Music of Week

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Jazz drummer Henry Conerway III was raised in a musical family and nurtured by the jazz community of his native Detroit. Throughout the album the sounds of the city can be heard in do-wop riffs and hints of gospel. Conerway is joined on this album by Kevin Smith on bass and Kenny Banks Jr on piano. The album is called With Pride For Dignity. For Conerway the title is both ancestral homage and political self-affirmation in a world that often denies humanity to black people.  

October 22nd Stuart Weber - The Fifth Row

Oct 23, 2018

Listening to an acoustic instrument alone in a beautiful room is a rare experience difficult to translate that experience to a recording, but  Stuart weber has done just that with his latest album The Fifth Row. The album is a collection of songs for classical guitar recorded in eleven historic theatres in five western states. Weber’s phrasing is engaging and the songs are beautiful but what makes this album unique is the way the acoustics of these historic buildings become an extension of his instrument creating a rich sound that gives you goosebumps.

October 15th Anne Akiko Meyers- Mirror In Mirror

Oct 15, 2018

Anne Akiko Meyers is a classical violinist much in demand with the worlds top orchestras. Her latest album seems to counteract the international touring life with intimate and personal compositions composed or arranged for her. The track we’re hearing, Lullaby For Natalie, was composed for Meyer’s second child by John Corigliano. To this day the piece is used to help her daughter sleep. Anne Akiko Meyers’ beautiful collection of 20th century classical violin music is called Mirror in Mirror.

July 26th Kingston Rudieska - Everyday People

Jul 25, 2018



July 20th Nicki Bluhm - To Rise You Gotta Fall

Jul 20, 2018

Country music has always done a stellar job of celebrating strong women, and Nicki Bluhm is the latest example. Her new solo album To Rise You Gotta Fall makes songwriting sound easy. After six years fronting the Gramblers, Bluhm split from her husband and took the subsequent songs into the Sam Phillips Studio in Memphis. The resulting album is a masterful display of a strong voice with feminine vulnerability, a breakup album that doesn’t drag you down with it, but stands tall. Nicki Bluhm's album is called To Rise You Gotta Fall, the track we’re hearing is How Do I Love You?

July 13th Kamasi Washington - Heaven And Earth

Jul 13, 2018

Kamasi Washington has been called the jazz voice of Black Lives Matter. He was raised in notoriously violent South Central Los Angeles during the gang wars of the 1980s and 90s, but mentorship from his musical parents and LA's black artist community steered him away from gang life and towards the music of Coltrane, Stravinsky, and Snoop Dogg, with whom he toured out of college.  Washington’s musical relationships and style blend funk hip-hop jazz and classical. He is a rare communicator who's poise and charisma account for his broad appeal.

July 3rd Joshua Redman - Still Dreaming

Jul 3, 2018

In the late 1960s Dewey Redman played saxaphone in a band called Old And New Dreaming with Ornette Coleman, charlie Hayden, and Don Cherry. His son Joshua Redman has just released an album which pays homage to his father's work with that band. Joshua Redman is one of the most creative talents in jazz today, his group plays with a deep musical sensitivity and connection to each other. The songs are beautiful, sometimes playful, and display a great range of expression.

In late April, to celebrate his 85th Birthday Willie Nelson released an album of eleven original songs. There aren’t many artists you can say that about. The album is called Last Man Standing and is full of Willie’s signature humor and wisdom. The songs navigate themes of aging, loss, and mortality, but the album isn’t dark. It suggests sunniness in the face of loneliness and grief. Willie Nelson’s 73rd album is called Last Man Standing, the track we’re hearing is Me And You.

Peter and the Wolf was written by Serge Prokofiev in 1936, with the purpose of introducing children to the instruments of a Symphony Orchestra. it has just been rewritten for jazz band and recorded by the New England Jazz Ensemble. Not only are the classical instruments replaced by big band soloists, the narration has also been translated to the vernacular of jazz. The original melodies sound natural as jazz riffs, revealing the influence 20th century classical music had on jazz. For the past 75 years Peter and the Wolf has introduced children all over the world to classical music.

April 20th The Turbans

Apr 20, 2018

What is World music? Its when the sounds of the disparate traditions of Turkey, Bulgaria, Israel, Iran, Greece, Spain, and England come together to deliver a high energy blend of , authentic, spontaneous, sounds. They are called the Turbans, and began when Oshan Mahoney and Darius Thompson met in Kahtmandu Seven years ago. The Turbans cut their teeth on the road before holing up in an old English farmhouse to record their self-titled debut album.

Emmet Cohen is emerging as a shining star of jazz piano. He plays with a subtle sensitivity not often heard among young virtuosos. He also has a deep reverence for the history of jazz and developed the Jazz Masters Legacy Series, a collection of live recordings with living legends, such as Ron Carter, who is the most recorded bassist in jazz history. Ron Carter joins Cohen on Masters Legacy Series Volume 2. The subtext of the album is the passing of the torch across the generations, but listening to the music its clear there are two masters here.

April 6th Orquesta Akokan

Apr 6, 2018

Akokan is a Yoruba word used by Cubans to mean from the soul. The sixteen piece big band Orquesta Akokan brings original songs with an old school mambo sound to New York’s Daptone Records. They couldn’t afford to record the album in New York so they came together in the legendary Areito studio in Havana. The band brings some of Cuba’s most ferocious musicians together with stars of New York's latin music scene, as well as veteran vocalist Jose Pepito Gomez. Orquesta Akokan’s album reminds us that the roots of Cuban music are stronger than ever and continuing to spread.

February 27th Lara Downes - For Lenny

Feb 27, 2018

Leonard Bernstein is a treasure of American music.  The son of Ukranian immigrants he was a prolific composer, pianist, educator, and conductor associated with New York Philharmonic for forty-seven years. The conservative culture of classical music wouldn't let a gay man hold a prestigious conducting position so he lived his whole life in the closet. Leonard Bernstein was born in 1918.  in honor of his 100th birthday pianist Lara Downes has released a tribute to Lenny, twenty-eight tracks which beautifully encapsulate the spirit of the man and his music.

January 12th Stephen Ruppenthal - Flamethrower

Jan 12, 2018

Stephen Ruppenthal is a versatile trumpeter known for his work with experimental contemporary music and sound art. His latest album, Flamethrower, evolved over eight years and contains world premiers of five pieces for trumpet with interactive electroacoustics. Ruppenthal extends his instrument from its traditional sound using digital audio processing, demonstrating the limitless possibilities of the genre of classical electronic music. Stephen Ruppenthal’s album is called Flamethrower, the track we’re hearing is Misty Magic Land.

December 19th Trio Da Kali/Kronos - Ladilikan

Dec 19, 2017

Take a trio of the finest griot musicians from Mali and put them in a studio with western music’s most revolutionary string quartet and the resulting album is of the most rewarding musical collaborations you’re likely to hear. The musicians are Trio Da Kali, and the Kronos Quartet. Both groups have acknowledged this collaboration as among the best of their respective careers. The music speaks for itself. The album is Ladilikan the track we’re hearing is Garaba Mama.