Originally published on Thu April 24, 2014 8:47 am
Soviet composer Vadim Salmanov is little more than a footnote outside Russia, but his four energetic, skillfully orchestrated symphonies are making a small comeback. Russia's venerable Melodiya label has reissued them in a handsomely packaged double-disc set of live recordings made between 1957 and 1977.
Conducted with burning intensity by Yevgeny Mravinsky, Salmanov's rarely heard music soars off these albums with a sound that is thoroughly Russian yet charged with a certain Soviet-era anxiety.
"Needles River" is the first single from Melaena Cadiz's upcoming album Deep Below Heaven. She wrote and recorded the song with her husband, Mikael Kennedy. Kennedy also conceived and directed the video.
Angelique Kidjo is a musical superstar from Benin, West Africa. Since her album Logozo in 1991, she has graced stages around the globe. Now living in Brooklyn, Kidjo has a pair of new projects to discuss here, along with a performance from the stage of World Cafe Live.
Yesterday, the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation announced the recipients of its 2014 Performing Artist Awards, including 13 jazz and improvising musicians, who will receive at least $1.7 million in unrestricted grants in total.
From as far back as we can tell, music makers have been inspired by the flora and especially the fauna around us. From tooting tunes on actual animal horns and bones, to musical portraits of creatures large and small, performers and composers of all stripes have included critters in their creations. In this puzzler, you must identify the creature depicted in the music.
Originally published on Mon April 21, 2014 9:25 am
He's widely acknowledged as one of the best jazz drummers in the world. But he's also a singer-songwriter; a session man for Bob Dylan and Joni Mitchell; the son of a singing preacher man from Louisiana. And though a man of such experiences is, as you might expect, quite busy, he's also keeps his own signature band: Brian Blade & The Fellowship Band.