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    Kenny Wheeler: quiet man on the cutting edge

    Kenny Wheeler
    Kenny Wheeler

    The guardian.co.uk writes,

    "Sad songs have always made Kenny Wheeler happy. His pieces often sound like backdrops to movies in which women throwing Mona Lisa smiles over their shoulders vanish into mists, or estranged lovers exchange lingering glances. He isn't given to analysis of why this bittersweet music so fascinates audiences and his fellow jazz musicians – even in a business of few words, Wheeler is legendarily shy – but around his 80th birthday last January he unwound enough to tell me: "What I like doing best is writing sad tunes, and then letting wonderful musicians destroy them. I don't want the players to try to interpret what they think I'm feeling."

    Lightens My Sadness, She Livens My Days

    Pizzarelli & Molaskey
    PIzzarelli & Molaskey

    Concert Review by Stephen Holden (for The New York Times)

    Time warps, time lines and time signatures: as John Pizzarelli crooned Irving Berlin’s “Count Your Blessings” with the tenderness of a father lulling a sleepless child, the voice of his wife and musical partner, Jessica Molaskey, slipped in behind him to sing Jonathan Larson’s “Seasons of Love,” from the musical “Rent.”

    Jazz Saxophonist Marion Brown Dies

    Marion Brown
    Marion Brown

    Known for his association with Archie Shepp, Amiri Baraka, Ornette Coleman and other bright lights of the 60s avant garde jazz community, Marion Brown died on Monday, October 18, in Hollywood, Florida. He was 79. Brown had been ill for many years and had not performed publicly in a long time. Brown recorded over a dozen albums as a leader for Impulse!, ESP, Black Lion and ECM, but is perhaps best known for his appearance as a sideman on two seminal records of the ‘60s: John Coltrane’s Ascension and Archie Shepp’s Fire Music.

    Tom Waits Releases 78 RPM Record and Player

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    Tom Waits' recent collaboration with New Orleans institution the Preservation Hall Jazz Band on the benefit LP Preservation was originally inspired by an old 78 rpm recording of Danny Barker's 1947 Mardi Gras Indian street chant "Tootie Ma Is a Big Fine Thing". Now, the song is coming full circle, as Waits and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band's take on the tune is set to be released as a 78 record on November 19 by Preservation Hall Recordings, according to his site. (The B-side contains Waits' and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band's cover of Barker's "Corrine Died on the Battlefield".)

    A New Initiative to Support Toronto's Vibrant Jazz Scene

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    Toronto – This fall, Toronto Downtown Jazz (TDJ) is expanding its commitment to year-round jazz and offering support to local area musicians for their special projects. Through a juried process, successful applicants will obtain marketing and public relations support from TDJ, accessing a wealth of resources and contacts typically reserved for Festival related concerts only. From the Festival’s monthly electronic newsletter, to our website to a dedicated media release and more, TDJ Special Projects will help get the word out.

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