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Concert Review: Carla Bley and Ethan Iverson at the Healdsburg Jazz Festival

There are any number of Northern California jazz festivals that have been around longer than the one in Healdsburg, but none save the granddaddy of them all in Monterey has a history thicker with interconnected relationships. The Wine Country web emanates from festival founder and guiding spirit Jessica Felix, whose longstanding friendships with jazz artists … Read More “Concert Review: Carla Bley and Ethan Iverson at the Healdsburg Jazz Festival”

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Carla Bley/Andy Sheppard/Steve Swallow: Andando El Tiempo

Tough as it is to believe Carla Bley is now 80 years old, it’s not hard at all to hear that her questing spirit is undiminished on this album of new work. With saxophonist Andy Sheppard and bassist Steve Swallow-her go-to musical partners of 20 years-by her side, Bley continues to navigate through knotty chord … Read More “Carla Bley/Andy Sheppard/Steve Swallow: Andando El Tiempo”

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Andy Sheppard: Surrounded by Sea

Impressionistic yet suffused with piercing emotional clarity, veteran British saxophonist Andy Sheppard’s quartet recording Surrounded by Sea is one of the year’s most affecting albums. Guitarist Eivind Aarset, bassist Michel Benita and drummer Sebastian Rochford join Sheppard for a dozen tracks (half composed by the saxophonist) that, like the sea itself, marry titanic power with … Read More “Andy Sheppard: Surrounded by Sea”

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Andy Sheppard/Michael Benita/Sebastian Rochford: Trio Libero

Freedom, in the context of jazz, can often mean anarchy, a complete break from structure and restraint. But for the trio of saxophonist Andy Sheppard, bassist Michael Benita and drummer Sebastian Rochford, freedom-which recurs, in various Italian forms, in the track listing-apparently suggests not chaos but release, a feeling of blissful transcendence. Throughout their ECM … Read More “Andy Sheppard/Michael Benita/Sebastian Rochford: Trio Libero”

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