Winnipeg's Jazz Magazine


In this issue

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Little Things

I’m writing this letter from Victoria, at the front edge of a festival tour with Curtis Nowosad’s quintet. As often happens for me in other cities, I found myself looking for the unique yet unspectacular things that are here, that somehow help the place feel comfortable, loving and appealing. I was talking with some of […]

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straight up

Smooth Jazz Sundays

It’s a privilege to be the host of Smooth Sundays 2015 at the Lyric Theatre in Assiniboine Park. Having recently returned from the Bahamas Jazz Festival and a ten-day tour in Israel, my band and I are pumped to have the opportunity to back up top international musicians that will be joining us for this […]

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July/August 2015: Walle Larsson

Jazz Camp

Jazz Camp at the University of Manitoba is right around the corner, and we’re all excited for another year. Over the last twenty-plus years, Jazz Camp has become a hub in the community. Every August, participants have an opportunity to tap into artists who have traveled around the world with this music, and to engage […]

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July/August 2015: Walle Larsson

dig! Goes Big

Ten years ago, dig! magazine was just making its way into the hands of Winnipeg readers. Today we’re going strong, with six issues a year and an annual Rent Party that raises the roof—along with important cash reserves. This year, we’ve extended the dig! circle to include two new initiatives. The first is the Big […]

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tune-up

Joel Green

Joel Green started playing trombone in his junior high band. He borrowed his grandfather’s trombone, and never really gave it back. Within a month, he was hooked! Classically trained, he remembers being almost overwhelmed by the raw energy and intensity of jazz when he first encountered it. “It’s addictive,” he adds, “so I just kept […]

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tune-up

Writing for Big Band?

In the fall, the Big dig! Band will roll out its second season, and once again, we’re inviting anyone in the community to try their hand at composing/arranging. It’s a big deal to feel your musical imagination expressed by seventeen or eighteen professional musicians! Getting those ideas translated and organized for that large an ensemble […]

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July/August 2015: Walle Larsson

Kneebody

I like bands. I like the idea of a bunch of dudes traveling the country together in a van playing music. These dudes sound only like themselves, and that sound, forged over years of playing in loud, sweaty clubs, is what keeps us all coming back. Record after record, tour after tour. These folkloric musical […]

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you won’t forget me

Ornette Coleman (1930-2015)

With the death of Ornette Coleman in June, we lost another jazz legend. A fiercely independent artist and a controversial figure pretty much his whole musical life, Coleman ushered in a new way of thinking about improvising—he was determined to shake free of the restrictive structures of show tunes and blues, and to push his […]

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you won’t forget me

Remembering Bob Belden (1956-2015)

I first met saxophonist Bob Belden when he joined Woody Herman’s Young Thundering Herd in 1979, replacing Joe Lovano. He was recruited out of North Texas State, like a lot of young musicians joining big bands on the road at that time. He loved Wayne Shorter and was influenced by his playing in a very […]

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you won’t forget me

Archie Alleyne (1933-2015)

Drummer Archibald Alexander Alleyne, a much-loved and highly respected veteran of Canada’s jazz community, passed away on June 8 at age 82, following a lengthy battle with prostate cancer. ArchiegrewupintheKensingtonMarketareaofTorontoatatimewhenitwaslargelypopulatedbyEasternEuropeanJewishimmigrantsandAfricanCanadians.Aprimarilyself-taughtmusician,hiselegantyetdrivingswingandmelodicismledtocomparisonswithfirst-generationbebopdrummerslikeKennyClarkeandMaxRoach. Duringthe1950s,whensegregationandracialdiscriminationstillimpactedmanymusicvenues,hewasamongthefirstblackmusicianstobreakthoughthe“colourline.”HesoonbecameafixtureatTorontoclubsliketheColonialandtheTownTavern,frequentlybackingvisitingstarssuchasLesterYoung,BillieHoliday,BenWebster,Harry“Sweets”Edison,StanGetz,Eddie“Lockjaw”Davis,andTeddyWilson. Alleynetemporarilyretiredfromplayingin1968followingamajorautomobileaccident,butmadeacomebackintheearly1980s,amongotherthingsco-leadingaquartetwithvibraphonistFrankWrightandtouringextensivelywithpianistOliverJones.Later,in2000,heandthelatesaxophonistDougieRichardsonformedthehardbopcomboKollage,whichhadanumberofincarnationsandservedasanurturinggroundforyoungermusicians. Atirelesssocialactivist,AlleynespearheadedsuccessfuleffortstopushtheCanadaCouncilfortheArtstomakerecordinggrantsavailabletojazzmusicians,andtheTorontoJazzFestivaltofeaturemoreblackartists.Later,heestablishedtheArchieAlleyneScholarshipFundtoassistpromisingyoungperformers.In2012hewasnamedanOfficeroftheOrderofCanada. A memoir, Colour Me Jazz: The Archie Alleyne Story, co-written with Sheldon Taylor, was due to be launched this month, but has […]

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reflections

Where the Wild Things Are

My friends are avid birders. They carry around their list, and they’re ecstatic when they can identify and check off yet another species. At first it was easy, with many species so close to home. It gets progressively tougher though, and if you don’t have the resources to travel to exotic places, you have to […]

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