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JazzTimes June 2020

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10 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
what's on jazztimes.com

Exclusive Content Our new “Jazz in the Age of COVID” page directs readers to a regularly updated cancellation/postponement list, online events calendar, and photo gallery of musicians lost in the coronavirus pandemic. Plus interviews with Uri Caine and Mike Karn, album and book reviews, and much more. JT Blog For our 50th-anniversary issue in September, we’re compiling a list of the top 50 jazz albums of the past 50 years, and we want to know what you’d put on it. Please vote in our readers’ polls, organized by decade and open for two weeks each. The 1970s (above) and ’80s polls have closed, but let us know your top 10 choices of the ’90s (starting May 18), ’00s (starting June 1), and ’10s (starting June 15). Audio & Video Exclusive premieres of Sanborn Sessions’ fourth…

2 min.
all changed, changed utterly

Right now I’m thinking that my last editor’s note was too optimistic. “We are printing our annual Festival Guide in this issue as we do every May,” I wrote, “knowing that much of it may become inaccurate, but also confident that much of it will not, and that sometime soon we will all gather again, socially distanced no longer …” From where I sit today, looking out at a deserted midtown Manhattan avenue, I find it hard to imagine any festival listing for 2020 will be accurate. This we already know: There was no festival this spring at the Fair Grounds in New Orleans. There will be none this June in Montreal, or this July by Lake Geneva’s shores, or this August at San Jose’s Plaza de César Chávez. The list goes…

7 min.
wallace roney 1960–2020

Wallace Roney, a star trumpeter—and the only trumpeter ever to study personally with Miles Davis—who built a 40-plus-year career chasing the cutting edge of jazz, died on the morning of March 31 at St. Joseph’s University Medical Center in Paterson, New Jersey. He was 59. His death was confirmed by his publicist, Lydia Liebman, who said that the cause of death was complications from COVID-19. “I can’t believe this man is gone,” said fellow jazz trumpeter and composer Jeremy Pelt on Instagram. “He meant so much to me and his very real presence in the music kept people honest.” Already an accomplished and recognized musician during his youth in Washington, D.C., Roney broke through to the wider world at the tail end of the 1980s’ “Young Lions” era as a sideman for two…

4 min.
the shadows know

If you ask saxophonist Remy Le Boeuf about his fascination with shadows, you receive a characteristically thoughtful answer. “I like the metaphor of the absence of something having substance,” he says. “We tend to put a lot of value on substance, but I think the absence is very powerful.” That line of thinking has yielded a modest amount of art in the past for this rising star, including various personal poems, lyrics, and music. But it’s become an even greater impetus in the present, firing Le Boeuf’s imagination and undergirding one of 2019’s most absorbing large-ensemble releases—the self-titled debut from Remy Le Boeuf’s Assembly of Shadows. A finely honed work steeped in fantasy and stacked with some of New York’s most impressive players, the album draws attention, rightly, to the leader’s…

4 min.
living in the maternal world

Things changed profoundly for the Netherlands’ Tineke Postma following the 2014 release of her album Sonic Halo, a collaboration with fellow alto and soprano saxophonist/composer Greg Osby. That year, Postma gave birth to a son; she suddenly found herself moving at a different pace than she was accustomed to, and her priorities shifting. Although she didn’t—couldn’t—jump right into her next project, Postma began channeling inspirations from her motherhood experience into new music, ultimately resulting in Freya, her six-years-later followup. “I just needed more time to create a new album, being a new mom,” she says. “I wanted to not rush, to come up with something I could really stand behind once it felt right to record again as a bandleader.” Freya, which she began piecing together in 2018, features 10 original compositions…

3 min.
jt 50

This month: March 1995 Writing about racism 25 years ago was just as challenging as it is now. Jazz has long been thought of as being on the right side of history, ahead of less woke areas like sports, government, the military, business and, well, pretty much every other aspect of America. Throughout the 20th century, while segregation loomed large, jazz was often integrated. But one only needs to look at the history of jazz artists touring the South to find plenty of examples where race was an issue, both on and off the bandstand. Nonetheless, by 1995 the jazz community congratulated itself, at least publicly, for breaking down racial barriers, offering equal opportunity to players regardless of skin color. And yet deep resentments were simmering under the surface of this seemingly…