Category Archives: Uncategorized

João Gilberto, the Voice of Bossa Nova, Dies at 88 (DownBeat)

“Look at the wind tearing out the trees’ hair … .”

“But trees don’t have hair, João,” said the psychologist.

“And some people have no poetry in their souls,” he replied.

For my DownBeat obit on the genius João Gilberto, I spoke with Eliane Elias and the legendary Wanda Sá.

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Filed under Bossa Nova, Brazilian music, Chris McNulty, Joao Gilberto, Stan Getz, Uncategorized

Tomorrow in Freeport: The Great Jazz Singers – “From Satchmo to Billie”

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If you’re free on Sunday afternoon, 2/5/17, join me for a look back at The Great Jazz Singers (Part 1) – From Satchmo to Lady Day. I’ll be speaking – and playing killer film clips – at the Freeport Memorial Library on Merrick Road at 2:30 pm, and it’s free.

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Filed under Allen Morrison, Billie Holiday, Bing Crosby, Louis Armstrong, Uncategorized

“You can’t think and play at the same time…”

…The music is going too fast.” – Sonny Rollins quoted in Esquire. http://ow.ly/x0rax

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Wayne Shorter to Play on Laura Nyro Tribute Project

Billy, Wayne, LarryLarry Klein and Billy Childs’ “Laura Nyro Revisited” album, coming this fall, will feature Wayne Shorter on “Upstairs By A Chinese Lamp.” Alison Krauss, Susan Tedeschi, Dianne Reeves, Rickie Lee Jones, Esperanza Spalding, and more big names will appear on the tribute album.

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April 23, 2014 · 9:49 am

Looking frwd to hearing pianist Alan Broadbent tonight…

Alan BroadbentLooking forward to hearing pianist Alan Broadbent (2 Grammys, 7 nominations) & trio @The Drawing Room, 56 Willoughby St, Bklyn tonight at 7!

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“Free to Be Jane Monheit” – DownBeat, June 2013

Monheit photo from DB, hires1

“Free to be Jane Monheit” – DownBeat, June 2013

Jane Monheit, one of the most accomplished jazz singers of her generation, no longer strives for perfection. Here’s my article from the June 2013 DownBeat.

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Filed under Downbeat, Jazz, Music Writing and Clips, Uncategorized

Why Harry Connick Jr. Couldn’t Sit Idle

Why Harry Connick Jr. Couldn’t Sit Idle During ‘Idol’ — “The point Connick tried to make, which Jackson didn’t want to hear, was that the show’s contestants didn’t know these classic songs well enough to take liberties with their melodies and lyrics. In doing so, they were murdering the music.”
Next Avenue http://ow.ly/kIQEw

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Int’w w/Bobby McFerrin today!

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Int’w w/Bobby McFerrin today before his show @ Adelphi U. New CD ‘spirityouall’ is gorgeous jazz/blues/Americana http://ow.ly/k79V4

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Filed under Downbeat, Jazz, Music Writing and Clips, Uncategorized

Coming soon – a profile of Jane Monheit

Putting finishing touches on my profile of Jane Monheit for the June DownBeat. Video preview of her new album is at  http://ow.ly/jzHDn

Jane Monheit - "The Heart of the Matter"

Jane Monheit – “The Heart of the Matter”

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Rest in peace, Van Cliburn

Truly the end of an era. Rest in peace, Van Cliburn. 

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“Making the Invisible Visible” – my DownBeat int’w with the Wayne Shorter Quartet

The Wayne Shorter Quartet

The Wayne Shorter Quartet

What’s it like to compose new music on the spot with Wayne Shorter? See my int’w with the members of his quartet in the March DownBeat. http://ow.ly/hMo15

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Filed under Downbeat, Jazz, Music Writing and Clips, Uncategorized, Wayne Shorter

Treasures In The Attic: Finding A Jazz Master’s Lost Orchestral Music (NPR)

Stride piano pioneer James P. Johnson also wrote beautiful symphonic music, lost for years. Highly recommended NPR story: http://ow.ly/hnnaz

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Wonderful piece on Wayne Shorter in NYT

Wonderful piece on Wayne Shorter, one of jazz’s great seekers, by @NateChinen in NYT. http://ow.ly/hmzD5

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My DownBeat profile/interview with tenor saxophonist JD Allen (Feb 2013)

JD Allen at Jazz+Colors, Central ParkRising tenor sax star JD Allen almost never plays covers, preferring his own brisk, intense, forward-leaning trio compositions. So, when he was backstage at Jazz at Lincoln Center recently, preparing to make his debut as a guest soloist with the JALC Orchestra in a “Best of Blue Note Records” concert, he wondered to himself, “What the hell am I doing here?” Then he came out and made it abundantly clear that he can play anything.  I interviewed him a few days later in the cafe at the Brooklyn Museum, and the resulting feature is in the February DownBeat.

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Wynton Marsalis opens Jazz@Lincoln Center in Doha, Qatar

Jazz @ Lincoln Center’s new club in Doha, Qatar. New York’s Rodriguez Brothers band, with Carlos Henriques on bass, played during the “soft opening.” The Wynton Marsalis Quintet played the official opening week.

Wynton Marsalis opens Jazz@Lincoln Center branch in Doha, Qatar. Here’s my piece in Downbeat. http://ow.ly/eg7RR

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Lee Konitz is 84 and is cooler than you.

Lee Konitz is 84 and is cooler than you. DownBeat is currently running my review of the alto sax legend and his “Enfants Terribles” (feat. Bill Frisell) as their lead story. http://bit.ly/RF1D2D

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Filed under Bill Frisell, Downbeat, Lee Konitz, Music Writing and Clips, Uncategorized

Re-Imagining “Porgy and Bess”

Re-Imagining Porgy and Bess - A Conversation with Diedre Murray

The new “Porgy and Bess,” adapted for Broadway by Suzan Lori-Parks and Diedre L. Murray is up for 10 Tonys, including Best Musical Revival, Best Actress, Best Actor and Best Orchestrations. For the May 2012 issue of DownBeat, I interviewed Diedre Murray on how she and her collaborators re-imagined Gershwin’s score for 21st Century Broadway. (Click the pic to read.)

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Filed under Downbeat, Music Writing and Clips, Porgy and Bess, Uncategorized

Miami Herald Interviews Lyle Cogen About “Sticks & Stones,” Coming to Aventura Arts and Cultural Center

The Miami Herald interviews Lyle Cogen about her musical play “Sticks & Stones,” which helps children understand how to defuse and prevent bullying behavior.  The show comes to the Aventura Arts and Cultural Center on Monday, October 10, 2011. http://bit.ly/o8agWN

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Lyle Cogen Talks Bullying Prevention on NewsChannel 13 Albany

Video: Lyle Cogen on NewsChannel 13 Albany

 

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Filed under bullying, Business/Non-Profit Writing and Clips, education, Lyle Cogen, Uncategorized