Even though the official release of In A World Of Mallets by Jason Marsalis is not until February 19th, we jumped on it immediately at WEMU. With the panoply of vibes, tubular bells, marimbas and other mallet instruments this recording is like a breath of light, spring air. Perhaps it’s the New Orleans vibe that percolates throughout the songs or the emergence of a new working group in jazz, but this is a welcome addition to the WEMU playlist.
Strange as it may seem, Black Aboriginal Australians have adapted American style Country music as a vehicle for telling their own unique stories. Roger Knox aka: The King of Koori Country or The Black Elvis, is one of the leading practitioners of this style and has just released a brand new album, Stranger In My Land (Bloodshot).
For this release Knox is backed up by the rotating cast of musicians led by producer Jon Langford (The Mekons), known as The Pine Valley Cosmonauts.
José James is simply beyond category. No Beginning No End is a culmination of his career and life weaving threads of jazz, balladry, R&B, classic and neo-soul plus hip-hop into a sensual stream of consciousness.
While we love to feature the all-time greats of music on WEMU, we also look for deserving unknown ensembles, such as The Aguabella Latin Jazz Band which received their CD premiere for “Baker: Gateway To Death Valley” this morning. We had actually played many of these musicians before when they were in the band led by the late, great conga player, Francisco Aguabella. Today they keep Aguabella’s legacy alive. Now you know how they found their beautiful name.
This Tuesday was a perfect blues day on WEMU. The cold and the clouds called for down-home story-filled music. Our playlist this morning included local blues luminaries Johnnie Bassett and George Bedard along with Columbus Ohio’s blues emissary, Teeny Tucker.