We all need a little trip to La La Land.
The cover of Childish Gambino’s album ‘Awaken my love’.
In a gloomy year filled, a number of artists with an Afrofuturist perspective gave hope with inspired works of art.
The cover of the South African afro-jazz band Batsumi’s self-titled album, which was designed by its bassist Zulu Bidi.
Sometimes album sleeves reveal little about the music. Instead they illuminate the society it came from, exposing unexpected stories of people, art forms and struggles.
Janis Joplin in a new documentary, Janis: Little Girl Blue (2015).
Janis Joplin was once voted the 'Ugliest Man on Campus'. Sharon Jones was told she was 'too old, too fat, too short, too black' to succeed in music. Two documentaries chart the lives of these extraordinary women.
The cover art of ‘Bitches Brew’ by Mati Klarwein.
‘Bitches Brew’ and ‘Live-Evil’, two albums from Miles Davis’ electric period, have more than musicological significance. They challenge the listener to think beyond aesthetics and form.
Brian Douglas/Icon Films
It places Davis in a continuing, living history of African-American sound, rather than planting him on a pedestal.
A detailed look at one of the musician's most celebrated performances gives a glimpse of the dedication which allowed talent to flourish.
Jazz in the classroom not only teaches children to play instruments; they may also learn a range of essential life skills.
Many middle-class parents buy classical CDs because it is supposed to make their kids clever. But a jazz-loving academic has started using her favourite genre in early childhood learning.
Sathima Bea Benjamin was seldom recognised during her lifetime as a performer.
Ian Bruce Huntley
It took ages for one of African jazz's hidden masterpieces to be reissued. Still today, four decades later, 1976's 'African Songbird' tells volumes about the politics of the time.
Carlo Mobelli on the bass.
South African jazz is experiencing a new wave like seldom before. One of its strongest proponents, jazz veteran Carlo Mombelli, has just released a new album.
Jazz was the most influential musical movement of the 20th century. What’s its story?
The Count Basie Orchestra.
Jazz evolved from the fringes of American society into one of the most influential, and enduring, musical movements of the 20th century. How did it get from what it was to what it is now?
Ice-T performing at a music festival.
Californian rap and jazz poetry may sound like an odd mix – but both are rooted in historic inequalities
The question arises time and time again about why jazz festivals include other genres - and the answer is really simple.
Jazz represents a minority audience in an already relatively small music market and to cover costs, the aggregation of fans must be across genres to maximise numbers.
This year's Ibiza Prom was a convenient target for those unhappy with the expanded remit of the Proms – but an unfounded one.
What is gravity? What is spacetime and why does it get curved? These are some of the questions discussed at Science and Cocktails.
To achieve science becoming part of everyday entertainment, one needs to take science out of its usual academic context.
A drummer performs at the Beijing International Jazz Festival.
With Blue Note Jazz Club opening a venue in Beijing, a genre that's flagging stateside may experience a Far East revival.
Ma Rainey was one of Paramount Records’ most popular artists.
JP Jazz Archive/Redferns
In the 1920s, many black musicians were exploited by record companies, and faded into anonymity. Here are some of their stories.
Blood, sweat and tears.
Amid Golden Globe recognition and Oscar buzz, Damien Chazelle’s film about a young jazz student and his abusive teacher is pulling in viewers who would normally run screaming from the words “drum solo…
Playing at Bennetts Lane is an indication that you can be considered a ‘serious’ jazz musician.
Last week’s announcement that Melbourne’s Bennetts Lane Jazz Club will close in nine months came as a shock to most in the Australian jazz community. Bennetts Lane has been a focal point for local jazz…
Horace Silver, 1989.
Musicians often have curious minds, and the pianist and composer Horace Silver was no exception. An often overlooked musician in the public eye, Silver wrote some of the most performed jazz standards of…