By Devon Wendell Although I despise the whole concept of “desert island discs,” top ten, twenty, or 100 “Greatest” lists and that kind of lazy and pedantic journalism, I do accept the fact that there are certain recordings that I simply cannot live without. The Clifford Brown/Max Roach Quintet is the perfect band of the… Read More Doc Wendell’s Prescription for Bebop: “Clifford Brown and Max Roach at Basin Streets” (Emarcy)
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)
– SONNY- By Devon Wendell Today, Monday September 7th, Sonny Rollins shall turn 85 years young. So I couldn’t help but write about what Sonny means to me. Very few artists have had the impact on my life that Sonny has had, and he’s still doing it. I don’t think a day goes by… Read More Happy 85th Birthday: Sonny Rollins
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 When listening to “Dizzy Atmosphere” recorded live on September 29th, 1947, with Dizzy Gillespie at Carnegie Hall, it’s hard to believe that tomorrow, March 12th, Bird will have been dead 59 years. In that solo alone, Bird captured the future, present, and the entire history of jazz in a frenetically beautiful but… Read More Bye Bye Bird From Hollywood: The 59th Anniversary of the Death Of Charlie Parker
By Devon Wendell Pianist and composer Helen Sung has quickly established herself as a jazz veteran over the past decade, performing and recording with icons such as; Clark Terry, Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter, T.S. Monk, Lonnie Plaxico, and Terri Lyne Carrington to name a few. She is one of the most consistently brilliant recording artists… Read More CD Review: Helen Sung “Anthem For A New Day” (Concord Jazz Records)
By Don Heckman Trumpeter Chris Botti has moved, over the past decade, from visibility in the smooth jazz genre – an identity that never really seemed quite right for him – to international prominence as a versatile jazz artist with a unique style of his own. Described by his record company, no doubt accurately, as… Read More Q & A: Chris Botti
By Devon Wendell The Playboy Jazz Festival held its second Free Community Concert at The Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza Mall yesterday, featuring two acts dedicated to the soul of fusion-jazz. The California weather was sunny and perfect and as the show’s emcee Pat Prescott (KTWV 94.7 The Wave) put it, this was a “Perfect Memorial… Read More Live Jazz : The Jeff Lorber Fusion and The Washington Prep High School Jazz Ensemble in the Playboy Jazz Festival’s Free Community Concert at the Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza Mall.
By Fernando Gonzalez Miami, Florida. Can we have Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra in some juke joint or hole-in-the-wall neighborhood jazz club just once? Just for the fun of it. It will probably never happen – economics wouldn’t allow that, for starters. But listening to, and watching, Marsalis and the JLCO… Read More Live Music: Wynton Marsalis and The Jazz At Lincoln Center Orchestra in a Jazz Roots Series performance at Knight Concert Hall in the Adrienne Arsht Center.
By Don Heckman There’s never any question that a performance by Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra is going to be a significant musical event. But their appearance at Royce Hall Friday night in a UCLA Live concert was even more — a program of works that entertained and illuminated, while offering… Read More Jazz Live: Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra at Royce Hall