What a better way to celebrate the passage of time (New Year), from a musical standpoint, than with Loren Schoenberg, musician, Jazz scholar, former director of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem.
His book "The NPR Curious Listener's Guide to Jazz" (https://www.amazon.com/NPR-Curious-Listeners-Guide-Jazz/dp/039952794X) is a great introduction to Jazz, and an opportunity to discover or learn to appreciate many artists through Schoenberg's insightful and informative comments.
Duke Ellington's "All Star Road Band" album was recorded live at a dance in the Sunset Ballroom, in Carrolltown, PA, in June 1957.
It is not among his most famous, but is interesting in several aspects.
-- The Music --
There are relatively few albums of the Ellington band performing at dances, the most famous being "Duke at Fargo", recorded in 1940. Fast-forward 17 years and we have with the "All Star Road Band" album another dance date, but with a more "modern" vers
I was wrong, there is hope - though I'll never fit the Duke Ellington Orchestra in my living room, I may be able to get in the studio with them. Well, not quite, because they would have had to record with modern technology in high-resolution (192 kHz ?)...
Here's a session I would have enjoyed: "Jazz Party", at Columbia's 30th Street studios. Dizzy Gillespie dropped in, as well as Jimmy Rushing. The original LP was released with applause added in. Another version is available without
Monday was not a good day for me. I was told this:
My hopes to recreate the Duke Ellington Orchestra in my living room were shattered... I knew my 2000€ speakers were not quite up to the task, but I was hoping that perhaps investing a little more in my system would somehow get me there. Reading review after review on this very site (and many others) I had been led to believe that I would experience the music as if the performer was in the room.
Maybe I should fin
Five months after posting my initial "preview" of ECDesigns’ PowerDAC-R I would like to offer some concluding comments on my experience with this unique product.
I will also include additional information that was provided by ECDesigns in answer to some of my questions. Some of this information may already have been mentioned in the long ECDesigns thread on this forum, but it will be convenient to have it available here for future reference. Even if one does not grasp all the techni
It’s been a long time coming…
ECDesigns is a two-person operation run by brothers John and Gordon Brown; John handles circuit design and Gordon oversees the programming aspects. They are based near Eindhoven in the Netherlands, and products are sold directly through their website (www.ecdesigns.nl).
John Brown introduced himself on DIYAudio in 2006 with these words: "I have spent my entire life designing, repairing and building electronic equipment – electronics is my passion...
Objective: expressing or dealing with facts or conditions as perceived without distortion by personal feelings, prejudices, or interpretations (Merriam-Webster)
Arthur Salvatore is an old-timer with an outdated website that contains many fascinating insights into audio. My favorite section describes his "audio philosophy". One aspect which can be put in practice by all of us, concerns his description of "levels of audible improvements":
Ever tried copper foil speaker cables ? I have experimented with a couple recently:
- DIY model
- Silversmith Audio's Fidelium cables
1) DIY copper foil cables
They are easy to make yourself - here is a recipe someone gave me. All you need is:
- Kapton tape (https://www.amazon.com/Temperature-Resistant-Polyimide-Sublimation-Soldering/dp/B08T74TCFS/ref=sr_1_14?dchild=1&keywords=KAPTON+Tape&qid=1618095371&sr=8-14)
- Copper foil, 16AWG
I am always curious to understand how people manage their music collection, and often surprised by the creativity deployed by some.
Perhaps reading about what I have designed will be of interest to others, though it is build "from scratch" and hardly replicable "as is". I'll admit that I am quite proud of my work: the results meet my specific needs.
I gave Roon a try for a couple years, then gave up, explaining why here (good background on why I embarked on this project):
Marvelous Marvin Hagler, one of boxing's all time greats, just died, aged 66.
His boxing record: 67 pro fights, with only 3 losses (all controversial). He elevated boxing to an art form as few have ever done. From his interviews after his retirement, he seemed like a kind man. He remained bitter about the world of boxing, having been robbed in his last fight of a well-deserved victory against the more popular Sugar Ray Leonard.
Anyone interested in the "Sweet Science" sh
The Pittsburgh Jazz Festival organized on June 20, 1965 a "Jazz Piano Workshop" which was luckily recorded and issued on CD by Mosaic Records: https://www.discogs.com/Various-The-Jazz-Piano/release/5260834. Here is a picture of the "cast" on that day: https://collection.cmoa.org/objects/cfcdaea2-de64-4f61-92cf-8f4e6d9db60f
Ellington plays two numbers (in addition to a duo with Earl Hines): a spirited version of "Take the A Train", with bass and drum accompaniment, and another piece "
In 1946 Hollywood made a film about Jazz - "New Orleans" - and cast Billie Holiday, arguably the most influential singer in Jazz, in a secondary role as a servant.
Yesterday, Hollywood celebrated Andra Day's depiction of Billie in the biopic "The United States vs Billie Holiday". Times have changed (though it could be argued there is still much progress to be made), but Billie Holiday is still remembered today as a "tragic" figure, somewhat obscuring her lasting contributions to Ame
You may have come across Jan Evensmo's work referenced in jazz publications or liner notes or by reading his fascinating website -http://www.jazzarcheology.com/ . I contacted him and he kindly agreed to answer a few questions:
Q: Your website is entitled "the treasures of vintage jazz". You have written "solographies" of numerous famous or lesser known artists. When did your passion for jazz start and how did you come to writing these solographies?
It started when I was
Loren Schoenberg (of the the National Jazz Museum in Harlem) has published a four part lecture on Ben Webster on YouTube.
The production is not of the highest quality (but the content easily makes up for it), and some of the tracks are better heard on youtube directly or from your collection, if you can find them. There are quite a few rarities.
Duke Ellington recorded music for 50 years.
Ask any Ellington fan to pick their favorite album, they will not be able to decide. Ever changing, throughout these 50 years, but always distinctive, what is it that makes Ellington so special ? His arrangements, his compositions, his ability to gather in his band the best talents and use them at their best ?
One aspect which I find fascinating is his piano playing. His style and sound is instantly recognizable, and forms the
Ellington never ceases to amaze and suprise me. Witness this short piece, released by Storyville earlier this year: "The Lake", part of his suite "The River", and performed at the end of a 1969 concert. Here are the Storyville notes:
"On November 7th, 1969, Duke Ellington and his orchestra played two concerts in Rotterdam, in the famous De Doelen concert hall. The second concert of the evening was prolonged, as the public wouldn’t let Ellington go. So while the rest of the bandmembe
At this time it is relevant to reflect on the merits of japanese-style greetings. Respect can be shown to others while avoiding the traditional western handshake.
Bowing can start when you first see the person at a distance, and continue as you approach them, but has to stop at a one meter distance !
Avoid the mistakes of Trump and Obama.
Reading AustinPop's excellent review of the EtherRegen I could not help but thinking - does it need to be so complicated ? Cascading switches, linear power supplies, audiophile network and DC cables, clocks - there has to be be a better way ! Call me naive, but I believe there is always an elegant and simple solution to all problems, and don't see why digital audio should not conform to that rule. If we have not found it, then we need to look harder
Here's an example to illustrate the importance of remastering quality.
The track is "Stepping into Swing Society" by Duke Ellington, recorded on January 13, 1938. I love the title !
Here's what Eddie Lambert has to say about this track (in "Duke Ellington: A Listener's Guide" - a little publicity for this great book:https://www.amazon.com/Duke-Ellington-Listeners-Guide-Studies/dp/0810831619 ) :
"By early 1938, the swing era was well under way. and Ellington in
A beautiful interpretation of "I Cover the Waterfront", by Henry "Red" Allen, dating from 1957:
Red Allen - trumpet
J.C. Higginbotham - trombone
Buster Bailey - clarinet
Coleman Hawkins - tenor saxophone
Marty Napoleon - piano
Evertt Barksdale - guitar
Lloyd Trotman - bass
Cozy Cole - drums
In the words of Gunther Schuller ("The Swing Era"):
"Recorded evidence of Allen's work from 1946 to his death in 1967 is
After spending quite a few years experimenting with various components, I finally have a system which satisfies me, so I thought I would describe it and explain why.
Speakers: Davis Courbet 4 (http://www.davis-acoustics.com/en/courbet-n4/)
Amplifier: Lavardin ISX (http://www.lavardin.com/lavardin-isE.html)
DAC: ECDesigns MOS16 DAC (https://www.ecdesigns.nl/de/info/mos16)
Source: ECDesigns UPL (with ElectroTos cable) (https://www.ecdesigns.nl/de/info/upl16)