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Venerable jazz guitarist George Freeman celebrates 95 years with a new compilation

Legendary Chicago jazz guitarist George Freeman has been honing his dynamic, explosive style since the 1940s, working with dozens of the genre’s hall of famers, including Charlie Parker, Richard “Groove” Holmes, Gene Ammons, Jimmy McGriff, Buddy Rich, Shirley Scott, and his brothers Von and Bruz Freeman. On Sunday, April 10, Freeman turns 95, and to mark […]

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Percussionists Hamid Drake and Michael Zerang return to in-person performance for their annual solstice concerts

Six years ago, I characterized Hamid Drake and Michael Zerang’s winter solstice concert series as “an anchor, a beacon, and a seasonal tradition in its own right.” The two drummers began performing as a duo at Links Hall in 1990; surrounded by percussion instruments from around the world, they would begin by candlelight, then play […]

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A pair of Italian experimentalists help Ken Vandermark and Hamid Drake cross into new territory

For decades, percussionist Hamid Drake and reedist Ken Vandermark have sustained a partnership founded upon a deep engagement with the history of free jazz. Both within and outside the DKV Trio, their long-running ensemble with bassist Kent Kessler, their improvisations often arise from rhythmic foundations. But they’re also restless explorers, and on Open Border a […]

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Ken Vandermark, Kent Kessler, and Hamid Drake are back to help improvised music fans release holiday stress

In January the DKV Trio released The Fire Each Time (Not Two), a six-CD box set documenting a string of gigs that percussionist Hamid Drake, bassist Kent Kessler, and reedist Ken Vandermark played with multi-instrumentalist Joe McPhee in four different countries during the last two months of 2017. This set—and previous DKV recordings featuring the […]