Mark Stryker of The Detroit Free Press sent the following comment about the current DVD in Doug's Picks: In honor of your DVD - Sinatra and Peggy Lee. "Ooh." Among all the other good things in this clip: Sinatra's chops. How about that effortless low F at 1:54. Ooh.   … [Read more...]

CD: Jovino Santos Neto

Jovino Santos Neto, Alma do Nordeste (Adventure Music). Based for some years in Seattle, the pianist, flutist and composer returns to his native Brazil and collaborates with eleven of his countrymen. The music is based in the baiãos, forrós, xotes and other rich forms of Northeastern Brazil. It is intensely rhythmic, melodic and full of adventure. Indigenous percussion and stringed instruments meld beautifully with Santos Neto's jazz concepts. Once you've heard Toninho Ferragutti's playing in … [Read more...]

CD: Ed Reed

Ed Reed, The Song Is You (Blue Shorts). His career was derailed by a troubled life, but as he approaches his eightieth year, Reed's second CD confirms that he is a singer who serves the song. Not a great vocal technician, he specializes in phrasing and interpretation that penetrate to the heart and meaning of lyrics. Among thirteen well-chosen songs, the title tune and "Lucky To Be Me" are essential performances. The small band led by Peck Allmond includes Russell George, once a superb bassist, … [Read more...]

CD: Brubeck Brothers

Brubeck Brothers Quartet, Classified (Koch). The band headed by bassist/trombonist Chris and drummer Dan Brubeck is in top form on seven new quartet compositions, an impressive chamber suite and a stirring ensemble version of their father's "Blue Rondo a la Turk." Guitarist Mike DeMicco, pianist Chuck Lamb and the brothers have become one of the tightest ensembles in jazz without losing their sense of surprise, even abandon. When they combine with the Imani Winds for Chris Brubeck's … [Read more...]

DVD: Peggy Lee

Fever, The Music of Peggy Lee (Capitol). This quasi-documentary sketches Peggy Lee's life and career. Its greatest contribution is the use of performance clips, interviews and informal films to create a portrait of a gifted artist whose human warmth matched her talent. She was terrific even in a shampoo commercial. Her first husband, the guitarist Dave Barbour, remained her great love even beyond their divorce. The bonus clip of Lee singing "I Only Have Eyes for You" to Barbour as he accompanies … [Read more...]

Book: Glenn Gould

Katie Hafner, A Romance on Three Legs (Bloomsbury). The story of Glenn Gould's search for the perfect piano allows us to know the great pianist--and great eccentric--a little better. The book is a superb piece of reporting, its subtext a meditation on the compelling nature of music and its ability to inspire obsession. … [Read more...]