WBGO Blog
  • Jimmy McGriff Has Died

    May 24, 2008. Posted by Joshua Jackson.

    Add new comment | Filed under: Notes

    Jimmy McGriff: 4/3/36 - 5/24/08

    Details very limited, but the great organist's passing has been confirmed.
    -Josh

  • Pete McGuinness Jazz Orchestra on the bandstand at Cachaca

    May 21, 2008. Posted by Becca Pulliam.

    Add new comment | Filed under: Jazz Alive, Notes

    Trombonist and singer Pete McGuinness teaches at New Jersey City University and arranges for the Westchester Jazz Orchestra. Recently, he has put together his own band, and my friend Emily Ginsberg -- just out of college, new in New York and looking for good music -- caught them on Monday night. Here's her report. - Becca Pulliam

    Looking for a new big band to check out? Perhaps a band to book for your next party? The Pete McGuinness Jazz Orchestra might be able to fill that order. With a beautiful full sound that never diminishes, the entire orchestra goes big, from the first note to the last note. The syncopated rhythms give the orchestra a great kick and personality, and that was my favorite element of the show. Nothing sounded forced, or off.

    This band can do it all, from ballads to crooning to get-up-and-dance, and they did it with style and Cachaca's great sound. I could actually hear the lyrics when Pete sang!

    Big band lovers, this is a must-see for you. Music lovers, it is definitely worth your time to check these guys out. Bring a dancing partner, because you will want to shake it on the dance floor after the first note. - Emily Ginsberg

  • Vibraphonist Walt Dickerson 4/16/28-5/15/08

    May 18, 2008. Posted by Joshua Jackson.

    Walt Dickerson

    Sad news to report. On May 15th, vibraphonist Walt Dickerson died of cardiac arrest at his home in Willow Grove, Pennsylvania. He was 80. Walt made a string of amazing records in the 1960s for Prestige that rarely receive much notice beyond the realm of the hardcore jazz fan. I highly recommend them - This is Walt Dickerson, A Sense of Direction, Relativity, and my favorite, To My Queen - a quartet date with bassist George Tucker, drummer Andrew Cyrille and pianist Andrew Hill. Walt also cut some stuff for SteepleChase Records, and he collaborated with Sun Ra. They made a few intriguing records together, including Impressions of a Patch of Blue, based on Jerry Goldsmith's music for the Academy Award winning film starring Sidney Poitier and Shelley Winters (you MUST watch this movie). Walt's music is not so easy to find, but very much worth the effort. He will be missed.

    -Josh