Articles by: S. Victor Aaron

Jean-Luc Ponty – Mystical Adventures/ Individual Choice (1982/1983)

by S. Victor Aaron When I initally got into fusion jazz in the mid to late seventies, Jean-Luc Ponty was one of the first artists I became a fan of, and I still dig his music today. He’s been an enduring figure on the scene, having been recording for over forty years with the large majority of his output fallingRead More

Alice Coltrane (1937-2007) and Michael Brecker (1949-2007): An Appreciation

by S. Victor Aaron The jazz world took a double whammy over the weekend as Alice Coltrane and Michael Brecker passed away. Both of these artists were among my favorites, and like many of others, I’ll miss them and the major contributions they’ve made to the art form. Alice Coltrane was already an accomplished bop pianist when married John ColtraneRead More

Michael McDonald, “Tuesday Heartbreak” from Motown Two (2004): One Track Mind

Michael McDonald, “Tuesday Heartbreak” from Motown Two (2004): One Track Mind

We all know that Stevie Wonder is a great singer, but former Doobie Brothers star Michael McDonald simply outdoes him here.

One Track Mind: Nick Cave, "The Lyre of Orpheus" (2004)

by Pico I finally got around to listening to Tom Waits’ sprawling odds-and-ends collection Orphans and it occurred to me that Australian-born/England-residing singer-songwriter Nick Cave has a lot of similarities to Waits. Both have scary sounding voices (Waits a whiskey-scarred growl and Cave a deep baritone), write detailed narratives delving in frequently dark themes like death, love and religion, oftenRead More

One Track Mind: Otomo Yoshihide’s New Jazz Orchestra, "Gazzelloni" (2005)

by S. Victor Aaron Tokyo-based whack jazz guitarist, turntablist, composer, arranger and knob twiddler Otomo Yoshihide has been called the John Zorn of Japan for his love of combining experimental sounds with avant-garde jazz. And to my ears, there’s not much there to dispute the comparison, for better or for worse. His fascination with sine waves can be mind expandingRead More

Koko Taylor, “Merry, Merry Christmas” (1992): One Track Mind

Koko Taylor, “Merry, Merry Christmas” (1992): One Track Mind

With Koko Taylor’s sassy wailing, “Merry, Merry Christmas” provides a great excuse to sway to some prime, funky electric Chicago blues done right by one of its living legends.

Obscuro: Mariani – Perpetuum Mobile (1970)

by Pico When I first read about an album by Mariani called Perpetuum Mobile from 1970 and featuring Eric Johnson, two thoughts immediately came to mind. Either the “1970” part was a typo and “1980” was intended, or this was a different Eric Johnson than the Austin, Texas-based axe virtuoso known and worshiped by legions of electric guitar enthusiasts aroundRead More

One Track Mind: Ween, "Gabrielle" (2005)

by Pico A couple of weeks ago we looked at a band who at times sound like a virtual clone of Yes in their prime. This time, we spotlight a musical group who has taken mimicking others to an whole ‘nother level. Mickey Melchiondo and Aaron Freeman, aka Dean and Gene Ween, have been offering up songs that lyrically areRead More

One Track Mind: Guy Clark, "Stuff That Works" (1995)

by Pico In My Hallowed Opinion, it doesn’t matter much what kind of music it is, if it’s created and executed well, it’s worth listening to. That’s why you don’t have to like crooners to appreciate Sinatra. Or get into reggae to respect Bob Marley. That’s why even though I don’t consider myself a fan of country music, I canRead More

One Track Mind: Spock’s Beard, "South Side Of The Sky" (2002)

Alright, confession time. There are large areas of the musical landscape I listen to pretty regularly but haven’t written about and probably never will. And there’s various reasons for that. For instance, popular releases are bound to be well covered elsewhere, adding my thoughts to it just seems redundant. Then there is the time factor, as in, so much music,Read More

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