Ari Brown hasn’t often sought the spotlight, but his blend of bebop rigor and avant-garde daring puts him on par with the likes of Fred Anderson and Von Freeman.
For nearly 70 years, Bob Koester owned the Jazz Record Mart and Delmark Records—and though his businesses could be “crazy town,” they helped nurture thriving communities.
I’m a live-music addict, and it sometimes feels completely unreal that I haven’t been to a concert in almost a year. But one of the pandemic’s few silver linings is that some musicians are digging into their archives and issuing old live material that might otherwise have stayed on the shelf. Such is the case […]
When the Art Ensemble of Chicago reinvented itself as an orchestra for its 50th-anniversary recording, last year’s We Are on the Edge, the idea didn’t come out of thin air. It reflected a use of the classical methods and sounds that the ensemble’s lone surviving founder, woodwind and percussion player Roscoe Mitchell, has been pursuing […]
For 19 years, the Chicago Underground Quartet’s first album was their only album—but now longtime collaborators Rob Mazurek, Jeff Parker, and Chad Taylor have recaptured the group’s freewheeling jazz spirit.
The band is already midflight as the sound fades up at the beginning of “You Are Free to Choose,” the opening track of the Junius Paul double LP Ism (International Anthem). Perhaps unintentionally, this parallels his career, which has also been in motion for some time. The Chicago-born-and-raised bassist first performed in 2002 at Fred […]
Moor Mother and Roscoe Mitchell met in 2017 when they played back-to-back at Skaņu Mežs, an experimental music festival in Riga, Latvia. Mitchell, who plays a vast assortment of woodwind and percussion instruments, got his start in the mid-60s as an early member of visionary Black arts organization the Association for the Advancement of Creative […]
Next time you think you’re busy, look at Tomeka Reid’s schedule. Even though the cellist was already committed to touring Europe with Rob Mazurek’s Exploding Star Orchestra and the Art Ensemble of Chicago, she just assumed the position of Darius Milhaud Distinguished Visiting Professor at Mills College in Oakland, California (even though she’s based in […]
A charter member of the AACM and a longtime partner of saxophonist Kidd Jordan, drummer Alvin Fielder was an encyclopedia of jazz history with an eye on the future.
This year’s lineup details a sprawling cross section of the genre, including world-changing explorers the Art Ensemble of Chicago, trad band the Fat Babies, venerable guitarist George Freeman, and restless experimenter Rob Mazurek.
Art Ensemble cofounders Roscoe Mitchell and Famoudou Don Moye expand the group into an 18-piece big band with the likes of Nicole Mitchell, Tomeka Reid, Jaribu Shahid, and Fred Berry.
Chicago singer, composer, and multi-instrumentalist Angel Bat Dawid talks about the improvisation and inspiration that shaped her new album, The Oracle.
AACM elder and Art Ensemble of Chicago founder Roscoe Mitchell honors a record label that helped his innovations reach the world.
Corbett vs. Dempsey continues to reissue overlooked, out-of-print treasures from the Hat Hut catalog.
The current Museum of Contemporary Art exhibition “The Freedom Principle: Experiments in Art and Music, 1965 to Now,” in part explores the history and legacy of Chicago’s massively influential Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians. Reedist and composer Roscoe Mitchell was a founding member of the organization and became internationally recognized for his membership […]