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GA Russell

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About GA Russell

  • Birthday November 5

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    Raleigh, NC
  • Interests
    eBook reading
    Canadian football

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  1. Welcome back Lazaro! I've seen that you post from time to time on Facebook, and I've wondered when we would see you again here.
  2. Saxophonist/Composer Alex Weiss Exhibits His Surrealist Jazz Conception on "Most Don't Have Enough," Set for February 24 Release By Ears&Eyes Records Album Features Seven Originals, Two Avant-Jazz Covers In the Recorded Debut of Weiss's Glad Irys Quintet With Saxophonist Dan Blake, Guitarist Yana Davydova, Bassist Dmitry Ishenko, & Drummer Ches Smith, With Guest Pianist Marta Sanchez CD Release Show at P.S. 133, Brooklyn Tuesday, March 14   January 23, 2023 Alex Weiss’s idiosyncratic vision of postbop jazz finds a new apex with the tenor saxophonist-composer’s February 24 release of Most Don’t Have Enough (ears&eyes). Weiss’s third album as a leader is also his first with Glad Irys, his working quintet since 2019 comprising soprano saxophonist Dan Blake, guitarist Yana Davydova, bassist Dmitry Ishenko, and drummer Ches Smith, with pianist Marta Sanchez adding her distinctive stamp to two of the album’s nine moody, mysterious tracks. Seven of Most Don’t Have Enough’s tunes are Weiss originals, each bearing the composer’s hallmarks of unusual form, meter, and texture. His approach to music and art is deeply informed by the work of his grandfather, the great Spanish surrealist Eugenio Granell. “The importance of exercising one’s imagination was instilled in me by my grandfather,” Weiss says. “I started seeing a synergistic relationship between the jazz idiom of the ’50s and ’60s and surrealism, and the element of social protest in both.” That context by itself suggests a great deal of freedom in Weiss’s music, and he does not disappoint. Pieces like “Thread Your Grandmother’s Needle” and “Akira: Sun and Moon” offer wide open spaces for the players to color as far outside the lines as they dare. There is even a cover of Ornette Coleman’s “Humpty Dumpty” to reinforce that sense of creative liberation. Like Coleman, however, Weiss’s music is also rich with melody—though rarely of a conventional stripe. There’s great lyricism and enchantment to be found in “The Leonard Nimoy Method” and “Thumbelina”—as well as great fun in trying to guess where the tunes will go next. Most Don’t Have Enough is also (as the title suggests) a vehicle for social and political commentary. “Your Dark Shadow Appears at the Door” is a menacing meditation on the onset of the Trump era; titles like “Homage to Elijah Cummings” and “Organized Religion” speak for themselves. Also speaking for themselves are Weiss’s brilliant collaborators. Blake is both a superb frontline partner for Weiss and a stunning improviser on “Humpty Dumpty” and the band’s cover of Chris Speed’s “Really Ok,” and the rhythm section of Davydova, Ishenko, and Smith make for a thrilling blend of stable and adventurous support, with each turning in remarkable solos of their own. Sanchez’s presence illuminates “Homage to Elijah Cummings” and “Akira: Sun and Moon,” imbuing both tunes with a jolt of unexpected pathos. Alex Weiss was born January 5, 1971, in New York City, but was raised in the Boston area. Beginning on saxophone at 12 years old, he was gigging professionally by 15. He studied music at the University of Massachusetts and San Francisco State University, also conducting life-changing “field work” at the latter city’s fabled Saint John William Coltrane African Orthodox Church where he played every Sunday for two years. Weiss made his way through the 1990s in San Francisco, where he made important connections with saxophonists Roberto DeHaven (who played on Weiss’s 1997 debut recording, Make Your Own Lightning), Marco Eneidi, Glenn Spearman, and John Tchicai. He relocated to Spain in 1999, spending four years in the Madrid-based band Mojo and leading his own Gallo Pinto quintet. Returning to the Bay Area in 2003, he played in multiple contexts and projects—including his quartet Outhead, with which he recorded two albums (2007’s Quiet Sounds for Comfortable People and 2014’s Send This Sound to the King). Arriving in Brooklyn in 2008, Weiss reunited with Tchicai to record One Long Minute with the Danish saxophonist’s Five Points band, working with bassist Dmitry Ishenko and Ches Smith, who would become longtime collaborators. They worked with him on 2012’s Fighter Planes & Praying Mantis, his second recording under his own name. Weiss also worked with the likes of Wadada Leo Smith, Herb Robertson, Sean Conly, Shahazad Ismaliy, Marcella Lucatelli, Liz Kosack, and Santiago Leibson; played in the hora/klezmer outfit K’nock Brigade; and earned a master’s degree in music therapy from New York University. The 2013 birth of his son took Weiss off the bandstand for a few years; shortly after he formed Glad Irys in 2019. The COVID-19 pandemic forced another long hiatus, which he used to compose much of the music that now makes its way to the world as Most Don’t Have Enough. Alex Weiss will be performing a CD release show with the band heard on Most Don’t Have Enough on Tuesday 3/14, 6pm, at P.S. 133, 610 Baltic St., Brooklyn, NY. Photography: Kathryn Lewis     Alex Weiss EPK: "Most Don't Have Enough"  Alex Weiss Web Site    
  3. The Congressional Budget Office reports that the Social Security fund is headed for bankruptcy in ten years. https://www.theepochtimes.com/social-security-will-be-bankrupt-by-2033-on-current-trajectory-cbo-report_5003529.html
  4. I read this book last week. The author says that Miles lost his voice not because of his throat operation, but rather because soon after the operation he screamed at a record company executive. This is news to me. Would the exec have been Bob Weinstock? Anybody know anything about this?
  5. Here are six collections, each 100 songs on five CDs, each $9.95. 60s Classics https://www.hamiltonbook.com/60s-classics-the-ultimate-collection-compact-disc ***** Summer of Love https://www.hamiltonbook.com/summer-of-love-the-ultimate-collection-compact-disc ***** 70s https://www.hamiltonbook.com/70s-the-ultimate-collection-compact-disc ***** 80s Chartbusters https://www.hamiltonbook.com/80s-chartbusters-the-ultimate-collection-compact-disc ***** Classic Rock https://www.hamiltonbook.com/classic-rock-the-ultimate-collection-compact-disc ***** Country Greats https://www.hamiltonbook.com/country-greats-the-ultimate-collection-compact-disc
  6. NEW SONNY ROLLINS COLLECTION GO WEST!: THE CONTEMPORARY RECORDS ALBUMS ARRIVES JUNE 23 Continuing Craft Recordings’ celebration of Contemporary Records, Go West! explores the legendary saxophonist’s output with the influential jazz label 180-gram 3-LP and 3-CD box sets contain newly mastered audio by Bernie Grundman of Way Out West, Sonny Rollins and the Contemporary Leaders and Contemporary Alternate Takes Plus an exclusive 2021 interview with Sonny Rollins and new liner notes by GRAMMY®-winning music historian Ashley Kahn Advance single “You” (Alternate Take) available to stream/download here Click here for trailer video Craft Recordings announces the release of Go West!: The Contemporary Records Albums, a new 3-LP, 3-CD and digital collection that explores Sonny Rollins’ output for Lester Koenig’s revered Los Angeles jazz label. Newly cut from the original analog tapes by GRAMMY®-winning engineer (and former Contemporary Records studio employee) Bernie Grundman, the 20-track set presents two classic albums from the legendary saxophonist’s catalog: Way Out West (recorded in March 1957) and Sonny Rollins and the Contemporary Leaders (October 1958). Adding additional context are six alternate takes, culled from both albums. Originally released in 1986 on the long-out-of-print compilation album Contemporary Alternate Takes, these tracks allow listeners to hear Rollins and his fellow musicians develop such iconic recordings as “Way Out West” and “Come, Gone.” Set for release on June 23 (March 17 digital), and available for pre-order here, the 3-LP edition (pressed on 180-gram vinyl at RTI) and the 3-CD set both include an expanded booklet with new liner notes by the GRAMMY® Award-winning music historian Ashley Kahn. Also included is a new interview with Rollins, conducted by Kahn in August 2021. Beginning today, fans can stream or download an alternate take of “You.” Previously unavailable on digital platforms, the recording was captured during the sessions for Sonny Rollins and the Contemporary Leaders. Go West!: The Contemporary Records Albums is part of an ongoing collection of special releases celebrating the 70th anniversary of Contemporary Records, including 2021’s Ornette Coleman – Genesis of Genius, which is available here, and the Contemporary Records Acoustic Sounds series, featuring a variety of classic, 180-gram vinyl reissues from the likes of Art Pepper, Benny Carter and Shelly Manne, available here. In the spring of 1957, 26-year-old Sonny Rollins was primed for a new adventure. For nearly a decade, the tenor saxophonist had worked his way up through the ranks of the New York City jazz scene. By the mid-50s, Rollins was playing alongside such stars as Miles Davis, Clifford Brown and Max Roach, and Thelonious Monk, and had released his first albums as a leader on Prestige Records. The saxophonist had also established himself as a talented composer, through such now-iconic jazz standards as “Oleo,” “Airegin,” “Doxy” and “St. Thomas.” But while the Harlem-born artist was firmly entrenched in the East Coast hard bop scene, the opportunity to explore the sights and sounds of the West Coast (where the cool jazz movement was in full swing) had a strong appeal. Moreover, having recently concluded his contractual obligations with Prestige, Rollins was a free agent. In his new liner notes, Ashley Kahn writes, “The idea of freedom comes up often in chronicles of Rollins during this period. It’s noted in the music he was creating—particularly in his decision to perform and record with piano-less rhythm accompaniment, allowing for a harmonic freedom, but also in his extended improvisations that developed into lengthy stories of their own. Rollins was developing his sound and approach on a daily basis.” At the center of the West Coast jazz scene was Contemporary Records. Founded in 1951 by former screenwriter and film producer Lester Koenig, the young label was home to some of Los Angeles’ most exciting artists, including Shelly Manne, Barney Kessel, Hampton Hawes, Art Pepper and André Previn. From its state-of-the-art recording facilities to its high-impact jacket art, Contemporary Records had quickly established itself as an industry tastemaker—and Rollins wanted to take part in the action. Koenig, who had recently begun pairing East and West Coast musicians together, was just as eager to work with the rising star. “I think everybody on the scene knew about Contemporary Records. Contemporary had a very positive reputation, a good name,” recalls Rollins, speaking to Kahn in 2021. “[Koenig] seemed to be a very resolute fellow, a no-nonsense type of guy, and a very charming person. . . . He was very respectful and a supporter of the music. He knew the history.” Rollins commemorated his inaugural trip to California with Way Out West. Recorded in the early hours of March 7 with bassist Ray Brown and drummer Shelly Manne, the album marked the saxophonist’s first in a trio setting. A loose concept record, Way Out West was comprised of originals (“Come Gone” and the title track), standards (Duke Ellington’s “Solitude,” Isham Jones’ “There Is No Greater Love”) and a pair of Western classics: Johnny Mercer’s “I’m an Old Cowhand” and Peter DeRose’s “Wagon Wheels.” Engineer Roy DuNann (whom Rollins refers to as “the Rudy Van Gelder of the West Coast”) recorded the sessions. The memorable jacket art, photographed by Bill Claxton, was also conceived of by Rollins. The desert scene features the musician as a lone cowboy, drawing a saxophone from his gun holster. “I used to go to the movies every week in Harlem and I happened to be a big cowboy fan,” reveals Rollins. “They were my heroes and they were always the good guys. They stood for justice. In the end, good would always win over bad.” In 1958, Rollins returned to Los Angeles—but this time he was a star. In the two years following his first visit, the saxophonist had released multiple albums (including the groundbreaking Freedom Suite), made his debut at Carnegie Hall and was hailed by critics as the decade’s most influential tenor sax player. Rollins had also married his first wife, actress and model Dawn Finney, whom he met during his first trip to California. His follow-up for Contemporary, Sonny Rollins and the Contemporary Leaders, would bookend this eventful era—marking the musician’s final album of the ’50s, before he embarked on his first European tour and took a three-year hiatus, ahead of his next artistic phase. Recorded over three days that October, Sonny Rollins and the Contemporary Leaders found the horn player primarily in a quintet setting, backed by Manne, Barney Kessel (guitar), Hampton Hawes (piano) and Leroy Vinnegar (bass), with a guest appearance by vibraphonist Victor Feldman—all of whom also recorded as leaders on the label, as the title implies. Bridging the sounds of both coasts, the album showcased the talents of each musician, as they played eight standards, including “Alone Together” (Schwartz/Dietz), “You” (Donaldson/Adamson) and “How High the Moon” (Lewis/Hamilton). “I really like the mix of tunes we did on the Leaders album, and I also like that the record shows there is a difference between the West Coast and East Coast musicians back then,” notes Rollins. “The musicians out there were just like the West Coast itself—beautiful landscape, beautiful weather, everything like that… East Coast jazz was more hard-edged. The bebop music we were playing at that time represented that divide—I could hear the difference.” Rollins’ love affair with California wasn’t just about the scenery, however. To him, these trips and their resulting albums represented a unique moment in his life—one filled with creative exploration, a thrilling sense of opportunity and romance. “Being out West felt like new beginnings to me,” he explains. “That whole experience in L.A. was a moment of growth. I’m so grateful that I’ve lived to the age that I am and that I could learn. I’m still learning, you know, growing and learning.” Click here to pre-order or pre-save Go West!: The Contemporary Records Albums. Exclusive Contemporary Records merchandise also available here. Sonny Rollins – Go West!: The Contemporary Records Albums tracklist (Vinyl) LP 1: Way Out West Side One 1. I’m An Old Cowhand 2. Solitude 3. Come, Gone Side Two 1. Wagon Wheels 2. There Is No Greater Love 3. Way Out West LP 2: Sonny Rollins and the Contemporary Leaders Side One 1. I’ve Told Ev’ry Little Star 2. Rock-A-Bye Your Baby With A Dixie Melody 3. How High The Moon 4. You Side Two 1. I’ve Found A New Baby 2. Alone Together 3. In The Chapel In The Moonlight 4. The Song Is You LP3: Contemporary Alternate Takes Side One 1. I’m An Old Cowhand (Alternate Take) 2. Come, Gone (Alternate Take) Side Two 1. Way Out West (Alternate Take) 2. The Song Is You (Alternate Take) 3. You (Alternate Take) 4. I’ve Found A New Baby (Alternate Take) Sonny Rollins – Go West!: The Contemporary Records Albums tracklist (CD/Digital) Disc 1: Way Out West 1. I’m An Old Cowhand 2. Solitude 3. Come, Gone 4. Wagon Wheels 5. There Is No Greater Love 6. Way Out West Disc 2: Sonny Rollins and the Contemporary Leaders 1. I’ve Told Ev’ry Little Star 2. Rock-A-Bye Your Baby With A Dixie Melody 3. How High The Moon 4. You 5. I’ve Found A New Baby 6. Alone Together 7. In The Chapel In The Moonlight 8. The Song Is You Disc 3: Contemporary Alternate Takes 1. I’m An Old Cowhand (Alternate Take) 2. Come, Gone (Alternate Take) 3. Way Out West (Alternate Take) 4. The Song Is You (Alternate Take) 5. You (Alternate Take) 6. I’ve Found A New Baby (Alternate Take) About Contemporary Records Founded in 1951 by Lester Koenig (December 3, 1917 – November 21, 1977), Contemporary Records is a uniquely Hollywood story. An intellectual who loved the arts, Koenig (pronounced kay-nig) thrived in the film industry as a screenwriter, co-producer, and assistant to William Wyler, playing an important role on landmark films such as The Best Years of Our Lives, Detective Story and Roman Holiday. Koenig’s life in movies was effectively ended by the Red Scare in 1953, when he was called to testify before the House Un-American Activities Committee. He was flayed by the conservative Hollywood establishment for having left-wing sympathies, and blacklisted he turned his attention to Good Time Jazz, a label he’d launched in 1949, to record a Dixieland combo featuring players who all had day jobs with Disney. He initially created Contemporary as an outlet for new contemporary classical works, but his ears were wide open and by the mid-1950s many of Southern California’s most exciting jazz artists were eager to document their music in what was rapidly becoming one of the best studios on the West Coast under the auspices of Roy DuNann, the sound engineer Koenig lured away from Capitol Records in 1956. The artists responded to Koenig’s steadfast faith in their creativity, and Contemporary became the essential vehicle for L.A. modernists and East Coast players looking for respite from the New York hustle. Seven decades later, the label’s legacy looks more imposing than ever, as the albums that Lester Koenig and his son John recorded continue to inspire and influence leading players on the contemporary scene. To learn more, go to CraftRecordings.com/contemporaryrecords. About Craft Recordings Craft Recordings is home to one of the largest and most essential collections of master recordings and compositions in the world. Its storied repertoire includes landmark releases from icons such as Joan Baez, John Coltrane, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Celia Cruz, Miles Davis, Isaac Hayes, John Lee Hooker, Little Richard, R.E.M., Joan Sebastian, and Traveling Wilburys. Plus, the catalog recordings of celebrated contemporary acts including A Day to Remember, Evanescence, Alison Krauss, Nine Inch Nails, Taking Back Sunday and Violent Femmes, to name just a few. Renowned imprints with catalogs issued under the Craft banner include Fania, Fantasy, Fearless, Musart, Nitro, Panart, Prestige, Riverside, Rounder, Specialty, Stax, Vanguard, Varèse Sarabande, Vee-Jay and Victory, among many others. Craft creates thoughtfully curated packages, with a meticulous devotion to quality and a commitment to preservation—ensuring that these recordings endure for new generations to discover. Craft is also home to the Billie Holiday and Tammy Wynette estates which preserve and protect their respective names, likeness and music through day-to-day legacy management of these cultural trailblazers. Craft Recordings is the catalog label team for Concord. For more info, visit CraftRecordings.com and follow on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube. Sonny Rollins | Go West!: The Contemporary Records Albums Contemporary Records | Release Date: Digital: March 17, 2023; LP/CD: June 23, 2023 ‌ ‌ ‌ # # #
  7. Speaking of the devil, here is an article from yesterday's local weekly about a turntable repairman. https://indyweek.com/news/15-minutes/greg-bower-57/
  8. Thanks sg! That's how I always said it in my mind, but recently I thought it might be "Buddimer."
  9. This is the album I always associated with him as well! I stumbled upon it just a few weeks ago on YouTube Music. Does anyone know how to pronounce Budimir? RIP.
  10. https://www.zerohedge.com/technology/vinyl-comeback-continues Apparently this number does not include the sales of used albums. The article suggests that most of the digital downloading is for songs rather than albums. And interestingly, only half of the LP buyers own a turntable.
  11. Don Aliquo Expands His Creative Horizons With "Growth," To Be Released February 17 On Ear Up Records Acclaimed Nashville Saxophonist Pushes the Envelope With 8 Open, Edgy Original Compositions with 2 Piano-less Quartets Featuring Trumpeter Rod McGaha or Guitarist Steve Kovalcheck CD Release Show at Rudy's Jazz Room, Nashville, Saturday, February 18   January 12, 2023 Saxophonist Don Aliquo lives up to the title of Growth—his eighth album, set for a February 17 release on Ear Up Records—with a trial by fire. Armed with his tenor sax and bass clarinet, as well as two venturesome, piano-less quartets, the Nashville area-based artist pushes past his established comfort zone and into more precarious and challenging improvisational territory. Aliquo’s eight original compositions are equally audacious. They are simultaneously complex and wide open, signaling that the leader is broadening his boundaries not just as an instrumentalist and improviser but as a composer as well. “I wanted to go beyond basic variations on bebop and hard bop and embrace other sounds, including avant-garde,” the reedman explains. “I definitely wanted to write and perform some pieces in a more open context that would stretch me.” More than a charting of his personal development, Growth doubles as a chronicle of the burgeoning Nashville jazz scene, with songs highlighting the more colorful corners of the aptly nicknamed “Music City.” It’s also apt that Aliquo (a Pittsburgh native) should be joined on this expedition by the cream of the jazz crop in his adopted hometown. His companions include trumpeter Rod McGaha, guitarist Steve Kovalcheck (since transplanted to Denver), bassists Jacob Jezioro and Jonathan Wires, and drummers Marcus Finnie and Danny Gottlieb. Having taken down the musical guardrails (especially on the tracks without Kovalcheck, which leave only the bass for a harmonic outline) doesn’t mean that Aliquo shies away from the precipice. Whether somersaulting his way across a marathon solo on “Lower Broadway Rundown,” staking out rhythmic freedom on “For the Vulnerable,” or charging through the structural labyrinth of “Salt and Light,” Aliquo takes seriously the proposition of Wayne Shorter (an important influence on Growth) that “Jazz means ‘I dare you.’” Yet strong melody and groove remain priorities as well. In particular, “Woman Clothed in the Sun” and “Blues for Duffy and Doug” each boast memorable hooks, the former moving in a confident strut and the latter with easy swing. Challenging, adventurous music, Growth reminds us, can still be fun to listen to. Don Aliquo was born May 10, 1960 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His father, Don Sr., was (and is) a much-in-demand jazz saxophonist in Pittsburgh and introduced his son to the music at an early age. Don Jr. began his own musical practice on the clarinet in elementary, but his father convinced him that the saxophone would allow him to get more work in jazz. Indeed, he was soon able to get his dad’s work—sitting in on gigs with Don Sr.’s bands. By the time he had finished high school, however, Don Jr. had carved out a niche for himself in Pittsburgh’s rich jazz tradition, working with the likes of trumpeter Benny Benack as well as jamming with saxophonist Stanley Turrentine. He enrolled in 1978 at Duquesne University, then moved on to Berklee College of Music in Boston (along with Duquesne classmate Jeff “Tain” Watts), but quit Berklee to go on the road with the Tommy Dorsey Band. After leaving the road, Aliquo returned to Duquesne for his undergrad and master’s degrees. Though he was throughout that time a reliable and esteemed saxophonist on the Pittsburgh scene, working with drummer Roger Humphries, among others, it wasn’t until 1997 that Aliquo recorded his first album, February Regrets, following it up two years later with Power of Two. Shortly thereafter, he left the Iron City, co-founding (with pianist Dana Landry) the Jazz Studies program at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, TN. His artistic career, however, soldiered on in his new home. He appeared on Landry’s 2002 recording The Journey Home (also featuring legendary vibraphonist and educator Gary Burton); the pianist returned the favor by performing on Aliquo’s albums Another Reply (2003) and Jazz Folk (2006, featuring bassist Rufus Reid). The 2010s brought forth the 2010 recording Sun & Shield; 2015’s New Ties and Binds, co-led with trumpeter Clay Jenkins; and 2019’s Live at Hinton Hall (The Innocence of Spring), a duo with pianist Michael Jefry Stevens. The decade also brought opportunities to play and teach in China and Colombia, with a performance in Spain following in 2021. It’s all been part of a remarkable growth cycle for Aliquo, in personal as well as professional terms. “Nashville has come a long way in the past 20 years,” he says, “and in many ways I think I have as well.” Don Aliquo will be performing a CD release show on Sat. 2/18 at Rudy’s Jazz Room, 809 Gleaves Street, Nashville, with Rod McGaha, tpt; Jacob Jezioro, b; and Chester Thompson, d. Photography: Rod McGaha     Don Aliquo EPK: "Growth"  Don Aliquo Web Site  
  12. The Mega Millions jackpot is up to $1.1 billion.
  13. CI seems to be making a special effort to clear out its inventory before the end of the fiscal year. Until January 31 no matter what you buy (tobacco and non-tobacco) no matter what sales discounts you are getting for orders over $99 get an additional 20% off and free shipping. Code: P1311A
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