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From left: Zev Feldman, Serene Montgomery and Robert Montgomery
(Photo: Mark Sheldon)

Musicians, Fans Celebrate Wes Montgomery Album Release
Resonance Records celebrated the release of Echoes Of Indiana Avenue, a collection of previously unreleased recordings by guitarist Wes Montgomery, at Indianapolis’ Jazz Kitchen on March 6. The walls of the rust-colored, dimly lit venue did some echoing of their own, with performances and speeches that emphasized the significant impact of Indianapolis on the jazz community around the world.
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Newport

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Fest Season Includes Trombone Shorty, Esperanza Spalding Hitting the Road
Excitement is in the air, with several music festivals taking place in April. Artists and fans will hit the road for fests …
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Interview with Pianist Kirill Gerstein
Born in Voronezh, in southwestern Russia, pianist Kirill Gerstein learned of jazz at an early age while in the throes of his classical training.
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All-Stars Honor Robert Johnson at Centennial Celebration
In Sherman Alexie's 1995 novel Reservation Blues, a bedeviled black man named Robert Johnson …
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Record Store Day Offers Limited-Edition Vinyl Releases
Dave Brubeck, Bill Evans and Esperanza Spalding are just a few of the artists who will be highlighted …
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REVIEWS // EDITORS’ PICKS
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1 BY BOBBY REED
Esperanza Spalding, Radio Music Society
(Heads Up/Concord)
The most anticipated jazz album of the year has arrived, and Esperanza Spalding’s hook-filled Radio Music Society is an artistic triumph. Her 2010 album, Chamber Music Society, caused quite a buzz in the jazz world, and her Grammy win for Best New Artist in 2011 pushed Spalding into the global spotlight. …
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BY AARON COHEN
Various Artists, The Karindula Sessions:
Tradi-Modern Sounds From Southeast Congo
(Crammed Discs)
This disc’s title refers to a style of music in southeastern Congo that blends traditional sounds, modern refrains and an incredible stringed instrument unlike any other in the world. …
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BY BOBBY REED
Jeff Hamilton Trio, Red Sparkle (Capri)
The Jeff Hamilton Trio’s latest album concludes with the subtle sounds of some chuckling in the studio. My guess is that the musicians left those few seconds of laughter on the recording to convey how much fun they had while making this sterling collection of swinging, straightahead jazz. The joy is evident in the music itself. …
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BY BOBBY REED
Toots Thielemans, Yesterday & Today
(Out of the Blue/Naxos of America)

When it comes to jazz harmonica, the first name that springs to mind is Toots Thielemans, who will celebrate his 90th birthday later this month. The double CD Yesterday & Today is a compilation of 38 rare or previously unreleased tracks spanning the time period 1946 to 2001. …
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BY AARON COHEN
Johnathan Blake, The Eleventh Hour (Sunnyside)
Drummer Johnathan Blake’s career as a sideman could be described as hectic, but because he always plays with such determined control, that adjective doesn’t quite fit. His bandleaders have included such diverse artists as trumpeter Tom Harrell, guitarist Russell Malone, pianist Kenny Barron and rapper Q-Tip. …
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BY FRANK ALKYER
Joel Harrison 7,
Search
(Sunnyside)
Joel Harrison is a New York-based guitarist, composer and arranger of amazing skill and breadth. He’s tackled the music of drummer Paul Motian, explored country jazz, looked into the music of Appalachia, Africa and India, harnessed “string choirs,” and recorded in stripped-down duo and solo settings. …
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BY FRANK ALKYER
Kenny Garrett, Seeds From The Underground (Mack Avenue)
With Seeds From The Underground, Kenny Garrett delivers a beautiful artistic statement full of muscle, grit, melody and charm. All 10 songs on Seeds are Garrett originals, fully displaying his impressive writing skills. …
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BY HILARY BROWN
Brad Mehldau Trio,
Ode
(Nonesuch Records)
Pianist Brad Mehldau, who tends to dot his performances with cleverly reworked pop cultural commentary and recognizable nuggets, has excelled in the trio setting. But recently he’s also done fine work in a duo with pianist Kevin Hays (on Modern Music) and in a quartet with saxophonist Lee Konitz, bassist Charlie Haden and the late drummer Paul Motian (on Live At Birdland). …
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BY FRANK ALKYER
Various Artists,
Jazzhaus Live Series

(Arthaus Musik)
Traditionally, Editors’ Picks have been devoted to individual albums, but in the case of the new Jazzhaus series, an exception had to be made. The series launched in March with three recordings taken from radio and television archives in Germany. …
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BY AARON COHEN
R.J. Smith, The One: The Life And Music Of James Brown (Gotham Books)
During James Brown’s lifetime (1933–2006), this American legend seemed to exist on a sphere unlike that of anyone else. And who could blame him? He redefined the rhythmic DNA of popular music, holding on to his lifelong love of gospel, soul and jazz while creating the international phenomenon known as funk. …
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JAZZ SCHOOL // TOOLSHED
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iCondenser Blues
Blue’s Mikey Digital is an external condenser microphone that transforms an iPad, iPhone, or iPod into a high-quality stereo recording device. It features automatic and manual gain control and has an auxiliary input for direct recording. …
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Tablet Mount
On-Stage Stands’ iMount System is a suite of iPad-mounting products that includes a tablet mount, regular stand and compact stand, each sold separately. …
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Wood Tones
Antigua has developed an all-wood B-flat clarinet designed by Morrie Backun. The CL3230 is made of grenadilla that’s aged 25 years or more. …
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High-Decibel Design
The aggressive, raw sound of Sabian’s O-Zone cymbals is now available in the company’s B8 Pro series. Two new B8 O-Zone crashes (16-inch and 18-inch) feature a multi-holed design …
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Top Selections
Fender has introduced its new top-of-the-line Select series. The five guitars and two basses include …
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Small hrCLASSIC INTERVIEW
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Classic by John Hammond // November 11, 1935
The Tragedy Of Duke Ellington, The ‘Black Prince Of Jazz’
A Musician of Great Talent Forsakes Simplicity for Pretension
Of all our native popular composers Duke Ellington is probably the most gifted and original. For more than ten years, he has been producing, with the aid of the most accomplished orchestra in America, songs and arrangements quite unlike those of any other musician, black or white. His work has been received with international acclamation, in some cases, less than it deserved and in a few, considerable more.
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