All stories by Steve Provizer on BroadwayStars

Sunday, November 10, 2019

Concert Review: Blue Note Records Celebrates its 80th at Shalin Liu — Almost Something for Everyone, and That’s Cool by Steve Provizer

All three groups in this Blue Note anniversary concert were distinctly different. One was shaded with a hip hop influence, one proffered organ trio jazz-funk and one, all female, had singing…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 04:24PM
Sunday, November 3, 2019

Jazz CD Review: Nat King Cole Hittin’ the Ramp — The Early Years (1936-1943) by Steve Provizer

To hear Nat King Cole move from an anonymous member of a backing chorus to a world-class vocal soloist is well worth the time this boxed set demands. The post Jazz CD Review: Nat King Cole H…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 05:06PM
Saturday, October 26, 2019

Jazz Album Review: The Bad Plus’ “Activate Infinity” — Emotionally Narrow by Steve Provizer

The Bad Plus are telling stories, but the trio doesn’t seem to want to follow wherever they might lead, which narrows their music's emotional range. The post Jazz Album Review: The Bad Plu…

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Sunday, September 29, 2019

Film Reconsideration: The Beats’s “Pull My Daisy” at 60 by Steve Provizer

You can go home again, daddy-o, but you’re not the same person you were the first time around. The post Film Reconsideration: The Beats’s “Pull My Daisy” at 60 appeared first on The …

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 10:55PM
Friday, September 6, 2019

Jazz Recording Review: “Jazz and Art” — Paying Musical Homage to Painting by Steve Provizer

For me, about half of the compositions here successfully reflect the artistic visions of the painters that inspired the music. The post Jazz Recording Review: “Jazz and Art” — Paying M…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 11:42AM
Monday, September 2, 2019

Book Review: “Rabbit’s Blues” — The Reserved Tenderness of Johnny Hodges by Steve Provizer

Johnny Hodges was originally a Cambridge/Boston guy, and one of the most interesting sections of Con Chapman biography is his knowledgeable description of the local jazz scene in the 1910’…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 05:54PM
Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Book Review: “Underland: A Deep Time Journey” — Between Despair and Hope by Steve Provizer

Robert Macfarlane’s ability to limn the pull between beauty and cataclysm provides a dynamism that elevates this book well above the level of simple “nature” writing. The post Book Rev…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 07:48PM
Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Music Review: The Gloucester Blues Festival — A Manageable Model by Steve Provizer

I left thinking that holding a blues (or a jazz) festival in every city and town would not be a bad idea. It’s a better way for municipalities to spend their money -- with a surer payoff -…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 04:36PM
Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Film Remembrance: D. A. Pennebaker — Documentarian Extraordinaire by Steve Provizer

D. A. Pennebaker was inventive, dogged, and had the ability to win people’s trust. The post Film Remembrance: D. A. Pennebaker — Documentarian Extraordinaire appeared first on The Arts …

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 09:32PM
Monday, June 24, 2019

Jazz Appreciation: The Double Six of Paris — A 60th Anniversary Appreciation by Steve Provizer

2019 is the 60th anniversary of the formation of the Double Six of Paris, so it is a good time to shine a spotlight on the group's spectacular work. The post Jazz Appreciation: The Double Si…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 12:48PM
Sunday, June 9, 2019

Jazz Concert Review: Christian McBride & Tip City — Mastery and Joy by Steve Provizer

It’s an uncommon pleasure to see band members enjoy themselves the way Tip City did. The post Jazz Concert Review: Christian McBride & Tip City — Mastery and Joy appeared first on T…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 03:03PM
Sunday, May 5, 2019

Film Review: “Bolden” — Putting Flesh on a Jazz Myth by Steve Provizer

Bolden is an intense film, depicting a life lived in a horrifically racist time and place. The post Film Review: “Bolden” — Putting Flesh on a Jazz Myth appeared first on The Arts Fuse.

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 08:12PM
Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Film Interview: “Ira Gitler Lives” — From Bret Primack, Jazz Documentarian Extraordinaire by Steve Provizer

"The half-hearted support of jazz by American broadcast TV, be it commercial or PBS or cable, has been an insult not only to the artists, but to the public as well." The post Film Interview:…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 06:49PM
Thursday, April 18, 2019

Jazz CD Review/Commentary: Holly Cole — Sticking to the Standards by Steve Provizer

I did want to use this CD as a springboard to engage with the question of how using material of a certain age tends to pre-select -- and limit -- listenership. The post Jazz CD Review/Commen…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 06:41PM
Monday, April 15, 2019

Book Review: “Coders” — Brave New World, Coded by Steve Provizer

Coders had nothing in their intellectual toolbox that would help them understand people. The post Book Review: “Coders” — Brave New World, Coded appeared first on The Arts Fuse.

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Sunday, April 7, 2019

Jazz Commentary: Pee Wee Russell — A Singular Voice by Steve Provizer

Despite the fact that clarinet (and occasional sax) player Pee Wee Russell was one of the most distinctive voices in jazz history, his name remains unknown outside of infra jazz circles. The…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 11:21AM
Monday, March 25, 2019

Jazz Commentary: Jazz and the Single Trumpet Player by Steve Provizer

Far more people would recognize Chet Baker’s name than Jack Sheldon’s -- and that is unfortunate. The post Jazz Commentary: Jazz and the Single Trumpet Player appeared first on The Arts …

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 11:35AM
Friday, March 22, 2019

Book Review: “Creating the Jazz Solo” — An Iconoclastic View by Steve Provizer

Rarely does a book leave me questioning the ways in which I understood, or thought I understood, the construction of some of the most formative solos in jazz history. The post Book Review: …

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 12:16PM
Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Jazz Concert Review: Monterey Jazz Festival On Tour — at the Berklee Performance Center by Steve Provizer

When it comes to jazz, you can be pretty confident that when you put excellent players together -- whether they know each other or not -- something very good will happen. And it did. The pos…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 09:16AM
Thursday, February 28, 2019

Book Review: “Making Music American — 1917 and the Transformation of Culture” by Steve Provizer

1917 was an important year, but perhaps not important enough to justify the sweeping title of the book. The post Book Review: “Making Music American — 1917 and the Transformation of Cult…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 06:10PM
Saturday, February 16, 2019

Jazz Concert Review: Mnozil Brass — Music-as-Vaudeville by Steve Provizer

The seven-man musical wrecking squad from Austria called Mnozil Brass has created a combination circus band, village band, marching band, and vaudeville orchestra. The post Jazz Concert Rev…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 11:04AM
Friday, February 8, 2019

Jazz CD Review: Quinsin Nachoff’s “Path of Totality” — Splendidly Distinctive by Steve Provizer

Path of Totality is a distinctive recording, put together with great attention to form and detail -- and performed with enormous skill. The post Jazz CD Review: Quinsin Nachoff’s ̶…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 07:36PM
Thursday, December 13, 2018

Book Review: “Playing Changes” — Redefining Jazz by Steve Provizer

This volume is clearly critic Nate Chinen’s resounding response to the “jazz is dead” chant.

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 03:04PM
Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Theater Review: “Breath & Imagination” — An Indomitable Voice by Steve Provizer

The success or failure of this show rests primarily on the physical presence, voice and acting of the actor playing the celebrated lyric tenor Roland Hayes.

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 12:36PM
Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Jazz/Book Review: Saxophonist Dexter Gordon — Portrait of a Sophisticated Giant by Steve Provizer

Sophisticated Giant paints a convincing picture of an extremely charming, intelligent, resilient, and talented man.

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 10:06AM
Friday, November 30, 2018

Jazz CD Review: The Kelly Green Trio — Flexing Musical Muscles by Steve Provizer

Kelly Green and her trio are essentially mainstream players, but they explore a lot of challenging territory within that framework.

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 04:04PM
Thursday, November 15, 2018

Jazz CD Review Round-Up: Christopher Hollyday, Chris Pasin, Abigail Rockwell, and Jake Ehrenreich by Steve Provizer

Christopher Hollyday's Telepathy is a keeper, Chris Pasin's Ornettiquette is an excellent outing, Jake Ehrenreich's A Treasury of Jewish Christmas Songs is uneven, and for some long winter n…

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 11:12AM
Saturday, November 10, 2018

Jazz CD Review: Ethan Helm & Wet Electric — A Very Unusual Recording by Steve Provizer

In this album, saxophonist Ethan Helm has achieved a very personal balance between highly composed sections and solos rooted in harmony and free playing.

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 11:06AM
Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Jazz CD Review: Dexter Gordon and Woody Shaw — From Out of the Past by Steve Provizer

These albums, featuring Woody Shaw and Dexter Gordon, are illuminating to listen to side by side.

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 11:04PM
Monday, October 1, 2018

Jazz CD Review: Darren Barrett’s “Time for Romance” by Steve Provizer

Time For Romance: But Beautiful may qualify -- if I can even use the term now -- as seduction music.

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 03:32PM
Saturday, September 29, 2018

Jazz Commentary: Chet Baker — The Climax of Cool by Steve Provizer

For most of its history, jazz has been a macho culture. Sexual ambiguity or gay-ness were subjects of derision.

Linked From The Arts Fuse at 05:18PM

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