Thursday, April 30, 2009

Icons Among Us: Jazz in the Present Tense

Read our coverage of the new 4-part documentary, Icons Among Us: Jazz in the Present Tense.

AAJ News Center Upgrade

We made some minor improvements to the All About Jazz News Center. We removed the news type legend and incorporated it into the "Type" dropdown list box. You can also access the RSS feeds that AAJ reads & posts from the "Active Feeds" link.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Drummer/Singer/Songwriter Brian Blade Interviewed at AAJ

Known in the jazz world for his slick and superlative drumming skills, Brian Blade is engaged in making other musical statements these days. Statements that are outside the jazz genre, but are an essential part of this enlightened man and serious musician whose musical tastes run "between Bela Bartok and Wayne Shorter to Al Green = 16841," who, he adds, all intermingle for him.

The Shreveport, Louisiana., native has contributed his considerable talents as a drummer for projects with Joshua Redman, Kenny Garrett and Bill Frisell. He can also be heard on recordings of Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Emmy Lou Harris and Seal. And he's a member of the Wayne Shorter Quartet for nine years and running.

On April 21, 2009, he releases a recording that is a departure from those associations. Mama Rosa (Verve) is a collection of personal and reflective songs Blade has written over the years in his solitary time.

AAJ is providing extensive coverage to celebrate the release of Mama Rosa, including:

AAJ continues to provide the most comprehensive coverage on the web, so check out all the buzz surrounding Brian Blade and Mama Rosa at AAJ today!

Singer/Songwriter Melody Gardot Interviewed at AAJ

Over the course of two much-lauded albums, singer/songwriter Melody Gardot has garnered a reputation many spent far longer to achieve. Still, it didn't come easily to Gardot, who never set pen to paper until an accident that almost left her in a wheelchair permanently.

Still, adversity can provide the greatest source material for songwriting, and even greater perspective on life, and as Gardot has grown as a songwriter between Worrisome Heart (Verve, 2008) and My One and Only Thrill (Verve, 2009), so, too, has she grown in terms of her ability to view the bigger musical picture, with her latest album featuring strings to expand her sonic palette.

AAJ contributor Esther Berlanga-Ryan spoke with Gardot about the making of My One and Only Thrill, and her view on gaining greater perspective on life, music and how to view the same experience from a different angle.

Check out Melody Gardot: Perspective at AAJ today!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Track Coverage, Improve Review Conversion, AAJ:Mobile, Take Five, Contest Giveaways, and more!

Dear Publicist:

2009 has been an active year for All About Jazz as we continue to roll out new features and services for the industry. We recently upgraded the publicist and record label listing page, we made tracking client coverage easier, and we developed a solution to help maximize your client's chances for coverage.

All About Jazz has achieved substantial growth in 2009 readership, and new initiatives are accelerating this. We recently reached 85,000 readers in a single day, and our traffic is up 13% since January.

Please read on and bring yourself up to speed on how you can benefit from our recent improvements and increased traffic.

Thanks for reading and enjoy!
Michael Ricci


  1. Tracking Made Simple
  2. Improve Turnaround: Your AAJ Record Service List
  3. New AAJ Interview Feature
  4. Post calendar dates once and sync them up at MySpace, Last FM, JamBase, ReverbNation, AAJ...
  5. AAJ: Mobile Launches
  6. AAJ Partners With AOL
  7. Contest Giveaways
  8. How To Credit All About Jazz

1. Tracking Made Simple

Publicists: We created a single page that lists all client-related articles and CD reviews. Go to your listing page and click the "AAJ Coverage" link. You can find your listing page by going to the GUIDES page and searching for your profile.

Record Labels: You can view the last 25 CD reviews right from your profile page.

2. Improve Turnaround: Your AAJ Record Service List

We're always working to increase our coverage of jazz music: from debut releases by relative unknowns to established stars. For a volunteer staff, AAJ's turnover is relatively low, but writers do come and go, and they don't always notify you when they move on. We've developed a solution that will allow us to keep your list current. Go to your profile page and enter the writers you service in the "AAJ Record Service Recipients" box. We'll contact you about either removing or replacing writers. See the instructions in section 1 above for accessing your profile.

3. New AAJ Interview Feature

Take Five and In Ten are two free ways for a musician to further raise the awareness of his/her music at All About Jazz.

We'll present their Take Five or In Ten answers as articles and will feature the exceptional ones (example) on the home page. All articles will be associated with the musician's profile page.

Play it straight: Submit Take Five Answers
Make it personal: Submit In Ten Answers

4. Enter your calendar dates at ArtistData and sync them up with All About Jazz, JamBase, Last.FM, MySpace and more!

All About Jazz has joined the ArtistData network which allows musicians to submit calendar dates one time and distribute them over more than ten music websites.

ArtistData is a free syndication service that allows musicians to save a tremendous amount of time entering calendar dates. Enter your shows at and have them sync up with calendars at MySpace, LastFM, ReverbNation, PureVolume, Jambase, All About Jazz, AAJ:Mobile, and AAJ:New York (print).

Learn more about ArtistData and sign up today.

5. AAJ: Mobile Launches

Readers can now enjoy All About Jazz content (articles, news, mp3 downloads, local calendar, venue directory, etc.) direct from their iPhone, Blackberry, or Palm. Click here to read about this new and exciting project.

6. AAJ Partners With AOL

All About Jazz was recently accepted into the AOL Music Network. AOL loves our spirit and content, and will soon feature articles, reviews, news, downloads and musician profiles at their website. We're excited about the opportunity to work with the leader in the online music space, and we look forward to expanded collaborations down the road. We're always working to maximize the reach of our content and promote jazz in general, and the AOL partnership will certainly help our mission.

7. Contest Giveaways

Record Labels: If you have an interest in sponsoring a contest giveaway at All About Jazz, please contact our contest coordinator, Justin Vargo. We're booked out ten weeks, but we do accommodate all advertisers in a timely manner.

8. How To Credit All About Jazz

When quoting AAJ in marketing material, please credit us "[Author Name], All About Jazz" (e.g. "C. Michael Bailey, All About Jazz") or simply "All About Jazz." Using "" is also fine. Please do not use "AAJ" or "" as is the home of the WorldWide Alternative Jukebox.

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Bassist Tony Grey Interviewed at AAJ

Since graduating from Berklee with honors in 2001, Tony Grey has earned a reputation as one of the most exciting bassists of his generation. His debut solo recording ...Moving (Self Produced, 2004) won enthusiastic reviews and revealed a musician gifted with a very strong sense of melody, and songwriting skills which drew from influences far beyond the parameters of jazz.

As one third of pianist Hiromi Uehara's electrifying trio, Grey has played all over the world to great critical acclaim, and has also found time to play and record with the likes of John McLaughlin, Wayne Shorter}, Herbie Hancock, Zakir Hussain and Branford Marsalis.

Now, with his second solo album, Chasing Shadows (Abstract Logix, 2008), Tony Grey is beginning to step out of the shadows and forge an identity as a leader in his own right. AAJ Contributor spoke with Grey about the new album, working with Hiromi, and his legendary uncle...John McLaughlin.

Check out Tony Grey: Stepping out of the Shadows at AAJ today!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Saxophonist Ravi Coltrane Interviewed at AAJ

Saxophonist Ravi Coltrane, he of the inescapable surname, is continuing to grow both as a musician and a person. His playing these days contains more maturity; a sense of exploration, combined with a sureness of attack and a brawny sound.

The growing musical proficiency is documented on Blending Times (Savoy Jazz, 2009). Coltrane and his working band--pianist Luis Perdomo, bassist Drew Gress and drummer E.J. Strickland--address a group of tunes both written and improvised on the spot. The band takes an imaginative approach and expresses itself in a particularly free-wheeling way. The essence of jazz is its spontaneity and that comes out in this music. Coltrane is an investigative soloist throughout, but it's also his decisions as a bandleader, setting the direction of the music, that are central.

AAJ Contributor R.J. DeLuke spoke with Coltrane about his latest release and the tremendous impact of his legendary father, John Coltrane, and especially his mother, Alice Coltrane, on his way of thinking, living and making music.

Check out Ravi Coltrane: Changing and Blending Times at AAJ today!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Read an AAJ Article - Download a Free MP3

All About Jazz now includes free MP3s with our articles, CD reviews and news announcements.

Read the Bob Sneider & Joe Locke Film Noir Project review and download "Black Dahlia," read the Barney McAll interview and download four MP3s, read guitarist Will Sellenraad's new CD release announcement and download three MP3s, or... you get the picture.

Links to tracks are located just below the article.


Pianist/Composer Barney McAll Interviewed at AAJ

Composer and pianist Barney McAll is a leading light of the new Brooklyn--the New York borough that is the fount of much that is new in jazz. The spectrum of McAll's music is wide, ranging from mood-setting jazz ensemble recordings to electronica. But it all comes down to the notes, and their relation to each other. As McAll says about growing up with and learning music, "If you have a piano in the house that's a start." Organic music is both the source and the destination.

McAll's fifth album, Flashbacks (Extra Celestial Arts, 2008), has its launch party April 8, 2009 at New York's The Jazz Standard. The launch will feature leading musicians such as Billy Harper and Ben Monder. AAJ Contributor Simon J. Harper spoke at great length with McAll about his five albums, working with Gary Bartz, film music, and much much more in Barney McAll: Dynamic Pianist And Composer, the first of a number of features at AAJ today to shine a spotlight on McAll and his music.

In addition to Simon's in-depth interview, you can read Mark F. Turner's insightful review of Flashbacks, also published today at AAJ.

AAJ will also be featuring four MP3 Daily Downloads, so that you can hear a broad cross-section of music from McAll's discography. Here's what will be available:

  • APR 07
    Release the Day
    from Release the Day
    (Transparent Music/Jazzhead, 2000)
  • APR 08
    Thirty Two
    from Widening Circles
    (Jazzhead, 1998)
  • APR 09
    Yemaya One
    from Mother of Dreams & Secrets
    (Jazzhead, 2005)
  • APR 10
    from Flashbacks
    (Extra Celestial Arts, 2008)

Finally, you can watch McAll in action, from a 1990s Australian Television Broadcast with his Barney McAll Unit, today's AAJ Daily Video.

AAJ continues to bring you the most extensive jazz coverage on the web. Check out all the buzz surrounding Barney McAll at AAJ today!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Trumpeter Alex Sipiagin Interviewed at AAJ

The 1980s in the Soviet Union was a time when the role and rule of the Communist Party were being questioned and unmasked by the policy of "glasnost"--less censorship and greater freedom of information--that was emerging. Some jazz was played in the U.S.S.R. since before World War II. Even during the height of the Cold War, in 1962, Benny Goodman performed in Moscow (a concert attended by Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev). But glasnost did not take hold until roughly the latter part of the '80s. In the earlier part of the decade, teenage trumpet player Alex "Sasha" Sipiagin was busy trying to find out more about the mysterious American art form that was capturing his fancy.

Thankfully, Sipiagin was able to satisfy his curiosity, and then some. He showed an emerging brilliance on the trumpet in his native land, and in 1991 landed on U.S. soil to pursue a career that is still growing. In addition to securing solid gigs with the Mingus Big Band and Mingus Dynasty, he's been part of the Gil Evans Orchestra and a regular member of Dave Holland's superb bands, among others. Now based in the New York City area, he's become one of the fine players on the scene.

AAJ Contributor R.J. DeLuke spoke with Sipiagin about his new album, Mirages (Criss Cross, 2009), growing up in Russia, coming to America and, ultimately, giving it back to his home country.

Check out Alex Sipiagin: Burning For Jazz at AAJ today!