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JJA Member Updates: October 2012

Oct 14th, 2012 | By

Looking for proof that jazz is alive and well? You’ll find the most recent publications and other work reported by the extremely active members of the Jazz Journalists Association after the jump. We never sleep!  If you are a JJA member and would like your recent activities included in the next installment of Member Updates, send a brief paragraph beginning with your name to membernews@gmail.com by November 1, 2012.


David R. Adler is teaching jazz history to 58 freshmen at Queens College this semester. He has reviewed recordings by Aruan Ortiz, Kenny Wheeler and Rez Abbasi for Stereophile, and written liner notes for David Kikoski, Opus 5, Teriver Cheung and Todd Marcus. He’s currently working on a profile of Me’shell Ndegeocello for JazzTimes. His three-year-old daughter Tess is taking well to the presence of little sister Vida, age 10 weeks as of this writing.


Bob Blumenthal will be leading listening sessions on the Gary Burton-Chick Corea collaboration for three New England presenters who are featuring the duo plus the Harlem String Quartet in concert this month.  The sessions will take place as follows: 10/15 – Dartmouth Bookstore, Hanover, NH, 5:30 PM; 10/19 – Amy Tarrant Gallery, Burlington, VT, 6:30 PM; 10/21 – Symphony Hall, Boston, MA, 4:00 PM.


Noal Cohen contributed to the liner notes of the new Uptown double CD, Frank Wess – Johnny Coles/Two At the Top (Uptown UPCD27.69/27.70).


Sharonne Cohen wrote about The Devil’s Music: The Life and Blues of Bessie Smith — a musical play celebrating the Empress of the Blues — which has been running, somewhat under the radar, for the past 12 years. She also offered a tribute to pianist/composer Shimrit Shoshan, who passed away at the age of 29, reporting on a memorial held by the NYC jazz community at Smalls. Both pieces appeared in DownBeat.


Renetta DeBlase regularly sends Rich Keith of www.purejazzradio.com a list of jazz events in the Washington, DC, area that he posts on his web site, encouraging visitors to the District to attend concerts at the Kennedy Center and at clubs. She sent a copy of her jazz history audiobook about Billy Taylor and Duke Ellington to Nat Hentoff and to Burnett Thompson, a composer, pianist, and teacher, www.pianojazz.com.


Jake Feinberg interviewed his biggest name to date, after 200 interviews with musicians and 20 months on AM 1330 the Star. Bill Cosby, the greatest crossover entertainer of our time, was his guest for an uninterrupted 1 hour and 40 minutes. Hear it at http://www.jakefeinbergshow.com/2012/09/jfs-88-the-bill-cosby-interview/


Ken Franckling provided the college and university band CD reviews for Jazz Times’ 2012-2013 Jazz Education Guide and previewed southwest Florida’s fall 2012 through spring 2013 jazz concert season for JazzTimes.com. Images from his Jazz in the Key of Light photo archive will be on display at the Charlotte County Jazz Society’s concert series in Port Charlotte, varying at each monthly concert from October through April.


Gary Giddins has written an afterward to Dorothy Baker’s 1938 novel Young Man with a Horn, which New York Review Books is finally bringing out this month. The Leon Levy Center for Biography, of which Gary is executive director, is now accepting applications for the 2013-2014 Leon Levy Fellows in Biography, until November, for published writers who are now tackling biographies. (Info at 212-817-2025)


Sid Gribetz presented a five hour radio tribute to Willis Gator Tail Jackson on WKCR (89.9 FM, NYC) on September 30.


Steve Griggs wrote 10 previews for the Earshot Jazz Festival. Steve’s review of the new Marian McPartland biography by Paul de Barros will be published in November. Steve is working on a profile of pianist Laurence Hobgood for Cadence Magazine. Steve writes 4 blogs, on music, Joe Brazil, a jazz listening class, and a class of audio mashups. Steve has been nominated to join the board of the Friends of the Seattle Public Library.


Marcia Hillman has submitted her liner notes for Savant CD “Cedar Walton Presents Piero Odorici” for consideration for the current 55th Annual Grammy Awards.


Patrick Hinely continues to be surprised by where ECM Records places his photographs years after he created them—most recently a 1989 backstage shot of Carla Bley and Steve Swallow, as part of ” ECM: A Cultural Archaeology”; and also a soundboard view of Manfred Eicher and Jan-Erik Kongshaug from the1996 New York recording sessions for Kenny Wheeler’s album Angel Song, which was published in the Sacramento-based sound engineering magazine Tape Op.


Michael Hittman and flutist Michel Gentile are curating the Jeff GardnerTrio at the Sycomore Bar, Brooklyn, New York on October 28. There are two sets (8 & 10 p.m.), and no admission.


Thomas Jacobsen attended the annual meetings of the International Association of Jazz Record Collectors in New Orleans, September 6-8.  Speakers included Charles Suhor, Bruce Raeburn, Lars Eedegran, Nina Buck and George Jr., and Michael Boving and Spencer Williams Jr., grandson of Clarence Williams. The Tornedo Brass Band played for the closing banquet.  Attendees included many from abroad.


Matthew Kassel reviewed the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival for DownBeat. He wrote about two new Fred Hersch albums for The New York City Jazz Record. He reviewed a Hersch Trio performance at the Village Vanguard for The Forward, along with Ezra Weiss’s new big-band album. He profiled Roy Nathanson’s jazz and poetry series at The Stone for Capital New York. He also wrote a feature story for The Wall Street Journal on innovative traffic signals.


Kiyoshi Koyama’s two-hour JAZZ TONIGHT show ( every Saturday from 11:00pm-1:00am) on NHK-FM will feature Charles Mingus (October 6th) in celebration of his 90th birthday, and pianist Yoko Miwa (October 20th), who will be back in Japan performing around the country for the second time this year. Currently Ms. Miwa is living in Boston and teaching at Berklee.


Rudy Lu photographed the 9th annual Wall Street Jazz Festival in Kingston, NY on 9/1, the weather abbreviated Albany, NY Riverfront Jazz Festival on 9/8, Tom Harrell Quartet in concert in Schenectady, the 29th annual Lake George Jazz Weekend on 9/14-9/15 and the debut of Ben Allison’s Jim Hall Project in Athens, NY on 9/29 for albanyjazz.com.  His Ben Allison photos were also featured with a review by J  Hunter on nippertown.com.


Antoinette Montague will be singing Jazz and Blues at the Lenox Lounge, this Sat, October 6, 2012, 8:00 and 10:00 pm sets. Also returning to the 52nd Street Jazz Fest, October 20, 2012 at 1:00pm – 3:00, The Duke Ellington Center for the Arts produced by Mercedes Ellington. For details check antoinettemontague.com.


Jennifer Odell‘s Downbeat cover story, “No Guts, No Glory,” about Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews and the making of “For True,” was selected for inclusion in the 2012 Best Music Writing anthology. She caught up with Troy again this fall to discuss his upcoming project with Raphael Saadiq for Downbeat’s upcoming Readers Poll issue. Jennifer also reviewed new releases by Maceo Parker, Roni Ben-Hur and Santi Debriano.


John Pietaro, Vibraphonist/Percussionist, records with new ensemble The Red Microphone (10/7), and hosts The October Jazz Revolution (10/20, 17 Frost, Brooklyn) featuring Ras Moshe, Erika Dagnino, Nora McCarthy & Jorge Sylvester and Radio NOIR. He also leads the Dissident Arts Orchestra as it plays a live improvised score to The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (17 Frost). Plus gigs with Karl Berger (10/18, El Taller), Erika Dagnino (10/22, Revival Bar, and 10/26, Brecht Forum) – see www.DissidentArts.com.


Peter Pullman will be on WBGO’s Jazz from the Archives on consecutive Sunday evenings, 30 September and 7 October, from 11:00 pm to midnight (Eastern). The program is a long-running coproduction of the NPR affiliate and Institute of Jazz Studies, Rutgers University. Tune in to 88.3FM on these evenings to hear Bud Powell’s music and Pullman’s reading of excerpts from his new biography, Wail: The Life of Bud Powell.


Bruce Pulver of Atlanta, GA has been building artist relationships through his review writing, liner note projects, radio appearances,  local school master classes and clinics organizing for close to ten years. Most recently he has been organizing and producing a live jazz concert program called the “Performances in the Home” Concert Series, combining an evening of food, drink and live jazz performances in the intimate setting of a home.


Carol Sudhalter‘s Astoria Jazz Band will give its fourth and final concert in the grant-funded Series ‘Octogenarians of Jazz’ on Oct. 13, 3 pm at Steinway Reformed Church, Astoria.  The concert will feature nonagenarian tenor saxophonist Fred Staton accompanied by quartet (first three concerts featured David Amram,  Rudy Lawless and Sarah McLawler). The Elder Statesman’s magnificent career highlights can be viewed at: http://www.jazzmuseuminharlem.org/archive.php?id=284.


Ron Sweetman has been awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for his thirty six years of research, preparation & presentation of his weekly two-hour jazz radio program “In A Mellow Tone” on CKCU FM in Ottawa, Canada.


Dragan Tasic photographed the 38th Jazz Festival Willisau, Switzerland and Bluesto Bop Festival , Lugano, Switzerland for Jazz’N’More.


Greg Thomas‘s Sunday jazz column in the New York Daily News has had recent features on Ron Carter, Cedar Walton, Gerald Clayton, Vijay Iyer, Michel Camilo, Luciana Souza, Antonio Ciacca, Bobby Sanabria, and Jane Monheit. On October 2nd he moderated a panel discussion on the documentary “The Savoy King: Chick Webb and the Music That Changed America” at the Schomburg Center in Harlem.


Nancy Valentine sang,”Thank You For Everything,” lyrics by Edmund Anderson for Billy Staryhorn’s “Lotus Blossom,” at Saint Peter’s Church, NYC on September 12th for the Memorial of Edmund’s widow, Joan Uttal-Anderson.  On October 9th, Nancy will continue recording her straight-ahead jazz CD devoted to the music of Billy Strayhorn.

 JJA Member Updates are compiled and edited by Mike West with assistance from Tanya Ellerbee.

Use our JJA Member Directories to find  JJA members qualified to contribute to your  publication or production or to assist you with your jazz-related project.  The directories can be searched by name,  area of expertise and geographic location.

If you aren’t a JJA Member yet, consider joining us. Membership is open to both Professional Journalists (writers, bloggers, photographers, videographers, web producers and others who cover jazz) and  Industry Associates (musicians, educators, presenters, promoters and others who work in the industry and support our work.)


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