The Jazz.com Blog
August 31, 2008 · 0 comments
Are you still listening to the same old jazz CDs? Did your musical tastes stop developing around the time of Sketches of Spain? Would you like to know what’s happening now on the jazz scene?
Unless you stumbled on to this web page by mistake – looking for info on a basketball team in Utah or an IBM technology platform – you must have an interest in the current state of jazz. And if you're like me, you are always hoping to hear something new and exciting on the scene. But where to begin, with so many CDs released every week, and limited time and money to check them out? With this in mind, jazz.com hunts out the best jazz tracks each month, sifting through the new CDs that arrive on the market, and picking out the most exciting individual tracks.
Five days per week, jazz.com features a Song of the Day drawn from the best of the recent releases. We find some great music here that you probably wouldn’t encounter on your own. We don’t just highlight releases from the major labels, but we also listen to indie projects, self-produced CDs, and deserving disks from the four corners of the world. The predominant focus here is jazz, but we sometimes feature blues, world music or other styles.
This month we covered a wide range of fine projects, including new releases from standard-bearers Kenny Barron and Roy Hargrove, outstanding tracks by lesser known but exciting players Donny McCaslin and Aaron Parks, retro stylings from David Berger and John Pizzarelli, slide guitar from Sonny Landreth, 'talking blues' from John Lee Hooker, Jr., music from Cuba, France Norway . . . and quite a bit more.
It may be worth noting that the very talented Mr. McCaslin set a jazz.com record this month – his new CD Recommended Tools inspired four separate jazz.com critics to publish track reviews within a few days of the CD's release. If you have heard this disk, you will know what all the fuss is about. But I am also especially impressed by two recent vocal releases, highlighted here, featuring Kate McGarry and Alyssa Graham. (By the way, the ubiquitous Donny McCaslin also shows up on Kate McGarry's track, where he delivers what is this reviewer's favorite sax solo of the summer.) All in all, it was a very good month for jazz.
But don’t take my word for it, listen to the music. Below are links to the reviews for all the tracks selected as Song of the Day during the month of August. Click here for a complete list of all the recordings featured as Song of the Day since the inception of jazz.com.
Mathias Eick: October
John Lee Hooker, Jr.: Dear John
John Pizzarelli: This Can't Be Love
Kenny Barron & Lionel Loueke: Duet
Donny McCaslin: The Champion
Aaron Parks: Peaceful Warrior
Sonny Landreth: When I Still Had You
Wayne Wallace: Fascinating Rhythm
Glenn White: Sacred Machines
Tim Kuhl: Versus
David Berger: Jeepers Creepers
Chriss Campion: Recado Swing
Kate McGarry: Let's Face the Music and Dance
Jeff Barone: Open Up
Stephane Wrembel: Eternal Cycle 2
Alyssa Graham: America
Steve Allee: Bus to Belmopan
Roy Hargrove: I'm Not So Sure
Omar Sosa: D'Son
Trio Sud: Renaissance
Miles in India: All Blues
This blog entry posted by Ted Gioia