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JJA Member Updates: April 2013

Apr 12th, 2013 | 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@jazzjournalists.org by May 3, 2013.


David R. Adler is writing liner notes for David Binney’s Lifted Land (Criss Cross) and Darryl Harper’s The Edenfred Files (Hipnotic), both forthcoming in 2013. David also wrote an Opening Chorus piece on Tony Malaby for JazzTimes, and reviews of Eric Revis’s Parallax (Clean Feed) and Miguel Zenon’s Oye!!! Live in Puerto Rico (Miel) for The New York City Jazz Record. At press time, David is finishing up his second monthly blog post for The Village Voice.

Gregg Akkerman, as editor for the new “Listener’s Companion” book series from Scarecrow Press, saw the first entry released in March titled “Experiencing Stravinsky” by Robin Maconie. He discussed the music and life of Johnny Hartman on two recent radio interviews with Lazaro Vega’s “Jazz From Blue Lake” (WBLV-FM) and Derrick Lucas on WGMC as part of Black History Month. Akkerman’s 2012 book “The Last Balladeer: The Johnny Hartman Story” will be re-released in paperback this summer by Scarecrow Press.

Jane Ira Bloom performed as a member of a nation-wide telematic music ensemble in “Virtual Tour: A Reduced-Carbon Footprint Concert Series, California-New York” on April 7  at New York – Stony Brook University, Simons Center for Geometry and Physics Auditorium. The concert features renowned experimental jazz and computer music musicians, that are long-time collaborators, performing original works together telematically in California and New York.

Stephanie J. Castillo reached her Kickstarter goal of $50,000 and will begin her film, Night Bird Song: The Thomas Chapin Story, this summer. In a nail-biting ending, the 45-day global campaign ended on March 30 at 11:45am with 224 backers from the U.S. and other countries where Thomas had fans. The last $8,300 needed to meet her goal came from an anonymous backer, a couple in NYC. Total raised: $51,552, with the backers giving an average of $132 each.

Ken Franckling wrote the liner notes for pianist Mac Chrupcala’s new trio CD, One More for the Road (Cats Paw), with Bernard Purdie and Jim Cammack. He also reviewed singer Giacomo Gates’ March Sarasota Jazz Festival concert for JazzTimes, and posts extensive coverage of the Southwest Florida jazz scene on his Jazz Notes blog. He profiled pianist Benny Green in the February issue of Hot House.

Steve Griggs wrote a profile of Luke Bergman and preview of the Seattle Women in Jazz Festival for Earshot Jazz. He is also teaching a jazz analysis class at Puget Sound Community School focused on the album Page One by Joe Henderson.

Marcia Hillman interviewed jazz drummer Steve Williams for a feature article to appear in the May issue of The New York City Jazz Record. She will also be highlighting JazzApril in her regular column for the April issue of The Jassman.

Thomas Jacobsen reviewed Anat Cohen’s CD,Claroscuro, in the March issue of The Clarinet. He also did the liner notes for New Orleans clarinetist Joe Torregano’s CD,It Had to Be You.

Kiyoshi Koyama’s weekly two hours NHK-FM JAZZ TONIGHT show (every Saturday 11:00pm-1:00am) will welcome pianist Fred Hersch as special guest next month. Mr. Hersch will talk about his Grammy nominated Alive at the Vanguard album and will perform a solo piano.

Bill Leikam covered the live shows of the John Daversa Small Band and the Hal Galper Trio both of them at the Bach Dancing & Dynamite Society aka the Douglas Beach House in Half Moon Bay, California. He also covered the William Parker Show at Stanford University’s newly opened Bing Concert Hall. These three live reviews are being written for All About Jazz and JazzWest.com.

Rudy Lu photographed and reviewed a Martha Redbone/John McEuen concert for nippertown.com. He photographed, Stephane Wremble, Dead Cat Bounce, Brian Blade Fellowship Band and Bopitude for albanyjazz.com.

Howard Mandel wrote about Karl Berger and the 40th anniversary of the Creative Music Studio for The Wire (due out in May), blogged about the birthdays of Ornette Coleman and Cecil Taylor, moderated JJA webinars on digital downloads for reviewing and hosting Jazz Hero parties, brought conguero John Amira to his World Music class at NYU, attended a tribute to the late Fred Anderson in Chicago, and spent a weekend at the Brubeck Institute’s 12th annual festival in Stockton, Ca.

Bill Milkowski wrote liner notes for David Chesky’s New York Rags, and for David Weiss’ Endangered Species. He also interviewed Maria Schneider for Jazziz and wrote an appreciation of the late Claude Nobs in a Montreux Jazz Festival preview for Down Beat. He also interviewed Bob James & David Sanborn (in conjunction with their new Okeh release, Quartette Humaine), and did an appreciation of the late Claude Nobs and a roundup of John Zorn CD reviews, both for Down Beat.

Steve Monroe‘s March Jazz Avenues for the Mid-City DC edition of capitalcommunitynews.com. included a preview of Amy K. Bormet’s Washington Women in Jazz Festival, a review of trumpeter Carol Morgan’s group at the Atlas, and highlights of the Mid-Atlantic Jazz Festival, where Monroe interviewed Orrin Evans and Tim Warfield. Monroe also blogged on Nasar and Kush Abadey’s Generations Legacy Band show, and Kimberly Thompson’s festival show, both at the Atlas, and the new Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club’s orchestra.

Jennifer Odell recently organized (with John Swenson) the first monthly meetup of an extended group of New Orleans jazz journalists, establishing a mission and plans to honor Kidd Jordan, our local Jazz Hero.  She also says,”In Downbeat, stay tuned for my profile on cellist Helen Gillet, a story on Sweet Home New Orleans’new economic empowerment program for musicians, and reviews of new discs from Jaleel Shaw and Pedrito Martinez.”

John Pietaro and The Red Microphone perform and celebrate the release of their debut CD, The Red Microphone Speaks (Zirzamin 4/17). Pietaro also plays with Ras Moshe (Clemente Soto Velez Center 4/7), Dissident Arts Orchestra (Sycamore 4/8) and Karl Berger’s Improvisers Orchestra (El Taller 4/4 and Shapeshifter Lab 4/18).

Doug Ramsey wrote essays for forthcoming albums by Jerry Bergonzi on Savant and by the Inventions Trio (Bill Mays, Marvin Stamm and Alisa Horn) on the revitalized Chiaroscuro label.

Lew Shaw–  forty of Lew’s profiles of jazz musicians will soon be available in a 200-page book entitled JAZZ BEAT, Notes on Classic Jazz. Publication is scheduled for mid-May.

Arnold Jay Smith writes recently in his  blog Jazz Insights of clarinetists Will & Peter Anderson saluting Artie Shaw with Strings & a Benny Goodman late Octet, and Eddie Daniels with Roger Kellaway.

Daniel Smith‘s return to the performing stage is now underway after more than a year due to a serious illness in his family. He next performs at the Kitano on April 24th. JJA members in the NY area are welcome to attend (complimentary admission and preferred seating) by contacting the Kitano reservation line at  212 885 7119.  Further engagements to be announced. Download samples of ‘Brazilian Jazz Concerto for Bassoon and Orchestra’ by Brazilian composer Joao MacDowell on his website .

Carol Sudhalter toured Italy for 3 weeks in Feb-March, giving 11 concerts and two masterclasses (‘Jazz Improv’ and ‘English Diction for Singers’) in Lombardy, Piemonte, Lazio and Puglia. She is delighted that her knowledge of Italian allows her to explain the poignant turns of phrase and nuances of so many of the American Songbook’s great lyrics.

Jeff Tamarkin is excited to be attending International Jazz Day celebrations in Istanbul at the end of April. Almost as exciting was going to the Paul Motian Tribute Concert at NYC’s Symphony Space, which he reviewed for an upcoming issue of JazzTimes (a photo gallery from the show is running on the JT site now). He is currently reviewing (and quite enjoying) the new Terence Blanchard CD.

Dragan Tasic photographed Dianne Reeves at the KKL Luzern, Switzerland, Mar. 25; Jeff Hamilton Trio at Grand Casino Luzern, Switzerland, Mar. 17; and Joyful Noise 29 feat. Erb-Escher-Koch-Leimgruber-Studer at Jazzkantine, Luzern, Switzerland, Mar. 2.

Pedro Tavares interviewed guitarist André Fernandes for Le Cool Lisboa and the Albatre Trio for Magnética Magazine. He furthermore previewed other concerts: Brad Mehldau + Mark Giuliana, Rodrigo Amado & Gabriel Ferrandini Duo, and Julian Arguelles Quintet, among others. He reviewed the album  A Casa da Árvore by João Firmino Trio.

Michael J. West wrote liner notes for the debut album by Michael Bowie’s DC-based band Sine Qua Non. He profiled Jeremy Pelt for JazzTimes, and contributed reviews of Miguel Zenon’s Oye!!! Live in Puerto Rico and New York Art Quartet’s call it art box set. He also reviewed Kendrick Scott’s CD release concert for the Washington Post, and wrote a feature on Westminster Presbyterian Church’s “Jazz Night” for Washington City Paper.


Member Updates are edited by Michael J. 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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