| May 23, 2014
CELEBRATED PIANIST JASON MORAN, who won a MacArthur Fellowship in 2010 and directs jazz at the Kennedy Center in Washington, walks into the band room at Kenwood Academy High School and faces a rather tough crowd.
For starters, virtually none of the...
| Jun 11, 2013
| 9:48 AM
Joseph Marinaro had a dream: He was going to be a great singer, like his heroes Frank Sinatra and Mario Lanza.
But the talented young crooner from Buffalo, N.Y., got married and had 10 kids, set aside his musical ambitions and laid asphalt to support...
| Jun 18, 2013
| 7:53 AM
Inspiring music-making isn't necessarily loud, aggressive, self-aggrandizing or heavily promoted.
Consider what happens early every Wednesday night at Andy's Jazz Club, where the superb but serenely understated Chicago guitarist Andy Brown leads a...
| Jan 2, 2013
| 10:27 AM
A new year brings new hopes for music in Chicago. Here are key resolutions for 2013:
Create a concise Cultural Plan. After months of town hall meetings, the city's Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events last fall came up with a 48-page wish...
| Jan 3, 2013
| 12:52 PM
The New Year has just begun, but the jazz scene never settles down. Among the weekend's highlights:
Rob Mazurek: The enterprising Chicago cornetist has produced remarkable work with his aptly named Exploding Star Orchestra, which conjures a...
| Jan 10, 2013
| 1:36 PM
When it comes to playing through pain, Chicago tenor saxophonist Frank Catalano has more experience than most of his colleagues.
Eighteen years ago, he severed the middle finger of his right hand while fixing his car, enduring surgery to reattach it and...
| Jan 15, 2013
| 3:05 PM
Out on the dance floor, young couples are throwing off dance steps right out of the Roaring Twenties: the Charleston, the fox trot, the shimmy.
Just inches away, up on the bandstand, youthful musicians you'd sooner expect to find covering Radiohead or...
| Jan 16, 2013
| 8:00 AM
To me, a kid growing up in the 1960s and '70s, Skokie seemed like any other suburb, its tidy houses sitting on impeccably manicured lawns.
Sure, on Friday nights and Saturday mornings you'd sometimes see Hasidic Jews strolling to and from synagogue....
| Jan 22, 2013
| 11:30 AM
For decades, the defenders of the status quo have insisted that the Chicago Jazz Festival must remain anchored in Grant Park.
They said the dreadful acoustics there were just fine.
They said the dilapidated Petrillo Music Shell served the fest well....
| Dec 11, 2012
| 10:16 AM
Any president's second term offers another shot at fulfilling dreams that got away the first time around.
So while President Barack Obama is strategizing on immigration, unemployment, the deficit and, oh yes, the fiscal cliff, I'd like to add one more...
| Aug 8, 2012
Until three weeks ago, no jazz club owner ever had been selected to receive the country's pre-eminent jazz honor: the National Endowment for the Arts' Jazz Masters Fellowship, which carries with it $25,000 and considerable prestige.
Anyone who follows...