When you think of the brilliant music of Merle Haggard, you don’t immediately associate it with anything in the jazz arena but saxophonist Bryan Murray and his band The Haggards have beautifully merged a progressive jazz style with the heartfelt, working class songs of the American music icon.
In the modern era of jazz, finding a true composer to follow is not the easiest thing to do. Especially if the composer can actually write beautifully melodic and emotionally deep music that is also a perfect launching pad rich for improvisation. Vince Mendoza does this and more.
Robin Eubanks is one of the preeminent trombone players in jazz. He has recorded and performed with legends Art Blakey, JJ Johnson, Joe Henderson, Dave Holland and many others.
I feel fortunate to be old enough to have grown up in a time where listening to the radio and buying albums was one of the activities you looked forward to. Each week my friends and I ventured into San Francisco and hit the Tower Records store on Columbia and Bay Street with hopes of…