Category Blog

Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers/IDJ Dancers: 35 Years On

1986 was a watershed year for the so-called ‘1980s Jazz Revival’. Indeed it was one of the few positives in a fairly duff year for music. Style magazines like The Face were on board and DJs such as Baz Fe Jazz, Patrick Forge, Gilles Peterson and Paul Murphy were spinning Blue Note sides for a […]

Sonny Rollins: Saxophone Colossus

Every serious jazz fan seems to have a favourite Sonny Rollins story. One whose origins I forget – but it may be recited in Ken Burns’ ‘Jazz’ documentary – concerns a late-night Carnegie Hall New Year’s Eve concert sometime in the 1990s. Rollins embarked on a typically Herculean solo at around 11:30pm. This went on […]

Tony Williams: New Lifetime Revisited

I’ve just had the pleasure of writing the liner notes for a new Tony Williams 3-CD collection, focusing on the mid-to-late 1970s, a period when the jazz/rock drum legend made some of the most electrifying music of his career. The albums Believe It, Million Dollar Legs and The Joy Of Flying showcase some brilliant drum […]

New Year’s Eve Jazz @ Coq D’Argent

Like a lot of people, I must confess to an ambivalent attitude towards the whole New Year’s Eve thang. But all that changed around five years ago when, at the behest of good friend/good pianist James Hayes, I began doing a yearly NYE gig at Coq D’Argent, a beautiful restaurant sitting atop 1 Poultry, one of […]