Sean Jones, Eddie Durham, Norah Jones & 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 Book Honors the Small Group Swing Sound of the 1940s-1960s: Jazz with a Beat is a new book by Tad Richards about the often neglected small group swing sound of the 1940s-1960s, born out of a desire for more accessible and danceable jazz in the Black community, and adapting big band Black swing to small combos with a more energetic beat. The book recognizes and honors his music as a legitimate jazz genre, providing a captivating glimpse into a vibrant era and paying tribute to the contributions of such iconic artists as Illinois Jacquet, Louis Jordan and Ray Charles, among many others.

New Documentary on Life and Music of Eddie Durham: WVIA and Chiaroscuro Records have announced a new documentary chronicling the life and musical career of swing jazz pioneer Eddie Durham will be made available to public television on February 1, distributed through American Public Television (APT) and broadcast on over 250 APT member stations nationwide. Titled WHAM Re-Bop-Boom-Bam: The Swing Jazz of Eddie Durham, the film was produced and directed by WVIA’s Kris Hendrickson and Executive Producer Ben Payavis II, along with Music Director and Producer Loren Schoenberg of The National Jazz Museum in Harlem.

Bill Cunliffe, Dimitri Landrain, Josh Nelson and more on the JAZZIZ Podcast: The JAZZIZ Podcast is our regular series of candid conversations with some of the most amazing artists from jazz and creative music. This month, we have shared our conversations with Bill Cunliffe, Josh Nelson, Steve Millhouse, Dimitri Landrain and more, who spoke with us about their latest albums and projects, as well as memories of their journeys in music. Click here to listen to the JAZZIZ Podcast.

Terry Adams Debut Solo Album Reissued: Pianist, composer and NRBQ founder Terry Adams’ debut solo album from 1995, Terrible, an all-original jazz record featuring such musicians as Marshall Allen, Tyrone Hill and Roswell Rudd, was reissued on January 26 via Omnivore Records. The album will be available on CD, digital and 2-LP, and its original 12-track program ranging from beautiful ballads to swinging romps is augmented by four bonus tracks, three of which are previously unissued.

City of a Million Dreams Screening at San Francisco’s MoAD, June 8: Jason Berry’s film, City of a Million Dreams, will have a San Francisco premiere as part of a Juneteenth presentation at the Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) on June 8. The film explores the history of New Orleans jazz funerals from the late 18th century to today. A live roundtable discussion with Berry and the film’s chief protagonist, New Orleans musician and educator Dr. Michael White, will follow the screening. More here.


New Albums

Andrew Binder’s Conspiracy Deliracy, Conspiracy Deliracy (self-released): Conspiracy Deliracy was conceived by bassist and composer Andrew Binder and features original compositions crossed between modern jazz, the music of pop music icons and conspiracy theories. Each track on the record is steeped with distorted references as tongue-in-cheek commentaries on today’s age of misinformation, interpreted by some of today’s top musicians from the Midwest.

Rich Halley, Fire Within (Pine Eagle): Fire Within is saxophonist Rich Halley’s third album with his quartet featuring pianist Matthew Shipp, bassist Michael Bisio and drummer Newmann Taylor Baker. The recording sees the group building on their intuitive chemistry in a series of powerful improvisations, recorded in Brooklyn in July 2023.

Josh Sinton, Couloir & Book of Practitioners, Vol. 2 (self-released): Baritone saxophonist Josh Sinton continues his evolution and exploration of his instrument on a new solo double album, Couloir & Book of Practitioners, Vol. 2. Couloir is a series of 15 short, distilled improvisations, while Book of Practitioners, Vol. 2, is the second book of saxophone etudes composed by Steve Lacy in the early 1980s.

David Bixler, The Langston Hughes Project Vol. 1 (Tiger Turn): Saxophonist David Bixler fulfils a longstanding ambition in his latest project, The Langston Hughes Project Vol. 1, where he composes works inspired by the Harlem Renaissance poet. Leading a jazz quintet and string quartet, Bixler’s purposeful saxophone improvisation guides the ensemble through immersive soundscapes, bluesy swing feels, jagged atonal chaos and beyond.


Live Music and Festival News

Upcoming Carnegie Hall Concert Series to Feature Sean Jones Performance, February 4: Trumpeter and educator Sean Jones will perform alongside three alums from Carnegie Hall’s NYO Jazz program in the Zankel Hall Center Stage on February 4. The concert is part of New York’s Carnegie Hall’s Well-Being Concerts, a new series of hour-long intimate experiences that combine elements of mindfulness and meditation with musical performances, created in response to findings on significant anxiety and depression in adults nationwide. Tickets here.

Norah Jones Announces U.S. Tour: Norah Jones will release her new album, Visions, on March 8 via Blue Note Records. The singer, songwriter and pianist recently released the lead single from the album, “Running,” and its accompanying video, which you can watch via the player below. Jones has also announced her Spring 2024 U.S. tour dates, which will kick off May 6 in Boston and include concerts in Washington D.C., Brooklyn and Manhattan. Click here for a full list of dates.

New Omar Sosa Documentary and Spring Tour Dates: Omar Sosa’s 88 Well-Tuned Drums, a documentary on the life and music of GRAMMY-nominated pianist and composer Omar Sosa, will be released on TVOD streaming platforms including Amazon, GooglePlay and Tubi in March with a BluRay release to follow in April. An accompanying soundtrack LP comprising Sosa recordings featured in the film will also be released in April via Oakland-based Otá Records. Sosa will celebrate both on a Spring Tour, as he brings his Quarteto Americanos to Miami, Seattle, Oakland, Santa Cruz, Los Angeles and New York. Click here to check out all upcoming tour dates.

Trombone Shorty’s 8th Treme Therauxdown Set Announced for First Weekend of Jazz and Heritage Festival: Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue have announced that the eighth edition of the Treme Therauxdown concert will take place at New Orleans’ Saenger Theatre on April 27, during the first weekend of the Jazz and Heritage Festival. Past shows have included such artists as Jon Batiste, Mavis Staples, Allen Toussaint and Dr. John, among many artists This year’s lineup will be announced soon. More here.


Artist Credit: Neal Williams/Epic Problems

Branford Marsalis and Wynton Marsalis Join Forces to Support Jazz Education in St. Louis: Branford Marsalis and Wynton Marsalis will join forces to support jazz education in St. Louis, Missouri, at Swing for Tomorrow’s Stars Gala, a two-night fundraiser to support Jazz St. Louis’ portfolio of community engagement and jazz education programs that will take place at the Harold & Dorothy Steward Center for Jazz on February 21 and in the Khorassan Ballroom at The Chase Park Plaza on February 22. The event will also see saxophonist and St. Louis native David Sanborn receiving the organization’s inaugural Harold & Dorothy Steward Center for Jazz Lifetime Achievement Award. More here.


Featured photo by Todd Rosenberg.

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