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DownBeat Announces Readers Poll Results
The results of the 76th Annual DownBeat Readers Poll are in. Iconic pianist Ahmad Jamal was named as the readers’ choice for the DownBeat Hall of Fame, bassist Esperanza Spalding became the first woman to be named DownBeat’s Jazz Artist of the Year, and Brad Mehldau’s Live In Marciac (Nonesuch) was named Jazz Album of the Year. More »

Brad Mehldau (Photo: Michael Jackson)


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‘Size Matters’ Big Band Series
Grows in Brooklyn

On a recent Monday night in Brooklyn, saxophonist Joshua Shneider set out for the Tea Lounge cafe, site of the weekly “Size Matters” big band series. More »

Wynton Marsalis Turns 50
With a Lincoln Center special airing on PBS, all eyes have turned to a special birthday taking place in the jazz community: Wynton Marsalis turned 50 on Oct. 18.  
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DownBeat Editor Among ASCAP Deems Taylor Award Winners
Aaron Cohen’s article “Ray’s Kind Of Jazz,” published in the October 2010 issue of DownBeat, has been recognized with an ASCAP Deems Taylor Award.
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O’Farrill Offers Sprited Tribute to
González Brothers

Could it be 40 years ago already? In the early ’70s, young musicians knew that brothers Andy and Jerry González’s house on Gildersleeve Avenue in the Bronx was the place to hang: a place to play music, learn music, hear music, talk about music, and meet other musicians. More »

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1 By Aaron Cohen
São Paulo Underground, Três Cabeças Loucuras (Cuneiform)
A few years ago, the Chicago-based cornetist Rob Mazurek moved to Brazil, and he took with him a communal—rather than individual—ideal. …
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Neil Cowley Trio,
Radio Silence
The Neil Cowley Trio comes to us from the United Kingdom as a thoroughly modern piano trio, and Radio Silence is its third, and best, recording to date. The group—consisting of Cowley on piano, Richard Sadler on bass and Evan Jenkins on drums …
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James Carter Organ Trio, At The Crossroads (EmArcy/Decca)
Here we have an example of a great artist doubling up on album releases in the same year. Back in the spring, James Carter delivered the beautiful Caribbean Rhapsody: Concerto For Saxophone And Orchestra. …
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By Hilary Brown
Pablo Aslan Quintet, Piazzolla In Brooklyn And The Rebirth Of Jazz Tango (Soundbrush Records)
Occasionally, there is triumph in failure. In 1959, famed composer and bandoneón player Astor Piazzolla (1921–’92) attempted …
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Christian McBride, Conversations With Christian
(Mack Avenue)
This has been a big year for Christian McBride fans. In September, McBride delivered The Good Feeling, a big band date …
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By Bobby Reed
Warren Haynes,
Man In Motion
In the press materials for his soulful solo album Man In Motion, guitarist and singer Warren Haynes says, “I feel that musicians are students for life, so it’s important for me to always seek new experiences …
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By Aaron Cohen
The Curtis Brothers, Completion Of Proof
(Truth Revolution)
One of the joys of watching talent rise through the ranks of jazz education is when a well-schooled pair, like bassist Luques Curtis and his brother, pianist Zaccai Curtis …
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Enrico Rava Quintet,
Enrico Rava is in no hurry on his latest recording, Tribe. The 12 original compositions travel at pace that’s perfect for late-evening contemplation or Sunday morning meditation. …
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By Bobby Reed
Lonnie Smith,
Mama Wailer

(Masterworks Jazz/Sony)

As part of the CTI Records 40th Anniversary program, Masterworks Jazz has reissued numerous titles, including Lonnie Smith’s Mama Wailer, a gem recorded in 1971, before the soul-jazz organ icon …
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by Aaron Cohen
Von Freeman,
Have No Fear
This year, all of us at DownBeat were thrilled to hear that Von Freeman was officially invited to become part of America’s musical elite when the National Endowment for the Arts recognized him as a Jazz Master. …
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Signature Sound
After enduring years of pounding, Chick Corea’s Stage 73 Mark V electric piano became too fragile to take on the road. Before going into storage, Corea and his tech team sampled every note and took the massive …
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Enhanced Sampling
Roland has introduced the SPD-SX Sampling Pad, a multipage percussion instrument with 2GB of onboard sampling memory and three effects engines. …
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Spirit Of Composition
Jazz saxophonist, educator and composer/arranger Steve Slagle has created an original guide to tapping into the creative spark for composition and improvisation. In his book Scenes, Songs & Solos: A Composition Workbook For The Creative Musician
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Modern Axes
Fender has introduced the Modern Player Series of electric guitars and basses. A combination of never-before-seen appointments …
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Speak Easy
Hosa Technology’s Hosa Pro speaker cables feature 14 AWG Oxygen-Free Copper conductors for enhanced sonic clarity and a black PVC jacket for durability. …
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Motema Records




ARC Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival

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Classic by John Ephland // May 1, 1989
Tony Williams: Still The Rhythm Magician
“I wouldn’t change anything that I’ve done because it’s all brought me to where I am. And where I am is a good place to be.” Perhaps more than any drummer over the past 30 years, Tony Williams has epitomized that incessant drive towards newness of expression on his chosen instrument. For him, change has been a necessary and vital ingredient to his evolution as an artist, whether it has come through the music of Art Blakey and Max Roach, or from playing with such key figures as Sam Rivers, Gil Evans, Eric Dolphy, Jackie McLean, and Cecil Taylor.
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