New Doug’s Picks

The new Picks in the center column concern three pianists, two alto saxophonists, one photographer and a rare Rifftides classical recommendation. … [Read more...]

CD: Roger Kellaway

 Roger Kellaway, Live at the Jazz Standard (IPO). For the pianist's stand at the New York club, he continues his drumerless ways of recent years but, as usual, has plenty of rhythm. He is abetted by guitarist Russell Malone and bassist Jay Leonhart. Vibraharpist Stefon Harris is also aboard, fitting into Kellway's conception of a group modeled on the Nat Cole Trio. Cellist Borislav Strulev makes a moving contribution to Kellaway's "All My Life." The exuberant blowing is on familiar pieces, … [Read more...]

CD: Grace Kelly, Lee Konitz

Grace Kelly, Lee Konitz, GracefulLee (Pazz). Alto saxophonists, one fifteen, the other eighty, on the same wavelength, enjoying one another's company. As I wrote near the time this was being recorded, Ms.Kelly is a phenomenon -- not a precociously talented child, but a complete improvising musician. With Konitz, one of the great individualists in jazz, she is a peer. On the tracks featuring her in duo with drummer Matt Wilson, guitarist Russell Malone and bassist Rufus Reid, she is resourceful … [Read more...]

CD: András Schiff

András Schiff, Ludwig van Beethoven: The Piano Sonatas, Vol. VII and Vol. VIII (ECM). With these CDs, the pianist completes his recording of the cycle of thirty-two Beethoven onatas written from 1795 to 1822. How Schiff's approach to the sonatas compares with the  Beethoven visions of Arthur Schnabel, Sviatoslav Richter, Richard Goode and the many other great pianists who have recorded them is a matter of the knowledge, taste, temperament and ears of the listener. To these ears, he sees into the … [Read more...]

DVD: Bill Evans

Bill Evans, Live '64-'75 (Jazz Icons). We see and hear the most influential jazz pianist after Bud Powell with four versions of his trio in concerts or television appearances in Scandinavia and France. In a slightly disjointed encounter, Lee Konitz is the guest on one tune. Otherwise, Evans is deep in conversation with his sidemen: bassists Eddie Gomez, Chuck Israels and Neils-Henning Ørsted Pedersen: and drummers Larry Bunker, Alan Dawson, Marty Morell and the seldom seen Eliot Zigmund. Much of … [Read more...]

Book: William Claxton

William Claxton, Photographic Memory (Powerhouse). This generous volume has the great photographer's pictures of a few jazz people, including shots of Chet Baker that helped make both of them famous. But here we have full-range Claxton; portraits of personalities as varied in time and occupation as Igor Stravinsky in 1956, Benicio Del Toro in 2001, Ursula Andress in 1962, Spike Lee in 1989 and Vladimir Nabokov in 1961. This survey of Claxton's work, much of it previously unpublished, … [Read more...]