Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, live sessions and more!
Start Your Free Trial

Clayton Brothers and Friends: The Gathering

Foremost among their many attributes, the Clayton Brothers are the snazzy stewards of a timeless brand of funky hard bop that won’t go out of style so long as any of us have a hedonistic bone in our bodies. While they’ve set an unremittingly high standard for this music over their past 30-plus years together, … Read More “Clayton Brothers and Friends: The Gathering”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Angelica Sanchez Quintet: Wires & Moss

Blending through-composition and group improvisation is an increasingly common but still stubbornly tricky enterprise, like managing the aesthetics of a kite in flight. The composer labors to concoct this skeletal contraption, starts running with it, then at some point releases it to the muse and mercy of her ensemble’s collective flights of fancy, tugging down … Read More “Angelica Sanchez Quintet: Wires & Moss”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Albare iTD: Long Way

The Australian guitarist Albert Dadon (a.k.a. Albare) has assembled a top-notch band for this project, including Antonio Sanchez (drums), George Garzone (tenor sax) and Leo Genovese (piano). Unfortunately, the stylistic mesh doesn’t maximize their formidable talents. At its best, Long Way accomplishes a globalized, airy groove in which Albare-who lived in Morocco, Israel and France … Read More “Albare iTD: Long Way”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Harold Mabern: Mr. Lucky: A Tribute to Sammy Davis Jr.

Brisk, buoyant and gimmick-free, this straightahead quartet date is as unpretentiously satisfying as that first swig of cold beer after a hard day’s work. In the liner notes to Mr. Lucky, pianist Harold Mabern proclaims Sammy Davis Jr. to be “the greatest performer ever,” and this beaming tribute brims with the innocent insouciance of that … Read More “Harold Mabern: Mr. Lucky: A Tribute to Sammy Davis Jr.”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Essence of Ellington: Live : William Parker Orchestra

You know that an orchestra organized by William Parker to pay tribute to Duke Ellington is going to result in something sprawling and stupendous, and Essence of Ellington doesn’t disappoint. At 60, Parker is taking evident satisfaction in being a free-jazz renegade and a traditionalist at the same time. The release of this two-hour live … Read More “Essence of Ellington: Live : William Parker Orchestra”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Poncho Sanchez and his Latin Band: Live in Hollywood

The Latin jazz of Poncho Sanchez rolls on like a well-oiled machine, showcasing the verities that have made him North America’s (if not the world’s) most popular conguero-bandleader. Unlike last year’s Chano y Dizzy! with trumpeter Terence Blanchard, Live in Hollywood boasts no high concept or special guests. On the contrary, some familiar faces are … Read More “Poncho Sanchez and his Latin Band: Live in Hollywood”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

George Schuller’s Circle Wide: Listen Both Ways

Drummer-composer George Schuller makes no secret of his preference for thorough circumspection. He named this quintet Circle Wide, entitled this record Listen Both Ways, and has the first, longest and probably best song on it pose the question “Could This Be the Year?” When your father, Gunther Schuller, has long been one of the jazz … Read More “George Schuller’s Circle Wide: Listen Both Ways”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Elliott Sharp’s Terraplane: Sky Road Songs

Terraplane is the vehicle by which Downtown NYC guitarist-composer Elliott Sharp plumbs the blues. It’s not a casual flirtation: From the first Terraplane disc in 1994 up through this sixth recording, Sharp has demonstrated an authentic affinity for the timeless essence of the music. At its best, as when saxophonist Sam Furnace was prominent on … Read More “Elliott Sharp’s Terraplane: Sky Road Songs”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Clifton Anderson: And So We Carry On

For approximately half his life and the lion’s share of his career, 55-year-old trombonist Clifton Anderson has suffered by comparison as the only other horn player onstage in a band with his uncle, the incomparable improviser Sonny Rollins. But Anderson’s perseverance over the decades has provided an increasingly stronger foil for Rollins, and steadily more … Read More “Clifton Anderson: And So We Carry On”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Klang: Brooklyn Lines…Chicago Spaces

This fourth recording from the stable quartet assembled and led by Windy City clarinetist James Falzone is a charming yet still cerebral collection. Falzone keeps it simple, focused and lighthearted, composing every tune save for two spacious AACM-oriented group improvisations (the “Chicago Spaces”). There are no guest stars here, and no full-length tributes to his … Read More “Klang: Brooklyn Lines…Chicago Spaces”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Sean Noonan: A Gambler’s Hand

Sean Noonan is never boring. His last few records can accurately be described as Afro-Celtic punk-jazz with a fixation on boxing. A Gambler’s Hand is a concept album about an Irish gambler entombed behind a wall, and it features a string quartet and Noonan’s pugilistic drumming. The string arrangements are reliably bold, frequently beautiful and … Read More “Sean Noonan: A Gambler’s Hand”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Brandi Disterheft: Gratitude

Bassist Brandi Disterheft’s third record presents her first star-studded ensemble, with trumpeter Sean Jones and alto saxophonist Vincent Herring as lead horns (Anne Drummond is the flutist) and a rhythm section of drummer Gregory Hutchinson and pianist Renee Rosnes astride her bass. Her tunes make good use of this formidable sextet, beginning with a “Blues … Read More “Brandi Disterheft: Gratitude”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Jeff Davis: Leaf House

Drummer Jeff Davis is among the brigade of broadminded jazz composer-improvisers teeming out of Brooklyn. On his second outing as a leader, he cuts his ensemble down from six musicians to three and replaces his wife, Kris Davis, with Russ Lossing on piano. But his 12-year partnership with bassist Eivind Opsvik remains-they’ve been the rhythm … Read More “Jeff Davis: Leaf House”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Sean Wayland: Click Track Jazz: Slave to the Machine

Long established on the Sydney, Australia, jazz scene, keyboardist Sean Wayland, who has lived in New York since 2005, makes his biggest play for a heightened Stateside profile with this two-disc, 27-song collection. It’s instructive to know that he’s conservatory-trained but venerates the fusion-funk of Herbie Hancock, whose influence looms large-not only via the Headhunters-style … Read More “Sean Wayland: Click Track Jazz: Slave to the Machine”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Jessica Williams: Songs of Earth

If there were a lifetime achievement award for Talent Deserving of Wider Recognition, this veteran West Coast pianist would have it in her criminally modest trophy case. Her sixth disc for the Origin label supposedly differs from the others for its heavy emphasis on spontaneous composition, with the material culled from live solo performances over … Read More “Jessica Williams: Songs of Earth”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Arturo O’Farrill: The Noguchi Sessions

Give Arturo O’Farrill credit for guts. The 50-something leader-composer of splendid big bands and small ensembles chose to record the first solo piano record of his career in a single sitting. What’s more, he chose to record it inside a museum built by and dedicated to an artist, Isamu Noguchi, for whom O’Farrill has long … Read More “Arturo O’Farrill: The Noguchi Sessions”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Roscoe Mitchell and the Note Factory: The Far Side

A live recording from Germany’s Burghausen Festival in 2007, Far Side furthers Roscoe Mitchell’s distinctive mesh of brusque jazz and alert chamber music, spun by the double quartet of his Note Factory into a webbing of tensile strength and innovative textures. It begins with a 31-minute magnum opus, “Far Side/Cards/Far Side,” that dawns portentously with … Read More “Roscoe Mitchell and the Note Factory: The Far Side”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.

Count Basie Orchestra: Swinging, Singing, Playing

This latest chapter in the Basie band legacy leads with a scintillating rendition of “Too Close for Comfort.” On that track, guest vocalist Nnenna Freelon swivels the singsong verses five different ways while the orchestra hews to its swinging template. Freelon (who has gigged with the CBO off and on for years and cites it … Read More “Count Basie Orchestra: Swinging, Singing, Playing”

To access this content, you must purchase JazzTimes Membership.