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Tuesday, November 10, 2015
Sunday, November 08, 2015
Sunday, October 11, 2015
"A hindrance, as I see it, to the film becoming conclusively impressionistic, and therefore meeting Cheadle's (and thus the audience's) demands, is that the main narrative itself isn't all-that engaging, to be frank. But what held my attention was Cheadle as Davis. It's a captivating enough transformation that I was on board for much of the ride, which Cheadle, wisely, I thought, keeps to a brief 100 minutes. There's a kind of demystification of Davis that happens in the present-day narrative, as compared to the genius that is Davis the musician, that I think even those who aren't familiar with the man and his work, are aware of. Miles Davis. Genius musician. Untouchable. Even superhuman and god-like. He's a legend. So there's almost a reconciling (the man versus the legend) that some may have to do in order to settle into the film - the present-day story giving us "a man," frail, broken, with a cocaine and alcohol habit (the film appropriately doesn't sugarcoat any of this by the way), a shadow of his former self, angry at the world, and maybe even at himself; and the flashbacks in essence, give us "the legend" in his prime," despite some fracturing, who created the many masterpieces we love and are in awe of today.
Sunday, August 09, 2015
With the new band and the thematic connection to Eric Garner's death, you'd think the album would be full of raw nerves and anger. But instead, Blanchard has created a suite of instrumentals, songs, and spoken word meditations that invite reflection on finding the strength and peace to heal and move forward. He challenges listeners to be "breathless from exerting your free will, breathless from doing good, breathless from blowing your own sweet solo."
Jazz Heavyweight Terence Blanchard Won't Turn a Blind Eye | Mother Jones
Friday, August 07, 2015
Friday, July 31, 2015
What a hard swinging drummer. I was fortunate to see him many times. He could lay down grooves that made your body move as good as anyone. He and the late John Hicks had a special chemistry. He worked for a good while with Ahmad Jamal. He recorded a few albums, of his own, on the CTI Kudu label in the early seventies. He will be missed.
Idris Muhammad, legendary New Orleans drummer, is dead at 74 | NOLA.com
Wednesday, July 22, 2015
Sunday, June 21, 2015
"As well as exploring Simone’s dynamism as a performer, the documentary is set to shed light on her mental health issues and struggle with bipolar disorder. Her passion for politics and association with the African-American civil rights movement are also highlighted in the film."
Friday, June 12, 2015
"Ornette Coleman, the alto saxophonist and composer who was one of the most powerful and contentious innovators in the history of jazz, died on Thursday in Manhattan. He was 85.
The cause was cardiac arrest, a family representative said.
Mr. Coleman widened the options in jazz and helped change its course. Partly through his example in the late 1950s and early ’60s, jazz became less beholden to the rules of harmony and rhythm while gaining more distance from the American songbook repertoire.
His own music, then and later, embodied a new type of folk song: providing deceptively simple melodies for small groups with an intuitive, collective musical language and a strategy for playing without preconceived chord sequences. In 2007, he won the Pulitzer Prize for his album “Sound Grammar.”
Monday, June 01, 2015
Terence Blanchard on pushing for social change The sounds of jazz trumpeter Terence Blanchard have provided the sonic backdrop to nearly thirty years of American cinema. He joins Melissa Harris-Perry to discuss how his social consciousness informs his art and gives a special performance of his song...
Monday, May 18, 2015
The alto saxophonist Vincent Herring projects his sound in a strong, centered beam, and even his most intense moments suggest a controlled combustion. You could chalk that up to experience — Mr. Herring, 50, has been playing seriously since his teens — but it probably has as much to do with disposition. There’s footage of him with Horace Silver’s band in the 1980s, sounding like he does now, slashing but calm.
Saturday, May 16, 2015
Sunday, April 12, 2015
Four Brothers: Quartet made up of prestigious jazz musicians and lifelong friends to headline UNC/Gr | GreeleyTribune.com
"Williams laid the groundwork for a community of jazz musicians in New York who supported each other, found each other gigs and played as often as they could together. Now Smith and three of those accomplished jazz musicians will form the so-called National Pastimes Productions All-Star Quartet to honor Williams and Mulgrew Miller on the final night of the UNC/Greeley Jazz Festival, which opens April 16 and runs for three days. "