The Best Songs: Just a Closer Walk With Thee

Just a Closer Walk with Thee is a traditional gospel song that has been covered by many artists. Performed as either an instrumental or vocal, “A Closer Walk” is perhaps the most frequently played number in the hymn and dirge section of traditional New Orleans jazz funerals. Rebirth Brass Band – A Closer Walk With Thee: The ‘jazz funeral’ starts …

April 22: The late Charles Mingus was born in 1922

 Just because I’m playing jazz I don’t forget about me. I play or write me the way I feel through jazz, or whatever. Music is, or was, a language of the emotions. ~Charles Mingus – Irascible, demanding, bullying, and probably a genius, Charles Mingus cut himself a uniquely iconoclastic path through jazz in the middle of the 20th century, creating …

April 15: Bessie Smith Birthday

It’s a long old road, but I know I’m gonna find the end. ~Bessie Smith – Press: Who are your favorite singers? Bob Dylan: Bessie Smith, Ma Rainey, Billie Holiday and Nancy Sinatra ~Bob Dylan (Paris Press Conference – 23 May 1966) – I’ve been poor and I’ve been rich, and rich is better. ~Bessie Smith Downhearted Blues, 1923: Trouble, …

April 12: Herbie Hancock was born in 1940 – Happy 75th Birthday

I don’t look at music from the standpoint of being a musician; I look at it from the standpoint of being a human being. ~Herbie Hancock It’s not exclusive, but inclusive, which is the whole spirit of jazz. ~Herbie Hancock Herbie Hancock is a true icon of modern music. Throughout his explorations, he has transcended limitations and genres while still …

April 07: The late Billie Holiday was born in 1915 – 100 years ago

 The first popular jazz singer to move audiences with the intense, personal feeling of classic blues, Billie Holiday changed the art of American pop vocals forever. ~John Bush (allmusic.com) The Billie Holiday Story – BBC Documentary (56min) April 07: The late Billie Holiday was born in 1915

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