Terence Blanchard, Julian Lage, Trombone Shorty & 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.

 

Noteworthy

New Alice Randall Album and Memoir: My Black Country is a new collection of Alice Randall’s most beloved songs, as interpreted by some of the strongest Black female voices in modern country, roots and folk music, that will be released on April 12 via Oh Boy Records. The album includes Rhiannon Giddens, Saaneah Jamison, Valerie June, Miko Marks, Leyla McCalla, Rissi Palmer, Allison Russell, Sistastrings, Adia Victoria, Sunny War and Alice’s daughter Caroline Randall Williams. The record will be released in conjunction with Randall’s memoir of the same name, out on April 9 on Atria/Black Privilege Publishing via Simon & Schuster.

New Julian Lage Song and Video: Guitar virtuoso Julian Lage has released “Nothing Happens Here” as the fourth song from his new Blue Note album, Speak To Me, due out on March 1. The song features Kris Davis on piano, Patrick Warren on keys and Levon Henry on saxophone, alongside Dave King on drums and Jorge Roeder on bass. A video of this band performing “Nothing Happens Here” live at SFJAZZ has also been shared and you can watch it via the player below.

Dave Grusin’s Murder By Death Score Available on Vinyl for the First Time Ever: Varèse Sarabande and Craft Recordings will release Academy Award-nominated composer Dave Grusin’s score to Neil Simon’s 1976 whodunit comedy, Murder By Death, on March 22. This will be the first time the soundtrack will be made available on vinyl. The original 22-track program will be released on a translucent clear pressing and its jacket will feature artwork by iconic cartoonist Charles Addams, sourced from the artist’s original illustration. Limited-edition diamond yellow marble vinyl will also be available exclusively at Varèse Saraband’s website.

New Joshua Crumbly Video: Bassist, producer and songwriter Joshua Crumbly has shared his latest single, “again, on the road” and its accompanying music video, which was created by visual artist finnimalism. Watch it via the player below. “again, on the road” is a single from Crumbly’s EP, P.S., featuring collaborations with Samora Pinderhughes, Michael Rocketship and Little Dragon.

Chrysalis Records Kicks Off Toumani Diabaté Reissue Campaign: On March 15, Chrysalis will reissue a remastered edition of Toumani Diabaté and Ballaké’s New Ancient Strings, featuring the two kora players’ creative renditions of traditional Mande melodies and seen as the follow-up to a 1970 collaboration between their fathers, Sidiki Diabaté and Djelimadi Sissoko. The album was recorded in 1997 in a makeshift studio in one single night in Mali, on the anniversary of the country’s independence, with no overdubs or effects. The new edition of New Ancient Strings also comes with a 16-page booklet of liner notes and photos and begins the label’s reissue campaign of Diabaté albums, recently acquired from Warner Music.

 

New Albums

Gerald Cannon, Live at Dizzy’s Club – The Music of Elvin & McCoy (Woodneck): Celebrated bassist Gerald Cannon honors McCoy Tyner and Elvin Jones, with whom he played alongside for 14 years and nine years respectively, on his new album, Live at Dizzy’s Club – The Music of Elvin & McCoy. Cannon’s vehicle features an outstanding ensemble of musicians who also shared the stage with these giants, including Dave Kikoski, Lenny White, Joe Lovano, Sherman Irby, Eddie Henderson and Steve Turre.

Matthieu Bordenave, The Blue Land (ECM): On The Blue Land, French saxophonist Matthieu Bordenave expands his trio of German pianist Florian Weber and French bassist Patrice Moret with the unique sensibilities of drummer James Maddren. Besides the soulfully angular rendering of John Coltrane’s “Compassion,” the quartet tackles eight Bordenave originals that bridge the gap between chamber-jazz dynamics and post-swing designs.

Filip Dinev, Romann (self-released): On Romann, Hamburg-based guitarist Filip Dinev showcases his fearless approach to the modern guitar trio format. Collaborating with Tilman Oberbeck on double bass and Jan Zeimetz on drums and percussion, the album consists of originals drawing on distinct aspects of Dinev’s Balkan heritage and also includes a unique interpretation of the Lennon/McCartney classic, “Blackbird.”

Phil Sargent, Sons (self-released): Renowned guitarist and composer Phil Sargent, well-established in the Boston and New York music scenes, has collaborated with the likes of Dave Liebman and Jerr Bergonzi. In his latest endeavour as a bandleader, Sons, Sargent takes to the studio to explore fatherhood’s transformative impact through vast textural landscapes and genre fluidity.

 

Live Music and Festival News

Terence Blanchard Career Retrospective at Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Rose Theater: Jazz at Lincoln Center will celebrate Terence Blanchard by presenting his career retrospective in jazz across two nights of performance at the Rose Theater on March 1-2. Tickets here. Blanchard will perform with his E-Collective plus Turtle Island Quartet, as well as special guests Benny Green, Christian McBride, Ben Wendel, Pedrito Martinez, and Tarriona “Tank” Ball (of Tank and the Bangas). Blanchard recently won the 2024 GRAMMY Award for Best Opera Recording for Champion, making this his eighth GRAMMY win.

Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue Summer Tour: This summer, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue will take center stage on a headlining tour with support from Big Boy from OutKast. The run will begin in June and includes a stop at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles, California, on September 4. An additional date at New York’s The Rooftop at Pier 17 with support from Neal Francis has also been announced. Click here for all upcoming tour dates. Additionally, Trombone Shorty recently teamed up with Sammy Cyrus for a special project named Saint Brass, dropping the new track “Mardi Gras Morning,” a joyful track capturing the spirit of New Orleans that you can listen to via the player below.

Linda May Han Oh at the Miller Theatre, March 3: Linda May Han Oh will return to New York’s Miller Theatre at the Columbia University School of the Arts on March 2. The bassist, composer and arranger will perform music from The Glass Hours, a collection of original works based on abstract themes of the fragility and time and life exploring paradoxes embedded within our individual and societal values, with a vibrant cast of musicians, including Sara Serpa, Mark Turner, Fabian Almazan and Obed Calvaire. Tickets here.

Palm Springs International Jazz Festival, February 24-25: The 3rd annual Palm Springs International Jazz Festival is set to take place from February 24-25. The weekend of music will kick off with iconic trumpeter Herp Albert and singer Lani Hall at the Annenberg Theatre in the Palm Springs Art Museum. Other artists scheduled to perform include The Cookers, Veronica Swift, Taj Mahal and Sona Jobarteh. “The Palm Springs International Jazz Festival is growing every year with marquee artists performing in a state-of-the-art theater with the beautiful backdrop of the desert,” said Artistic Director, Lowell Pickett via an official press release. “The festival presents a rich cross-section of jazz icons and international artists for programming that brings the community together with the power of music.” More here.

Big Ears Festival in Knoxville, March 21-24: This year’s edition of the Big Ears Festival is set to take place in Knoxville, Tennessee, from March 21-24. Some of the notable names performing this year include Jon Batiste, Herbie Hancock, Shabaka Hutchings, Vijay Iyer and many more. Other highlights include a 70th birthday celebration for guitarist Marc Ribot and Nonesuch Records celebrating their 60th anniversary, with several artists from the storied label participating and special programming celebrating its impact on the realm of music. More here.

NEC’s 7th Annual Coretta Scott King Concert, February 26: The New England Conservative (NEC) will host the 7th annual Coretta Scott King tribute concert on February 26. The free event will celebrate the life and legacy of the trailblazing activist and soprano and will mark the 70th anniversary of her NEC graduation. Bringing to life a program that resonates with her spirit and principles, the concert is co-curated by NEC’s Black Student Union and Castle of our Skins. More here.

 

Featured photo by Justen Williams.

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