Jazz and Blues

Jazz Caliente
12:00 pm
Thu March 7, 2013

Innovators in Cuban Jazz: Grupo Irakere

Irakere album cover
stereophile.com

The pioneering Cuban jazz band, Irakere, nurtured some of Cuba's leading musicians who went on to gain international fame.

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Jazz
11:59 am
Wed March 6, 2013

Time is on their side: Ageless jazz drumming

"Killer" Ray Appleton, a veteran drummer with the wisdom of experience and ageless swing.
Jimmy Katz Courtesy of the artist

Originally published on Wed March 6, 2013 11:59 am

I've been listening to two very good new albums led by drummers. After learning that both men are in their early 70s, I can't help but wonder how I process that fact in what I hear.

"Killer" Ray Appleton (b. 1941) and Barry Altschul (b. 1943) practice different styles. But they both came of musical age in the hard-bop era, spent many years living in Europe and eventually returned to New York. In other words, they've each got a lot of experience.

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Jazz Northwest
3:00 pm
Sun March 3, 2013

Latin Jazz and more on Jazz Northwest this week

Latin jazz is one of the features on this week's Jazz Northwest, 2 PM Pacific on 88.5 KPLU.  Recent CD releases from veteran Seattle percussionists Johnny Conga and Lary Barilleau are included as well as a new solo CD by Brazilian pianist Jovino Santos Neto at the Fazioli Piano Salon in NYC.

Also this week, Vancouver reed man James Danderfer leads a New Orleans-style street band, and Jay Thomas' latest CD The Cats plays some neo-boogaloo!

Jazz Northwest is hosted by Jim Wilke, exclusively for 88.5 KPLU and kplu.org.  A podcast is available online following the broadcast.

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Blues Time Machine
12:00 pm
Fri March 1, 2013

Little Walter's 'Mellow Down Easy' rips through time

Little Walter

The Blues Time Machine

Little Walter made a harmonica sound like nothing that had been heard before – somewhere between a saxophone and an electric guitar. By the early 1950’s he not only used amplification, he used the amp to creatively alter his sound with distortion and sonic effects.

You might say he was the Jimi Hendrix of the harmonica. One song in particular has rolled through history: 'Mellow Down Easy.'

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Jazz Caliente
12:00 pm
Thu February 28, 2013

Latin Jazz Birthday: Willie Bobo

Willie Bobo February 28, 1934-September 15, 1983
afrocubanlatinjazz4.blogspot.com

William Correa was born to Puerto Rican parents in Brooklyn, and was raised surrounded by music in El Barrio.  At 14 he began learning to play bongos, later graduating to conga, timbales and trap drums.  

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Jazz Northwest
3:00 pm
Sun February 24, 2013

Dmitri Matheny Valentine's Day concert on Jazz Northwest on February 24

Dmitri Matheny, Nick Manson at Seattle Art Museum
Jim Wilke

Flugelhorn player Dmitri Matheny was in Seattle for a Valentine's Day concert at The Seattle Art Museum. The concert was recorded for Jazz Northwest and this week's episode will showcase some of the highlights.

Dmitri Matheny was a student of the late Art Farmer, one of the most highly regarded musicians to play the instrument.  Joined by a former Seattle resident, Nick Manson on piano, with Chris Higgins, bass and Robert Rushing, drums, the quartet played a mix of standards, ballads and originals for an appreciative crowd. 

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Blues Time Machine
12:00 pm
Fri February 22, 2013

Still a mystery who wrote 'One Way Out'

The Blues Time Machine

It’s another one of those mysteries — who actually wrote “One Way Out”?

Elmore James recorded it in 1961, but didn’t release it until ’65. Sonny Boy Williamson released a version in 1961 and 1965 and G.L. Crockett had a 1965 hit with the same song under a different name.

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Jazz Caliente
12:00 pm
Thu February 21, 2013

A Sampling of Seattle's Latin Jazz

Fred Hoadley and Sonando at Tula's
Daniel Sheehan

Seattle is home to a number of very talented musicians whose focus is Latin Jazz.  Here are three bands well worth searching for in the clubs and concert halls of the Emerald City:

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Jazz & Blues
8:40 am
Thu February 21, 2013

3 local high school jazz bands to compete in elite NYC competition

Garfield High School jazz band
www.theculturemom.com

Three Seattle-area high school jazz bands have been selected from nearly 100 schools across the country to compete in this year’s prestigious Essentially Ellington Competition in New York City.

Jazz bands from Garfield and Roosevelt in Seattle as well as Edmonds-Woodway were the only three high schools selected from a region that includes 11 states and several Canadian provinces.

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The Science of Music
10:53 pm
Tue February 19, 2013

Can you learn to like music you hate?

Harmony — it's in the ear of the beholder, Australian researchers say.
iStock

Originally published on Fri February 15, 2013 4:23 pm

You hear some music you hate. That's fair. We all do on occasion. But can you learn to love — or at least not loathe — that music? Can you intentionally transform the visceral response you have to certain pieces and styles, or does that happen at some more incalculable, subtle level?

Researchers at Australia's University of Melbourne say that the more dissonance (which they describe as "perceived roughness, harshness, unpleasantness, or difficulty in listening to the sound") that we hear in music, the less we enjoy said music. Seems obvious enough, right?

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Jazz Northwest
3:00 pm
Sun February 17, 2013

Jazz Northwest for February 18

Esperanza Spalding and Thara Memory at the 55th Grammy Awards

Esperanza Spalding grew up in Portland, and one her mentors was trumpet player and educator Thara Memory.  The two were reunited on stage at the 55th Grammy Awards as they were awarded a Grammy for their co- arrangement of "City Of Roses" named for their hometown, Portland, OR.  The song is one of the originals on Esperanza Spalding's latest CD, "Radio Music Society" which also won a Grammy for Best Jazz Vocal Album.  The song is one of the features on this week's Jazz Northwest.

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Jazz Caliente
12:00 pm
Thu February 14, 2013

A KPLU Travel Club Valentine to Cuban music

Jorge Luis Pacheco
allaboutjazz.com

The KPLU Travel Club trip to Cuba was a great success, and the days and nights were filled with music! 

Use the arrows above the picture to flip through the slide show of 15 of my music-related photos from Cuba.

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Jazz & Blues
1:21 pm
Wed February 13, 2013

February 13 is World Radio Day

Danilo Perez
sfjazz.org

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) encourages us to acknowlege World Radio Day

"...a day to celebrate radio as a medium; to improve international cooperation between broadcasters; and to encourage major networks and community radio alike to promote access to information and freedom of expression over the airwaves. "

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Jazz Northwest
3:00 pm
Sun February 10, 2013

Icelandic pianist Sunna Gunnlaugs, and Trombonasaurus Wrecks on Jazz NW

Sunna Gunnlaugs Trio: Scott McLemore,Porgrímur Jóhnsson, Sunna Gunnlaugs.
Credit Hör∂ur Sveinsson

A double bill featuring a piano trio from Iceland, and a six trombone band is featured on Jazz Northwest this week.  The groups were recorded on separate occasions playing at Tula's in Seattle. 

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Blues Time Machine
12:05 pm
Fri February 8, 2013

Many rivers converged to make a New Orleans classic: 'Iko Iko'

Mardi Gras Indian
Joel Mann

The Blues Time Machine

It’s one of the most iconic songs from New Orleans, and like the city, it’s origin and meaning are a product of may different influences.

Its meaning is still being debated by scholars and linguists, but “Iko Iko” was first recorded in 1953 by James “Sugar Boy” Crawford, who wrote the pop song “Jock-A-Mo” based on 2 different Mardi Gras Indian chants. The Mardi Gras “Indians” are actually African-American groups who have been parading as Indian tribes at Mardi Gras since the mid-19th Century.

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