Jazz

Les McCann – Invitation to Openness (1972; 2015 reissue)

Les McCann – Invitation to Openness (1972; 2015 reissue)

Les McCann’s free-form soul-jazz experiment ‘Invitation to Openness’ is the sound of someone loosing himself from the bonds of expectation.

The Uppercut: Matthew Shipp Mat Walerian Duo – Live at Okuden (2015)

The Uppercut: Matthew Shipp Mat Walerian Duo – Live at Okuden (2015)

As a vehicle for this promising woodwinds talent from Poland Mat Walerian, his encounter with Matthew Shipp on ‘Live at Okuden’ makes good on that promise.

JD Allen, “A Throng of Millions Can Be One” from Bloom (2015): One Track Mind

JD Allen, “A Throng of Millions Can Be One” from Bloom (2015): One Track Mind

JD Allen’s “A Throng of Millions Can Be One,” just one of many standout moments on ‘Bloom,’ feels like the birth of a new jazz hymn.

Miles Davis’ brilliant, misunderstood Bitches Brew broke every rule: ‘An art form unto itself’

Miles Davis’ brilliant, misunderstood Bitches Brew broke every rule: ‘An art form unto itself’

Miles Davis sideman Lenny White talks about recording the groundbreaking, genre-shattering ‘Bitches Brew,’ released in April of 1970.

Matthew Shipp on David S. Ware, unusual collaborations + the Miles Davis Paradigm

Matthew Shipp on David S. Ware, unusual collaborations + the Miles Davis Paradigm

Matthew Shipp offers interesting thoughts for Dialog Talk, a site that archives ideas and perspectives from extraordinary global arts figures.

Frank Sinatra, “Only the Lonely” from Ultimate Sinatra (2015): One Track Mind

Frank Sinatra, “Only the Lonely” from Ultimate Sinatra (2015): One Track Mind

Listen as Frank Sinatra sustains the words until you hear the cracks in his voice and, you become certain, his heart.

Donny McCaslin – Fast Future (2015)

Donny McCaslin – Fast Future (2015)

Donny McCaslin’s ‘Fast Future’ manages to be original, adventurous and engaging all at once, making this one of his very best efforts to date.

Cyrus Chestnut, “Gloria’s Step” from A Million Colors in Your Mind (2015)

Cyrus Chestnut, “Gloria’s Step” from A Million Colors in Your Mind (2015)

Cyrus Chestnut doesn’t supercede the definitive take by Bill Evans’ Trio. Still, I found myself enjoying the new corners he and his trio explored.

Frank Sinatra + Count Basie, “The Best is Yet To Come” from Ultimate Sinatra (2015)

Frank Sinatra + Count Basie, “The Best is Yet To Come” from Ultimate Sinatra (2015)

A highlight of ‘Ultimate Sinatra,’ everything is in place on Frank Sinatra’s Count Basie collaboration “Best is Yet to Come.” And then it surprises you.

Gavin Harrison – Cheating the Polygraph (2015)

Gavin Harrison – Cheating the Polygraph (2015)

Gavin Harrison’s ‘Cheating the Polygraph’ references Porcupine Tree and big band, but quickly moves well beyond those well-worn tropes.