Stormy Mondays: Taste of Today’s Rich Jazz World

I’ve been reading Ashley Kahn’s great Kind of Blue, a wonderfully detailed account of the recording of jazz’s great album and the context from which it grew. (His book on A Love Supreme is also well worth reading.) It has me thinking about how interconnected all those artists from the fifties and sixties were, how rich a musical world it was, and how rich a jazz world we live in right now.

There’s been such an explosion of amazing music and musicians in the past 15 years or so, musicians who have taken acoustic jazz and made it their own, reinventing the approach and sound to some degree, and holding close to its roots to some degree. It’s the most vibrant and exciting music scene out there, and you haven’t been paying attention, start. Start by picking someone–Jason Moran, Bill Frisell, Vijay Iyer, Christian McBride, Ravi Coltrane, whoever–and branch off from there. The journey is guaranteed to lead you to stunning new places.

With that in mind, this week’s Stormy Monday is a full performance from just a couple weeks ago by the Kuhn brothers, Joachim and Rolf. The pianist and clarinet player are long established and well respected German performers who are best known Stateside for their late sixties album Impressions of New York. What we have here is a performance of that material “reloaded” as the announcer says, with the addition of Brian Blade and John Patitucci, both members of Wayne Shorter’s quartet and both players whose interests and projects are wide ranging. The show is amazing right away, brilliant, engaging music. I can’t stop listening, and I hope you won’t be able to either. And I hope it sets you off on a quest of ever increasing discovery of the thriving jazz world.

And here’s video of the entire performance from an Arte Live webcast…

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