Category Archives: Archives

At WSJ on Rez Abassi’s Django Shift

‘Django-shift’ by Rez Abbasi Review: Retuning a Guitar Legacy An album from the forward-thinking guitarist offers muscular new renditions of the music of early jazz great Django Reinhardt. Michael Sarin, Rez Abbasi and Neil Alexander PHOTO: KIRAN AHLUWALIA By Martin Johnson Sept. … Continue reading

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At WSJ on Joshua Redman’s MoodSwing Revival

MUSIC REVIEW ‘RoundAgain’ by Joshua Redman Review: Playing Through Jazz’s Changes Brad Mehldau, Christian McBride and Brian Blade join the saxophonist on the four musicians’ first record together since 1994. Joshua Redman Quartet PHOTO: MICHAEL WILSON By Martin Johnson July 13, 2020 … Continue reading

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Meanwhile…. My Words at Other Venues

I enthusiastically post my Wall Street Journal work here as soon as I am able (30 days after it posts behind the WSJ paywall).  I’m a little slower to highlight other stuff that I write here.  In the name of … Continue reading

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At WSJ on Aaron Parks and the duo of Walter Smith and Matthew Stevens: Jazz Comfort Food

MUSIC REVIEW ‘Little Big II: Dreams of a Mechanical Man’ and ‘In Common 2’ Reviews: Jazz’s Take on Comfort Food Tasty new releases from pianist Aaron Parks and the duo of saxophonist Walter Smith III and guitarist Matthew Stevens are … Continue reading

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At WSJ on Liberty Ellman’s Last Desert

MUSIC REVIEW ‘Last Desert’ by Liberty Ellman Review: Moving Out of His Own Shadow The new album from the jazz guitarist might be even more influential than his 2015 record ‘Radiate.’ Jazz guitarist Liberty Ellman PHOTO: ALAN NAHIGIAN By Martin Johnson May … Continue reading

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At WSJ on Jazz Livestreams

This was a quick and dirty rundown done in response to the early days of the pandemic. The Staying Inside Guide: Taking Improvisation to a Whole New Level Livestreamed concerts by jazz musicians reinvent the typical performance for times of … Continue reading

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At WSJ on John McLaughlin’s Excellent Is That So.

MUSIC REVIEW ‘Is That So?’ by John McLaughlin Review: Meditative Jamming Turning away from technically flashy music, the guitarist revisits Indian fusion on a contemplative record that grew out of improvisational sessions. John McLaughlin in 2016 PHOTO: IMAGO/ZUMA PRESS By Martin … Continue reading

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Meanwhile, My Words at Other Venues

I post most of what I write here, but some of it is posted elsewhere first. For one, there’s this piece I did for the National Sawdust Log on the great young composer, saxophonist and flutist Anna Webber.  https://nationalsawdust.org/thelog/2020/02/05/in-review-anna-webber-idiom-vi/ For … Continue reading

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At WSJ on Cellist Maya Beiser and Her Tribute to David Bowie

MUSIC REVIEW ‘Bowie Cello Symphonic: Blackstar’ by Maya Beiser Review: Tribute to a Rock Icon The cellist reworks and expands David Bowie’s final album. Cellist Maya Beiser PHOTO: SACHYN MITAL By Martin Johnson Jan. 7, 2020 2:52 pm ET Cellist Maya … Continue reading

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At WSJ on Roberta Piket’s Domestic Harmony

MUSIC REVIEW ‘Domestic Harmony: Piket Plays Mintz’ by Roberta Piket Review: Jazz From a Marriage The pianist’s album offers solo renditions of music written by her husband, drummer and composer Billy Mintz. Roberta Piket PHOTO: JOHN ABBOTT By Martin Johnson Dec. 26, … Continue reading

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