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Show #61: Remembering Charlie Haden

Posted July 18, 2014 by | 3 Comments
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Charlie Haden died last Friday at 77. He had contracted polio as a teenager in Springfield, Missouri and the dreaded disease had returned in 2011 like Faust from Hell.
Charlie was a great friend of KCRW. He probably visited both myself and Chris Douridas 30 times on Morning Becomes Eclectic. But he didn’t want us just to play his music; he loved being guest deejay, …

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Show #60: Crème de la Crème of New Releases

Posted July 11, 2014 by | 4 Comments
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The new albums that I’m always grateful to receive piled up again and I need to share the best of them. Here is this week’s crème de la crème of fantastic new releases.
Los Hacheros: This group of New York City musicians play some of the best Cuban-style salsa of any band I’ve heard. They recorded it all live. Remember that many albums are produced, …

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Show #59: Rhythm Planet’s July 4th Soundtrack

Posted July 4, 2014 by | 0 Comments
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With the exception of Bruce Springsteen‘s classic song, this week’s Rhythm Planet features some Independence Day theme songs that don’t get a lot of play. Alyssa Graham does a beautiful job on the Simon & Garfunkel classic, and so does Brubeck’s great alto saxophonist, Paul Desmond. Jazz singer Teri Thornton gives us a vocal version of Nelson Riddle’s theme for the classic TV series …

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Program #58: New Releases for Summer

Posted June 27, 2014 by | 2 Comments
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For the past few weeks I’ve covered various things: Brazilian Music for the FIFA World Cup, African Sax Kings, Little Jimmy Scott, and Songs About Food.  When you do this the new releases pile up and it gets to a point where you have to share them. I only keep and promote about 40% of the music I receive: the fancy word is “curation”. …

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Show #57: Remembering Little Jimmy Scott

Posted June 20, 2014 by | 0 Comments
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Little Jimmy Scott was a singer’s singer. Let’s start with what Nancy Wilson said about him:
“There would be no Nancy Wilson were it not for Little Jimmy Scott. I owe all that I am and all that I have to this man’s singing style…when I hear Jimmy, he touches me with his unique ability for phrasing. The emotions riding on the timbre of his …

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Show #56: Brazilian Futebol & Music

Posted June 13, 2014 by | 0 Comments
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I bought a caxirola the other day. This is the official noisemaker for the 2014 World Cup games hosted in Brazil. Alas, they’ve already been banned from the games because supposedly they can be hurled like missiles and could hurt somebody. Nonetheless, it’s time for World Cup! This week’s show celebrates Brazilian Futebol and its music.
I’ve been to Brazil numerous times. Once I went up to …

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Show #55: African Sax Kings

Posted June 6, 2014 by | 6 Comments
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Many of us know the great guitarists of Africa: Mali’s Ali Farka Toure, Guinea’s Sekou “Diamond Fingers” Diabate, the great bass players of South Africa (Bakhiti Kumalo who played with Paul Simon on Graceland, Sipho Gumede who worked with Dollar Brand and others). But we don’t know much about African saxophone players. I had to do some thinking about this too.
The impetus was a …

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Show #54: Tom’s Latest Picks

Posted May 30, 2014 by | 3 Comments
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This week, I wanted to share some recent music that I’ve been listening to a lot. I didn’t try to be too eclectic, just play stuff I love.
We start with a quartet of great new jazz albums: Eric Alexander, an amazing tenor player, then a forceful pianist who grew up in Israel and now based in NYC, Alon Nechushtan. Next, a lovely piece by …

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Show #53: Noteworthy Releases

Posted May 23, 2014 by | 0 Comments
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This week, Rhythm Planet spins some more new releases that have filled up my grab bag. We begin with a good compilation of Malian music, a great way to start anybody’s collection of Malian music. Bassekou Kouyate is one of the most authentic Malian music purveyors and one of my favorite musicians. His show at UCLA was a highlight for me. He plays the …

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Show #52: Songs About Food, Glorious Food

Posted May 16, 2014 by | 0 Comments
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When I heard Jon Favreau and his music supervisor, KCRW’s resident Frenchman Mathieu Schreyer, on MBE earlier this week I was inspired to do a show featuring songs about food. The new film Chef is a hit and the soundtrack is great. It made me think of  another Frenchman, the great Enlightenment philosopher Voltaine’s comment about eating:
“Nothing would be more tiresome than eating and …

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