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Greg Burk

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Geri Allen Floods Jazz Bakery

Deep Waters Flow Still Invited to a party among humans last month, I blundered into a quietly alert gentleman who spoke with urgent patience. This was a lifelong jazz freak and guitarist named Herb Jordan, and when he said he’d co-produced a number of albums by Geri Allen, I all......
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Roscoe Mitchell and Joseph Jarman Liberate the Ford Amphitheatre

Freedom Now Back in the mid-’60s, when history’s most extreme music was exploding out of the fission between sound exploration and civil rights activism, the lines between jazz and philosophy got kind of blurred. And Roscoe Mitchell and Joseph Jarman, as members of the Art Ensemble of Chicago and the......
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Medeski Martin & Wood to Steam the Fonda

Keys to the Kingdom Magnets sucking sound from bumpy little whirling wheels. Barely technology, closer to voodoo, but that’s what makes the old Hammond B3 organ boil, and only mystic priests can get the steam rising. All praise to the late Jimmy Smith, to Deep Purple’s Jon Lord, and to......
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Guitarist Ben Monder investigates Club Tropical

The Guitar Whisperer You know within about three seconds that something original is coming out of Ben Monder’s electric guitar — a whispering flow of harmonic challenges that fold backward, sideways and across dimensions like time-space origami. There are two answers to the obvious question of why nobody else is......
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Lamb of God to Bless Hyundai Pavilion

Everybody Loves a Clown (So Why Don’t I?) Actually, I do love metal clowns. Ozzy cleaning up dogshit, Nikki Sixx staggering around with a needle hanging out of his arm, Axl Rose throwing pre-passout tantrums about insufficiently slavish room service — ha-ha, the crowd roars, and I guffaw along. But......
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It's Always Full

‘It’s Always Full’ Every time I put on Full Moon in 3, the latest album by Santa Barbara songwriter Jennifer Terran, something happens. Right from the opener, “Full Moon,” a physical shiver of I dunno what — hope? — coalesces from the probing piano arpeggios, from the words about pain-turned-to-fertilizer,......
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Big and Juicy

Joey Sellers’ music makes your ears prick up. I know, ’cause I just listened to his El Payaso, released last year on Nine Winds, and it took me half an hour to snip off all the shiny little thorns. Chasing large-ensemble demons with special zeal, Sellers has been one of......

Mods & Rockers 2006

Great musicians hold the lens the same way movie stars do, with all-absorbing concentration and surrender; the resulting inner stillness draws the eye to its glow. So performance documents make the best rock films, and the Mods & Rockers fest presents quite an array. The king of the rock doc......
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Something Like Jellyfish

It’s almost not a music-listening experience. Cephalic Carnage is more of an environment, like writhing in a pool crowded with dolphins and jellyfish and giant squid. Metal castings abound, yes — the thrash-jazz beats splashed out by “John,” the doomy/jagged riffs of “Steve” and “Zac,” the woof & huff of......
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It's Personal

edit: ksullivan Learning, learning. Leni Stern wants to know and grow and hoe that row. Her thirst has pulled her all over Africa, India and Asia to absorb the rhythms, the scales, the feelings into her voice and her electric guitar, to make herself into that universal translator in the......
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