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Jazz And Sports: Man vs Zone Defense

By Sam Griffith

In many sports, the coach has to make a decision as to whether play zone of man defense. Each of these type of defenses have specific goals and uses in a variety of sports. When improvising, the performer can absolutely utilize similar principles to adjust to different situations.

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Steve Lacy’s Evidence

Steve Lacy – Evidence

by Carl Schultz

Soprano saxophonist Steve Lacy had a long and diverse career. Possibly known more for the projects he led in the second half of his life, Lacy also performed and recorded with many musicians associated with the ‘Trad,’ Bebop, and Swing styles. These included pianists Thelonious Monk, Mal Waldron, and Wynton Kelly, drummers Elvin Jones, Billy Higgins, and Roy Haynes, among others. Lacy’s career began during an era of change in modern jazz music and he was a part of this change, performing and recording with Cecil Taylor early in the pianist’s career. Evidence, the solo examined in this piece, is the title track from a 1961 recording featuring other musicians active in that time’s musical evolution. (more…)

Jazz Concerts Streaming This Weekend – 11/14/14

By Sam Griffith

Here is a list of jazz concerts streaming for free this weekend. Notable performances include: Ellis Marsalis Birthday Celebration at Lincoln Center and Jason Jackson at Smalls. Click on the link to be redirected to the website where the stream is available. (more…)

Herb Pomeroy – Solo and Analysis

Herb Pomeroy – Now’s The Time

by Carl Schultz

Herb Pomeroy was a Boston based trumpeter that is infrequently discussed in the history of jazz. This is not due to his performance abilities as they have been highly thought of by many musicians, including the great saxophonist Charlie Parker. It was Pomeroy’s abilities as a trumpeter that led Parker to hire him when he was performing in Boston based clubs like Storyville or the Hi-Hat. One such date in 1953 was recorded and released as the BlueNote album, “Charlie Parker Live at Storyville.”

Pomeroy’s solos on this date show a very detailed and thoughtful approach to harmony as well as a way of playing the trumpet that seemed to be in vogue at the time. His playing is frequently in the middle and low registers of the instrument, features a dark yet brassy tone, and a ‘laid-back’ approach in his time-feel. These aspects were not uncommon among trumpeters hired by Parker such as Miles Davis or Chet Baker. Of the material on “Charlie Parker Live at Storyville,” Pomeroy’s solo on the Parker blues, Now’s The Time shows the overall finesse which the former brings to these recordings.

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Last Week’s Jazz – 10/28/14

By Sam Griffith

Here are some a few interesting jazz-related tidbits from last week.

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Bizarre Moments in Jazz: 1959 Grammy Award Winners

By Sam Griffith

The year 1959 holds special significance in the history of recorded jazz. Several significant recordings were made this year, all of which are discussed in a great documentary – 1959 The Year The Changed Jazz. This documentary discusses 4 albums – Time Out by Dave Brubeck, Kind of Blue by Miles Davis, The Shape of Jazz To Come by Ornette Coleman and Mingus Ah Um by Charles Mingus. All of these albums would become highly influential towards shaping the performance styles, improvisational concepts, and compositional approaches of future generations.  (more…)

Jazz In The Mainstream: Boardwalk Empire Season 5 “What Jesus Said”

By Sam Griffith

Last nights episode, “What Jesus Said” provided us even more ideas about the role of music in this show, although it did not feature a lot of music. Silence was used a lot, and quite effectively. In addition to silence, we were also introduced to another significant component to early jazz/early popular music – the solo piano. (more…)