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OBITUARY: Marlene Verplanck is Gone

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From New York comes news that the singer Marlene VerPlanck died today at 84. She reportedly had pancreatic cancer but managed to keep the illness a secret from nearly everyone. Beginning in the 1960s Ms. VerPlanck worked closely with her husband Billy as a studio musician, singing in commercial jingles. In the 1970s she began singing in jazz clubs and at festivals and appeared at Carnegie Hall. Billy VerPlanck died in 2009. By then his wife's career as a jazz performer had blossomed. She was in demand in the US and became popular in Europe, particularly in Great Britain, appearing at Ronnie Scott's club in London and touring in England and on the continent...

PERFORMANCE / TOUR: Jazz This Week: The Bad Plus V 2.0, Storm Large, "Winter Jazz Fest," and More

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It's a big week for jazz and creative music in St. Louis, with one performance that's literally drawing international attention, the debut of a new festival, and more. Let's go to the highlights... Thursday, January 18 Guitarist Todd Mosby's New Horizons Ensemble performs at Sky Music Lounge; The People's Key will play at the Chase Club; and saxophonist Ben Reece's Unity Quartet returns to The Dark Room...

VIDEO / DVD: Oscar Peterson: Sinatra Portrait

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A zillion jazz tributes to Frank Sinatra have been recorded over the decades. One of the first and best is Oscar Peterson's A Jazz Portrait of Frank Sinatra. The album"s marathon recording session was done for Verve in a single night in Paris in May 1959. The album featured what would become the classic Oscar Peterson Trio -- featuring Peterson (p), Ray Brown (b) and Ed Thigpen (d). Thigpen had been added months earlier to replace guitarist Herb Ellis, who threw in the towel on Peterson's relentless touring schedule...

VIDEO / DVD: Red Garland: The Quota

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Pianist Red Garland is best known as the pianist Miles Davis hired in 1955 when pianist Ahmad Jamal turned him down. Davis admired Ahmad's modernist, bluesy swinging style on the keyboard, so much that he recorded songs such as Surrey With the Fringe on Top, A Gal in Calico and Billy Boy with Garland playing virtually the same way as Ahmad's earlier recordings...

ADVOCACY: States, Congress Battle FCC over Net Neutrality End

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Dozens of attorneys general filed a petition Tuesday challenging the Federal Communication Commission's recent decision to roll back net neutrality rules. A coalition of major tech companies has also promised court action; and Congress appears ready to take action, as well. The petition, filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, would block the rollback which FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, a Republican, has championed since being appointed by President Donald Trump last year...

BIRTHDAY: Jazz Musician of the Day: Cedar Walton

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All About Jazz is celebrating Cedar Walton's birthday today! For over 25 years, pianist Cedar Walton has enjoyed an up-tempo career, which never seems to slow down. Maintaining a non-stop itinerary, Walton has accompanied a litany of Jazz greats while also fronting his own successful groups. Born January 17, 1934 in Dallas, Texas, Walton set his sights on a career in music at an early age. An after- hours gig at the Denver Club introduced him to notable musicians like Charlie Parker... Read more...

CAREER: How to Use Word-of-Mouth to Drive Music, Ticket Sales

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As consumers become increasingly bombarded with advertising, that advertising gets increasingly easier to ignore, meaning bands and artists need to seek new (or in some cases old) ways of promoting their event. Thanks to the rise of social media, word-of-mouth promotion is seeing something of a resurgence...

MUSIC INDUSTRY: Distrokid Adds Lyrics Delivery, Shares Major Milestone

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DistroKid has added lyric delivery to its low cost digital music distribution service. The company is the first indie D.I.Y. distributor to offer the service, with iTunes and Apple Music at launch. "With the transition from CDs to streaming, what we've gained in convenience we've lost in immersion," says DistroKid founder Phil Kaplan. "Lyrics, artwork, and CD booklets have taken a back seat to digital menus and skip buttons. DistroKid's goal is to help our artists form stronger bonds with their listeners. One step toward this, is to help our artists get their lyrics into streaming apps...

TRENDS: 3 Factors Shaping the Music Industry in 2018

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With 2017 already having been a busy and reformative year for the music industry, 2018 looks to be headed in a similar direction. Here we visit three important factors which will have a major effect on the industry in the coming year. Guest post from the Royalty Exchange blog Last year was a transformative one for both Royalty Exchange and the music business at large. We're not big on milestone-type posts, but allow us to share a few internal numbers for the sake of illuminating what we think are some broader, macro-industry trends we all should be following in the year ahead...

BIRTHDAY: Jazz Musician of the Day: Aldo Romano

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All About Jazz is celebrating Aldo Romano's birthday today! Aldo Romano was born in France in 1941, the son of Italian immigrants. His first instrument was the guitar, but he decided to switch to drums in 1961. Essentially self-taught, he nonetheless benefited from the advice of Michel Babault and Jacques Thollot. He admired Philly Joe Jones, Elvin Jones, Tony Williams, Ed Blackwell, and Billy Higgins... Read more...

OBITUARY: Marlene Verplanck (1933-2018)

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Marlene VerPlanck, a polished jazz vocalist who began her recording career in 1955, had a strong second career in the 1960s and '70s as a prolific jingle singer, sang backup on Frank Sinatra's Trilogy album and had a third career recently as she toured and performed to critical praise, died January 14. She was 84...

MUSIC INDUSTRY: How to Boost Ticket Sales with Broader Distribution

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While purchasing tickets has become significantly easier for consumers than in pre-internet days, there is still a lost opportunity when it comes to distributing your event across the web. Here we look at how sales can be boosted by promoting them via commerce sites. Guest post by Katie Sawyer of Eventbrite...

CAREER: 7 Important Video Metrics for Measuring Your Content's Success

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When determining whether or not your video content is hitting home, there are some important metrics to pay attention to beyond just the view count, such as audience retention, subscribers, and where viewers are coming from. Guest post by Alexandra Kennedy of the Symphonic Blog In order to effectively manage your YouTube channel as an artist, it's important to look beyond the number of views at the bottom of your video when measuring your content's success...

BIRTHDAY: Jazz Musician of the Day: Gene Krupa

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All About Jazz is celebrating Gene Krupa's birthday today! Gene Krupa was easily one of the most colorful personalities of the big band era. Despite his outrageous stage persona, Krupa was a serious and disciplined musician whose vision changed the role of drummer forever and who helped standardize the jazz drum kit. Eugene Bertram Krupa was born in Chicago in 1909... Read more...

MUSIC INDUSTRY: Billy Collins on Sonny Rollins

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A couple of weeks ago, Billy Collins sent me an unpublished poem. Billy is a former U.S. Poet Laureate (2001-2003) and author most recently of The Rain in Portugal (Random House). His poems always have a jazz feel -- improvised, deft and witty. Between the December holidays, Billy wrote a poem about Sonny Rollins. Before we get to his verse, here's a note Billy sent along with background...

BIRTHDAY: Jazz Musician of the Day: Kenny Wheeler

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All About Jazz is celebrating Kenny Wheeler's birthday today! Although resident in England since 1952 and often thought to be an English musician, Kenny Wheeler was born in Canada in 1930. He began playing in his hometown of St. Catherines, encouraged by his father, a trombonist. His formal studies include composition with Rodney Bennett and William Russo. His earliest influences included Buck Clayton and Roy Eldrige but, by the time he left for London, he was looking towards bebop... Read more...

BIRTHDAY: Jazz Musician of the Day: Joe Pass

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All About Jazz is celebrating Joe Pass' birthday today! Joe Pass almost didn\'t make it as a musician due to his early battle with drug addiction. But following a successful rehab at Synanon and a recording session with fellow recovered musicians entitled Sounds of Synanon, the guitarist was signed by Dick Bock to the Pacific Jazz label. Pass made several albums as a leader and sideman for Bock, though work started drying up in the late 1960s as rock dominated the music marketplace... Read more...

RECORDING: Recent Listening: Kathrine Windfeld Big Band

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Kathrine Windfeld Big Band, Latency (Stunt Records) Kathrine Winfeld's second album further establishes the 30-year-old Dane in the vanguard of new arranger-composers and bandleaders. Her young, experienced, adventurous musicians from Denmark, Sweden and Norway may be considered an all-star Scandinavian aggregation, but not in the sense that Ms. Winfeld's music dwells on Scandinavian themes. Rather, her work is in a league with bands like those of Maria Schneider, Darcy James Argue, Christian McBride and John Beasley's Monkestra -- outfits unafraid to be eclectic and eccentric but insistent on values growing out of the mainstream tradition. Ms. Winfeld's crew maintains swing even when the saxophones in the piece called 'Double Fleisch' verge on free jazz a la Chicago's AACM of the 1960s. Then she unleashes the intrepid trombone soloist Goran Abelli, who is unrestrained, as he was in the 2016 Windfeld album Aircraft...

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