Before the first jazz records were recorded in 1917, New Orleans musicians were part of a culturally diverse scene, a conglomeration of African American, European, Creole, Afro-Caribbean, Mexican, Brazilian, and many other cultures, religions, and genres. And with ears open to them all, these proto- and early jazz musicians incorporated elements of each in their performances […]

[This review was published in the journal Jazz Perspectives (vol. 8, no. 1). Download a copy from my webpage. -ML] The Amazing Bud Powell: Black Genius, Jazz History, and the Challenge of Bebop. By Guthrie P. Ramsey, Jr. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2013. ISBN: 978-0520243910 (hardcover). 240 pp. $34.95. In The Amazing Bud Powell: Black […]

On September 22, 2015, after twelve years in production and planning, the New York City premiere of Carol Bash’s documentary, Mary Lou Williams: The Lady Who Swings the Band was met with great anticipation at a sold-out Harlem Stage Gatehouse.  The film, which was first premiered in February 2014 at the Los Angeles Pan-African Film Festival, […]

On Wednesday, August 12, 2015, conguero and composer Samuel Torres premiered his new recording, Forced Displacement (Zoho Records), at Zinc Bar in the West Village. As he explained in his introduction to the audience, the album is just one aspect of an ongoing project in San Juan de Urabá, Colombia, which will include a documentary […]

Improvisation and the Liberal Arts Call for submissions Special issue of Critical Studies in Improvisation / Études critiques en improvisation Guest edited by Jason Robinson, Mark Lomanno, and Sandra Mathern Like improvisation, the liberal arts advance our understanding of how individuals and communities interact with and relate to one another and derive meaning from human […]

Photo Credit: Adam Anderson

Monday, July 6th, 2015, marked the six-day anniversary of my third move to New York City. By then I had had enough time to rest up after the busy move, stock my fridge from the neighborhood Fairway, and hit up a few of those “only in NYC” spots that I’d missed so much. I spent the 4th […]

In 2007 I left the NYC jazz scene to attend a PhD program in ethnomusicology at the University of Texas at Austin. One of the reasons I chose the program was for its reputation as one of the strongest programs in the country for incorporating anthropology and the social sciences into music research. As someone interested […]


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