Amy Winehouse, Billie Holiday, Ennio Morricone & More: The Week in Jazz

The Week in Jazz is your roundup of new and noteworthy stories from the jazz world. It’s a one-stop destination for the music news you need to know. Let’s take it from the top.



New Billie Holiday Documentary: Billie, a new anticipated documentary on jazz singer Billie Holiday directed by James Erskine, will be released in theaters on November 13. You can watch the trailer via the player below. On the same date, Verve/UMe will release the official companion soundtrack for the film, featuring some of Lady Day’s most popular songs along with instrumental cues. Billie: The Original Soundtrack will be available on CD, LP and digital.

Final Dave Brubeck Album Out November 6: Verve is releasing the final studio recording from Dave Brubeck, a solo album entitled Lullabies, on November 6. The album showcases Brubeck’s distinctive improvisational style on a set of well-known children’s songs, classic standards and originals, and was recorded as a gift to his grandchildren in 2010. The announcement comes with a new animated video for the album track, “Brahms Lullaby.”

Will Vinson, Gilad Hekselman and Antonio Sánchez to Release Trio Debut: Saxophonist Will Vinson, guitarist Gilad Hekselman and drummer Antonio Sánchez unite in a new trio project, Trio Grande. Together, they will release their self-titled debut on November 13 via Whirlwind. “We’re all grounded in jazz but all of us are also looking for other sounds and influences to bring in: that’s what we have in common, and what sets us apart is that all our sounds and influences are so different,” explains Vinson via a press release.

Ennio Morricone and Bruno Nicolai Library-Music Project Reissued as Major Box Set: On October 30, Italian label Dialogo will reissue Ennio Morricone and his regular collaborator Bruno Nicolai’s major library music project, Dimensioni Sonore – Musiche Per L’Immagine E L’immaginazione. The project was originally issued by RCA in 1972 and it comprises 103 scores ranging from cerebral jazz to avant-garde abstractions. These scores have been remastered from original analog tapes and will be made available for the first time via a 10-LP deluxe box set.

Adult Swim Releases Jazz Compilation: Adult Swim has released a digital-only compilation titled New Jazz Century. The compilation is curated by Adult Swim writer/producer Luke Rhodes and highlights notable artists in the contemporary jazz scenes. Artists included on the compilation are Makaya McCraven, Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah, Sons of Kemet and more.

Two New Amy Winehouse Box Sets Announced: UMe has announced the release of a new Amy Winehouse 7″ singles box set and a 5-CD albums collection. The former, entitled 12×7: The Singles Collection, comprises all of Winehouse’s memorable singles from the Frank, Back To Black and Lioness: Hidden Treasures albums, and will be released on November 20. The latter, The Collection, comprises the three aforementioned LPs, plus Live in London, documenting a 2007 concert, and a collection of remixes from Frank and Back To Black. It is due out on December 4.


The Gig: Live Music & More

Marcus Miller to Launch New Online Concert Series: Bass great Marcus Miller and Entertainment Cruise Productions are launching a new 90-minute original streaming concert series named Saturday Night with Marcus Miller & Friends. The series is hosted by Miller and will feature a Saturday Night Band led by music director Eric Marienthal along with notable special guests during each episode. Episode one will premiere on October 10 with George Benson as special guest and guest band members Patrice Rushen and Joey DeFrancesco.

Pharoah Sanders 80th Birthday Livestream Concert, October 13: Sax legend Pharoah Sanders will celebrate his 80th birthday with a special live stream concert from Zebulon, Los Angeles, on October 13. The concert, called Another Trip Around the Sun, will see him alongside Azar Lawrence, John Beasley, Tony Austin and Sekou Bunch. It will begin at 7 p.m. in all time zones worldwide. Click here for more info.

Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra Celebrates Sesame Street: An hour-long special featuring the world-renowned Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis and iconic Sesame Street characters is set to premiere nationwide on PBS on October 30. The special is named Jazz at Lincoln Presents: A Swingin’ Sesame Street Celebration and features brand new big band arrangements of classic Sesame Street songs. It was filmed in front of a sold-out audience at Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Rose Theater. More info here.

Thundercat and Hannibal Buress One-Night-Only Show in Pasadena: Bass virtuoso Thundercat will team up with comedian Hannibal Buress for a one-night-only performance at the legendary Rose Bowl Drive-In in Pasadena, California. The concert will take place on October 24 and tickets are on sale now. Thundercat released his fourth LP, It Is What It Is, earlier this year, while Buress also recently released his Miami Nights comedy album and a new single entitled “Judge Judy” in honor of the famous media magistrate.


The Festival Guide

Vision Festival Announces Lineup for Soul-Healing Edition: Arts for Art has reimagined the renowned Vision Festival, the world’s premier festival of experimental music, as a limited-capacity outdoor event with a professionally-filmed live stream. Vision Festival: Healing Soul will kick off with a live stream solo performance by Wadada Leo Smith on October 8, followed by in-person and live stream events on October 9-12, featuring Oliver Lake, Andrew Cyrille, Amina Claudine Myers and William Parker, among others. In-person events will take place at New York City’s La Plaza at the Clemente. Click here for more info.


New Release Cheat Sheet

The Brianna Thomas Band, Everybody Knows (Breathline)

Brianna Thomas’ captivating vocal talents are on full display on her sophomore album, Everybody Knows, on which she presents a program of original compositions and reimagined classics. Produced by GRAMMY-winner Brian Bacchus, the new album is also a showcase for her band’s soulful sound, inspired by the lineup’s multicultural background.

The Dayna Stephens Quartet, Right Now! Live at the Village Vanguard (Contagious)

Saxophonist/composer Dayna Stephens performs works from his rich catalog and some new compositions alongside a stellar quartet featuring pianist Aaron Park, bassist Ben Street and drummer Gregory Hutchinson. Recorded live in February 2019 at New York City’s historic Village Vanguard, Right Now! also follows Stephens’ trio outing, Liberty, released earlier this year.

Ella Fitzgerald, The Berlin Lost Tapes (Verve)

A previously unheard live recording of Ella Fitzgerald in Berlin from 1962, in the midst of her most extensive European tour, two years after the release of her iconic Mack the Knife LP. Unearthed from the private collection of Verve founder Norman Granz, The Lost Berlin Tapes is a document of the First Lady of Song at the height of her popularity, performing hits and lesser-known gems with a trio led by pianist Paul Smith.


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