Larry Blumenfeld on jazz and other sounds

Posts Tagged: blunotes

Happy Columbus Day From Nicholas Payton

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In honor of Columbus Day—a holiday I can neither grasp nor endorse save for the joy of suspended alternate-side parking in my neighborhood—here’s a celebration from Nicholas… More ›

Now Playing: Pick Hits and Forthcoming Albums

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Pick Hit:  Marc Ribot The Young Philadelphians: Live in Tokyo (Yellowbird, just released) It’s hard to imagine something musical that guitarist Marc Ribot couldn’t do—or wouldn’t wish to…. More ›

O’Farrill 3.0: Adam Steps Out

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It came as no surprise to me when Adam O’Farrill placed in the top three at the Thelonious Monk Institute International Trumpet Competition two years ago, at the tender age of 19. I’d seen… More ›

NEA Names 2017 Jazz Masters

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There are still events that force me to check my cynicism at the door. The annual NEA Jazz Masters Awards counts among them. I may sometimes disagree with the choices of recipients, but never with… More ›

Carla Bley at 80

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As a pianist, Carla Bley plays exactly the right amount of notes. Needless to say they’re also the right note choices, except when they are gorgeously and intentionally wrong. Her hands seem to… More ›

Now Playing (New and Forthcoming CDs)

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Carla Bley/Andy Sheppard/Steve Swallow Andando el Tiempo (ECM, May 6): As pianist, composer and arranger, Bley, who turns 80 in May, has always exuded a stern authority tempered with obvious… More ›

Vijay Iyer’s New Day Gig at the Met Breuer

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Seated at a Steinway grand piano in a dark, intimate room in early March, Vijay Iyerwasn’t simply playing another gig. Aficionados in attendance could recognize a loose medley of familiar jazz… More ›

Now Playing (new & forthcoming CDs)

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Snow flurries fight it out with waves of warm breeze. My in-box is brimming with new music. The latest: Allison Miller and Boom Tic Boom Otis Was a Polar Bear (Royal Potato Family, April 8): Drummer… More ›

At Home With The Morans

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I got a chance to sit around the kitchen table at the Harlem home of pianist Jason Moran and singer Alicia Hall Moran, for this interview piece in The Wall Street Journal. The piece was ostensubly… More ›

Welcome to The New Quorum (Back in NOLA)

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I’m back New Orleans, where I’m honored to be writer-in-residence with The New Quorum—an artist residency organization dedicated to bringing professional musicians and writers from… More ›

Top Ten Jazz Recordings of 2015

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Those who pine for a new big idea in jazz—one that lends the music’s next chapter a catchy name—largely miss what’s going on. Radical thinkers—seeming outliers—are today’s prime movers…. More ›