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Weekend Wax Bits

yesterdayMusic / Jazz : JazzWax

This Sunday, in the New York Times Sunday Book Review, rock author and critic Anthony DeCurtis writes a glowing review of Anatomy of a Song. Anthony DeCurtis, whose biography of Lou Reed is out next year, is a big deal...        

Making Christmas Music

yesterdayMusic / Jazz : Rifftides

Rifftides activity is about slow a bit. Rehearsals and performances for the Yakima Jazz Sextet with the Yakima Symphony Orchestra begin this afternoon. If you are in the area, concerts are at 4:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. You’ll find more information in this post.  And here. The sextet rarely performs with an outfit this size; […]

Stanley Turrentine: 3 Videos

2 days agoMusic / Jazz : JazzWax

Stanley Turrentine (1934-2000) had a big, full, bossy sound on the tenor saxophone—less sassy than, say, Gene Ammons, but smokier with a strong, soulful attack. He was at his best when paired with pianist Horace Parlan or his wife, organist...       Related Stories Gary Burton: Something's Coming John Williams: Rainbows  

Other Matters: Journalism, Jefferson And Rivera

2 days agoMusic / Jazz : Rifftides

Charges about biased reporting are as old as journalism itself. President-elect Donald Trump’s accusations against The New York Times—and journalists in general—during and after his campaign would sound familiar to one of his predecessors. Six years into his second term as president, Thomas Jefferson wrote in 1807, “Nothing can now be believed which is seen […]


What times we find ourselves in. What fevers we live amongst. The horrors where we once visited, we now could dwell. Trying to find the psychic shelter from the assault of the last month has been difficult (in the extreme). Where we toyed with fanciful, post-fact reportage (usually from untamed worlds and near future hell-scapes), […]

Sixties Euro Beat Girls

3 days agoMusic / Jazz : JazzWax

In 1961, when the girl-group era ramped up in the U.S. with the Marvelettes' Please Mister Postman, Europe and Scandinavia began producing their own female pop-rock groups and solo artists. Many were quite good, but few ever made it to...        

Portland Jazz Bulwark To Close

3 days agoMusic / Jazz : Rifftides

There is news from Portland, Oregon, that Jimmy Mak’s jazz club will permanently close at the end of 2016. A leading west coast club for 20 years, Mak’s has been a primary outlet for the talents of musicians in Oregon’s active jazz community and for touring national artists. Owner Jimmy Makarounis told The Oregonian that […]

Dancing music in the C20: acid techno (1988-91)

Acid techno is sometimes defined as a punk-ish, North London, 90s answer to 80s Chicagoan acid house. There’s a good article on that angle here. But, eh, we’re defining at as The Streets of Rage soundtrack and some of the late-80s-era Juan Atkins singles. Why not! Yuzo Koshiro – The Streets Of Rage Model 500 […]

Video: Jimmy Giuffre Trio

4 days agoMusic / Jazz : JazzWax

From 1957 to 1959, reed player Jimmy Giuffre led a revolutionary trio. It featured Giuffre on clarinet, tenor sax and baritone sax; guitarist Jim Hall; and a series of bass players, including Ralph Peña, Jim Atlas, Red Mitchell, Ray Brown...       Related Stories Gary Burton: Something's Coming  

Dancing music in the C20: new beat (1986-88)

In the late 1980s, Europe developed its own kind of acid house – one that descended from the stiff, hard, aggressive, hyper-masculine Industrial and Electronic Body Music traditions. This European techno variant, called New Beat, was...Show More Summary

Billy Strayhorn’s 101st

4 days agoMusic / Jazz : Rifftides

Charlie Shoemake sent a reminder that today is the 101st anniversary of the birth of Billy Strayhorn (pictured with Duke Ellington). Strayhorn was a 16-year-old high school student in Pittsburgh when he brought his songwriting ability to Ellington’s attention. One of the songs he demonstrated that day was “Lush Life.” “Take The ‘A’ Train” followed […]

The Lost Bobby Scott

5 days agoMusic / Jazz : JazzWax

If I could sing and accompany myself on piano, I'd want to sound like Bobby Scott. The pianist and singer-songwriter (1937-1990) started out in the early 1950s as a superb jazz pianist and composer-arranger (Bethlehem, Verve, ABC-Paramount), shifting to pop-rock...       Related Stories Bobby Scott: Back to Joe's  

Hod O'Brien (1936-2016)

6 days agoMusic / Jazz : JazzWax

Hod O'Brien, a ruggedly handsome and soft-spoken bebop pianist who came to jazz in the late 1950s, left jazz for 10 years in the 1960s and early 1970s, only to return to the music, becoming one of the most highly...        

Weekend Extra: “Ow!”

6 days agoMusic / Jazz : Rifftides

I hope that you have as much fun watching and listening to this video as Ray Brown did when it was recorded. Brown is the bassist in a reunion with his old boss Dizzy Gillespie. He was the bassist on the original recording of “Ow!” by Gillespie’s big band in 1947, and James Moody was in […]

Hot on the heels of Hypersound

Why aren’t more people aware of Geinoh Yamashirogumi, given the legendary status of AKIRA and its soundtrack, for which they are responsible? We have featured them several times here, in an attempt to redress this situation, and speed up humanity’s currently stalled process of spiritual enlightenment. We previously mentioned that they are a collective of […]

Paul Desmond, Born 11/25/24

last weekMusic / Jazz : Rifftides

Normally, I pay little attention to my smart phone, but today it alerted me to several social media messages pointing out that I had not posted about Paul Desmond on his 92nd birthday. Believe me, it was on my to-do list, but the list was hijacked by a succession of duties, all necessary, important and […]

Weekend Wax Bits

last weekMusic / Jazz : JazzWax

So sorry for being unable to post my usual Weekend Wax Bits last weekend. I was in Toronto and crushed for time. Let me make it up to you with an action-packed roundup this week... My Barnes & Noble talk...        

Mose Allison: Club Date

last weekMusic / Jazz : JazzWax

On Dec. 29, 1989, pianist-singer Mose Allison appeared on Club Date, a San Diego TV show. He was joined by Gary LeFebvre on alto sax, Gunnar Biggs on bass and Dave Coleman on drums. Mose died earlier this month. [Photo...       Related Stories Mose Allison: Favorite Tracks Mose Allison: Thinkin' + Feelin' Mose Allison: Live in California  

Thanksgiving 2017

last weekMusic / Jazz : Rifftides

This is an important American national holiday. To those in or from the United States, the Rifftides staff wishes you a happy Thanksgiving. To those around the world: we appreciate your interest, readership and comments. Wherever you are, we hope that you have much for which to be thankful. (The first Thanksving at Plymouth, oil […]

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