRUPA
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Fat Daddy
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MARTY ELKINS
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No Eyes - Looking At Lester Young
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EMANUELE CISI
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Tricentennial Rag
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DR. MICHAEL WHITE (CLARINET)
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Flyin' Through Florida
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STAN KENTON LEGACY ORCHESTRA
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The Art of Time
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ELIF ÇAĞLAR
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Magical Kite
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CHRISTINE HITT
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Lost In A Crowded Place
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DARYL SHERMAN
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Love Wins
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JOHANNES WALLMANN
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Distant Song
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FRED FARRELL
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Cool Fantasy
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HOWARD MCGHEE
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Voices Fall From The Sky
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WILLIAM PARKER
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Anthem
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MADELEINE PEYROUX
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The Jazz Chamber
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CATHY SEGAL-GARCIA
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Moonlight
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GARY BRUMBURGH
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Columbia Sessions (1951-1955)
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FRANKIE LAINE
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A Tribute To Geri Allen
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HOWARD UNIVERSITY JAZZ ENSEMBLE
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Explosion
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CORY WEEDS
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The Prestige Albums
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MILES DAVIS
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The Django Experiment III
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STEPHANE WREMBEL
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Nightconcert
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ERROLL GARNER
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Looking At The Moon
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ALLEGRA LEVY
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Unbroken
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TIFFANY AUSTIN
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Valentine’s Day 1964 Live
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BEN WEBSTER
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Jazz Sessions
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IDA LANDSBERG
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Live At Storyville
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JOHNNY HODGES
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Stompin' At The Savoy
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NICKI PARROTT
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Baby Blue Eyes…May the First Voice You Hear Be Mine
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FRANK SINATRA
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Standing Room Only
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FRANK SINATRA
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My Mood Is You
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FREDDY COLE
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The Genius Of Eddie Jefferson
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ALLAN HARRIS
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Eyes Wide Open
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JAMIE SHEW
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Live
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CYRILLE AIMÉE
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I Never Knew
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JOHN COLIANNI
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Outside My Window
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JEFF DENSON
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Lucky To Be Me
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SHEILA JORDAN
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Bridges
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SHIRLEY CRABBE
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Songs Of Freedom
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ULYSSES OWENS JR
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Spring: Light out of Darkness
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SUSAN KREBS
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Close Up
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SARA SERPA
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Say It
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JOHN PROULX
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The Rings of Saturn
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JOANNE TATHAM
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5 Original Albums
Boxset / Compilation
CASSANDRA WILSON
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5 Original Albums
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BOBBY MCFERRIN
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Old Fashioned Gal
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KAT EDMONSON
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Now
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MONIKA RYAN
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Texting and Driving
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DAVE TULL
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We Play for Tips
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FRANCESCO CAFISO
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Sister Orchid
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NELLIE MCKAY
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The Colpix Singles
Boxset / Compilation
NINA SIMONE
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Rock Around the Rock Pile
Boxset / Compilation
RAY ANTHONY
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Concerts In Miniature - Volume 23
Live album
STAN KENTON
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The Questions
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KURT ELLING
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The Classic Albums Collection 1954-1964
Boxset / Compilation
ROY HAYNES
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Sings The Dance
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DENISE KING
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The Junction
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THE MANHATTAN TRANSFER
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Rhapsody for Now! & Doc(SACD)
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DOC SEVERINSEN
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7000 Miles
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DAVID LINX
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Here Comes The Sun
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DOLORES SCOZZESI
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The Show Before The Show
Live album
MIKE JONES
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Live At Victoria
Live album
SOLVEIG SLETTAHJELL
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Catwalk
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ANDREW NEU
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Pas de Géant
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CAMILLE BERTAULT
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Memories of Maynard
Boxset / Compilation
MAYNARD FERGUSON
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Live at the Jazz Mill 1954 - Vol 2
Live album
BARNEY KESSEL
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The Subject Tonight Is Love
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KATE MCGARRY
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A Song For You
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STEVE TYRELL
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As Is (Here's to Life)
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ALAN AND STACEY SCHULMAN
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Complete Last Recordings
Boxset / Compilation
THELONIOUS MONK
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Buvette Club,Rock Island February 1953
Live album
SERGE CHALOFF
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Travelin´
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ECHOES OF SWING
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Live in Europe
Live album
MELODY GARDOT
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That Old Feeling
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BEN PATERSON (PIANO)
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All For One
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JAMISON ROSS
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It Only Takes Time
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ANDREW DISTEL
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I Get A Kick: Cole Porter Reimagined
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LISA B (LISA BERNSTEIN)
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early jazz Music Reviews

DIVA 25th Anniversary Project

Album · 2018 · Big Band
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Carmel
Singularly the hardest working Big Band in the industry today, the DIVA Jazz Orchestra is lead by superwoman Sherrie Maricle, who not only is the drummer of the band but the collaborative ball of energy that drives the 15-piece group of highly qualified female instrumentalists. The inspiration for DIVA came from Stanley Kay, one-time manager and relief drummer for Buddy Rich. In 1990, Kay was conducting a band in which Sherrie Maricle was playing the drums. Stanley immediately picked up on her extraordinary talent and began to wonder if there were other women players who could perform at the same level. The search was on and through nationwide auditions, the foundation for DIVA was poured in June 1992, and what emerged is the dynamic musical force that holds forth to the present day.

Though DIVA holds dear the traditional jazz idiom, the release of 25th Anniversary Project includes original compositions by some of the members who are genuine, yet ingenious composers. Maricle explains; “the CD offers our listeners 10 original compositions by 9 remarkable composers, writing for 15 friends in 1 amazing band. It’s DIVA’s mission to continue to swing hard and grow, through the exceptional individual talent within the band and their extraordinary composers and arrangers.”

One such composition is by baritone saxist Leigh Pilzer, titled “East Coast Andy,” a romping tune with high flying horn hits, creatively conceived sections that add to the textural interest of the tune and a burning solo by Pilzer herself, as well as trumpeter Jami Dauber who has a penchant for stomping the gates with her high stepping style.

A beautifully written “Square One,” features alto and soprano saxophonist Alexa Tarantino in the writer’s seat. The tune is harmonically rich with soothing pastoral colorizations and emotional dips, that lead to emotive, conversationally based solos between Rachel Therrian on flugelhorn and Tarantino herself on alto saxophone. The elongated melody is stirring and memorable.

Maricle takes the album out with her original “The Rhythm Changes,” which is aptly titled as it refers to the rhythm of the motif and how it changes through the form of the composition. Soloists, Barbara Laronga on trumpet, Mercedes Beckman on alto saxophone, Noriko Ueda on bass and Maricle on drums create an interactive atmosphere for swing era stalwarts and jazz aficionados to savor. 25th Anniversary Project is certainly a keepsake, when taking stock of its measure, one asks; is it authentic to its source and performed with expertise and awareness, in this case a resounding yes can be heard.

DAVE TULL Texting and Driving

Album · 2018 · Vocal Jazz
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js
One of the big differences between the world of pop vocals and jazz vocals is that while the pop artist tends to use his voice to express his own thoughts and feelings, the jazz artist quite often applies their voice to a ‘standard’ composed by someone else, and for good reason as many of these standards are of a high standard and it is hard for almost any vocalist to come up with something of similar caliber that is original. Up and coming jazz crooner Dave Tull, looks to be one to break that stereotype as his new album, “Texting and Driving”, is all original material that holds up well against any of the known standards.

Dave’s specialty is witty lyrics and this album is full of future classics that often contain ‘laugh-out-loud’ insights that will have you spinning these tunes over and over. The album’s title track is a good example as Dave lampoons the self-absorbed phone obsessive who feels compelled to share every moment of their life with the world. Tull has a wonderfully rapid diction and his witticisms come spilling out at a dizzying pace which only adds to the overall hilarity. Other gems include songs about modern parents who don’t mind their kids and conversations with people whose name you can’t seem to recall. On “The Date”, Tull shares the mic with Cheryl Bentyne as their enter-twining voices reveal conflicting opinions about a first date. Dave is a funny guy, but never glib or overly silly, fortunately this is not Al Yankovitch territory. Dave also doesn’t mind changing things up now and again with a true tale of romance, or a song dedicated to his own children.

Dave is often backed on here by a powerhouse big band, and just like the best albums by Sinatra and Oliver Nelson, nothing comps jazz vocals as well as a big band does. Dave is also an in demand drummer for many artists, and he mans the skins on this album too. I’m not sure if he was singing and playing at the same time on here, but that would be quite the impressive fete if he did.

THELONIOUS MONK Thelonious Monk / Sonny Rollins (aka Work aka The Genius Of Thelonious Monk)

Split · 1956 · Bop
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js
“Thelonious Monk/Sonny Rollins” is one of those thrown together affairs pulled from three different sessions, in fact Rollins does not even appear on every track. Such records are often unsatisfactory, but this one is different as it presents a very coherent musical vision. Some ‘experts’ call this an EP, while others call it an LP. The truth is, with about 18 minutes on the first side and 16 on the back, it falls sort of in between, but possibly closer to an LP. The first recording session for this record took place in November 1953 and featured the Thelonious Monk Quintet, of which Rollins was a member. The second session was in September ‘54 and featured Monk’s trio sans Rollins of course. The last session was in October ‘54 and featured the Rollins’ quartet, of which Monk was the pianist. The track order on this record mixes these sessions up in a way that makes total sense and adds to the feeling of a congruous record.

The playing on here is brilliant, Monk’s career was nearing a peak and he sounds relaxed and happy, far different from the inconsistent performances that came much later in his career. Rollins is also in fine form, supplying endless melodic variations over Monk’s more blunt and percussive accompaniment. The Monk trio cuts feature Art Blakey on drums, whose short solos are inventive displays of metric trickery and phrase manipulation that is a perfect compliment to Monk’s approach to music. The choice of tunes on here is also good. Side one opens with Rollins joyfully flying over two well known upbeat standards, and closes with the Monk trio playing a lesser known Monk original, “Work”, that is quite abstract compared to the two openers. Side two opens with Monk’s trio playing “Nutty”, a piece that appears on many Monk recordings, and closes with his quintet playing another odd Monk favorite, “Friday the 13th”, on which Rollins shows he can easily handle Monk’s peculiar musical creations. This may not be the top record that Monk put out, but it holds up well against many of his best.

DIZZY GILLESPIE Diz And Getz

Boxset / Compilation · 1955 · Bop
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js
“Diz and Getz” is a re-issue that combines two previous albums, “The Dizzy Gillespie and Stan Getz Sextet” and “More of the Dizzy Gillespie and Stan Getz Sextet”. “The Dizzy Gillespie-Stan Getz Sextet” may not seem like a particularly imaginative album title, but when that album came out in the early 50s, grouping those two artists together was all it took to grab people’s attention in anticipation of what they may come up with. In those days, Dizzy was the master of east coast high energy be-bop, while Getz was the king of west coast cool, this may have seemed like an unlikely pairing at first, but when they recorded together, they meshed and pushed each other to come up with a sum that was even greater than its talented parts. Adding to the attention grabbing aspects of the record, the backup band is an all-star one with Max Roach on drums, Oscar Peterson on piano, Ray Brown on bass, and Herb Ellis on guitar.

“Diz and Getz” opens on fire as they take on a high speed bopped out version of Ellington’s “It don’t Mean a Thing…”, Getz shows he can hang with some of the best high speed soloists of the time as his fiery solo is sandwiched in between Dizzy and Oscar’s euphoric rides. This number is followed by the recognizable melody of Ellington’s “I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart”, which finds the band in a more relaxed mode. This swing groove will also carry over to the following track, “Exactly Like You”. On both of these numbers Dizzy often plays in a softer mode, possibly a nod to Stan’s west coast sensibilities. Throughout the entire record, Stan and Diz engage in creative interplay, often both will state a melody at the same time, in their own style, which then comes together in unexpected ways. Max Roach’s interesting and unorthodox approach to the drums also adds to that element of surprise. The first side of “Diz and Getz” closes with the ballad, “Talk of the Town”, on which Getz’s main talent shows through. At this time he was already becoming known as one of the smoothest ballad players since Lester Young, who happened to be his main influence.

Side two of “Diz and Getz” opens with a high speed blues-bop jam that builds in intensity as the solos are passed from Oscar to Herb, then Stan and finally Dizzy. When Gillespie hits his ride, Herb Ellis’ loud ferocious comping pushes Dizzy to new heights in a wonderfully chaotic buildup. This track is followed by a mellow blues original by Dizzy which he recorded with a different lineup from the all-star cast that makes up the rest of this album. This doesn’t mean there is a drop off in the quality of the playing though, Oscar Peterson may be a technically brilliant player, but Wade Legge’s more lyrical approach may be more interesting. The third cut, “Girl of my Dreams”, continues with the mellow vibe, this time with the all-star support group back on board. The final two cuts are two different versions of “Siboney”, first played as an up-tempo bop number, and secondly, in a Latin jazz style. These final two tracks are possibly the highlight of the album as Stan and Dizzy both turn in inspired solos. Its also interesting to note that Stan and Diz will continue their interest in Latin jazz, with Diz going in an Afro-Cuban direction, while Stan will pursue the Bossa-Nova fad.

JONI MITCHELL Hejira

Album · 1976 · Vocal Jazz
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progshine
Flashback: About 15 years ago it was not as easy as today, the internet world already existed and already gave all the signs of what the future would be like for music, but it still was not what it is today: a click and we heard a record...

So, my first real exposure to the music of Joni Mitchell was with what I could lay my hands on: and it was the 'Dog Eat Dog' album that I accidentally found in a second hand shop in the center of São Paulo for less than a dollar.

Well, now I know that this is not even close the best way to know Joni's music, Dog Eat Dog is pretty bad.

Back to the present. A few days ago I was watching for the second time the documentary Jaco and she appeared there talking about the album Hejira (in which Jaco Pastorius plays), and suddenly I remembered how much I love her music and that I had not yet heard Hejira.

Joni Mitchell has always been a goddess as a songwriter, her way of playing the guitar (with several different tunings) open new melodies and her compositions gain an even more original air. It's no different in Hejira. This record sounds so modern and up to date, even today. It fits in with Jazz Fusion, which had been developed a few years prior and was about to open doors with names like Weather Report, Return to Forever and Al Di Meola, but it is also Folk and it works, very well!

Hejira is a pleasure to hear from beginning to end and worth the hearing.

early jazz movie reviews

JONI MITCHELL Shadows And Light

Movie · 1980 · Vocal Jazz
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Slartibartfast
Joni Mitchell meets The Pat Metheny Group.

What can I say? This was my real introduction into the music of Joni and what a place to start! She had really entered a new phase and the tracks offered span from Court And Spark up to Mingus (and of course, the song Shadows And Light, exclusive to the live album).

The concert was an outdoors affair at the Santa Barbara County Bowl. The liner notes say that "this concert catches Joni at the height of her artistic excellence." Having explored her albums after and before this era, I can wholeheartedly agree with that. Jaco Pastorius, who had a reputation at that point of being erratic in live situations, seems to be in a good mode. The camera work is good and the concert is now available on DVD with 5.1 Dolby Digital Audio all of which make for a show worthy of revisiting from time to time.

Artists with Early Jazz release(s)

JMA TOP 5 Jazz ALBUMS

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Albums with 30 ratings and more
A Love Supreme Post Bop
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Kind of Blue Cool Jazz
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The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady Progressive Big Band
CHARLES MINGUS
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My Favorite Things Hard Bop
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