| Feb 24, 2015
| 3:08 PM
The last time I talked to trumpeter Clark Terry, a few months ago, he was exultant about the critical acclaim being lavished on the documentary "Keep on Keepin' On," which poetically chronicled his biography and his mentoring of the blind young pianist...
| Feb 19, 2015
| 7:21 AM
Why are two bona fide jazz legends – 88-year-old saxophonist Jimmy Heath and 87-year-old bandleader Bill Holman – playing the western suburb of Elmhurst this weekend?
For the same reason that trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie, drummer Louie Bellson,...
| Feb 12, 2015
| 6:33 AM
Through either a glorious fluke of programming or rather ingenious planning, or both, three unusually charismatic male jazz singers will be serenading the Chicago area this Valentine's Day weekend.
That's a remarkable confluence of talent considering...
| Feb 5, 2015
| 10:40 AM
If you caught one of the many national tours of "Fiddler on the Roof" that have come through town over the last 30 years or so, chances are you saw Theodore Bikel as Tevye, the barrel-chested father of five daughters who schleps his milk cart through...
| Feb 3, 2015
| 6:54 AM
No one loved Chicago trumpeter Bobby Lewis' work more than the great singer Peggy Lee, who was not shy about expressing her admiration for him.
Lewis, she said, has "a sound like no other. I like him best when he plays in pastels, but every note is...
| Jan 27, 2015
| 6:48 AM
Jazz was in trouble.
In the early 1960s rock was ascendant, jazz clubs were closing, jobs were evaporating and the music seemed to be coming to a creative and commercial dead end.
Until, that is, a group of intrepid players from the South Side of...
| Jan 22, 2015
| 7:23 AM
It would be difficult to overestimate the melodic grace, harmonic allure and lasting eloquence of the music of Antonio Carlos Jobim.
Universally loved songs such as "Girl from Ipanema," "Desafinado" and "One Note Samba" only hint at the mountain of...
| Jan 20, 2015
| 10:19 AM
Chicago trumpeter Orbert Davis was rehearsing with students in Havana last month when a translator tapped him on the shoulder and asked him to stop everything.
The translator then told the room that Cuban President Raul Castro had just been on TV to...
| Jan 15, 2015
| 8:45 AM
When he was 26 years old, Chicago pianist Robert Irving III joined the band of one of the most revered musicians in jazz: Miles Davis.
Irving played with Davis from 1979 to 1988, serving as music director and foil for a profoundly creative jazz...
| Jan 13, 2015
| 7:32 AM
We already knew she could sing, play the piano and write hyperliterate, musically sophisticated songs.
But can Chicagoan Patricia Barber host a radio show? More specifically, can she preside over a program designed not merely to entertain listeners...
| Jan 6, 2015
| 6:55 AM
If New Year's resolutions help us to aspire higher, Chicago jazz could use a few:
Boost the Chicago Jazz Festival, Part 1. The Chicago Jazz Festival made significant improvements in 2014, as in its belated embrace of social media, with a dramatically...