A ROGER SONG SCOUT AURAL BACK RUB: “Chelsea Bridge”

By Roger Crane, the Song Scout There is a Chelsea Bridge and it is located on the Thames in north London. According to David Hajdu’s intelligent, comprehensive and most readable 1996 biography of Billy Strayhorn, Lush Life, his evocative instrumental of the same name resulted from his viewing of a James McNeill Whistler painting. But,… Read More A ROGER SONG SCOUT AURAL BACK RUB: “Chelsea Bridge”

Live Music: The Great American Songbook is Alive and Well at Catalina Bar & Grill with Barbara Morrison, Stephanie Haynes and Jackie Ryan

 By Roger Crane Los Angeles.  In 2013 jazz pianist, Keith Jarrett, who issued a series of albums that featured the standards, was asked “What do standards mean to you and why have you recorded so many?” Jarrett replied, “First of all, they are anything but standard by today’s standards. But they are exceptional.” These exceptional… Read More Live Music: The Great American Songbook is Alive and Well at Catalina Bar & Grill with Barbara Morrison, Stephanie Haynes and Jackie Ryan

Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Big Band Jazz: Jimmy Heath’s “Really Big!” (Riverside)

By Devon  Wendell By 1960, Jimmy Heath was known as a true bop titan on the tenor saxophone. But on Riverside’s Really Big!, recorded that year, Heath’s big band arrangements and the incredible artists who made up his orchestra (Jimmy Heath, tenor saxophone, Clark Terry, trumpet, Nat Adderley, cornet, Tom McIntosh, trombone, Julian “Cannonball” Adderley,… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Big Band Jazz: Jimmy Heath’s “Really Big!” (Riverside)

Live Jazz: Ken Peplowski and the Ed Dunsavage Trio in a Siskiyou Music Project Concert

By Don Heckman Ashland, Oregon. In a fast happening program Wednesday night, a full collection of jazz perspectives were showcased in an entertaining evening of music reaching from small groups to the Rogue Valley All-Star Big Band. Topping it off, there was the stellar presence of veteran, award-winning clarinetist/tenor saxophonist Ken Peplowski and the briskly… Read More Live Jazz: Ken Peplowski and the Ed Dunsavage Trio in a Siskiyou Music Project Concert

Live Jazz: Roberta Gambarini and Kenny Burrell at Catalina Bar & Grill

By Don Heckman Roberta Gambarini didn’t waste any time establishing her impressive jazz credentials at Catalina Bar & Grill Thursday night. Relying on her perfect pitch and her brilliant interpretive skills, she strolled on stage, picked up a microphone and began to sing a stunning version of Cole Porter’s “So In Love” without a whisper… Read More Live Jazz: Roberta Gambarini and Kenny Burrell at Catalina Bar & Grill

CD Review: Charles Lloyd and Jason Moran — “Hagar’s Song”

Hagar’s Song (ECM Records) By Brian Arsenault For his 75th birthday, Charles Lloyd has released a most beautiful album, Hagar’s Song, with pianist Jason Moran. Stated simply, if you listen to many albums over many months you will not find beauty of this recording’s equal. Perhaps Lloyd has reached a point in his lengthy and… Read More CD Review: Charles Lloyd and Jason Moran — “Hagar’s Song”

Live Jazz: Jack DeJohnette, Chick Corea and Stanley Clarke at Catalina Bar & Grill

By Don Heckman Catalina Bar & Grill was packed to the gills Tuesday night.  If there was an empty seat anywhere in the big, comfortable L-shaped room, it was hard to locate.  Why such a crowd for a mid-week night?  Easy answer: The band on stage consisted of a trio that can pretty much be… Read More Live Jazz: Jack DeJohnette, Chick Corea and Stanley Clarke at Catalina Bar & Grill

Live Jazz: Jane Monheit and John Pizzarelli at the Valley Performing Arts Center

By Don Heckman I pushed aside one of my rules Saturday night – the rule that says once a year is enough to review most artists.  When I saw that Jane Monheit and John Pizzarelli were performing together at the shiny new Valley Performing Arts Center, I decided to make an exception to the fact… Read More Live Jazz: Jane Monheit and John Pizzarelli at the Valley Performing Arts Center

Live Jazz: The Jim Hall Quartet in a Jazz Bakery Movable Feast Concert

By Michael Katz There is a moment at the Musicians Institute Saturday night when all is stillness. Guitarist Jim Hall has just announced the next tune, “All The Things You Are.” The near capacity house is riveted as Hall plucks the first few chords, his left hand working up and down the frets like a… Read More Live Jazz: The Jim Hall Quartet in a Jazz Bakery Movable Feast Concert