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NEWS
March 31, 2014 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
Charles Baird Parker, 61, of Lansdale, the sole surviving child of the jazz saxophone great Charlie "Bird" Parker, died Sunday, March 23, at Lansdale Hospital of kidney, liver, and respiratory failure. News of Mr. Parker's death was released by his attorney, Albert Oehrle. Mr. Parker's father died in 1955 at age 34 while in mid-career as a jazz soloist. He helped create bebop, characterized by quick tempos and improvisation. His mother, Chan Woods, a dancer, died in 1999 at age 74 in Champmotteux, France.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 29, 2012 | BY CHRIS BARTON, Los Angeles Times
LOS ANGELES - The cavernous dance club in downtown L.A. is hopping, and the weekend is still a day away. The club is ordinarily a hotbed of thumping house music, but tonight, the headliner - Houston-born jazz pianist and bandleader Robert Glasper - is switching things up. Behind a bank of keyboards, Glasper leads his quartet through a restless swirl of searching piano melody, causing the crowd to sway under the hazy colored lights. As the song gathers into focus, one musician begins repeating an unmistakable, 40-year-old refrain, his voice shaded by electronics: "A love supreme . . . A love supreme . . . " This introduction of John Coltrane (or at least the sounds he inspired)
NEWS
May 17, 1996 | by Al Hunter Jr., Daily News Staff Writer
STANLEY TURRENTINE, "Jazz in the Sanctuary. " Featuring the Clayton White Singers and Trudy Pitts & Mr. C with Lee Smith. Mother Bethel AME Church, 419 S. 6th St. Sunday, 7 p.m. Tickets: $20. Info: 215-893-9912. Stanley Turrentine remembers he was on a gig at Count Basie's club in New York City when the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was killed. James Earl Ray's bullet silenced an elegant voice, triggered urban riots and, says Turrentine, killed jazz in the black neighborhood.
NEWS
December 26, 1996 | by Al Hunter Jr., Daily News Staff Writer
Back in the 1930s and '40s, jazz was a popular source of entertainment. People flocked to large ballrooms to listen, dance and marvel at the skills of the musicians. But the presentation and packaging changed. Jazz became the exclusive province of the cerebral chic and cheap club owners. The music that best "reflects the American democratic idea," was banished to "dark, little, stinky clubs," says T.S. Monk, son of the late jazz pianist and composer Thelonious Monk. And T.S. Monk, a former funk and R&B drummer who now plays jazz, believes the only way for jazz to reconnect with Americans is to get it on television, not in the usual historical or cultural shows, but as pure entertainment - with lighting, staging, drama, excitement.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 25, 1999 | By Kevin L. Carter, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
It's one of the top-selling jazz records of all time. Week in, week out, it sells more copies than many pop records - and it has for years. It is important because it brought together four of the greatest soloists of all time, as well as a top drummer and bassist, all of whom played at their peak on the record's six cuts, a couple of which have become jazz classics. It is Miles Davis' Kind of Blue, and on Aug. 17, the world of jazz will be celebrating the 40th anniversary of its recording.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 18, 1996 | By Daniel Webster, INQUIRER MUSIC CRITIC
Jazz, as an influence on music of this century, has a history that resembles the business cycle. Its chart shows surges and relapses, highs and lows, but an insistent presence. Speculum Musicae played from those charts Monday in a one-nighter at the Settlement Music School when three of its members performed jazz-based music written in the last 50 years. Stravinsky and Bohuslav Martinu spoke for the mid-century surge of jazz-based music; composers Edward Jacobs, Richard Festinger and Jonathan Harvey stood up for jazz as a vehicle to carry music into the new millennium.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 20, 1986 | By Jack Lloyd, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Mellon Jazz Festival rolled on last night at the Academy of Music with performances by two of the biggest question marks in the series, Michael Franks and Stanley Clarke. Never mind that it appeared to be an odd-couple booking; there were those who wondered just what either of these guys was doing at a jazz festival. As it turned out, Franks and Clarke came prepared with the answer. Clarke, of course, is the bass virtuoso whose jazz roots cannot be denied. As a member of Chick Corea's Return to Forever group and later on his own, Clarke was a vital force in the forging of fusion jazz in the early 1970s.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 3, 1994 | By Ken Keuffel Jr., FOR THE INQUIRER
Jazz elements in non-jazz idioms keep a listener engaged, even when they lead to the most jarring dissonance and ambiguous tonality. I conclude this after attending a concert of contemporary classical compositions Friday at Temple University's Rock Hall. Parnassus, a virtuoso New York ensemble, presented four works, three of which received premieres. October by Temple professor Maurice Wright and Combo by Parnassus conductor Anthony Korf included at least a modicum of jazz elements (e.g.
NEWS
June 2, 2000 | by Jonathan Takiff, Daily News Staff Writer
THE AT&T INTERNATIONAL WOMEN IN MUSIC FESTIVAL. 3 p.m. Sunday, Mann Center for Performing Arts, 52nd Street and Parkside Avenue in West Fairmount Park. Tickets: $20, $25 and $30. PhilaCharge: 215-878-7707. They solo with the finesse of a Jean-Luc Ponty, wail with the same wallop as the big bands of Buddy Rich and Woody Herman, yet get only a fraction of the respect. Such is the fate when you're young, gifted, and a woman, treading in the male-dominated world of jazz. This Sunday, the first (hopefully annual)
NEWS
September 1, 2000 | by Al Hunter Jr., Daily News Staff Writer
I'm sure when Peter J. McGuire first thought up the idea of Labor Day in the early 1880s, his motive was good -we should honor America's workers. But like the holidays set aside to honor veterans, presidents and Christopher Columbus, Labor Day has become simply another day off, a chance to earn some overtime or catch a sale. It marks the end of summer, the start of school and the celebration of jazz. OK, so I made the last one up. What the heck, jazz should get a day of recognition, and not just when some famous dead guy's birthday rolls around.
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NEWS
June 19, 2015 | By Shaun Brady, For The Inquirer
As members of the cast of the new opera Charlie Parker's Yardbird took their bows on the stage of the Kimmel Center's Perelman Theater this month, it was notable that the women outnumbered the men. The Opera Philadelphia world premiere, with a libretto by Bridgette Wimberly, looked at the life of the famed saxophonist through the eyes of the women in his life, with a standout performance by soprano Angela Brown as Parker's mother, Addie. As Jay Wahl, the Kimmel Center's artistic director of programming, points out, "Jazz has been a very male-dominated art form, and the idea of motherhood in jazz is not something that gets talked about very often.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 16, 2015 | By Shaun Brady, For The Inquirer
Over their 15 years together, the Bad Plus has developed a distinctive and recognizable sound: irreverent, florid, a juggling act of jazz, rock, and classical influences. This is, after all, a band that has covered both Stravinsky's Rite of Spring and Kurt Cobain's "Smells Like Teen Spirit. " Rare in jazz, it's a band in the truest sense, never allowing substitutions on the bandstand and always speaking in a collective voice. All of which makes the addition of a fourth voice an intriguing notion, especially one as well-defined as that of saxophonist Joshua Redman, who has enjoyed his own successful career for more than 20 years.
TRAVEL
June 15, 2015 | By Sean Wood, For The Inquirer
My connoisseur friend, a professional jazz saxophonist, opted for high-profile shows the likes of Wayne Shorter and Ron Carter. But when we attended the Montreal International Jazz Festival, I went the more economical route, taking in excellent free concerts among the downtown streets. Billed as the largest jazz festival in the world, Montreal's blowout is expected to draw at least 2.5 million visitors for its 36th iteration, from June 26 to July 5. It showcases titans and nobodies, esoteric virtuosi and waiting-room-friendly crooners, and everything in between.
NEWS
June 13, 2015 | By Dan DeLuca, Inquirer Music Critic
One of the most mind-blowing musicians of all time, jazz great Ornette Coleman, 85, died of cardiac arrest Thursday in New York. From the beginning, Mr. Coleman was an energetic innovator intent on moving the music forward. The saxophonist, who was raised in Fort Worth, Texas, and played early on with Pee Wee Crayton's band - Crayton is famously supposed to have paid him "not to play" - and a Silas Green From New Orleans tent show, started off his solo career in 1958, leading a band that featured trumpeter Don Cherry on the appropriately titled Something Else!
ENTERTAINMENT
June 10, 2015 | By Bruce Klauber, For The Inquirer
After 25 years and more than 1,300 Tuesday-night jazz jam sessions at Center City's 23rd Street Cafe, the horns, drums, basses, guitars, violins, harmonicas, and singers will soon be silenced for good. The property at 223 N. 23d Street will be demolished this summer, likely to make way for condominiums. (No firm date has been set for that demolition, so the jams will keep going until . . . they can't.) The concept, a jam session open to amateur and professional musicians and singers of all ages and skill levels, was the brainchild of Dutch architect Herman DeJong, jazz lover and onetime amateur bassist.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 3, 2015 | By Shaun Brady, For The Inquirer
CAPE MAY- Michael Kline hoisted an enormous wrench in one hand as he stepped to the microphone at Cape May Convention Hall on Friday to welcome the audience to the Exit Zero Jazz Festival. The fest producer meant to signify the work that had gone into preparing the three-day festival, which takes over the Victorian Shore town twice a year. The next night, on the same stage, it seemed not every bolt had quite been tightened. Headliner Dr. John appeared more than an hour behind schedule.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 28, 2015 | BY TOM DI NARDO, For the Daily News
SIXTY years after his death, Charlie Parker's status as a jazz alto saxophonist supreme remains one of American music's most enigmatic legacies. Plagued by drug abuse, racism, the compulsive need for female guidance and the burden of musical genius, the man known as "Yardbird" - or simply "Bird" - lived a brief life filled with passion, tragedy and unforgettable characters: the core ingredients of opera. "Yardbird," Opera Philadelphia's first world premiere since its first season 40 years ago, is told in flashbacks after Parker's death at only 34, in 1955.
NEWS
May 27, 2015 | By Jonathan Takiff, Inquirer Staff Writer
Take posh Center City restaurants and bars in need of off-night juicing. Mix with energetic promoters aiming to nurture Philly jazz and blues talents. Shake well and serve. What do you get? "A throwback to the supper-club era of the '50s and '60s that's been great for business, that brings in a well-dressed and surprisingly broad cross section of people who hang in all night," Volvér general manager Robert Delarosa said. "It's a really swanky deal. " "The best floating jazz show in Philly," said Thomas Camarda, one of the partners - along with Charlie Bartlett and Tony Kauffman - in a movable spread of music they call Jazz It Up Philly.
NEWS
May 20, 2015 | BY JOHN F. MORRISON, Daily News Staff Writer morrisj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5573
BUNKY deVecchis would go into a dimly lit nightclub with a camera without a flash and capture jazz musicians in full cry in whatever light was available. He didn't like flash photography, and his subjects were appreciative. Nothing like working to nurse notes out of your instrument with a flash going off in your face. Ambient light worked just fine for Bunky, and many of his images of jazz musicians, most of them caught performing at Philadelphia venues, have been widely exhibited and cherished by fans who hang them in their homes and offices.
NEWS
May 17, 2015 | By Shaun Brady, For The Inquirer
Despite a rousing ovation from the nearly full Art Alliance audience on Thursday, David Torn chose to end his set not with thanks, but with an apology. "If anybody thought I was going to play jazz or some kind of style tonight," the white-maned guitarist said, "I'm sorry. " Though some in the crowd - perhaps lured by Torn's production work with pop stars such as David Bowie, John Legend, and Madonna - may have been caught unaware by the evening's free-association sound sculptures, there was no need for disclaimers after his captivating, often-rapturous 70-minute set. Playing solo guitar mutated through a variety of electronic means, Torn conjured enveloping sonic environments as discomfiting as they were alluring to explore.
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