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Miles On Miles—Interviews and Encounters with Miles Davis by Paul Maher Jr. and Michael K. Dorr

By Farah Jasmine Griffin and Salim Washington (Thomas Dunne Books) Trudging through these books on the life and music of the enigmatic Miles Davis, trumpet great and brilliant conceptualist, one is forced to suggest that the experience be titled Miles of Miles. So much has already been written on Davis. This trio of writings adds … Read More “Miles On Miles—Interviews and Encounters with Miles Davis by Paul Maher Jr. and Michael K. Dorr”

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Bill Holman Band : Hommage

Composer-arranger Bill Holman, who turned 80 this year, continues to make the world safe for big-band jazz, providing arrangements on Hommage with the usual unexpected twists and turns that inspire his longtime sidemen in their solo outings and tight ensemble playing. It helps, of course, that Holman is located on the West Coast, where big … Read More “Bill Holman Band : Hommage”

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Chick Corea & Béla Fleck: The Enchantment

Although this musical collaboration by pianist Chick Corea and banjoist Béla Fleck is pleasant enough on the surface, it suffers from an uncomfortable, oil-and-water conflict in the admixture, particularly when the pair works over tunes written by Fleck. When they play Corea’s material the two seem mostly in accord, although Fleck is more adaptable, an … Read More “Chick Corea & Béla Fleck: The Enchantment”

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Rez Abbasi: Bazaar

The influx of creative musicians with ties to foreign lands has brought a small but growing and dynamic movement of players with roots in the Indian subcontinent blending Eastern sounds with jazz improvisation. Add to pianist Vijay Iyer and alto saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa the name of Rez Abbasi, guitar and sitar-guitar, who in addition to … Read More “Rez Abbasi: Bazaar”

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Alvin Batiste : Marsalis Music Honors Alvin Batiste

Clarinetist Alvin Batiste, whose life as a music educator has taken precedence over his recording career, is heard on one of his rare trips to the studio in this latest addition to the Marsalis Music Honors series. It’s a treat for listeners as well as fans of the clarinet, an often-treacherous instrument not generally employed … Read More “Alvin Batiste : Marsalis Music Honors Alvin Batiste”

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Joey DeFrancesco: Live: The Authorized Bootleg

The steam begins to rise almost from the first notes of organ titan Joey DeFrancesco’s Live: The Authorized Bootleg, a CD that’s the result of allowing the Yoshi’s house engineer to record the festivities of a four-night stand at the Oakland, Calif., club last year, supposedly with no intention of releasing the material. The alchemy … Read More “Joey DeFrancesco: Live: The Authorized Bootleg”

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