Browsing: Mainstream Jazz

A contentious figure of the jazz world, Eric Dolphy, no matter what your affiliation, blows some rather hot solos on a variety of standards on a variety of instruments. Dolphy’s explorative and innovative use of perhaps gimmicky techniques and extreme dissonance may provoke dissent, but undeniably extend the powers of the horns he plays whether a bass clarinet or a saxophone or a flute. In this video, Dolphy plays a legendary solo on the Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn tune, ‘Take the A Train.’ Explorations of the full range of the bass clarinet, reproductions of unexpected sounds and blistering hard…

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Today’s Daily News Roundup is heading to Broadway. Plus Aretha Franklin and Polaris Music Prize news. + Aretha Franklin will headline a New City Winery Festival in Queens in September. + Video of the Day – Eric Dolphy. + The big Franco snub: Polaris Music Prize voters aren’t showing much love for francophone albums. + This Day in Music – 1920: Isaac Stern was born. + Come from Away, the Canadian musical focusing on the 38 planes and their occupants who were redirected to Gander, Nfld., on Sept. 11, 2001, will be performed at a Shubert theatre on Broadway in February.

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Today’s Daily News Roundup asks whether Classical music is as calming as we are lead to believe. Plus a new appointment to the Philadelphia Orchestra, and more. + Is Classical Music calming for our brains? Gramophone’s Andrew Mellor deconstructs the notion. “Let’s not deny great music its reassuring, contemplative and soothing qualities. But let’s not pretend that’s all it does either. Music of all kinds – whether heard live at the Philharmonie in Berlin or via your phone on the top deck of the 196 bus – has the ability to temporarily realign the chemical balance in our brains. It’s a…

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In an interesting mix of West African Songhoy lyrics and electric guitar blues, the four member Songhoy Blues play trance-like grooves that shouldn’t be relegated into ‘fusion’ or ‘world’ music just because they aren’t western. From Mali, the Songhoy Blues play what they call ‘desert blues’ to capture the nostalgia and dislocation caused by wartime migration. Their droning guitar riffs and lyrical strains build into an infectious swelter, while the drum beats and guitar solos can’t help but raise heartbeats and get feet tapping. Video of the Day: Songhoy Blues – NPR Tiny Desk Concert

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Here is your Daily News Roundup megapost for July 13 to 15. We apologize that the website experienced some turbulence during that period – we are working tirelessly to fix issues as they arise! + La Scena Musicale is launching its 2015–16 fundraising campaign. Learn what you can do to help here. + Read Norman Lebrecht’s weekly album review. This week he critiques a disc of Polish violin concertos performed by Piotr Plawner and the Kammersymphonie Berlin. “Piotr Plawner is a dexterous soloist and the Kammersymphonie Berlin offer decent accompaniment, but the interpretations are safe and somewhat anonymous. Compare the Panufnik…

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Winner of the Grammy for best new artist in 2011, bassist, composer, singer Esperanza Spalding stands as one of the strongest young voices in the jazz scene. On her latest album, Emily’s D+Evolution, Spalding brings an eclectic fusion of Joni Mitchell style delivery, harmonically unique pop, and stylish rock punk. The use of foot pedals and electric bass departs from the earlier acoustic sound to create a warping soundscape that wraps up the listener in a series of loops and reverbs. In the following video, the more progressive and breathy style meshes well with the overly theatrical costumes and stage…

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Everyone wants to impress their friends on an instrument. Thanks to New Orleans jazz pianist Jon Batiste, you can learn the basics of piano in 9 Easy Steps. After following these instructions, you too can play like the award-winning Stay Human bandlander. Topics discussed include: how to care for your your piano, theory basics, and jazz harmony. Jon Batiste Teaches You How to Play Piano

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In this absolutely fire video, Joshua Redman and James Carter throw almost every saxophone technique possible at the Thelonius Monk standard “Straight, No Chaser.” From the highest altissimo notes imaginable to growling at the deepest, bluesiest ranges of the horn, the two former young lions of jazz go at each other shot for shot in an enthralling improvisation battle. On an extend band break, the two jab at each, laugh at each other, growl at each other, honk at each other all with saxophones to create one of the highest energy jazz performances on Youtube. Joshua Redman, James Carter –…

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+ This Day in Music: George Gershwin died this day in 1937. + The 37th edition of the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal was a resounding success for all involved, read the festival summary here. + A benefit concert for Black Lives Matter on Wednesday in New York City is tragically timely in light of recent events. + Angèle Dubeau & La Pietà’s albums have now been streamed more than 30 million times across more than 100 countries. + Read Kiersten van Vliet’s review of Gershwin arrangements for solo piano by British composer Michael Finnissy, played by Dirk Herten. “Finnissy, who celebrated…

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George Gershwin’s songs are so ubiquitous that it is hard to imagine an experience of his work untouched by adaptations, whether in film or in the concert hall. This set of 13 tunes was transcribed by English composer Michael Finnissy over the same number of years, between 1975 and 1988. Finnissy is perhaps best known for his transcriptions, from his English Country Tunes (1982–85) to his completion of Mozart’s Requiem (2013). Finnissy, who celebrated his 70th birthday earlier this year, hailed Dirk Herten’s performance as “thoughtful, sensitive, [and] delicately-shaded,” while praising his refined touch. He continued, “I feel like a…

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