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jazz music Mark McGrain

Mark McGrain takes Plunge, music ensues

Contrapuntally speaking
Trying to find continuities in the strains of jazz history can be a dizzying, foolish, irresistible head game. Original as it is, this stuff all comes from somewhere, right?
By: JON GARELICK  |  June 27, 2011

jazz supergroup The Cookers in Boston

The Cookers' book

A "supergroup" maintains the standard
When does a one-off gimmick turn into a "real" band? On the face of it, the Cookers, who come to Scullers next Thursday, June 16, could easily have become a gimmick that outlived its usefulness — a handful of wily veterans egged on by a couple of younger cats as a way to trade on the collective power of their names and score some gigs.
By: JON GARELICK  |  June 09, 2011

giant list

Plainville, James Farm, and the Infrared Band

Old and new dreams
When Antoine Batiste is looking for a guitarist, the one thing he doesn't want to hear is "white boys with bad hair playin' them cowboy keys."  
By: JON GARELICK  |  May 26, 2011


Photos: New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival | April 27–May 6, 2011
Big Freedia, Creole Wild West, Danny Barnes, Dr. John, Dave Bartholomew, Pine Leaf Boys, Tom Jones, Washboard Chaz and Zion Harmonizers perform live at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival from April 27–May 6, 2011.
By: JON GARELICK  |  May 18, 2011

New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival

Playing pretty at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

Anthems and praise songs
An accordion blasted a few bars of a two-step and then stopped. "That's the only Cajun music you'll hear on this stage," said Colin Meloy. The Decemberists were making their New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival debut on the Fais Do-Do stage, which is typically reserved for Cajun, zydeco, and other indigenous Louisiana music.
By: JON GARELICK  |  May 12, 2011

JCA orchestra performs during Jazz week in Boston

Eric Jackson and Jazz Week

Good waves
When he headed for BU from his home town of Camden, New Jersey, in 1968, Eric Jackson thought his ultimate destination was medical school and a career in psychiatry. But as a jazz fan from an early age — and the son of a fairly renowned jazz DJ — he found himself on the closed-circuit BU student station, WTBU.
By: JON GARELICK  |  April 26, 2011


Review: Cure For Pain: The Mark Sandman Story

Documentary about the late Morphine frontman
It's difficult to say whether anyone besides fans will be drawn to Robert G. Bralver & David Ferino's at times hagiographic documentary about the late Morphine frontman, who died on a concert stage in Palestrina, Italy, in 1999, at the age of 46.
By: JON GARELICK  |  April 27, 2011

guitarist Julian Lage

Floating heavyweights

Club d'Elf, Julian Lage, Jérôme Sabbagh, and Michael Feinberg
Club d'Elf, Julian Lage, Jérôme Sabbagh, and Michael Feinberg
By: JON GARELICK  |  April 13, 2011

jazz flutist kudina

Ilona Kudina, Gretchen Parlato, and Your Neighborhood Saxophone Quartet

Magic flute and more
Although Ilona Kudina is a flutist, I'm hesitant to call her new Nothing But Illusion a wonderful jazz-flute CD, because it's really just a wonderful jazz album.
By: JON GARELICK  |  March 30, 2011

Gretchen Parlato

Getting it live: Boston's Spring jazz preview

Singing and more in the clubs
Two of the most adventurous and enduring of Boston bands, both coming off banner years in which they celebrated their 25th anniversaries, are pushing hard into spring.
By: JON GARELICK  |  March 14, 2011


Tal Gamlieli Quartet at Lily Pad

Lily Pad | March 3, 2011
Sometimes it's all a matter of making complex things simple. Or revealing the complex depths beneath simple surfaces.
By: JON GARELICK  |  March 04, 2011

Jason Palmer

Brad Mehldau, Fred Hersch, Dan Tepfer, Jason Palmer, and Donny McCaslin front a busy week

Pleasures, simple and otherwise
Brad Mehldau, Fred Hersch, Dan Tepfer, Jason Palmer, and Donny McCaslin front a busy week
By: JON GARELICK  |  March 02, 2011


Dennis Taylor | Steppin' Up

Kizybosh (2011)
The set-up is familiar and unpretentious: a saxophone-fronted organ trio playing blues 'n' roots.
By: JON GARELICK  |  February 23, 2011


Young and not so old

Noah Preminger is effin great; plus, dynamic duos live
Noah Preminger is 25 years old. But close your eyes when he's playing - or talking - and you might think you're hearing a gruff jazz sage with 40 years on the road.
By: JON GARELICK  |  February 16, 2011


Review: The David Wax Museum mesmerize Club Oberon

Not so statuesque
The Mexicano Americana folk band the David Wax Museum’s album-release party for Everything Is Saved at Oberon February 3 was a triumph in every way: musically, theatrically, even socially and politically.
By: JON GARELICK  |  February 09, 2011


Live Review: Wayne Shorter Quartet at Berklee

Wayne Shorter Quartet performed at Berklee Performance Center on February 8
Sometimes the Wayne Shorter Quartet's willingness to be open to process doesn't leave much of an impression in terms of final product. That was the case Tuesday night at the Berklee Performance Center, where the band were playing their first Boston gig since an October 2009 New England Conservatory concert. The 90-minute set seemed to have been organized around new material. Everyone was working from music stands.  
By: JON GARELICK  |  February 10, 2011


The David Wax Museum and Tierney Sutton bridge tradition with the here and now

Border crossings
"Is that the jawbone of an ass?", I ask Suz Slezak in the lobby of the Paradise, giving the question my best Biblical inflection. She'd been playing the strange percussion instrument with her band the David Wax Museum in their opening set for the Carolina Chocolate Drops. "Yes!" she says brightly. "You can get them on eBay!
By: JON GARELICK  |  February 01, 2011


The education of Grace Kelly

Hat tricks
Legendary 79-year-old alto-saxophonist Phil Woods laughs indignantly when I ask him how he knew 18-year-old alto-saxophonist Grace Kelly was special. "Come on, when you hear it, you know what it is! I've been doing this for 65 years!" Pressed for particulars, he at first says, "Her maturity." Then he demurs. "It's not any one thing. She's got the whole kit."
By: JON GARELICK  |  January 19, 2011


Joe Lovano Us Five | Bird Songs

 Blue Note (2011)
It's worth taking Lovano's word that this is not a Charlie Parker "tribute" album.
By: JON GARELICK  |  January 11, 2011


After the rain with Charles Lloyd

Tenderness sutras
The voice — a rolling, unhurried drawl with a laugh in it — is that of Charles Lloyd, 72 years old, saxophonist, early career star, temporary recluse, lifelong mystic seeker.
By: JON GARELICK  |  January 04, 2011


Ten live jazz gigs to catch in early 2011

All flavors of great jazz
Next week we'll tell you all about the tenor saxophonist Charles Lloyd, who brings his great band with Jason Moran, Reuben Rogers, and Eric Harland to the Regattabar January 21-22. In the meantime, here are 10 other primo jazz acts to catch live this winter.
By: JON GARELICK  |  December 29, 2010

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