| Apr 8, 2014
| 7:54 AM
It's quite possible that Thursday evening will mark a dramatic new beginning for two extraordinary musicians.
Chicago singer Tammy McCann owns one of the most luxuriant voices in jazz, but she never has teamed with a pianist-arranger of comparable...
| Apr 15, 2014
| 2:02 PM
Orchestra Hall has presented jazz since the early days of the 20th century, but only in the past two decades has the music been championed as part of a bona fide series.
Major and emerging stars have been booked for the series' 21st annual season,...
| Feb 11, 2014
| 7:27 AM
Can 15 years have gone by since Chicago blues master Billy Branch released a studio album as bandleader?
Apparently so, but he surely sounds as if he's trying to make up for lost time with "Blues Shock" (Blind Pig Records), a remarkably strong release...
| Feb 18, 2014
| 6:47 AM
Last March, the superb Chicago jazz singer Grazyna Auguscik was rehearsing for one of the biggest concerts of her career, in her native Poland, when she received the worst news of her life.
Her partner of more than 20 years, Marek Bajson, had been...
| Feb 25, 2014
| 8:08 AM
Mardi Gras will arrive a little early this year for Chicago listeners, thanks to a most unusual and promising concert this weekend by Orbert Davis' Chicago Jazz Philharmonic.
While revelers in New Orleans will celebrate the traditional Fat Tuesday on...
| Mar 4, 2014
| 7:52 AM
Several years ago, Chicago priest and jazz guitarist John Moulder came up with a bold idea: Put on a jazz festival in which all the musicians and clubs donate their services, with the proceeds going to fight hunger.
Moulder, who's widely admired by...
| Mar 18, 2014
| 1:34 PM
Few poets have captured the feeling of jazz – its rhythms, its cadences, its sense of freedom – more lyrically than Langston Hughes. The music courses through his words, which carry backbeats and melodies as seductive as those in any solo by a...
| Jan 21, 2014
| 7:25 AM
The elusive art of jazz has proven notoriously difficult to capture on film, as has been amply demonstrated by films such as Clint Eastwood's ponderous Charlie Parker biography "Bird" (1988) and Ken Burns' stultifying, multi-part documentary "Jazz" (2001)...
| Jan 23, 2014
| 9:07 AM
These are lively days – and nights – for saxophonist-clarinetist Victor Goines, who last weekend presented the world premiere of an original orchestral suite at Jazz at Lincoln Center in New York and this weekend offers new music over three...
| Jan 28, 2014
| 10:40 AM
For the past couple of decades, Chicago saxophonist Ken Vandermark has been racing around the globe, prolifically recording, performing and generating provocative new ideas in music.
His innovative work and seemingly inexhaustible efforts won him a...
| Jan 14, 2014
| 9:26 AM
When Chicago blues singer Shemekia Copeland began performing "Ain't Gonna Be Your Tattoo" in concert, she was startled by the response.
The song, which unflinchingly addresses violence against women, inspired more than just applause. After concerts,...