Jeff Winbush

Jeff Winbush

When you think about long lived, constantly adapting and evolving jazz bands, how often does The Yellowjackets come to mind? I must confess that I had largely forgotten The Yellowjackets when the Jazz Fusion movement ebbed. Well, that was my mistake because Russell Ferrante (piano and electronic keyboards), Jimmy Haslip (electric bass), Bob Mintzer (tenor and soprano saxophones, clarinets, flute, electric wind instrument) and Marcus Baylor (drums, percussion) have roared back with an impressive …

Rachel Z

Published in Jazz Artist Interviews
On her new album, Moon at the Window (Tone Center), pianist Rachel Z (aka Nicolazzo) plays homage to the music of Joni Mitchell, including such songs as "Big Yellow Taxi" and "Free Man In Paris." Rounding out the trio is drummer Bobbie Rae and bassist Patricia Des Lauriers (replaced on tour by Nikki Parrott).

Rachel raps on how exposure to Joni Mitchell in kindergarten led to her new album, how a jazz pianist ends up playing with Peter Gabriel and wonders if not playing team sports hu …

No wonder fans are scrambling to get a copy of Paul Jackson, Jr.’s latest recording, Lay It Back.

It seems every project Jackson becomes involved with becomes a top hit, including his work on Michael Jackson’s Thriller album, along with Jackson’s own #1 hit single with his version of Motown’s "It’s A Shame," and his own previous album, Still Small Voice.

Yes, every musician has his or her own voice-something unique that tells fans, "thi …

I’ve always believed that appreciating jazz is like appreciating wine. You have to acquire a taste for it and it only develops over time. And good jazz like good wine is wasted on the young. A generation that is led to believe that Jennifer Lopez can sing, Adam Sandler can act and Fear Factor is quality television, can’t be expected to appreciate an Oscar Peterson or Ahmad Jamal. Then again, every now and then someone comes along to blow away your preconceived notions.

Another Mind …

If you've been making music for 30 years and you've only had one hit song you must either have the endurance of a marathon runner or you're just doggedly determined and don't know when to quit.

Jay Beckenstein and his cohorts in Spryo Gyra are built for endurance. Long after jazz fusion bands like Weather Report and Return to Forever called it a day, the Beckenstein Bunch is still making great contemporary jazz like their latest release, The Deep End and hit the road to share their mus


Rachel Z

Published in Concert Reviews
When pianist Rachel Z led her trio into the intimate confines of the 5:01 Bar, you had to forgive her if she was slightly disoriented. Rachel put on hold her solo career and promoting her new CD interpreting the music of Joni Mitchell, Moon at the Window, for a stint touring America’s biggest arenas in the band of prog-rock icon Peter Gabriel.

The Manhattan-born and raised Rachel Nicolazzo (a.k.a. Rachel Z) joined Gabriel for a 20-city North American tour in fall 2002. "Peter Gabriel

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