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Tag Archives: jazz

Music Review: Holly Bowling – ‘Better Left Unsung’ (Solo Piano Tribute to the Grateful Dead)

On the surface, you might think that limiting the songs of a band that thrived on the interplay between various parts – most importantly the lead and rhythm guitars of Jerry Garcia and Bob Weir – wouldn't work, but you’d be mistaken. There is power and subtlety in these reinterpretations that I think Garcia would have admired, as his own personal tastes seemed to range to the more subdued and authentic soul of acoustic performances. Read More »

Music Review: Frank Zappa – ‘ZAPPAtite: Frank Zappa’s Tastiest Tracks’

From the sonic exuberance of “Dancin’ Fool” and “Tell Me You Love Me” to the funky dissonance of “You Are What You Is” and “Joe’s Garage” to the bathroom-humor excellence of “Don’t Eat The Yellow Snow” and “Titties and Beer,” this album will give you just as much of a “taste” for Frank Zappa’s music as his son’s "Zappa Plays Zappa" did for me some eight years ago. Read More »

Music Review: Charlie Parker – ‘Unheard Bird: The Unissued Takes’

With material taken from the end of the 1940s all the way up through 1952, 'Unheard Bird' finds Charlie Parker fitting his sound into such variations as fronting a big band, leading a quintet, floating effortlessly above a Latin jazz orchestra and playing alongside such jazz luminaries as Thelonious Monk, Max Roach, Buddy Rich, and Dizzy Gillespie. Read More »

Music Review: Macy Gray ‘Stripped’ on Her New Album

macy gray stripped

With 'Stripped', Macy Gray marries her songwriting and interpretive skills in one place. The new album acts as proof that Gray's style has become its own blueprint on making, and playing, by one's own set of artistic rules to achieve longevity. Read More »

Can’t Turn It Off: The Nu Shooz Interview, Part 1

Between 1982 and 2016, Nu Shooz recorded six LPs and an EP. Their most recent effort, 'Bagtown' (2016, NSO Music), is the culmination of much musical study in understanding the distance and intimacy between pop and R&B. Both Valerie Day and John Smith discuss the birth of Nu Shooz, their biggest hit "I Can't Wait" and more in this exclusive interview with Blogcritics! Read More »

Can’t Turn It Off: The Nu Shooz Interview, Part 2

Between 1982 and 2016, Nu Shooz recorded six LPs and an EP. Their most recent effort, 'Bagtown' (2016, NSO Music), is the culmination of much musical study in understanding the distance and intimacy between pop and R&B. Both Valerie Day and John Smith discuss the birth of Nu Shooz, their biggest hit "I Can't Wait" and more in this exclusive interview with Blogcritics! Read More »