Archive for mulgrew miller

Gone Too Soon – Jazz Artists We Lost in 2013

Posted in In Memoriam, Video Vault with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 30, 2013 by curtjazz

As 2013 draws to a close, I want to look back and remember some of the wonderful jazz artists we lost this year. Some had long, illustrious careers, others were cut down in their musical primes. In either case we are so grateful that they were here long enough to share some of their art with us. We are grateful to live in an age where video makes it possible to always have great memories of how their music touched us.

May they rest in peace.

Dwayne Burno (bass)

Donald Byrd (trumpet)

George Duke (keyboards)

Jim Hall (guitar)

Chico Hamilton (drums)

Yusef Lateef (reeds)

Marian McPartland (piano)

Mulgrew Miller (piano)

Cedar Walton (piano)

Butch Warren (bass)

Frank Wess (reeds)

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Mulgrew Miller – A Video Memorial

Posted in In Memoriam, Video Vault with tags , , , on June 1, 2013 by curtjazz

mulgrew millerAs most jazz fans know by now, Mulgrew Miller passed away on May 29 at 57, due to complications from a massive stroke he had suffered a few days before.

Though casual jazz fans may not have known his name, he was considered by many (myself included) to be one of the outstanding pianists of his generation.

Much has been written in the last few days about the man and his art by those far more knowledgeable than I, so I will let their words suffice as many of those who have written knew “Grew” personally.

Instead I would like to pay tribute by posting three of the many fine performances that he delivered over the years and a few sage words of wisdom from the man himself, that he shared with some young musicians. I’ve also listed a few of his best recordings as a leader, for those with some catching up to do.

Rest in Peace, Brother Mulgrew. The musical world that was so enhanced by your presence is diminished incalculably by your departure.

Recommended Recordings

Work (Landmark) – One of his earliest dates as a leader with Charnett Moffett on bass and Terri Lyne Carrington on drums. Out of Print and expensive. Grab it if you see a reasonably priced copy.

Hand in Hand (Novus) – My personal favorite. Eddie and Joe Henderson, Steve Nelson on vibes, Lewis Nash on drums, a young Christian McBride and Mulgrew’s compositions and amazing solos. One of the best jazz albums of the ’90’s. Also Out of Print.

The Sequel (MaxJazz) – This was a 2002 revival of Wingspan, a formidable quintet that Miller had originally formed in 1987. This time around they were a sextet with the addition of Duane Eubanks on trumpet. Though the membership is mostly different, they hadn’t skipped a beat in 15 years, due mostly to Mr. Miller’s strong guiding hand. CD is OOP but it’s currently available on mp3 at a very reasonable price.

Live at Yoshi’s – Volume Two (MaxJazz) – This was the second of two excellent volumes that Miller and his trio recorded at the famed Bay Area jazz club in a 2003 session. The reason that I give this set the nod over number one is simple; Volume Two is still available on mp3 for those who want it.