Friday, April 11, 2014

Anthony Braxton and the Tri-Centric Foundation

For all those fans of free jazz, avant garde, etc.  WKCR and Anthony Braxton are providing coverage of the 2014 Tri-Centric festival.  See for more details and schedule.  As I broadened my horizons as a listener of improvisational music, I heard about Anthony Braxton.  He is one of those innovators who I feel can't be categorized.  It's always an experience for me to learn about people like Braxton because it's different and new.  I often use youtube to discover his music, and also the music of the composers involved with the Tri-Centric festival.  See previous post of a sample of Braxton's work.

Anthony Braxton 12+1tet, "9 Compositions (Iridium) 2006"

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Three music birthdays this month: Billie Holiday, Charles Mingus, Duke Ellington

There are three very special birthdays this month in the music world; Billie Holiday, April 7, 1915, Charles Mingus, April 22, 1922, and Duke Ellington, April 29, 1899.   WKCR New York City radio 89.9 F.M. celebrates these birthdays with 24 hour broadcasts.  They have been doing this for over 40 years, and I've been listening to them for over 25 years.  I highly recommend them.  See for details on the broadcasts and further information.

Thursday, March 27, 2014


Yusef Lateef recently died in December of last year at age 91.  He had a tremendous career.  I was looking for his albums on youtube, and found this duo with Adam Rudolph which was recorded in Milann, Italy in 2012. 

Friday, February 28, 2014

What will I do with all these records?

I love just about any kind of music, and have been a record collector for many years.  So I have a good collection, far too many to listen to each one more than once, so I have been trying to sell them.  I started on ebay, but in recent years I have been dissatisfied with their policies.  To put it bluntly, they got too greedy with their fees and their control of paypal.  So I decided to look for other selling websites.  Etsy is o.k. but I think it's more for arts and crafts.  I found webstore, which has the lowest fees and conditions, good reviews, and I'm sticking with it.  I have mostly jazz, with some rock, and soul.  I recently added a few more listings.  If you have seen the list, and don't see what you're looking for, send me a wish list; I may have it.  The following is what was added this week:  Eagles, Santana, Dire Straits, a lot of fusion with Chick Corea, Airto, Joe Farrell, Deodato, Eddie Harris, Les McCann, Ray Charles, Third World, Brand X (Phil Collins on drums), Etta Jones, Dinah Washington, Nancy Wilson.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Ornette Coleman and Bix Beiderbecke birthday broadcasts

This month WKCR will be doing two 24 hour birthday broadcasts: Ornette Coleman March 9 and Bix Beiderbecke March 10.  Bix Beiderbecke was one of the early pioneers of the improvised solo.  He was active in the 20's and early 30's, and died much too young in 1931.  Ornette Coleman was one of the inventors of the free jazz movement.  He has had a long and varied career, which is still going strong at age 84.  In 2007 he won the Pulitzer Prize for his album Sound Grammar.  See  I have been listening to these broadcasts for many years, and they are both entertaining and informative.  I don't think there is another radio station in the world that devotes this much time to honor a musician.  If there is, let me know. 

Monday, February 24, 2014

Happy Pharrell Williams upbeat positive music videos

I discovered this video by Pharrell Williams called happy.  It's a really upbeat, positive video with music and dancing.  He filmed people dancing to the music for 24 hours.  It reminds me of music before rap took over, and his voice reminds me of Curtis Mayfield; a high smooth falsetto voice.  Below are a few youtube videos.  The second one is with Nile Rogers, one of the founders of Chic, the band who was big in the late 70's and early 80's.  If you're close to my age and was a teenager in the 70's-80's, you'll remember "Good Times" the big hit from Chic in 1979.


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Records for sale: Jazz pianists

There are several lps for sale by pianists who cover a wide range of music. 


Herbie Hancock was born in Chicago in 1940, Herbie was a child piano prodigy who performed a Mozart piano concerto with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at age 11. He began playing jazz in high school, initially influenced by Oscar Peterson and Bill Evans.   He has played with countless musicians and in numerous settings over his long career, which is still current.  I was fortunate to see Hancock in New Brunswick, N.J. in a duo with Wayne Shorter in 2000.  The lp for sale was another duo with the percussionist Willie Bobo, entitled Succotash, recorded in 1973.,pgr,37349495,auction_id,auction_details  

Below is another lp which finds Hancock in a different band, a sextet entitled Mwandishi.,pgr,37349687,auction_id,auction_details


The second featured pianist is Hank Jones, brother of Elvin and Thad.  Hank was born in Mississippi.  The family moved North to Pontiac, Michigan.  Hank's early influences were Art Tatum, Fats Waller, Earl Hines, and Teddy Wilson.  He played with many musicians, including Coleman Hawkins, Howard McGee, Andy Kirk and Billy Eckstine.  The following lp has Jones in a small group setting.  Just For Fun was recorded in 1977.,pgr,29367039,auction_id,auction_details


Next are two lps from Wynton Kelly, who was the pianist with Miles Davis in the 50's.  Kelly was born in Brooklyn, N.Y. the son of Jamaican immigrants.  Kelly played piano in church and R&B bands during his early years.  In his long career he has played with Dizzy Gillespie, Dinah Washington, Charles Mingus, and most notably Miles Davis on the best selling Kind of Blue album.  Below are 2 lps with Kelly as the leader.,pgr,29367120,auction_id,auction_details,pgr,29367636,auction_id,auction_details


Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, Mike Longo came from a musical family.  He was influenced by the church pianist as a child.  One of his early influences and mentors was Cannonball Adderley.  Dizzy Gillespie later hooked up with Longo, and they formed a lasting friendship and musical partnership.  The following lp, the Awakening, recorded in 1972, has Longo as the leader, and features James Moody, Ron Carter, Curtis Fuller, and Dizzy Gillespie.,pgr,29367748,auction_id,auction_details


Reggie Moore has worked with a wide variety of artists, including Johnny Hartman, Anita O'Day, Harry "Sweets" Edison, Betty Carter, Gary Bartz and Woody Shaw.  Moore had the honor of being the ambassador of the state, following in the footsteps of such legends as Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, and Dizzy Gillespie.  Here is an lp for sale with Moore as a leader, Furioso, recorded in 1972.,pgr,29368006,auction_id,auction_details


Jazz critic Stanley Crouch has stated that Jamal is second in importance to Charlie Parker to the development of jazz after 1945.  For 5 decades he has been one of the most successful small group leaders.  Below is the lp Rossiter Road recorded in 1986.,pgr,29389081,auction_id,auction_details


Born in 1941 in Toledo, Ohio, Cowell has had the fortune of playing with many jazz giants, including Marion Brown, Stan Getz, Clifford Jordon, Max Roach and Sonny Rollins.  He currently teaches music at Rutgers University in Newark, N.J.  Here is his 1977 release Waiting For The Moment.,pgr,29570153,auction_id,auction_details

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Saturday, January 18, 2014

The genious of David Byrne

Hello, everyone, I'm back after a long hiatus.  Do you remember David Byrne from the Talking Heads?  Well he has an amazing blog, filled with stories from his experiences traveling the world, and many other great writings, which makes sense coming from a guy who has many talents, is articulate and creative.  Anyway check it out.