Reviews and Blog Posts: jazz

A Very Jazzy Christmas

Jazzy Christmas

Here is a great free playlist of streaming music to get you into the holiday spirit. "A Very Jazzy Christmas" includes tracks from our Jazz Music Library database:

  • God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen performed by Marian McPartland
  • Adeste Fideles (O Come All Ye Faithful) performed by David McKenna
  • Christmas Time Is Here [Instrumental] performed by Vince Guaraldi
  • Ole Santa performed by Dinah Washington
  • Christmas In New Orleans performed by Louis Armstrong
  • Christmas Island performed by Ella Fitzgerald
  • And many more!

Melody Gardot

Melody Gardot is a jazz singer and an amazing, inspirational person that I am thankful for learning about at the library! Her story is not without tragedy. At the age of 19, she was hit by a car and as a result of extensive damage ended up with severe neurological complications that she continues to deal with to this day. Using music as a form of therapy, she has risen to be one of the most enticing jazz singers I have ever heard.

Gardot's first album, Worrisome Heart came out in 2008. In 2009, she released My One and Only Thrill. Ms Gardot continues to advocate for music therapy and inspire those that face overwhelming obstacles.

In a Tizzy over Dizzy

Today marks the anniversary of John Birks "Dizzy" Gillespie's birth. Born on this date in 1917, Dizzy and his contemporaries revolutionized modern jazz and influenced generations of musicians to come. Mr. Gillespie died in 1993, but his music remains legendary.

For Love of Abbey

Abbey Lincoln

Compared to legends like Billie Holliday and Shirley Horne, Abbey Lincoln was born Anna Marie Wooldridge August 6, 1930 in Chicago, the 10th of 12 children. Heading to L.A. at the age of 19, she became a nightclub singer until she rose to stardom. Sadly, Ms. Lincoln passed away this weekend at the age of 80.

In addition to being an amazing singer, Abbey Lincoln was nominated for the Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actress in 1969 for her role as the title character in For Love of Ivy starring opposite Sidney Poitier, who also wrote the story. This came as no surprise to those who had seen her in the 1964 film, Nothing but a Man.

Vintage 1965

Otis Blue Otis Redding sings soul

Full of civil unrest, 1965 was a turbulent year. The top grossing film of the year was The Sound of Music. Dune by Frank Herbert hit bookshelves. The TV show I Dream of Jeannie premieres. These albums were top sellers. What were you up to in 1965?

Sinner or Saint

I enjoy watching Ovation and was recently reminded of the amazing talent of Sarah Vaughan. Her vinyl album Sarah Vaughan in Hi-Fi, produced by Columbia, was a favorite at home.

I would duet with Sarah as a kid and while too young to understand the pathos of the lyrics, I was old enough to appreciate her incredible voice. If you're not familiar with Sarah Vaughan, treat yourself to 16 Most Requested Songs. I am fond of her ballads which are featured on After Hours.

Beat of a Different Drum

Who is the greatest drummer of all time? The backbone of the ensemble, this important figure is often shrouded in mystery and overshadowed by the rest of the band. Being a great drummer depends on more than just technical ability. The best drummers contribute a significant sound or style to their group and leave an indelible mark on the audience.

  • Ringo Starr of The Beatles provided a steady back beat and creative flourishes that helped make this band the legend it is today. Pete Best, the original drummer for the Beatles, was with the band for 2 years.

FREE MUSIC? ONLINE? AND LEGAL, TOO?

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Do you want to try some new music and not spend ANY money?  I'm talking free, folks!  Your tax dollars at work.

Yes, the Library has many CDs (22,085 titles today, to be exact) but that's not what I'm talking about right now.  Bet you didn't know we had streaming music that you can listen to day or night and never leave your home. All you need is a Denver Public Library card, an Internet connection, and Adobe Flash Player 9 or higher (free). 

Free Concerts in the Park

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Enjoy sublime music in the great outdoors for FREE this summer during City Park Jazz.

Remaining shows this season include:

6th Annual World Music Festival

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Heading up to the mountains this weekend? Be sure to check out the World Music Festival in Keystone! Admission is FREE!

Featured Musicians Include:

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