Tuesday, January 4, 2022

Collin Sherman - Suitable Benchmarks of Reform (January 4, 2022)

"Suitable Benchmarks of Reform", my thirteenth release, sticks to the same process I have used on past releases, where I play all of the instruments myself and overlay the parts. This album is essentially in two sections; the first being a collection of three independent tunes, and the second being a four-part suite.

The opening tune, “Phalanx Strictures”, has a rolling, propulsive 15/4 rhythm and a repetitive melody that makes use of the tendency for the odd meter to feel as if each measure is falling over the top of the next. It’s also the most instrumentally dense piece on the record. Although built around a repeating sequenced bassline, the harmony instruments and horns liberally apply accidentals, providing a sense of free exploration even with the bass continually returning to the tonic.

“Rival Machinations” is completely improvised, with no stated melody or pre-planned elements other than the instrumentation.

“Worthless Objects and Photographs Thereof” slows things down quite a bit and employs a memorable clarinet melody. The Bb soprano clarinet and bass clarinet are the only horns used on this piece, giving it an earthy vibe.

The rest of the album is comprised of the four-part “Rumination Suite” in C minor, which is intended to represent an arc of burgeoning self-awareness and accompanying psychological and spiritual recovery. Each movement in the suite is built around the soprano saxophone and bass tongue drum, providing a steady, metronomic foundation for the tunes.
The first movement, “Meditation on Resentment”, begins the suite with the slow (60 bpm) tongue drum establishing the pace and harmonic framework. Vibraphone provides color and expands the harmonic portrait before the saxophone enters. Eventually strings join the mix, and as the harmonies get more dissonant, the saxophone responds with increasing activity, eventually becoming frenetic and restless, expressing discontentedness.

The next movement, “Faults and Missteps”, explores the mindset one naturally has after nurturing one’s resentments. A repeating, bluesy electric guitar riff sets the tone for the piece along with the tongue drum, insistent and throbbing.

“Things Turn Around” begins with near silence as the tongue drum occasionally provides a lone “C” note. Gradually, various other percussion instruments enter the fold, as well as an oboe, before the saxophone begins its exploration. As the parts flesh out and become busier the piece builds to a dense finale. The slightly quicker tempo and busyness of the piece provide a sense of moving forward; while not exactly providing happiness or resolution, there is the sense that one can move beyond the mistakes that nurturing one’s resentments inevitably yields.

The suite ends with “Foundations of Serenity”. As the most harmonically consonant movement in the piece it establishes a sense of calm. It is meant to reflect a mindset where, although not everything is perfect, there is enough to build a solid path forward.

I hope you enjoy this music and can relate, no matter where along your path you have found it. 

1. Phalanx Strictures
2. Rival Machinations
3. Worthless Objects and Photographs Thereof
4. Rumination Suit, Mvt. I: Meditation on Resentment
5. Rumination Suite, Mvt. II: Faults and Missteps
6. Rumination Suite, Mvt. III: Things Turn Around
7. Rumination Suite, Mvt. IV: Foundations of Serenity

Collin Sherman: Alto Saxophone; Soprano Saxophone; Bb Clarinet; Bass Clarinet; Oboe; Keyboards/Synthesizers; Electronics; Electric Guitar; Drum Programming.

Joey DeFrancesco Spring Tour 2022


Joey DeFrancesco's Spring 2022 Tour

New Album More Music is
Available Now via Mack Avenue Records

Album Offers the Remedy for a
Challenging Year, Supplementing His Organ
Virtuosity with Trumpet, Piano, Keyboard,
Vocals and, for the First Time, Tenor Sax

Upcoming Joey DeFrancesco U.S. Tour Dates

January 12 / Yoshi's Oakland / Oakland, CA
January 13 / Kuumbwa Jazz Center / Santa Cruz, CA
January 14-15 / Parker Jazz Club / Austin, TX
January 17-24 / The Jazz Cruise 2022 / Fort Lauderdale, FL
February 24 / Irvine Barclay Theatre / Irvine, CA
February 25 / Outpost Performance Space / Albuquerque. NM
February 26 / Outpost Performance Space / Albuquerque. NM
February 27 / The Nash Jazz Club / Phoenix, AZ
March 10-13 / Jazz Alley / Seattle, WA
March 25 / JAS Cafe Aspen / Aspen, CO
March 26 / JAS Cafe Aspen / Aspen, CO
April 8-9 / Berks Jazz Festival / Reading, PA
May 20 / Middle C Jazz / Charlotte, NC
May 21 / Jefferson Center / Roanoke, VA

Check Out Joey DeFrancesco on the Cover of
“More Music,’ his 39th album as a leader, showcases both his versatility and his virtuosity as he offers masterful performances…”
— DownBeat

"The results reflect his unshakable passion for the verities of chicken-shack funk—a passion firmly established by his decades of fervent organ playing, channelling the Hammond B-3 giants of yore—but they stamp the greasy Philadelphia-born style as his own.”
— New Yorker
After a year of pandemic lockdown – with stages dark and nightclubs shuttered, friends and families kept at a social distance, and political and social tensions raging – the one thing we could all use right now is More Music. And who better to supply that demand than Joey DeFrancesco?

More Music, available now via Mack Avenue Records, is “more” in every conceivable way. It offers up ten new DeFrancesco originals, brought to life by a scintillating new trio. And the master organist, who has long supplemented his keyboard virtuoso with his skilled trumpet playing, here brings out his full arsenal: organ, keyboard, piano, trumpet, and, for the first time on record, tenor saxophone. He also steps to the microphone to croon Mario Romano’s yearning “And If You Please.”

“It’s time for more music,” DeFrancesco declares. “This situation has been difficult for so many people. It's definitely time to get back at it.”

Ethan Iverson - Every Note Is True (Ships on February 11, 2022) Blue Note

If the digital album is purchased, you will receive the full album via email on February 11, 2022.

Standard digital downloads are delivered as MP3 44.1khz/24-bit audio files.

Please note, digital downloads are only available in the U.S. 

Pianist and composer Ethan Iverson makes his Blue Note debut with the remarkable Every Note Is True, an engaging and evocative date featuring a masterful new trio with bassist Larry Grenadier and legendary drummer Jack DeJohnette. The album is an opportunity for Iverson to look back at and expand upon his own musical history as he revisits the pop/rock influenced jazz style of The Bad Plus, the influential trio that the pianist co-founded in 2000.


1. The More It Changes
2. The Eternal Verities
3. She Won’t Forget Me
4. For Ellen Raskin
5. Blue
6. Goodness Knows
7. Had I But Known
8. Merely Improbable
9. Praise Will Travel
10. At The Bells Of Motley

Hi-Res Digital Disclaimer:

FLAC files do NOT work in iTunes/Apple Music players or on most portable music players without additional software. If you’re unfamiliar with FLAC files we suggest that you download the WAV files instead. More information on FLAC can be found here or here.

Immanuel Wilkins - The 7th Hand (Blue Note)

If the digital album is purchased, you will receive the full album via email on January 28, 2022.

Standard digital downloads are delivered as MP3 44.1KHZ/24-BIT audio files. 

Please note, digital downloads are only available in the U.S.

Alto saxophonist Immanuel Wilkins follows-up his acclaimed debut Omega (NY Times Best Jazz Album of 2020) with another striking album featuring his remarkable quartet with Micah Thomas on piano, Daryl Johns on bass, and Kweku Sumbry on drums plus special guest appearances by flutist Elena Pinderhughes and the Farafina Kan Percussion Ensemble

The album consists of an hour-long suite comprised of seven movements that strive to bring the quartet closer to complete vesselhood by the end, where the music would be entirely improvised, channeled collectively. The title is derived from a question steeped in Biblical symbolism: If the number six represents the extent of human possibility, Wilkins wondered how it would sound to invoke divine intervention and allow that seventh element to possess his quartet. “It’s the idea of being a conduit for the music as a higher power that actually influences what we’re playing,” he says.


1. Emanation
2. Don’t Break
3. Fugitive Ritual, Selah
4. Shadow
5. Witness
6. Lighthouse
7. Lift

Immanuel Wilkins: Alto Saxophone
Micah Thomas: Piano
Daryl Johns: Bass 
Kweku Sumbry: Drums

Hi-Res Digital Disclaimer:

FLAC files do NOT work in iTunes/Apple Music players or on most portable music players without additional software. If you’re unfamiliar with FLAC files we suggest that you download the WAV files instead. More information on FLAC can be found here or here.

Ornette Coleman - Round Trip: Ornette Coleman On Blue Note 6LP Box Set (Blue Note Tone Poet Series) Ships on January 28, 2022

Iconoclastic saxophonist and composer Ornette Coleman shook the jazz world when he arrived at the Five Spot Café in New York City in 1959 and began his run of seminal albums on Atlantic that laid the foundation for the free jazz movement to come. After a period of disillusionment during which he withdrew from public music making, Coleman re-emerged on Blue Note in 1966 and began writing an intriguing new chapter of his legendary career.

The boxset Round Trip: Ornette Coleman On Blue Note presents all-analog 180g Tone Poet Vinyl Editions of all six albums featuring Coleman that were recorded for Blue Note Records, including his five albums as a leader—the two-volume At The ‘Golden Circle’ Stockholm (1965), The Empty Foxhole (1966), New York Is Now! (1968), and Love Call (1968)— as well as his lone sideman appearance on New And Old Gospel (1967) by fellow saxophonist Jackie McLean. The boxset includes a booklet featuring rare photos and an enlightening essay by critic Thomas Conrad.

The Tone Poet Audiophile Vinyl Reissue Series is produced by Joe Harley and features all-analog, mastered-from-the-original-master-tape 180g audiophile vinyl reissues packaged in deluxe Stoughton Printing “Old Style” Gatefold Tip-On Jackets. Mastering is by Kevin Gray(Cohearent Audio), and vinyl is manufactured at Record Technology Incorporated (RTI).

Jackie McLean - Destination...Out! LP (Blue Note Classic Vinyl Series) Ships on January 21, 2022

By the time Jackie McLean began recording for Blue Note in 1959, the alto saxophonist had already been a stalwart of the NYC jazz scene for nearly a decade having spent the entirety of the 1950s cutting his teeth alongside bebop legends like Miles Davis and Charles Mingus. As the early 1960s progressed, McLean’s innovative hard bop sound began to take on a harder edge and a more adventurous spirit. Inspired by the likes of Ornette Coleman and John Coltrane, McLean started to seek a greater freedom of expression in his music and began to introduce elements of the avant-garde, while never fully relinquishing a grounding in his soulful sense of swing and chordal structures. On his 1963 quintet album One Step Beyond, McLean teamed up with the unique trombonist and composer Grachan Moncur III and brought in vibraphonist Bobby Hutcherson instead of a pianist, a move that gave the music a freer, more spacious feel. Inspired by this new musical direction and the tonal qualities of the band, McLean brought Moncur and Hutcherson back into the studio later that year with Larry Ridley on bass and Roy Haynes to record what would be his masterpiece of inside-out jazz: Destination… Out! On four original pieces—three by Moncur (“Love and Hate,” “Esoteric,” “Riff Raff”) and one of McLean’s (“Kahlil the Prophet”)—the quintet goes exploring, conjuring different moods and creating exciting new sounds that still sound fresh today.

This Blue Note Classic Vinyl Edition is all-analog, mastered by Kevin Gray from the original master tapes, and pressed on 180g vinyl at Optimal.


A1: Love And Hate
A2: Esoteric

B1: Kahlil The Prophet
B2: Riff Raff

Don Cherry - Where Is Brooklyn? LP (Blue Note Classic Vinyl Series) Ships on January 21, 2022

Blue Note founders Alfred Lion and Francis Wolff had open ears and open minds, as they proved time and time again through the early-1960s as they documented some of the most adventurous players of the modern jazz scene like Andrew Hill, Eric Dolphy, and Tony Williams. But it wasn’t until they brought Ornette Coleman and Don Cherry to Blue Note in 1965 that they dove headfirst into the avant-garde. Coleman and Cherry had of course made history together years prior as half of Coleman’s revolutionary quartet that put the NYC jazz world on notice that there was a new thing in town with their 1959 arrival at the Five Spot Café. Though Cherry co-led the album The Avant-Garde with John Coltrane in 1961, his career as a bandleader began with his bold Blue Note debut Complete Communion recorded in December 1965 (Coleman had documented his new trio live at the Golden Circle in Stockholm for his own Blue Note debut just weeks before). Cherry returned to Van Gelder Studio twice in the Fall of 1966, first to record his expansive Symphony for Improvisers and again for the fiery Where Is Brooklyn? The latter was a highly interactive quartet session featuring Pharoah Sanders on tenor saxophone and piccolo, Henry Grimes on bass, and Ed Blackwell on drums that presented five Cherry originals including “Awake Nu” and “The Thing.”

This Blue Note Classic Vinyl Edition is all-analog, mastered by Kevin Gray from the original master tapes, and pressed on 180g vinyl at Optimal.


A1: Awake Nu
A2: Taste Maker
A3: The Thing

B1: There Is The Bomb
B2: Unite

Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers - First Flight to Tokyo The Lost 1961 Recordings (Blue Note)

First Flight to Tokyo: The Lost 1961 Recordings is a thrilling previously unreleased live recording of Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers captured at Hibiya Public Hall in Tokyo on January 14, 1961 during the band’s first-ever tour of Japan. The Jazz Messengers were among the first modern jazz groups to tour the country, and adoring Japanese audiences were enthralled by one of the band’s all-time great line-ups featuring the legendary drummer with Lee Morgan on trumpet, Wayne Shorter on tenor saxophone, Bobby Timmons on piano, and Jymie Merritt on bass. The concert featured soaring performances of well-known jazz staples including Charlie Parker’s “Now’s the Time,” Thelonious Monk’s “Round About Midnight,” and Jazz Messenger hits including “Blues March,” “Dat Dere,” and “Moanin’.” First Flight to Tokyo was co-produced by Zev Feldman and David Weiss. The deluxe 2-LP vinyl and 2-CD editions both come with elaborate booklets featuring rare photos by Japanese photographers Shunji Okura and Hozumi Nakadaira; a historical essay by acclaimed jazz critic Bob Blumenthal; plus new interviews with Wayne Shorter in conversation with Blue Note president Don Was, celebrated saxophonist Lou Donaldson, Japanese jazz star Sadao Watanabe, renowned Japanese music critic Reiko Yukawa, Blakey’s son Takashi Blakey, and a trio of drum greats: Louis Hayes, Billy Hart, and Cindy Blackman Santana. Audio was newly transferred from the original ¼” tape reels, and the vinyl edition was mastered by Bernie Grundman and pressed on 180g vinyl at RTI.

1. Now's the Time (Live at Hibiya Public Hall, Tokyo, Japan 1/14/61)
2. Moanin' (Live at Hibiya Public Hall, Tokyo, Japan 1/14/61)
3. Blues March (Live at Hibiya Public Hall, Tokyo, Japan 1/14/61)
4. The Theme (Live at Hibiya Public Hall, Tokyo, Japan 1/14/61)
5. Dat Dere (Live at Hibiya Public Hall, Tokyo, Japan 1/14/61)
6. 'Round About Midnight (Live at Hibiya Public Hall, Tokyo, Japan 1/14/61)
7. Now's the Time (Version 2 - Live at Hibiya Public Hall, Tokyo, Japan 1/14/61)
8. A Night in Tunisia (Live at Hibiya Public Hall, Tokyo, Japan 1/14/61)
9. The Theme (Version 2 - Live at Hibiya Public Hall, Tokyo, Japan 1/14/61)