Scott Yanow

Scott’s Contributions

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October 2008    The Archivist

Percussion Ensemble
Milford Graves

In recent times, nearly the entire catalog of the 1960s avant-garde ESP-Disk label has been getting reissued (although Ran Blake Plays Solo Piano never seems to return). Percussion Ensemble features drum duets by Milford Graves and the forgotten Sunny Morgan...

09/21/08    Concerts

Jazz Festival 2008 Brazil

Brazil is primarily known in the jazz world for bossa nova, Antonio Carlos Jobim and the developing styles of the past few decades. Jazz Festival Brasil is the dream of Marcelo Costa, a trumpeter who decided that it was long overdue for the music he loves...

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September 2008    Books

Being Prez: The Life & Music of Lester Young
Dave Gelly

The Lester Young story has been sorted out, fully analyzed and solidified through the years in such books as Frank Buchmann-Moller’s You Just Fight for Your Life, Lewis Porter’s Lester Young and Douglas Henry Daniels’ Lester Leaps In. Born in Woodville...

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September 2008    Books

Upbeat: Nine Lives of A Musical Cat
David Amram

Whether playing French horn in jazz settings, writing for the New York Philharmonic or jamming on pennywhistle and flutes in dozens of countries, David Amram has seemingly encountered everyone important in music over the past 60 years. At one point in Upbeat...

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August 2008    The Archivist

First Giant Steps
John Coltrane

John Coltrane was already 29 when he took the first step toward fame and influence in the jazz world by joining the Miles Davis Quintet in 1955. There are relatively few examples of Trane’s playing before that year: He took a solo with Dizzy Gillespie on...

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August 2008    The Archivist

Classic Columbia, OKeh and Vocalion Lester Young with Count Basie (1936-1940)
Lester Young with Count Basie

The four-CD limited-edition boxed set from Mosaic, Classic Columbia, OKeh and Vocalion Lester Young with Count Basie (1936-1940), celebrates the Basie Orchestra of 1939-40 and its innovative tenor saxophonist Lester Young. Compared with the tough-toned...

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August 2008    The Archivist

All Aglow Again
Peggy Lee

Collector’s Choice, which has recently reissued nearly the entire Nat “King” Cole Capitol catalog of the 1950s and early ’60s (with an emphasis on Cole’s cheerful ballad and pop singing), has now launched a Peggy Lee series. All Aglow Again spotlights Lee’s...

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August 2008    The Archivist

Ornette Coleman Town Hall 1962
Ornette Coleman Trio

The steady reissue of releases from Bernard Stollman’s ESP-Disk label (when will they get to their long-elusive Ran Blake Plays Solo Piano date?) is quite welcome. ESP was one of the top free-jazz/avant-garde labels during the second half of the 1960s, and...

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August 2008    The Archivist

Live at the Club Baby Grand Vols. 1-2
Jimmy Smith

Jimmy Smith, who burst onto the jazz scene in 1956 and forever changed the way the organ is played, recorded prolifically for Blue Note during six-year period that followed his emergence. Live at the Club Baby Grand Vols. 1-2 had previously eluded other...

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August 2008    The Archivist

Live In Zurich
Duke Ellington

Despite how many of their CDs are available, one can never have too many Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington albums. The Austrian TCB label has dug up two previously unreleased live sets that were performed in Zurich. Armstrong’s Live in Switzerland is from...

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August 2008    The Archivist

Classic Hawaiian Steel Guitar Performances 1933-34
Sol Hoopii

A Hawaiian steel guitarist well worth discovering, Sol Hoopii was a pioneer, taking guitar solos in 1925 (before Eddie Lang) and serving as an unacknowledged influence on Western swing of the 1930s and ’40s. Classic Hawaiian Steel Guitar Performances 1933...

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March 2008    The Archivist

Hamburg, Germany February 29, 1956
Various Artists

During 1944-57, Norman Granz produced Jazz at the Philharmonic, a series of organized all-star jam sessions that brought together many of the great solo stars of swing and bop on tours of the United States and Europe. Imagine getting to see Dizzy Gillespie...

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March 2008    The Archivist

Teddy Wilson in Copenhagen
Teddy Wilson

The Danish Storyville label has extensively documented American jazz musicians touring Europe for the past 50 years. Four recent sets of previously unreleased material are part of its In Copenhagen series. Teddy Wilson in Copenhagen is a typical trio set...

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March 2008    The Archivist

The Hilversum Session
Albert Ayler

Bernard Stollman founded the ESP-Disk label in 1964 and put out 45 albums, mostly of improvised free-jazz, before things slowed down in 1974. The music has resurfaced several times since then and, in recent times, Stollman has been accelerating the number...

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March 2008    The Archivist

The Best Of Von Freeman On Premonition
Von Freeman

Von Freeman, a brilliant tenor saxophonist based in Chicago who has always had a sound of his own, recorded four CDs for Premonition. The Best of Von Freeman on Premonition has 18 selections on two CDs drawn from those sessions (two are previously unreleased...

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March 2008    The Archivist

The Complete Hit of the Week Recordings, Volume 3
Various Artists

The Hit of the Week label was quite unique. Every Thursday during much of 1929-32, a one-sided record was released on a piece of cardboard and sold at newsstands for 15 cents. Most of the performances were as much dance music as jazz, although Duke Ellington...

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About Scott Yanow

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Scott Yanow has been writing about all eras and genres of jazz since 1975, for all varieties of outlets: From major publications to obscure magazines and the omnipotent All Music Guide, Yanow’s byline pops up everywhere. He has also written over 500 liner notes and countless press biographies and is the author of nine books, including Jazz On Film, Trumpet Kings and Jazz On Record 1917-76.