Lehman, Jarenwattananon & Rentner's "Best Of" 2014 CDs

December 31, 2014 by Tim Wilkins
Filed under Featured, Shows


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Saxophonist Steve Lehman & NPR's Patrick Jarenwattananon join The Checkout's Simon Rentner to pick the best CDs of 2014.

NPR's Patrick Jarenwattananon On 2014's Best

December 31, 2014 by Tim Wilkins
Filed under Playlists


The brainiest blogger in jazz, A Blog Supreme's Patrick Jarenwattananon, reviews NPRMusic's annual critics' poll of the best jazz CDs and trades notes with The Checkout on our own personal favorites for the year.

Saxophonist Steve Lehman's 2014 "Best Of"

December 31, 2014 by Tim Wilkins
Filed under Featured, Interviews


Saxophonist Steve Lehman, whose CD Mise en Abime topped many jazz critics' best-of lists for 2014, stops by to review his own favorite new releases this year.

Matt Stevens, The Nighthawks, Walter Smith III

December 17, 2014 by Tim Wilkins
Filed under Featured, Shows


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Guitarist Matt Stevens' quintet live at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, Vince Giordano's Nighthawks live at WBGO and saxophonist Walter Smith III's surprising inspirations.

Walter Smith III: Inspirations

December 16, 2014 by Tim Wilkins
Filed under Featured, Interviews


Saxophonist Walter Smith III talks about some of his surprising musical inspirations, including The Bodyguard and Rufus Wainwright.

Thanks to Josh Jackson for producing this interview.

Matthew Stevens Live at Berklee

December 16, 2014 by Tim Wilkins
Filed under Berklee, Featured, New Music


Guitarist Matthew Stevens performs live at the Berklee College of Music's Café 939 with pianist Gerald Clayton, bassist Vicente Archer, drummer Eric Doob and percussionist Paulo Stagnaro.

Broadcast live by WBGO's The Checkout from Boston on April 2nd, 2014.

Photo credit: Michael Borgida

Vince Giordano & The Nighthawks Live At WBGO

December 16, 2014 by Tim Wilkins
Filed under Featured, Studio Sessions


Bassist Vince Giordano leads his revival big band, The Nighthawks, in a special holiday concert. Recorded live at WBGO Dec. 10, 2014. Gary Walker hosts.

Vince Giordano (bandleader and bass/banjo/bass sax/vocals)
Bria Skonberg (trumpet)
Dan Levinson (clarinet/sax)
Jim Fryer (trombone)
Peter Yarin [piano]
Molly Ryan (vocals)

Giordano & The Nighthawks perform "Gotham Holiday Swing" at New York's Town Hall on Dec. 17 at 8 p.m.

Photo credit: Tim Wilkins

Blue Note's "Our Point Of View": Was, Hodge & Akinmusire

December 10, 2014 by Tim Wilkins
Filed under Featured, Shows


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Blue Note Records' president Don Was, trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire and bassist Derrick Hodge talk about their music and the future of the iconic jazz label.

Akinmusire and Hodge are members of "Our Point Of View," a Blue Note supergroup with Marcus Strickland on saxophone, Robert Glasper on piano, Lionel Loueke on guitar, Marcus Strickland on saxophone and Kendrick Scott on drums.

The group performs Dec. 12 at 7:30 p.m. at New York's Le Poisson Rouge in a benefit concert for WBGO.

Don Was: "Our Point Of View"

December 10, 2014 by Tim Wilkins
Filed under Featured, Interviews


Blue Note Records president Don Was talks with Simon Rentner about the label's rising generation of talent and the group "Our Point Of View," the label's supergroup with Ambrose Akinmusire on trumpet, Marcus Strickland on saxophone, Robert Glasper on piano, Lionel Loueke on guitar, Derrick Hodge on bass and Kendrick Scott on drums.

"Our Point Of View" performs at New York's Le Poisson Rouge on Dec. 12 at 7:30 p.m. in a benefit concert for WBGO.

Derrick Hodge: "Live Today"

December 9, 2014 by Tim Wilkins
Filed under Featured, New Music


Bassist Derrick Hodge performs "Dances With Ancestors and "Gritty People" from his Blue Note debut CD, "Live Today," live at WBGO, and talks with Josh Jackson. With Travis Sayles on piano and keyboard, Mark Colenburg, drums and Ambrose Akinmusire, trumpet.

Hodge appears in a benefit concert for WBGO on Dec. 12 at 7:30 p.m.  at New York's Le Poisson Rouge with Akinmusire, Marcus Strickland on saxophone, Robert Glasper keyboards, Lionel Loueke, guitar, and Kendrick Scott, drums.

Read more about Hodge's album, and this concert, here.

Photo credit: John Rogers