By Devon Wendell I’ve had this deep, lifelong obsession with the trumpet. I’ve written about some of the greatest musicians to ever pick up the instrument like Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Fats Navarro, Freddie Hubbard, Kenny Dorham, Art Farmer, Clifford Brown, and Wild Bill Davison, to name a few. I’d trade my right foot and… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Hard-Bop Trumpet: Donald Byrd’s ”Byrd In Hand” (Blue Note)
By Devon Wendell When it comes to purchasing an essential jazz recording, one often only has to look at the group of musicians listed on that specific record sleeve to know that the music is going to be incredible. That’s one of the great joys of being obsessed with this music; looking for that perfect… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Bop Bone: The Curtis Fuller Sextette’s “Imagination” (Savoy)
By Devon Wendell Costa Rican composer and percussionist Luis Muňoz is one of the most vibrant and dedicated Latin jazz artists on the scene today. His new album VOZ is an obvious labor of love which fuses Brazilian jazz, and “crossover” pop. But there’s a refreshing purity about VOZ. Muňoz is joined by special guests:… Read More New CD Review: Luis Muňoz “VOZ” (Pelin Music)
By Devon Wendell Freddie Hubbard was the quintessential Renaissance man of the trumpet during the 1960s. Hubbard’s superior technique, beautiful tone, and sheer confidence enabled him to do anything. From the start of the decade, he made bebop records with Dexter Gordon and Kenny Drew and hard-bop albums with Jackie McLean, Art Blakey & The… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Bop And Beyond: “Freddie Hubbard: Without A Song-Live In Europe 1969” (Blue Note)
By Devon Wendell For many occasional jazz listeners there are only 3 great trumpeters that come across their minds and lips, and they are of course Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie and occasionally Louis Armstrong. For those of us obsessed with the music’s many genres and glorious history (like myself) the list is much longer and… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Fat Girl: Fats Navarro Memorial No. 2: Nostalgia (Savoy)
By Devon Wendell It’s still hard to believe that Kenny Dorham is not mentioned alongside such fellow trumpet masters as Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Fats Navarro, Clifford Brown, Lee Morgan, and Freddie Hubbard. Dorham was one of the most extraordinarily unique musical thinkers to pick up the trumpet in the entire history of jazz. He… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription For Trumpet Bop: Kenny Dorham’s “Whistle Stop” (Blue Note)
By Devon Wendell 2014 was a strange year for music. I recall thinking to myself halfway through The Playboy Jazz Festival in June; “Okay, so everyone is going funk now. Wynton Marsalis’ head would explode!” To many jazz purists, funk is considered to be sellout music. Critics and fans freaked out when Miles Davis, Freddie… Read More 2014 Remembered: A Year Of Funk
By Devon Wendell For tenor sax players, the late ‘50s and early ‘60s were a time for hard blowing, fitting in as many notes as possible within a few bars, and trying to break free from familiar patterns. Sonny Rollins was the reigning king of articulation and might on tenor sax until Coltrane’s second stay… Read More A Twist Of Doc: Hank Mobley – The Unsung Hero Of Bop.
By Michael Katz There is nothing like driving around in a remote area to underline the virtues of good music. So I’d like to say a few kind words about Sirius XM. And also Avis, whose rental car was equipped with it. I recently spent a week in Yellowstone National Park, the setting for my… Read More Radio Jazz: Time To Get Sirius?
By Mike Katz When Dave Brubeck’s “Take Five” became a runaway hit, it was 1959 and I was in the third grade. By the time I started seriously listening to jazz, in the late sixties, Brubeck’s original quartet had broken up and the jazz scene was in a flux. Herbie Hancock and Miles Davis were… Read More An Appreciation: Remembering Dave Brubeck