Debbie Burke

Jazz Author


March 2018

Three Sides of the Same Coin

Standing midway between his sax player and flutist, New York-based trombonist James Hall delivers tendrils of texture and thoughtful harmony in his latest CD, “Lattice.” Together with their keyboard and drummer, the quintet presents smart, bright voices in an open... Continue Reading →

Solos Cut Short: Jazz Artists Who Left Us Too Early, with Howard E. Fischer

THEY DIED BEFORE 40 The founder and former executive director of the New York Jazz Museum (1972-77), Howard E. Fischer, unearthed some intriguing material about jazz artists whose brief lives brought stunning music to the world. Calling jazz “our most... Continue Reading →

The Quiltiness of “Article XI” from Anton Hunter

Named after an act that gives citizens its freedom of assembly, the new CD by Anton Hunter called “Article XI” is a patchwork of each musician’s imagination, stitched together with an eye towards harmony and color. Hunter, with his composer/guitarist... Continue Reading →

Swooping Sonority: The Vienna Clarinet Connection and that Gershwin Glissando

Much to the webosphere’s delight, a clip of arguably the most famous upwards glissando ever (“Rhapsody in Blue”), executed totally and satisfyingly by a Viennese woodwind ensemble, recently made the rounds and went viral. The musicians comprising the Vienna Clarinet... Continue Reading →

A Cloak of Passion with Baritone E.J. Decker

Oozing with insinuation and dripping with testosterone, the smoldering voice of baritone E.J. Decker is something unusual these days. Many excellent tenor singers make the jazz circuit, but to intentionally and prematurely train one’s naturally bari voice to stretch even... Continue Reading →

Raising the Bars – Notes on Flute from Hiro Honshuku

Just released March 2, the CD “Happy Fire” with composer/arranger/flutist and EWI player Hiro Honshuku is an ear-full of assertive, flavorful jazz with outstanding instrumentation. The title song of this CD gallops forward with energy from flute and violin in... Continue Reading →

Sprouting from a Fragrant Purple Tree – the Music of Laurent Medelgi

The first time he saw California’s jacaranda tree, guitarist and composer Laurent Medelgi was entranced. Such an aromatic and colorful experience could only lead to one thing: composing songs to fit its striking beauty. His sixth CD with the Medeljazz... Continue Reading →

Chicago Singer’s Second CD Stands Up Strong! Chatting with Tracye Eileen

Destined to soar to women’s anthem status, vocalist Tracye Eileen’s upcoming release “Why Did I Say Yes” is sung with smarts and sass. Intelligent women, she croons, can still make mistakes, and she proves you can be strong, own it,... Continue Reading →

Cue the Finger Snapping – Bobby Sanabria Pours Love Into “West Side Story Reimagined”

Bandleader, sideman, composer/arranger and superior percussionist Bobby Sanabria has a new project to honor whom he believes is one of America’s greatest composers ever: Leonard Bernstein. Though there have been many versions and interpretations of the musical “West Side Story,”... Continue Reading →

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