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  1. June 2, 2014

    Sun Ra Arkestra, Barbican, London – review

    Sun Ra’s music bristled with multiphonics and ad hoc ensemble work that was decidedly ragged at the edges. He carved out...

  2. March 30, 2014

    A Musical Celebration of the Life of Stan Tracey, Ronnie Scott’s, London – review

    When Stan Tracey died last December, he left a musical legacy steeped in the wry, sharp-witted spirit of postwar Soho....

  1. March 7, 2014

    First Person: Anne Phillips

    I came out of the womb singing and playing the piano. My father was a yarn salesman and my mother was a housewife. Much to...

  2. February 20, 2014

    The tax credit that costs NY its cool

    Events in New York this week reminded me of an old saying of Solomon Burke, the late great soul singer. “Sometimes you get...

  3. January 10, 2014

    Saul Zaentz, film and music mogul, 1921-2014

    No one, a wag once said of the producer Saul Zaentz, “was better at taking care of the books”. It was a two-edged tribute....

  4. May 1, 2013

    A guide beyond leadership legends and all that jazz

    The ‘I’ of Leadership: Strategies for Seeing, Being and Doing By Nigel Nicholson, Wiley, £18.99 This is the first management...

  5. December 28, 2012

    Bassist instinct

    Charles Mingus had prodigious appetites, a passion for justice and a filthy temper. He once smashed a treasured double bass...

  6. August 24, 2012

    Duke Ellington: The Private Collection

    Duke Ellington’s commercially recorded releases in the mid 20th century were, well, decidedly commercial. To redress the...

  7. November 5, 2011

    Duke Ellington: Meets Coleman Hawkins/And John Coltrane

    This terrific re-issue combines a classic Ellington small-group album featuring the founding father of jazz saxophone with a...

  8. June 3, 2011

    Cleo Laine, Ronnie Scott’s, London

    Cleo Laine’s natural contralto still soars into the upper register, swoops to a low-toned whisper and turns sentiment to...

  9. May 3, 2011

    Cheltenham Jazz Festival, Cheltenham, UK

    Norwegian good: Tord Gustavsen Cheltenham’s annual jazz festival signalled business as usual with a well-loved opener, Dame...

  10. April 29, 2011

    Precious little outrage

    Jazz: The Smithsonian Anthology, is the US cultural institution’s latest word on what constitutes the jazz canon. This CD...

  11. March 12, 2011

    Delfeayo Marsalis: Sweet Thunder

    Delfeayo Marsalis Sweet Thunder (Troubador Jass Records) The Shakespeare-inspired orchestral vignettes of Such Sweet...

  12. December 22, 2010

    Nut/Cracked, Dance Theater Workshop, New York

    You know a comedy revue is in trouble when it elicits the sleepy thought, “Yeah, that’s a funny idea”, without making you...

  13. December 20, 2010

    Ailey/JazzCity Center, New York

    Three Black Kings has lain dormant almost since Alvin Ailey created it for a massive Duke Ellington celebration that he...

  14. November 19, 2010

    The golden age of Duke Ellington

    Duke Ellington, around 1940 In 1931, as the great depression was biting its hardest, Duke Ellington left the economic...

  15. June 22, 2010

    Barnstorming nights of swing

    American trumpeter Wynton Marsalis has trenchant views on what is appropriate to jazz, and what defines it. Chief among them...

  16. June 21, 2010

    Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra/Wynton Marsalis, Barbican, London

    Wynton Marsalis at Stoke Newington Town Hall American trumpeter Wynton Marsalis has trenchant views on what is appropriate...

  17. April 5, 2010

    Water from an ancient well

    Over a more-than-50-year career, Abdullah Ibrahim has played many parts. There was the 20-year-old who walked from Cape Town...

  18. April 4, 2010

    Abdullah Ibrahim and Ekaya, Anvil, Basingstoke

    Austere pleasures: Abdullah Ibrahim’s music has taken a subtly mystical turn in recent years Over a more-than-50-year...

  19. December 23, 2009

    Great jazz pianists step into the limelight

    Art Tatum at the keyboard in 1940 The jazz piano trio, a specialism with its own lineage and admirers, is currently in rude...

  20. August 22, 2009

    Small Talk: Aleksandar Hemon

    Stranded in Chicago in 1992 while his native Sarajevo was under siege, Bosnian journalist Aleksandar Hemon decided to...

  21. April 15, 2009

    Gospel truth, classic blues

    The broad sweep of this year's Cheltenham jazz festival, which opens on April 28, begins with a jazz and gospel experiment...

  22. April 14, 2009

    Gospel truth, classic blues

    Cheltenham Jazz Festival, Cheltenham, UK The broad sweep of this year’s Cheltenham jazz festival, which opens on April 28,...

  23. August 9, 2008

    World David Honigmann

    Paul Carlon Octet Roots Propaganda Deep Tone Paul Carlon, a New York saxophonist, makes explicit the Cuban and Latin roots...

  24. May 24, 2008

    What goes around

    Over his 50-year career as a musician, Abdullah Ibrahim has played to a wide range of audiences. As a Capetonian ingénue...

  25. April 28, 2008

    Sharp notes with innuendo

    On April 10, jazz trumpeter Humphrey Lyttelton performed at the Bull's Head pub in Barnes, south-west London, 42 years...

  26. April 26, 2008

    Jazz - Mike Hobart

    Mary Lou Williams A Grand Night for Swinging High Note This welcome discovery from a 1976 club date captures Williams in...

  27. March 8, 2008

    Wider still and wider, shall thy bounds be set

    Here are some musical highlights from last year that Londoners were able to enjoy and that had something in common: the...

  28. January 29, 2008

    Grand celebration for Monsieur Petit

    Two special performances last week in Geneva's Grand Théâtre were given to celebrate the choreographies of Roland Petit,...

  29. January 28, 2008

    Grand celebration for Monsieur Petit

    Soirée Roland Petit Grand Théâtre, Geneva Two special performances last week in Geneva’s Grand Théâtre were given to...

  30. November 29, 2007

    A magnificent flying machine

    When the company toured Maurice Béjart’s version of The Firebird this year, the choreographer was very much alive. It was...

  31. September 29, 2007

    Cassandra Wilson - JAZZ

    On record, Cassandra Wilson is the nearest thing jazz has to a diva. She is a superb technician who stamps her mark with a...

  32. September 11, 2007

    Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Sadlers Wells Theatre, London

    It's amazing what a smile and a shimmy can achieve. I'm not being flippant - the most endearing quality of this dance...

  33. September 10, 2007

    Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, Sadler’s Wells Theatre, London

    It’s amazing what a smile and a shimmy can achieve. I’m not being flippant – the most endearing quality of this dance troupe...

  34. September 1, 2007

    DANCE

    Alvin Ailey Company Sadler's Wells, London EC1 Sadler's Wells hosts the return of the Alvin Ailey Company from Tuesday...

  35. July 24, 2007

    Wynton Marsalis, Barbican, London

    At this gig, the American trumpeter Wynton Marsalis presented the opulent textures and dazzling dynamics of the Lincoln...

  36. June 15, 2007

    Stan Tracey Octet, Ronnie Scott’s, London

    The 80-year-old London-born British modern jazz pianist has the knack of sounding indisputably British while wearing his...

  37. June 6, 2007

    Mingus Big Band, Ronnie Scott’s, London

    The Mingus Big Band has spent 15 years performing the composed legacy of Charles Mingus, the bass player and composer who...

  38. March 3, 2007

    Monument to self-improvement

    It took a while, the best part of 200 years, but Washington, DC, has finally hit its stride, for residents and visitors...

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