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Forgotten series: Bill Evans – The Complete Village Vanguard Recordings (1961)

by Nick DeRiso The pianist, of course, got all the press. But Scott Lafaro, this tragic genius in a unique counter-melodic style, is the one who so often gets forgotten. If you care anything about bass (rock, jazz or blues) you will find his recordings with Bill Evans at New York City’s Village Vanguard … and you will study them.Read More

One Track Mind: Nazz, "Open My Eyes" (1968)

by S. Victor Aaron Back in July, we talked aboutTodd Rundgren’s latest band, The New Cars. Then, we noted that the reconstituted and reconfigurated Cars threw out a few bones during their tour for the “Todd Is God” contingent in the crowd. One of these golden oldies is the brilliant, power-pop “Open My Eyes,” and in that article I, uh,Read More

Books: William C. Rhoden – Third and a Mile (2007)

by Nick DeRiso The timing couldn’t have been better: ESPN Books issues “Third and a Mile,” focusing on black NFL quarterbacks like Grambling products James “Shack” Harris and Doug Williams. And it happens just as two African-Americans advance to the Super Bowl as head coaches for the first time ever. That’s given these two local heroes a chance to reflect,Read More

Miles Davis and John Coltrane – Green Dolphin Street (1960)

by Nick DeRiso The last time Miles Davis and John Coltrane played together, as best I can tell. Recorded in Holland in April 1960, the stirring song cycle was later issued stateside by the little-known Natasha Imports. One version, from the 9th, had just So What, ‘Round Midnight, On Green Dolphin Street (obviously), Walkin and The Theme. Later copies, IRead More

Forgotten series: Tony Williams, Bobby Watson, Roy Hargrove – Pride of Lions (1992)

by Nick DeRiso Imagine a swinging Chopin, or Chick Corea with a case of classical gas. That’s the vision of James L. Mack — and it comes into focus on “Pride of Lions,” featuring a slew of stars from Tony Williams and Roy Hargrove, to Bobby Watson and Philip Bailey. I picked it up because I love Williams, the one-timeRead More

One Track Mind: Michael Brecker, "Dogs In The Wine Shop" (1990)

Last weekend I helped my brother move across state. After we stuffed the 26 foot U-Haul and his Ford pickup, he handed me the keys to the Ford and just as we were about to embark he showed my his XM radio and before I can tell him I already had an iPod handy for listening, he gave me aRead More

One Track Mind: Dr. John, "When The Saints Go Marching In" (2004)

by Pico We were, of course, a little saddened that the historic season of Louisiana’s NFL team, the New Orleans Saints, came crashing to an ugly end last Sunday. With apologies to U2 and Green Day, the song most associated with this team remains “When The Saints Go Marching In”. Just as it was on our minds for the Saints’Read More

U2/Green Day, “The Saints Are Coming” (2006): One Track Mind

They opened up the building and we streamed through the turnstiles, tickets and hats and signs in hand. We bought Dome Foam, personal pizzas, and peanuts. So much of that was similar to other days in this place, as the New Orleans Saints played their first home game of the 2006 NFL season. But, in the wake of Hurricane Katrina,Read More

Jesus "Chucho" Valdez – El Jazz Cubano/Solo Piano (1992)

by Nick DeRiso Capitol Records — under its Blue Note and World Pacific imprints — put out a much-needed overview of Cuban jazz a while back. From them emerged a new star: Showcased on both “El Jazz Cubano” (WP) and “Solo Piano” (BN) is the swinging magic of pianist Jesus “Chucho” Valdez. He’s featured both by himself and as theRead More

One Track Mind: Lindsey Buckingham, "Not Too Late" (2006)

While just about everyone else who critiques music have already trotted out their “Best of 2006” lists, I’m still going through many of these releases for the first time (I might work faster if I got paid better). One of last year’s servings that I finally gave a listen to was a rare one by a key member of oneRead More

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