Mark Keresman

Mark Keresman

Brubeck fans rejoice! The kind folks at Columbia Legacy have finally gotten around to giving the class-reissue treatment to their extensive Brubeck discography (he was on C…
Day & Taxi are a Swiss jazz trio that puts out records that avant-jazz fans can give to their friends that might ordinarily be scared off by the likes of Peter Brotzmann or…
Jazz legend/icon Ferdinand "Jelly Roll" Morton was a New Orleans gambler, pool player, vaudeville comedian, pimp and general braggart-about-town - but mainly he was perhaps…
Throughout most of his illustrious career, piano ace Bill Evans (1929-1980) -- who influenced many, many artists, from Miles Davis to Bill Charlap and Donald Fagen (Steely …
Return with us know to those thrilling days of yesteryear, when there was a sound in the air(waves) still referred to as "soul" or "rhythm & blues (R&B)." The sound was in …
Monk. Jazz people react with reverence, some rock people with awe and respect, whilst others go "Huh?" The late Thelonious Sphere Monk was one of the most pure jazz musi…
Anouar Brahem (b. 1957, Tunisia) is a virtuoso player of the oud (or ud, depending on you and/or where one asks), a North African/Middle Eastern stringed instrument of the lute/guitar family with a deep, amber sound. While well-versed in Arabic music, Brahem was and is decidedly influenced by jazz and improvised music, and he’s become a truly "internationalist" composer and improviser - fellow travelers Jan Garberek, John Surman, Richard Galliano and Dave Holland have recorded with him on his fi …
Though hardly a household name along the lines of Julie London or The Manhattan Transfer, this New York singer Barbara Sfraga is how do the kids say it somethin’ else. But Not For Her are the codependent "my man’s a real creep but, gosh, I’m glad he’s mine" clichés that have historically defined/plagued female jazz singers since the advent of the record. This lady blazes her own path. On her thus-far lone CD Oh What A Thrill (Naxos Jazz) she reinvents Jerry Lee Lewis' "Great Balls Of Fire …
DISCS THAT MADE 2003 BEARABLE (in no order whatsoever)

1) Elvis Costello, North (Deutsche Grammophon) The sardonic, erudite rocker turns into (for this album at least) a sober, haunted crooner, crafting his very own counterpart to the 1950s romantic-angst concept album Sinatra Sings For Only The Lonely but with all original songs, written with the poignancy of standards like "One For My Baby" and "Angel Eyes."

2) Lee Morgan, Sonic Boom (Blue Note) Sure, thi …
In no particular bleedin’ order:

1) Claire Ritter, Greener Than Blue (Zoning) Chamber jazz full of gentle warmth and quick wit.

2) Lukas Ligeti, Mystery System (Tzadik) Contemporary notated composition (sometimes referred to as "classical") integrating jazz, Martin Denny exotica, electronic and African music that’s both creative and eminently approachable.

3) Von Freeman, The Great Divide (Premonition) Hearty hard bop with some "out"/avant monkey-wrenches lovingl …