Sonny the sax king

At age 80, Sonny Rollins is indisputably the greatest living jazz tenor saxophonist, proved last night throughout a 2-hour set at New York's sold-out Beacon Theater in which harmolodic sage Ornette Coleman sat in, backed by drummer Roy Haynes and bassist Christian McBride, on "Tenor Madness."  "Sonnymoon For Two". Rollins was hunched and hobbled when he came onstage, but once he started blowing he stood upright and blasted his big bold sound with energy that brooked no diminishment of strength or inspiration, bending only to fire … [Read more...]

“Big Three” jazz guitarists extended to a couple dozen

In his article on the collaboration of Jim Hall and Bill Frisell in the April issue of Jazz Times, Evan Haga refers to the "Big Three" of current jazz guitarists: Frisell, John Scofield and John McLaughlin.Much as I dig them (and Hall), that designation is a rather typical journalistic foreshortening of a field, relegating to a rich second tier such high-profile powerhouse contenders as Pat Metheny, Pat Martino, Larry Coryell, James "Blood" Ulmer, Vernon Reid, George Benson, Les Paul, Russell Malone, Al Di Meola, Kenny Burrell, Toninho Horta, … [Read more...]