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.
Underrated Miles Davis Period Rediscovered in New Columbia/Legacy Release: Columbia/Legacy’s seventh chapter of its acclaimed Miles Davis Bootleg Series, That’s What Happened 1982-1985, shines a light on an underrated period in the musician’s career. Released on September 16 in digital and physical configurations, the multi-disc set includes previously unreleased studio tracks and an entire concert recorded in Montreal on July 7, 1983. It also comes with new liner notes and new interviews with some of Davis’ musicians from this time, including John Scofield, Marcus Miller, Vince Wilburn, Jr. and more.
Street Co-Naming for Bronx Jazz Great Onaje Allan Gumbs: A Bronx street will be co-named Onaje Allen Gumbs Way, in honor of the legacy of the late great jazz artist. Its street sign will be erected at the intersection of De Kruif Place & Dreiser Loop located in section one in Co-op City Bronx, where Gumbs lived. The ceremony will take place on July 5 and will be officiated by City Councilman Kevin C. Riley with many guest speakers and notable musicians also scheduled to attend.
Joey Alexander’s Origin Now Available on Vinyl: Joey Alexander’s first album featuring all-original music, Origin, is now available as a double LP set on sea glass colored vinyl via Mack Avenue. The record finds the pianist/bandleader/composer returning to the studio with the rhythm section with longtime collaborators Larry Grenadier and Kendrick Scott, plus special guests Gilad Hekselman and Chris Potter on select tracks.
Joy Guidry Wins Berlin Prize for Young Artists: Bassoonist/composer Joy Guidry won the 2021 Berlin Prize for Young Artists competition, selected among 230 applicants from 49 different countries. The prize was established to award musicians with singular voices and visions, and Guidry’s “Radical Self-Love” composition impressed the jury by redefining” the potential of a classical music program, finding musicality in a range of media including spoken word, film and fixed media,” an official statement reads. Guidry’s latest album, Radical Acceptance, is available now on Whited Sepulchre Records.
Nate Najar on JAZZIZ Travel: Nate Najar is the latest guest in our JAZZIZ Travel podcast series. The guitarist talks with us about paying tribute to Charlie Byrd and Stan Getz’s legendary collaboration on Jazz Samba, the 1962 album that helped launch a global Bossa Nova craze, with his very own album, Jazz Samba Pra Sempre, available now. Listen to our podcast conversation with Nate Najar via the player below.
Jazz Photography Exhibits at Newark Museum of Art: The Newark Museum of Art is currently hosting two jazz photography exhibitions. The first exhibit, Billie Holiday at Sugar Hill: Photographs by Jerry Dantzic, presents a series of photos of the legendary singer from 1957 that were published in a book by the same name five years ago. The second exhibit, Jazz Greats: Classic Photographs from the Bank of America Collection, features a collection of 33 images of jazz greats taken by 16 noted photographers. Both exhibits will run through August 22.
Azymuth Record Gets Newly-Remastered Vinyl Pressing Treatment: Craft Recordings and Jazz Dispensary will release a newly-remastered edition of Brazilian trio Azymuth’s eighth album, Telecommunication, in honor of its 40th anniversary. This samba-instilled, funky fusion record will be released on July 16 in a brand new pressing with newly-remastered audio as part of Jazz Dispensary’s ongoing Top Shelf series.
New and Upcoming Albums
Whit Dickey, Astral Long Form: Staircase in Space (Tao Forms): Described as one of his most adventurous and fully-realized works to date, Astral Long Form: Staircase in Space is Whit Dickey’s second album on Tao Forms. Dedicated to the drummer’s late mother and to his onetime mentor Milford Graves, the LP comprises five conceptually interwoven pieces performed by an intuitive quartet. Astral Long Form is available now.
Gilad Hekselman, Far Star (Edition): Guitarist Gilad Hekselman explores new sonic worlds on his self-produced venture, Far Star, out now. Emerging from the pandemic and defined by an explorative sound that is both progressive and timeless. “Far Star is about my ability to travel with my imagination to far sonic galaxies, all from the insides of a room. The music, worked on during a pandemic, somehow leaves me with memories of great freedom and liberation through what was clearly a very constricting time in our lives.”
Josean Jacobo, Herencia Criolla (self-released): Pianist/composer Josean Jacobo further explores the specific intersection of Afro-Dominican musical heritage and contemporary jazz sounds on his new album, Herencia Criolla, released on March 18. The album features Daroll Méndez on bass and Otoniel Nicolás on drums, plus special guest alto saxophonist Miguel Zenon.
John Yao’s Triceratops, Off-Kilter (See Tao): Trombonist/composer John Yao and his audacious three-horn quintet Triceratops released their bold, inventive second album, Off-Kilter on June 10. The album features Yao with saxophonists Bill Drewes and Jon Irabagon, along with bassist Robert Sabin and drummer Mark Ferber.
Live Music and Festival News
More Artists Announced for 2022 DC Jazz Festival: More artists have been added to the lineup of this year’s DC Jazz Festival, the 18th in its history. Ron Carter, The Mambo Legends Orchestra, Chien Chien Lu and Larnell Lewis will now be performing at the festival, which is set to take place on August 31-September 4. Previously-announced artists include Christian McBride, Dianne Reeves, Regina Carter, Orrin Evans, Cindi Blackman Santana and many more.
New Julian Lage Album and Fall Tour Dates: Guitar virtuoso Julian Lage will release View With a Room on September 16 via Blue Note, featuring his trio of bassist Jorge Roeder and drummer Dave King, plus six-string icon Bill Frisell. In addition to releasing “Auditorium,” its lead single, Lage has also announced a Fall U.S. tour in support of the record, which kicks off on September 13. Check out all tour dates here.
The Broad Presents Special Performance of Julius Eastman Masterwork: The Broad Museum in Los Angeles, California, will present a special performance of composer Julius Eastman’s Feminine, an expansive 60+ minute jam controlled by stop-watch timings that are the epitome of his long-form “organic music.” The piece will be performed by the 16-member classical collective Wild Up, under the artistic direction of Christopher Rountree, on July 23 and is part of The Broad’s Summer Happenings series. Tickets here.
Carnegie Hall Announces Judy Garland and Nina Simone Tribute Concerts: Carnegie Hall has added two tribute concerts to iconic vocalists to its 2022-2023 season. On December 12, Carnegie Hall will present Get Happy: A Judy Garland Centennial Celebration, featuring Broadway stars Jessica Vosk and Andy Karl. On February 23, Ledisi pays tribute to Nina Simone with a live performance of her album, Ledisi Sings Nina.
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