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Jazz Artist Interviews (709)

Get up close and personal with your favorite jazz artists!

29.01.2011

Miles Donahue

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One of the really fun parts of doing interviews for Jazz Review, besides the huge salary and private jet, is the chance to speak to some of the most amazing musicians working in the field of jazz and this is a real case in point. Miles Donahue has been called "one of the best kept secrets in jazz" by the Boston Globe and "a player whose strong personality asserts itself without hesitation" by Jazziz. Let me join in the fray here, this is simply one of the best saxophone players today, bar non …
29.01.2011

Anthony Wilson

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Can less ever be more? Well, according to jazz guitarist and composer, Anthony Wilson the answer can sometimes be yes. He spoke about the necessity of learning to become an uncomplicated writer while discussing his Power of Nine CD featuring the Anthony Wilson Nonet. "I think what separates this CD (Power Of Nine) from anything I did before is I am trying a little less hard. As I grow up and become a bit more comfortable with my own voice and what I have to contribute …
Keyboardist Brian Culbertson is making this Christmas the best ever. He has always celebrated the holidays with his family in central Illinois in a big way. He says, "I love getting together with the whole family and I really love making fires in the fireplace, just chilling out in the living room and listening to pretty Christmas music, and obviously the food. Everything about it is just wonderful. A great time of year." To celebrate this holiday, Culbertson has released A Soulful Christm …
29.01.2011

Marcus Strickland

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"If you are a jazz musician at a concert and all you see in the audience are jazz saxophone geeks and nobody else, then there is something wrong. You have missed the point," says Marcus Strickland an accomplished tenor and soprano saxophonist and composer. "There should be doctors, lawyers and beauticians there. There should be people from all walks of life. Life is much grander than just jazz music," he concludes. Strickland was making the comments during our conversation at the end of Octob …
29.01.2011

Argentina's Diva

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When Grammy Award winning composer, bandleader and pianist Maria Schneider invites you to tour with her, you seize the opportunity and that is exactly what Argentine vocalist, musician and composer Sofia Koutsovitis did. The native of Buenos Aires now living in New York City recently concluded a European tour with Schneider. Concerts were performed in Portugal, Spain, Austria, France and Switzerland. Koutsovitis who is a highly skilled vocalist had a unique performance role with Schneider’s o …
29.01.2011

Givin It Up with Mr J

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Al Jarreau owns one of the more recognizable voices in all of popular music. He swings, he swoons, he can reach the highest of levels and then dive to deepest depths, and this is all in the same song. Jarreau scats and becomes his own one man band capable of backing up the best jazz has to offer and as a soloist, he is outstanding in his field, bar none. This is pretty good for someone whose early training was not really in the direction of music. Jarreau holds a BS in psy …
29.01.2011

Daniel Barnes

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Daniel Barnes is one of Toronto’s top drummers, by some estimates he is in the top fifteen. Barnes can be heard on numerous recordings; his discography numbers thirty-eight albums, including the 1996 Juno award winning Africville Suite by pianist Joe Sealy. Barnes works regularly at live and studio gigs, he also works on composing and arranging music. Barnes is a hard guy to track down. I recently managed to meet up with him at a café in the west end of Toronto. I wanted to ask Barnes …
It is not very often that you have an opportunity to speak with a music icon as celebrated as Roger Kellaway and it is even less often that you get to talk to him on his birthday (67th). I had the opportunity to do both recently and found the pianist/composer to be one of the more congenial people that I have spoken to inside or outside of the music industry. Kellaway took time to reflect about the relationships he has forged, time spent in the late sixties as the arranger and pianist f …
"I am very vulnerable, very fragile and sometimes just very human. Overall, we are talking about the human condition and I think about things like that. Why are we here in the first place? It isn’t to be separate. Music is a way of connecting with people and a way of connecting with me. I can’t sing about great pain with any kind of truth unless I have had great pain. I am willing to reveal that part of myself to people. This music allows me to do that. I am willing to do that. I …
29.01.2011

Bob Reynolds

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Tenor saxophonist Bob Reynolds will be touring with John Mayer early in 2007. The two Berklee alumni have kept in touch over the years and although Reynolds has played the Monterey Jazz Festival, toured Japan and performed at the Kennedy Center, the upcoming gig with one of the music industry’s hottest young stars have to rate at the top of the list. Reynolds says the admiration for Mayer runs much deeper than the hit songs he has punched out, "He is somebody I respect beyond his musi …
29.01.2011

Various Artists

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Jazz Review wants to thank Ann Hampton Callaway, Cyrus Chestnut, Brenda Earle and Sherrie Maricle for taking time to share with us their Christmas memories and plans. Where did you spend Christmas growing up and what special memories do you have of that time? Ann Hampton Callaway: No one does Christmas like Chicago, with great white lights everywhere and snow swirling in the wind. It’s like you live in a holiday snow globe. I love …
29.01.2011

Chris Washburne

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The first time Chris Washburne picked up a trombone, it was a rather auspicious occasion. The superbly talented jazz musician, bandleader and composer seemed to have fun in relating the experience to me. "I didn’t pick the trombone, the trombone picked me. When I was ten years old I wanted to play the trumpet because it was shiny and because it played high and loud. There were still music programs in all the high schools and grade schools. At ten you could go and rent an instrument fairly che …
29.01.2011

Rory Partin Croons

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Rory Partin is a renaissance man in the world of big band swing music. Although he wasn’t born when many of the standards that appear on his new CD The Very Thought of You were first written, he sings them with the same charm that made Frank Sinatra, Bobby Darin and Nat King Cole household names. One of the premier crooners in music, the Louisiana born Partin is the lead vocalist and bandleader of the Rory Partin Band. Listeners will enjoy his smooth rich vocals on favorite tun …
29.01.2011

Adi Braun

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Whether she is singing in front of an audience, on a CD or talking to you, Adi Braun has a sensuality that drips from every note and leaves you hanging on every word. "I think we all sing about love," she says. However, Braun is much more than lusty vocals, she is a very good jazz singer who is quickly making inroads both in North America and Europe. Braun’s Rules of the Game album is filled with love stories from some of the best songwriters past and present. She provides a beautifu …
Take a space age sounding name like Galactic, mix in musical influences from Mardi Gras Indians and Professor Longhair, add some great honest sounding organic jazz tunes and you gain some insight into the music of drummer Stanton Moore and the influences that infuse his tunes. Moore combines a career as the drummer for Galactic with a burgeoning solo career that just saw him release his third project under his own name. The CD is simply titled Stanton Moore III. At the time of ou …
29.01.2011

Singer Cibelle

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"I like to be able to walk inside sound and touch this or that element," says Brazilian singer Cibelle from her home in London, England. "I have this song, then this world starts growing inside of my head and I start painting that song out. I embrace that poem with sounds that, let’s say, helps this poem reach where it has to go," she says. Her multi-layered songs are as much a product of the many facets of her personality as they are of continuous mixing of the tracks until she arrives at a …
The Book of Love opens with Cheryl Bentyne’s creamy smooth vocals cooing: "You don’t know the one that dreams of you at night, and longs to kiss your lips, longs to hold you tight. To you I’m just a friend. That’s all I’ve ever been, But you don’t know me." During the month of November, Bentyne and her label Telarc Records are releasing the CD The Book of Love and if you …
29.01.2011

Kellylee Evans

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Try to put singer/songwriter Kellylee Evans into any one musical category, and marvel as she effortlessly soars over, glides under, dances around, or bursts through it. Her electric, eclectic, vibe is a heady brew of jazz, soul, blues, carribean, and more. Evans gained worldwide recognition as runner-up in the 2004 Thelonious Monk International Jazz Vocals Competition, and her recently released debut CD, Fight or Flight, has inspired comparisons to Erykah Badu, and Cassandra Wilson. Jaz …
"We are living with an attitude of gratitude and we perform that way," says Sherrie Maricle the bandleader for The Diva Jazz Orchestra and drummer with her quintet Five Play based out of New York City. Maricle is one of the most delightful and talented people that I have spoken to. She is engaging and genuinely grateful for the opportunities that have come her way. Early in her career, she kept overcoming obstacles placed in her way because she is a woman musician in jazz music. Her talent simpl …
29.01.2011

Charlie Fishman

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Watching Charlie Fishman at work is an exercise in perpetual motion. He is everywhere at once, making sure that details are taken care of for the latest Duke Ellington Jazz Festival. The festival is his personal campaign to awaken and enlighten jazz enthusiasts to the unlimited possibilities that Washington, D.C. offers. There is always music playing, whether it is in a concert venue or at his home that also serves as his office. Charlie speaks with the enthusiasm and conviction of a man who tru …