bestnom1000x50

Jazz and Blues

Latest Articles

1008_eigsti_list

One night, one jazz trifecta

True, there aren't enough paying gigs for musicians, but the live music is out there — and last Wednesday, I had to scramble to make three promising shows.
Taylor Eigsti, the October Trio, and the BC Quintet
By JON GARELICK  |  July 02, 2010
1006_jones_list

Summer treats

From Andean to zydeco, pick your flavor and there's a summer music festival ready to serve it up.
Whether classical, jazz, pop, or folk, 'tis the season to get out and enjoy the music
By CLEA SIMON  |  June 18, 2010
1006_cennamo_list

Tony Cennamo (1933-2010)

Tony Cennamo is synonymous with jazz radio in Boston. A fixture on WBUR from the early '70s to his last late-night show in 1997, Cennamo — who died on June 8 — was lively, outspoken, even outrageous. But his depth of knowledge was irreproachable.
Boston jazz loses a great
By JON GARELICK  |  June 18, 2010
1007_giant_list

Does jazz have a melody problem?

It seems lately that every other jazz musician I talk to under 40 wants to talk about melody — how it’s the thing they all care about.  
Phil Sargent and Daniel Bennett try a new approach
By JON GARELICK  |  June 04, 2010
1005_lacy_list

Covering Lacy

For Josh Sinton, Steve Lacy stood out almost from the beginning.
A jazz master’s legacy finds traction
By JON GARELICK  |  May 21, 2010
MUSIC052110_Troop_list

Poetic chaos

The melodic noise collective known as A Troop of Echoes will unveil their full-length debut Days In Automation next weekend at AS220, hosting their album release party alongside an impressive gathering of local support.
A Troop of Echoes spend Days In Automation
By CHRIS CONTI  |  May 21, 2010


Deering High musician having a banner year

You might have caught 18-year-old Dominic Sbrega on NPR’s From the Top last week, playing Mexican folk-dance music on his stand-up bass.
Up-and-Comers Dept.
By JEFF INGLIS  |  May 14, 2010
1005_gsh_list

Amazing grace

The morning after I get back from the 41st annual New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, an oil executive is on the radio: “We’re throwing everything we have at it.” Meaning the exploded BP-leased well in the Gulf of Mexico, 50 miles off the coast of
The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival carries on
By JON GARELICK  |  May 07, 2010
FEAT050710_Cutler_list

Music for the love of it

Whether driving his Men of Great Courage on a tune about a spooky midnight stroll, or gently declaring a deep camaraderie with “We Shall Always Remain Friends,” Cutler’s concocting a soundtrack to the feelings in the room.
From the Schemers to the Men of Great Courage, Mark Cutler’s songs have always gotten to ‘that special kind of place’
By JIM MACNIE  |  May 07, 2010
Sonny_rollins-symphony-thumb

Review: Sonny Rollins at Symphony Hall

The lines were around the block for will-call and walk-up ticket purchases at Symphony Hall Sunday night — causing the show to start a half hour after its advertised curtain time. The place was nearly full, the mood celebratory. All good to see in a dow
Sonny Rollins, live at Symphony Hall, April 18, 2010
By JON GARELICK  |  April 23, 2010
1004_qoh_list

Pardon the interruption

Maybe it was when saxophonist Kelly Roberge, instrument in hand, leapt off the Cambridge YMCA Theatre stage in the middle of a performance by the Ayn Inserto Jazz Orchestra and fled the auditorium — as if in extreme gastro-intestinal distress.
Quartet of Happiness, Jerry Leake, and Jazz Week
By JON GARELICK  |  April 23, 2010


Foreclosure frontline

The 72 Hours project, which I and others have been developing in the effort to help those fighting eviction in Boston, uses video projection to bring public awareness to the struggles of those undergoing foreclosure.
Letters to the Boston editor, April 16, 2010
By BOSTON PHOENIX LETTERS  |  April 16, 2010
1004_rollins-list

The onliest Sonny

Sonny Rollins has held the unofficial title of world’s greatest living improviser at least since the early ’70s, following the death of John Coltrane and the second of two extended Rollins sabbaticals from public performance.
Rollins looks at 80
By JON GARELICK  |  April 09, 2010
GIANT040910_Holland_list

Extremeties

You can experience jazz at two different extremes at the Regattabar this month, in visits from the quintets of Dave Holland and Tomasz Stanko.
Dave Holland and Tomasz Stanko come to town
By JON GARELICK  |  April 09, 2010

It’s the rain and snow, stupid

For those morons who say after a blizzard, “How’s that for global warming!” may we point out that one of the harbingers of climate change is the severity of storms that we experience.
Plus, hard times for the Blackstone
By PHILLIPE AND JORGE  |  April 02, 2010
1003_deedee_list

Making it sing

If you come to Dee Dee Bridgewater’s new Billie Holiday tribute disc — or to her two Holiday shows at the Paramount Theatre this weekend — expecting a reverent impersonation, you could be in for a shock. Bridgewater has transformed the music and persona
Dee Dee does Billie, plus John Stein & Ron Gill
By JON GARELICK  |  March 26, 2010


1003_hendrix_list

Joyride

It is May 1966, in the Prelude Club in Harlem, an Atlantic Records release party.
The Worcester Art Museum shows us ‘Who Shot Rock & Roll’
By GREG COOK  |  March 26, 2010
1003_rollins_list

Sonny, Pat, and all the cats

The primo jazz event of the spring will be SONNY ROLLINS 's concert at Symphony Hall on April 18 (bso.org). The great master saxophonist and peerless improviser often hits town in April, and this time it's to kick off his 80th-birthday tour. Whew.
Names you know and names you should
By JON GARELICK  |  March 12, 2010
OTR031210_JCuba_list

Joe Cuba | El Alcalde Del Barrio

Fania kicks off 2010 with what is sure to end up being one of the year's most important archival releases of Latin music.
Fania (2010)
By GUSTAVO TURNER  |  March 12, 2010
MUSIC031210_funka_list

Into the groove

The 2010 Best Music Poll nominees announcement is fast approaching, but we do know all of the '09 victors will return to defend their titles, including jazz/funk reigning champs Funkatronic, who are looking for a three-peat.
Funkatronic kick out the hybrid-fueled jams
By CHRIS CONTI  |  March 12, 2010
Fred_Hersch_jordan-thumb

Review; Fred Hersch at Jordan Hall

Photos from Fred Hersch's set at Jordan Hall
Fred Hersch, live at Jordan Hall, February 17, 2010
By JON GARELICK  |  February 26, 2010


OTR022610_risingsun_list

The Souljazz Orchestra | Rising Sun

We're living in the middle of a veritable renaissance of "Spiritual Jazz."
Strut (2010)
By GUSTAVO TURNER  |  February 26, 2010
MUSIC_Pizzarelli_list

Reeling in the years

Call John Pizzarelli a mensch — he's smart, chatty, and a hot ticket. Hell of a guitarist, too.
John Pizzarelli keeps jazz moving on
By JIM MACNIE  |  February 26, 2010
1002_tmodel-list

Old man riffer

Bluesman James "T-Model" Ford is a survivor, and has been for a very long time.
T-Model Ford turns 90 . . . or thereabouts
By TED DROZDOWSKI  |  February 26, 2010
OTR021910_Loueke_list

Lionel Loueke | Mwaliko

Benin-born, Paris-and-Berklee-educated guitarist Loueke knows how to cover a lot of ground and make it all sound of a piece.
Blue Note (2010)
By JON GARELICK  |  February 19, 2010
1002_argue_list

Steampunk and Lima Beans

The hook for Darcy James Argue's Secret Society — who come to the Regattabar Thursday the 25th — is that they're a "steampunk big band."
Darcy James Argue's Secret Society and the Bert Seager Trio
By JON GARELICK  |  February 12, 2010


1001_michelin_list

No identity crisis

If great art and great artists are supposed to contain multitudes, then in music, at least, pianists have the edge: 10 fingers theoretically capable of 10 different simultaneous paths for the music to take. Of course, it's not that simple.
Nando Michelin and Matt Steckler know who they are
By JON GARELICK  |  January 29, 2010
OTR012910_Basia_list

Basia Bulat | Heart Of My Own

Like a Laurel Canyon Billie Holiday or a pixilated Tracy Chapman, Bulat sports a voice rich with vibrato, hearty oomph, and dignified lonesomeness.
Rough Trade (2010)
By ZETH LUNDY  |  January 29, 2010

A wake-up call

Some months back, Judge Richard Posner, a prolific author and longtime leading figure in the laissez-faire-oriented Chicago school of economics published his latest tome, a little bit of conservative heresy titled A Failure of Capitalism .
Ranting about money and media; musical musings; and notes from the road
By PHILLIPE AND JORGE  |  January 29, 2010
101_natraj_listts

Fusionists

Nobody likes labels — except maybe critics. And we all want to live by Duke Ellington's measure of quality: beyond category. Beyond names and borders, that is, in a post-racial society. And yet, the word "fusion" — at least in music — has a pejorative c
Natraj and friends expand their neighborhoods
By JON GARELICK  |  January 15, 2010