Thomas Cunniffe

NOTES FROM THE EDITOR (01-21)

Happy New Year, everyone (yes, I know we’re late)!  Welcome to the year-end/new year edition of Jazz History Online. This issue was supposed to be published on December 31, but 2020 had one final trick to pull. I was posting a set of reviews to the site on December 30, and noticed that a number […]

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2020: THE SUMMATION

2020 is FINALLY over! Jazz History Online presents its lists of the best CDs, reissues and books, plus a solemn remembrance of those jazz masters who passed away.

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JAZZ IN THE TIME OF COVID-19 (December 2020)

In a continuing series, Jazz History Online devotes its CD Review section to discs issued during the pandemic. Thomas Cunniffe reviews 6 discs this time, including Dave Douglas’ “Overcome”, Fred Hersch’s “Songs from Home”, Carla Marciano’s “Psychosis”, The Royal Bopsters’ “Party of Four”, Matt Wilson’s “Hug!” and Martin Wind’s “White Noise”.

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NEW MUSIC FROM OLD MASTERS

The four albums spotlighted in this month’s Retro Review offer new insights into the music of Dave Brubeck, Ella Fitzgerald, Charles Mingus and Sonny Rollins. Each recording adds previously unissued music which help to fill gaps in their legacy. Thomas Cunniffe highlights these important recordings.

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HEART FULL OF RHYTHM” (by Ricky Riccardi)

Known amongst his colleagues as “Rickipedia”, Ricky Riccardi is the go-to man for all things pertaining to Louis Armstrong. His first Armstrong biography, “What a Wonderful World” reappraised the jazz icon’s later years (1947-1971). His newest addition is “Heart Full of Rhythm”, which discusses Armstrong’s equally-misunderstood big band era (1929-1947). Thomas Cunniffe’s review of the new book notes that Riccardi has grown as an author and historian since the earlier volume, and that while he has not lost his enthusiasm for his subject, his arguments are guided by scholarship rather than jingoism.

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The 1968 Bill Evans Trio with Eddie Gomez & Jack DeJohnette

For about 6 months in the middle of 1968, pianist Bill Evans led a remarkable trio featuring bassist Eddie Gomez and drummer Jack DeJohnette. Up until now, the only recordings that existed of this group were the Grammy-winning LP Bill Evans at the Montreux Jazz Festival and a handful of bootleg recordings. In this Historical Essay, Thomas Cunniffe discusses the group’s recordings (including a newly released–and previously unknown studio session) as well as a rare TV broadcast.

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NOTES FROM THE EDITOR (09-20)

Hello everyone— Welcome to the new edition of Jazz History Online, now emanating from our new permanent headquarters in Wilmington, Delaware. Many of you have asked why I decided on Wilmington. It was the usual real estate combination: price and location. Apartment rents are much lower here than most cities on the East Coast (and […]

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MINGUS AT ANTIBES (Atlantic 3001 [LP]/Rhino 72871 [CD])

It was hot in the summer of 1960, but it wasn’t all due to the weather. Civil Rights was a regular topic on the evening news. With racial inequality still part of our daily lives in 2020, Thomas Cunniffe felt that it was appropriate to re-examine Charles Mingus’ explosive concert at Antibes from July 1960, featuring Ted Curson, Eric Dolphy, Booker Ervin, Dannie Richmond and special guest Bud Powell.

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BACK TO WORK!

The COVID-19 virus shut down live concerts within a few days. The re-emergence of concerts is a slow process, but Thomas Cunniffe reports that musicians can get back to work if they are willing to create their own opportunities.

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JAZZ IN THE TIME OF COVID-19 (September 2020)

In a continuing series, Jazz History Online devotes its CD Review section to discs issued during the pandemic. Thomas Cunniffe reviews 8 discs this time, including “Artemis”, Dena DeRose’s “Ode to the Road”, Dave Douglas’ “Dizzy Atmosphere”, Sarah Elgeti’s “Dawn Comes Quietly”, Brian Landrus’ “For Now”, Allegra Levy’s “Lose My Number”, Maria Schneider’s “Data Lords” & Kenny Washington’s “What’s the Hurry”.

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