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The name of Donald Byrd means different things to different generations of music listeners. For those who prize the mainstream jazz of the 1950s and 1960s, he was a gifted trumpeter and one of the best practitioners of "hard-bop". But he reached a far wider audience in the 1970s, by aligning himself with the soul and funk music of the day, achieving huge sales, especially with the album Black Byrd. He was also possessed of a huge intellectual energy, and pursued an academic career in parallel with his musical one, taking lecturing jobs from the 1960s on.

Darn that dream

`Kansas City' is the latest in a long line of attempts to describe jazz on film.

Pedal to the metal

Phil Johnson gets next to a stack of recent jazz releases. They, in turn, get next to him

Jazz Michel Petrucciani Royal Festival Hall, London

Michel Petrucciani makes his entrance - all three feet of him, big bald head on a frame so tiny it looks like trick photography - beetling on crutches to the spotlit piano. He tosses the crutches aside, hoists himself laboriously up on to the stool, puts his right foot in a stirrup- like pedal-extension, and starts to play muscular chords, a melody hinted at but not yet recognisable; total assurance, and a big sound. Some cascading runs, a snatch of funk, another glimpse of that melody - then he's off again, patiently sketching in the musical landscape he intends to explore. When "These Foolish Things" emerges, it is with tender simplicity: now we have reached the beginning.

Edinburgh Festival / Day 4: Reviews

UNDER MILK WOOD

RECORDS / New Releases: Howard Riley: Beyond Category (Wondrous WM0104, CD)

A homage to Duke Ellington and Thelonious Monk, two great jazz composers who were also adjacent links in a fascinating line of piano-players that ran parallel to the better-known virtuoso tradition of men such as Art Tatum and Bud Powell. Riley, a British pianist best known as a brilliant exponent of free improvisation, examines both their famous ('Sophisticated Lady', 'Round Midnight') and less familiar work ('Fleurette Africaine', 'Coming on the Hudson') with love, respect and insight, adding considerably to his own stature in the process.

ROCK / Loose fittings, nifty threads: Don Cherry - QEH

FOUNDER member of one of the most significant groups in the history of jazz; godfather to World and New Age music; and Neneh Cherry's step-dad to boot, Don Cherry in performance remains an enigma. Is he a truly intuitive musical genius or merely one or two notes short, as it were, of the proverbial full chord? He certainly knows how to play the holy fool. Dancing across the stage in strange Tai Chi-like steps, making odd gnomic announcements and taking an age to tune a lute from Mali that looked more in need of tree surgery, Cherry comes on like an African griot washed up on the shores of the South Bank.

Dizzy Gillespie dies, aged 75

DIZZY GILLESPIE, the trumpeter, a towering figure in the history of jazz and co-creator with the saxophonist Charlie Parker in the 1940s of the immortal 'be- bop' style, died yesterday as one of his most famous tunes played gently in his hospital room. He was 75.

Obituary: Dizzy Gillespie: John Birks 'Dizzy' Gillespie, trumpeter, composer, band leader, born Cheraw South Carolina 21 October 1917, died Englewood New Jersey 6 January 1993.

WELL, yes, they do come any bigger than Dizzy Gillespie, but not much. His great achievement was to take jazz by the scruff of the neck in the middle Forties and to change it to fit the radical ideas which had been forming in his mind for several years before. The inspired work and development of those ideas led him to become one of the biggest single influences in the history of the music.

Obituary: Johnny Carisi

John E. Carisi, composer, arranger and trumpeter, born Hasbrouck Heights New Jersey 23 February 1922, died New York 3 October 1992.
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