(aus dem Jazzinstitut Darmstadt)

13 - 26 January 2022 | Ausgabe 02/2022 (English)

We read the morning paper for you!

Dear jazz friends,

The Jazzinstitut's JazzNews keeps you up-to-date with news of the jazz world, which we collect, summarize, and issue via e-mail about once a week. This service can also be accessed on our website (www.jazzinstitut.de), where it is updated on a daily basis.

If you need bibliographies of the musicians named in our JazzNews, please click on our website’s Jazz Index page. This is a bibliographical reference to jazz-related books, magazines, journals and other sources that you can access without charge. If you don't find the name(s) you’re looking for, feel free to e-mail us! We will send you Jazz Index digests of articles about musicians as they make the news.

Now, have fun reading about the jazz week that was!

... brief news ...

John Fordham talks to saxophonist Sonny Rollins about the reasons why he withdrew and practiced regularly on New York's Williamsburg Bridge between summer 1959 and fall 1961, one being dissatisfaction with his musical development, another an expectant mother next door to his apartment whom he didn't want to disturb. Rollins talks about playing for 14 or 15 hours at a time, no matter what weather it was, and about the spiritual experience of being "so close to the sky up there, any time of year". Fordham describes the changes in Rollins' playing after his return to the jazz scene and talks to Rollins about having had to stop playing the saxophone for health reasons, as well as about the spiritual beings he knew many musicians to be, no matter what human faults they might have had (The Guardian). --- Nate Chinen talks to saxophonist Tony Malaby about the effects of his COVID infection in March 2020 and how he regained his lung strength by practicing underneath a New Jersey Turnpike overpass (not unlike Sonny Rollins's famous practice spot), which eventually led to five Bandcamp releases so far, "Turnpike Diaries" (NPR).

Tammy La Gorce talks to Alina Bloomgarden who started the nonprofit "Music on the inside" connecting jazz artists with incarcerated people for lessons, concerts and mentoring, about the source of her idea (Louis Armstrong), about the success of her program, as well as about how she spends her Sundays in New York City (New York Times). --- Dean Van Nguyen looks back at the jazz history of Japan and talks to Tony Higgins, co-curator of the J Jazz reissue series, to saxophonists Koichi Matsukaze and Kohsuke Mine and the widow of pianist Ryo Fukui, reflects upon pianist Toshiko Akiyoshi who left Japan for the US after being discovered by Oscar Peterson in 1952, and learns how the internet helped focus on a new interest in Japan jazz history (The Guardian).

Abbey Maclure talks to British trumpeter Emma Jean Thackray about how she started in music, about her study at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, about trying to express herself in her music and her mantra being "move the body, move the mind, move the soul". Thackray also talks about catching Covid early during the pandemic, leaving her unable to sing for six months (Yorkshire Evening Post). --- Chris Searle talks to saxophonist Javon Jackson about his latest album, "The Gospel According to Nikki Giovanni", a collection of spirituals picked by the poet/civil rights activist, as well as about the meaning of spirituals for African Americans today (Morning Star for Peace and Socialism)

Ted Gioia tells the story of the album "The Discovery of Buck Hammer" released in 1959 which turned out to be a hoax created and performed by TV celebrity and jazz fan/pianist Steve Allen (The Honest Broker). --- Jeff Tamarkin talks to drummer Makaya McCraven about the inspiration for his work being his curiosity, as well as about his latest project "Deciphering the Message" that works with samples from the Blue Note label catalog, in which he wants to highlight "that this music was made by young people" (Relix).

Jason Fraley talks to saxophonist Branford Marsalis about his usual audience, about music in the family, about having wanted to play trumpet as a child, like his brother Wynton, but his father handing him a clarinet instead, about touring with some of the great names in jazz in the 1980s which helped him in his development as a musician, about working with Sting and Public Enemy, about fronting The Tonight Show band in the early 1990s, as well as about a Jazz Master Award he received together with Wynton and his father Ellis in 2011 (WTOP News). --- On the occasion of bassist Charles Mingus' 100th birthday, Peter Larsen talks to Eric Mingus about his father's roots in Los Angeles, his influence on Eric as a musician and how he bought him his first cello at age 7 or 8, as well as about being at the table when his father and Joni Mitchell discussed the album "Mingus". Larsen also talks to saxophonist Charles McPherson about how he got hired by Mingus, as well as about how he sees the bassist as a mix of "Jimmy Blanton, a lot of Duke Ellington, a real nice dose of Charlie Parker and the beboppers, and of course the Western classical music and tradition" (Orange County Register).

David Hammer reports about trumpeter Irvin Mayfield who entered federal prison in Florida, starting an 18-month prison terms for stealing $1.3 million from New Orleans Public Library Foundation (New Orleans Times-Picayune). --- Ted Gioia reads Bill Milkowski's new book about saxophonist Michael Brecker and wonders why Brecker who has been considered a hero among fellow musicians has been widely neglected by critics (The Honest Broker). --- Rich Tupica talks to guitarist Elden Kelly about the influence of Keith Jarrett's 1997 solo album "La Scala" on his style (Lansing City Pulse). --- Jürgen Helfricht talks to German pianist Manfred Kugler about his collection of sheet music which he plans to give away (Bild). --- Michael Brüning celebrates German sound engineer Wolfgang Hirschmann on the occasion of his 85th birthday (JazzZeitung). --- John Edward Hasse remembers Aretha Franklin on the 50th anniversary of her "Amazing Grace" album (Wall Street Journal). --- Rich Pelley talks to singer Gregory Porter about how he spends his Sundays (The Guardian)­. --- Jon Solomon talks to pianist Marcus Roberts (Westword). --- Melanie Nagy and Tom Yun report about a stamp revealed by Canada Post honoring 102-years-old singer Eleanor Collins (News Channel 3).


We learned of the passing of vibraphonist Khan Jamal at age 75 (WBGO), Belgian pianist Fred van Hove at age 84 (Taylor Daily Press), saxophonist Rev. Willis Hickerson Jr. at age 89 (Charlotte Observer), promoter Charlie Herschbach at age 62 (Kris 6 News), singer Marty Roberts at age 89 (Los Angeles Times), percussionist Badal Roy at age 77 (Scroll.In, NPR, New York Times) Brazilian singer Elza Soares at age 91 (Deutschlandfunk), drummer Montez Coleman at age 48 (St. Louis Post-Dispatch), record store owner Ezell Cooper at age 89 (Chicago Sun-Times), pianist Beegie Adair at age 84 (WHU Herald), German saxophonist Emil Mangelsdorff at age 96 (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Frankfurter Rundschau, Süddeutsche Zeitung, Journal Frankfurt), as well as critic and author Terry Teachout at age 65 (Wall Street Journal, Do the Math, The Honest Broker, NPR, JazzWax, Jazz Journalists Association).

From the World of Jazz Research

Composer, trombonist and musicologist George E. Lewis has been elected a member of the music section of Akademie der Künste Berlin (Akademie der Künste), while his latest composition will be premiered at Sprengel Museum in Hannover, Germany (Das Neue Ensemble).

Last Week at the Jazzinstitut

Ronny Graupe + Nicole Schneider: heimat@jazzinstitut (@ dazz Festival)
We started "heimat@jazzinstitut", our new series of short residencies at the Jazzinstitut last week with a fascinating "duo-log", an unusual improvised dialogue between guitarist Ronny Graupe (Berlin) and graphic artist Nicole Schneider (Darmstadt). The concert in front of a limited audience was live-streamed and can still be viewed on YouTube. "Duo-log" will lead to an exhibition at the Jazzinstitut's gallery from mid-February through the end of April, showing some of results from the residency and highlighting technical experiences from the encounter.

R.I.P. Emil Mangelsdorff
He was a wonderful musician and a humanitarian. Emil Mangelsdorff who died last 21 January 2022 at age 96 has been a monument of the legendary creativity of Frankfurt's post-war jazz scene. His biggest hero was Charlie Parker, he played the blues like few others, his take on standard jazz compositions always was highly personal as well as emotional. Emil, as he was known to everybody, had a clear understanding of what jazz meant to him, musically and as an aesthetic and political statement. Born in 1925 he had witnessed the persecution of dissidents during the Third Reich when he was arrested for being part of the subversive Frankfurt jazz clique. As a result he was forced to join the army and eventually ended up in a Russian PoW camp where by chance he once heard some measures from a Lionel Hampton record through the speakers of a nearby ship, energizing him for the hardships he had to endure. After his return he quickly became part of the lively Frankfurt jazz scene, and participated in a number of different bands like the traditional Two Beat Stompers, the cool jazz quintet by pianist Jutta Hipp, or the Jazzensemble des Hessischen Rundfunks. In the 1950s he often collaborated with his brother, trombonist Albert Mangelsdorff, but soon also formed his own band, recording regularly. He was also heard on a successful jazz and lyrics series for which he provided the music. In the late 1980s Emil started a series of school lectures, starting with his eyewitness memories of Nazi Germany and explaining how jazz for him personally became a voice of freedom and democracy. For 25 years Emil had a monthly concert series at Holzhausenschlösschen Frankfurt with his own quartet and regular guests. Emil had performed at the Jazzinstitut a number of times, the last time during our Jazz Conceptions workshop where he specifically talked about his musical approach. We were present at some of the honors he received, the Goethe-Plakette of his hometown Frankfurt, the Hesse Jazz Award, the Wilhelm-Leuschner-Medaille of the state of Hesse, the title of Honorary Professor that was bestowed on him. Emil was a humble human being, loved being among friends and colleagues, listened to jazz and classical music whenever possible, was well-read and just as well-informed about today's politics, and he was happy to join discussions about many topics. He kept practicing and playing up to the end, even though he must have missed his audience and especially the school programs terribly during the pandemic. We will remember him as a great musician, a philanthrope, a friend.

Current opening hours of the Jazzinstitut
The Jazzinstitut is open to the public by appointment. Research slots will be given out with exact time slots for one visitor at a time. We ask our visitors to be either fully vaccinated,  recovered or officially tested (3G regulation). At the same time we continue our offer for research help by phone, e-mail or video-call. If you would like to schedule a video call, please send an e-mail to make an appointment and give us an idea what you want to talk about. We will then reply with a link for a Webex video session for your meeting.

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Jazzinstitut Darmstadt
Bessunger Strasse 88d | 64285 Darmstadt | Germany
The Jazzinstitut is an institution of the City of Sciences Darmstadt | Das Jazzinstitut ist eine Einrichtung der Wissenschaftsstadt Darmstadt