Jazz Articles


Jerry Granelli: What I Hear Now

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The simple answer to the question that drummer Jerry Granelli poses on What I Hear Now is “horns." He hears horns over the foundation of his regular trio with saxophonist Dani Oore and bassist Simon Fisk who uses the 3 string bassetto here. The mix is three reeds, including tenor saxophonist Mike Murley, joined by a trombone. Granelli is not an easy guy to put into a compartment. He was part of pianist Vince Guaraldi's trio during the ...


An Evening With the Pops, Part II or, Louis Louis, We Gotta Go Now

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Well, kids, when last we left Louis Armstrong; he had solidified his place as America's first legitimate jazz superstar on the basis of his seminal recordings with his Hot Five and Hot Seven ensembles, was married to a legumicidal maniac and trusting his fortunes to a mobbed-up dandy who shared his neckwear with Al Capone. There was some nonsense about aliens and crabs, a veiled slam at the sorry state of modern celebrity, Canadians were somehow involved, and Prime Minister ...


Grateful Dead: Dave's Picks Volume 14 Academy of Music, New York, NY, 3/26/72

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There was nothing like a Grateful Dead concert and never more so than in New York, but this one comprising Dave's Picks Volume 14, is an especially significant one: the final night (except for a benefit for the Hell's Angels the very next evening) of a six-night run at the Academy of Music on 3/26/72, taking place just before the band departed on their now legendary initial exodus to Europe. Leave it to the good ol' Grateful Dead to turn ...


Nils Lofgren: Nils Lofgren

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Apart from Nils Lofgren's essay of clear-headed, affectionate reflection and a few extra photos, there's no additional content on the reissue of his eponymous solo album (here often referred to as “Fat Man" based on the cover picture). But there really doesn't need to be: this is one of those very rare rock records that sounds now as it did on its release in 1975: perfect for its time and on its own terms. Not that it's innovative. ...


Milford Graves/Bill Laswell: Space / Time - Redemption

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Drummer Milford Graves boasts a pedigree stretching back to the first tide of Free Jazz in the 1960s, most prominently as the drummer for the storied New York Art Quartet. His infrequent forays onto disc since have resulted in underground classics such as Nommo (SRP, 1966) with pianist Don Pullen and Babi Music (IPS, 1976) with a cast of fire-breathing saxophonists. As such his appearance on a newly recorded studio date should be cause for celebration. However in some ways ...


Schnellertollmeier: X

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This young Swiss trio with the tongue twister moniker, derived by stringing the musicians' surnames together, helps redefine the conventional guitar-led power trio format and succeeds on many fronts. It's an adrenalized outfit that abides by a thunderous posture, amalgamating progressive rock, metal, minimalism and Sci- Fi style free improvisation amid devastating bass and drums interactions. At times, the band's high-volume force-field could make Black Sabbath sound like a hotel lounge act. The musicians dish out cyclical and ...


Ron Aprea: Ron Aprea Pays Tribute to John Lennon and the Beatles

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The John Lennon-Paul McCartney canon has been recorded by everyone with the possible exception of “Honey Boo Boo" and “Mini Me." Some of those efforts are feckless attempts at moving the popular-genre so far away from its source it is laughable. Saxophone artist, Ron Aprea had the unique opportunity (along with trumpeter Steve Madaio, he of Stevie Wonder and the L.A. studios) to record with John Lennon on his post-Beatles award-winning album, “Walls and Bridges" (1974, EMI). ...


An Evening with the Pops

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There are several theories concerning the origin of jazz. The most prevalent is that jazz originated primarily in New Orleans, a so-called “gumbo" of influences ranging from African polyrhythms to European classical to American Negro spirituals, and permeated the turn-of-the-century culture to the point that within two decades it had established hotbeds in the two largest cities in the country at that time, New York and Chicago. Another, lesser-accepted theory is that the same aliens who built the pyramids returned ...

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