Tuesday, November 12, 2013
November, 2013 Europe Jazz Media Chart: more contributing journalists, better preview and purchase options, and music as interesting as always!
Thursday, September 5, 2013
On the cover: John Zorn (cover photo by Peter Gannushkin)
the leader of the Downtown New York improv scene turns 60
Infrastructure: Odessa, Ukraine - Master Jam Fest
a new, unique format of a jazz competition/festival thoroughly reviewed, and commented by jury members, Cyril Moshkow and Vladimir Feyertag
Jazz Travels: Bergen, Norway - Natjazz
Gregory Durnovo reviews Norway's oldest jazz festival's 51st edition, and interviews Norwegian musicians, pianist Espen Eriksen and trumpet player Mathias Eick
History: pianist Victor Fridman, "Jazz In My Life"
a thorough memoir by a pianist who remains active on Moscow's jazz scene since his debut in early 1960s
Singer Anna Buturlina interviewed, by Eugenia Bragantseva
Jazz at the Hermitage Garden Festival: the 16th downtown Moscow festival's special inlay
News: young Russian musicians Alexey Ivannikov (piano) and Anastasia Volokitina (vocal) win prizes at, respectively, piano and vocal jazz competitions during the Montreux Jazz Festival in Swinzerland / Pianist Leonid Vintskevich awarded by prestigious government prize in Russia / Europe Jazz Media Chart / American Jazz Radio chart / NEA 2014 Jazz Masters announced
ArtBeat: keyboardist and Russian folk music enthusiast Sergey Filatov interviewed (by Dmitri Filatov,) as ArtBeat Music label releases Filatov's duet album with guitarist Valery Kiss, and Filatov produces his EthnoSphere festival for ArtBeat-run Alexey Kozlov Club in Moscow this September
The Discreet Charm of Vinyl: Oleg Skvortsov with the 2nd installment of his Jazz Vinyl Covers History, this time on LP sleeve artist Jim Flora
Jazzed People: Anna Filipieva interviews Russian veteran jazz photographer Alexander Zabrin on the occasion of his photo album release, Alexander Zabrin's Triumph of Jazz
Usadba Jazz 2013 festival near Moscow reviewed, by Anna Filipieva and Constantine Volkov; bassist Avishai Cohen who headlined one of the festival's five stages interviewed by Gregory Durnovo
To mark Wayne Shorter's 80th birthday, Diana Kondrashin translates a chapter from Michelle Mercer's Footprints (announcing the forthcoming Russian edition of the book.)
Sergei Ryazantsev: "Every Saxophonist Sounds Different"
Anna Filipieva interviews Muscovite sax educator who raised two generations of Russian sax players, on the occasion of his 60th birthday
In Memoriam: pianist George Duke; Russian saxophonist Vitaly Kleinot; Estonian singer Silvi Vrait
Russian Real Book: piece by pianist Mikhail Kull
Tuesday, August 27, 2013
The second, enhanced edition of the book on the jazz segment of American music industry reflects dramatic change in the music business since the 2008 first edition. Written by jazz journalist Cyril Moshkow, editor and publisher at Russia’s Jazz.Ru Magazine, the book is an overview of the American jazz community not from the performers’ point of view, but rather the music industry persons’, those who help the music happen. Largely unseen by the audience, the industry people are as much important in creating jazz music and bringing it to the audiences as anybody. Educators, club owners, festival organizers, producers, sound engineers, record label executives, jazz researchers, jazz critics, journalists and broadcasters all have their voice in a series of in-person interviews on which the book is based. This is the first original research on the topic not only in Russia, but in the world as well.ISBN 978-5-8114-0852-8
Since 1998, Cyril Moshkow works as editor (since 2006, also as publisher) at Jazz.Ru, Moscow-based Russia’s only jazz magazine. His first jazz book, Jazz Industry in America, was published in Russian by Planeta Muzyki, the St. Petersburg-based branch of Russia’s Lan publishing house, in 2008. The book was based on a collection of more than 40 in-person and several more phone and email interviews with American jazz educators, club owners, festival organizers, scholars, radio presenters, record label executives, producers, sound engineers and others who create and support jazz. The first edition sold well, and revealed demand for the second, enhanced edition, titled Jazz Industry in America, 21st Century. About 15 interviews were added, and several chapters were totally rewritten, as the music industry experienced dramatic shifts in the past five years.
From 1998 to 2012, Cyril took 15 trips to the U.S., most of them self-supported (some 35 weeks in total) to meet people in the jazz industry for interviews, and visit jazz festivals, clubs, schools, and organizations in 12 states and in D.C. Most of the pictures in the book were taken by himself, unless noted otherwise in individual captions.
Cyril Moshkow wrote and co-wrote three other books on music: The Jazz Greats (2009,) The Blues, Introduction To The History (2010,) and Russian Jazz (2013.)
Jazz Industry in America, 21st Century book contents:
JAZZ EDUCATION. TEACHING JAZZ IN AMERICA: WHO, AND HOW
The History of Jazz Education: a Brief Overview
Berklee College of Music, Boston, MA
New England Conservatory, Boston, MA
New School University Jazz Program, NYC
Manhattan School of Music: Raising an Universal Musician
Life’s Everywhere: Other Schools
American Jazz Education Today: More Facts and Figures
JAZZ AND THE AUDIENCES: FESTIVALS, CONCERTS, AND CLUBS
Festivals and Concerts: Who Does It, and How
Stadium Jazz? They Can Do It In Idaho
Jazz Institute of Chicago: «Live and Die in Collaboration With...»
SFJAZZ: Healthy Commercial Approach
Kingston Jazz Festival: «Jazz Requires Passion»
Patricia Nicholson-Parker: «Idealism Is Very Practical»
George Wein: «Commercialism Plus Artistic Integrity»
Living Tradition. New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival
THE MYTH OF AMERICAN JAZZ CLUBS
John Dimitriou, Seattle’s Jazz Alley
Joe Segal, The Jazz Showcase: «There’s Many Good Musicians, But No Giants Anymore»
Michael Dorf. The One Who Run the Knitting Factory
The Culture We Pay For
JAZZ IN THE CITY
The National Capital’s Jazz Scene
Philly Jazz: Past and Present
RECORDED JAZZ: PRODUCERS AND ENGINEERS
What Is Changing in How Jazz Is Recorded?
Recording Trends: American Jazz Journalists On The New Sounds
Rudy Van Gelder: An Age Behind The Console
Tom Lazarus: An Universal Engineer
Jim Anderson: «To Record What I Like»
George Avakian, Member of the Lenin Order
Bob Karcy: Arkadia Records As a Team
John Zorn And His Tzadik
Michael Cuscuna, Master of Reissues
Blue Note. History of a Great Label
Teo Macero, The Sound Innovator
Gerry Teekens: European Producer of American Jazz
Grammy: Jazz, Among Other Musics
JAZZOLOGY: JAZZ RESEARCH IN AMERICA
Who Needs an Institute of Jazz Studies?
Jazz Archive of Chicago: Know How
Son of Father: Bruce Raeburn at the New Orleans Jazz Archive
National Jazz Museum in Harlem. Face Towards General Public
There’s Life Everywhere: University of Idaho Jazz Collections
JAZZ IN THE MEDIA. RADIO AND PRESS
Howard Reich, Chicago Tribune: Jazz Not About Money
Down Beat. Eight Decades of Jazz History
Internet and Jazz: Wayne Saroyan’s Experience
Jazz Radio: WBGO, KCSM, and Other Four-Letter Words
Jazz and TV: Did Jazz Help Jazz Much?
Why Jazz Journalists Need an Association
Images of Jazz, and Those Who Create Them
ORDER THE BOOK FROM THE PUBLISHER
Wednesday, June 26, 2013
Special 10th anniversary Usadba Jazz festival supplement: an interview with Maria Syomushkina, Usadba Jazz producer
an overview of 2013 Usadba Jazz program
10 glorious years: snippets from Jazz.Ru coverage of the 2004-2012 Usadba Jazz festivals
Big Jazz: Russia's nationwide Kultura TV channel's "jazz reality show" analyzed
8th Jazz_Bishkek_Spring festival in the capital of Kyrgyzstan, Central Asia
Jazzahead! 2013 - Bremen, Germany: Europe's jazz fair
50 Years With Joy And Love: Moscow jazz record producer Nikolay "Big Nick" Bogaichuk interviewed
A History Of A Person: Leningrad/St.Petersburg jazz enthusiast Nathan Leites in conversation with Jazz.Ru Magazine's associate editor Anna Filipieva; Nathan's personal collections spanning five decades of Leningrad jazz scene history moved to the Russian Jazz Research Center in Yaroslavl - the jazz archive road story!
The Discreet Charm Of Vinyl. The history of jazz album covers, vol. I - Alex Steinweiss, by Oleg Skvortsov.
In Memoriam: saxophonist Anatole Gerasimov (1945-2013)
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Jazz.Ru Magazine #1-2013 (#47) released on February 12, 2013On the cover: Dave Brubeck (photo by Pavel Korbut) as seen by, and spoken about, by his son, trombone and bass player Chris Brubeck
Peter Vostokov & The Big Jazz Orchestra play Tchaikovski/Ellington/Strayhorn: an interview with the leading trumpet player from Russia's younger jazz generation
9th Rostov Jazz Festival: Cyril Moshkow, Jazz.Ru editor, reviews the gathering of the southernmost regional Russian jazz scene
'RUSSIAN JAZZ': a two-volume hardcover collection of Jazz.Ru articles on Russian jazz is published in St.Petersburg
SibJazzFest-2012: a review of the Siberia's best jazz festival
Yuri Galkin: The British Graduate. Jazz.Ru interviews the bassist who recently returned to Moscow after a 7-year stint in London.
Marina Vishnyakova and her Atlantic Experience: Russian jazz violinist who gradually makes it in Philadelphia
Tampere Jazz Happening 2012: Anna Filipieva reviews Finland's grandest jazz festival
News From Helsinki: the presentation of Finnish jazz scene in Moscow reviewed
Sergey Khutas "Moscow...Sky": an interview with Russian bassist on his debut album as a leader
Saxophonist Nick Vinstkevich interviewed on his work with his father, pianist Leonid Vinskevich, and the role the Jazz Province festival (which he helps his father to produce) plays in their lives (by Anna Filipieva)
In Memoriam. Soviet jazz veteran saxophonist Emil Geigner passes away at 91; we also bid farewell to jazz radio host Moisei Rybak (1934-2013) and Siberian jazz drummer, Sergei Kushilkin (1962-2013)
Friday, December 21, 2012
Alex Rostotsky’s discography is the most impressive in Russian jazz: he has more than 25 albums under his belt as composer, producer, and performer at the same time. But it is not just sheer volume that is important. Every next Rostotsky’s recording features a new concept, a new stylistic turn, new sound, new partners, and new approach. Electric bassist, keyboards player, vocalist, composer, arranger – it is hard to say what is his main role; therefore his works stand apart from the bulk of Russian jazz recordings, as they are certainly not «like all others do.»
Rostotsky’s music works have a unique «globalized» focus. He fuses elements of different music cultures – those from Africa, India, Middle East, and Russia – with jazz rock, electronica, classical music influences, and jazz, not just within albums, but often within a single piece of music. This poly-cultural, or poly-ethnic, approach is natural in the world music idiom, but a rare feature in Russian jazz, while most of Alex’s musical partners are jazz musicians.
This compilation of Rostotsky’s recordings documents just one facet of his music’s poly-cultural approach. For «A Swan Is Swimming By» he chose from his 21st century records nine tracks with a focus on Russian music. Of course he had recorded more than nine tracks of Russian-influenced music: for an instance, his 2006 album, «Pictures At An Exhibition Or Promenade With Mussorgsky» (JBT/One records) consisted entirely of jazz readings from the great Russian classical composer’s book. But this compilation does not have any composer’s music in it – that is, other than Rostotsky’s; but all his compositions in this new album are based upon the melodies of Russian folk songs, and (in seven tracks out of nine) on the genuine folk lyrics.
One should not, however, seek in this music neither precise ethnographic documentation, nor simplified pop-folk approximation. Nothing is that simple here. Melodies and harmonies of Slavic folklore are easy to recognize, but they are cleverly combined with many other unlikely elements, such as electronic rhythms, or sharp Indian percussion, or quasi-classical symphony sounds, while all those elements are nailed together with prolonged improvisational statements which are, undoubtedly, jazz.
Most prominently, it is the work of Yuri Parfyonov that stands out. The trumpet and flugelhorn virtuoso was Rostotsky’s steady musical partner during the 2000s, bringing in Alex’s projects his expertise in oriental music: Parfyonov first came to prominence in 1970s Soviet jazz as the principal soloist in Bumerang, Uzbekistan-based jazz rock combo which added a lot of Central Asian spices in their own brand of fusion. Other strong jazz soloists in «A Swan Is Swimming By» are guitarist Pavel Chekmakovsky, tenor saxophonist Sergei Golovnya, and others.
But it is vocals that gives this album its special flavor. Classical singers Anna Sokolova and Elena Romanova, an entire chamber choir led by Vyacheslav Simonov, and spicy Indian voice of Indian tabla master Keshab Kanti Chowdhury all make different tracks to shine their different sound facets, but the most exotic element of the album’s sound is Rostotsky’s own singing voice. He has a certain vocal experience (he sung for years in an Orthodox Christian church choir, after all,) but his singing in this album does not play the standard vocal role: it is rather an integral part of the instrumental arrangement, as Alex more often sings through a vocoder than not – which adds his voice a strange shade of an exotic synthesized sound, either mystical, or romantic, or slightly ironical.
All this combined, the listener experiences an unusual whole, in which we can single out different elements of different styles and influences, but hardly we shall. This is not entirely jazz, entirely not rock, definitely not a study in ethnomusicology and not a stereotyped example of «world music» – it is just Alex Rostotsky’s music, as individual as it gets, and turned to the listener by its recognizably Russian side in this record.
Cyril Moshkow, editor, Jazz.Ru magazine
Sunday, October 7, 2012
I will appear in the United States next week for a few gigs, as well as some fieldwork in my research for two books I am working on right now: Jazz Industry in America (2nd edition) and Black Music: Roots and Branches (both in Russian, for St.Petersburg-based Planet of Music publishing house.)
The gigs are:
October 17, 2012
Princeton University, Princeton, NJ
Russian pianist Ivan Farmakovsky and music critic Cyril Moshkow present the lecture "Introduction to Russian Jazz and Soviet Music"
Noon – 1:30 pm, McAlpin Rehearsal Hall, Woolworth Center
October 22, 2012
Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ
IVAN FARMAKOVSKY QUARTET performs jazz arrangements of songs of Russian composers. Ralph Bowen (saxophone), Ivan Farmakovsky (piano), Kenny Davis (double bass), Donald Edwards (drums). Introduction by music critic Cyril Moshkow
12:30 pm, Mason Gross School of the Arts
In between, I plan to visit a few jazz research institutions in the Greater NYC area. Back to Moscow on October 23.