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That Clancy Sigal Sound

That Clancy Sigal Sound

I learned of Clancy Sigal’s death on July 16th only on returning home Saturday to Ithaca, New York after five weeks on the road. I owed him an email. I’d…

The Organs Of Salamanca

Histories of the organ draw a stark distinction between the instrument’s origins in antiquity, where it was deployed in the arena to accompany gladiatorial combat, and its later life in…

The Brilliance of Velasquez

It there’s one comfort to be had in the mad scrum of high summer tourism it is that the crowds can still be escaped, even with just a few deft…

Dangerous Blues: Monk Does Vadim

The late 1950s were great years for black-and-white movies in France: I’m referring specifically to those with white people on screen, and black musicians invisible on the soundtrack. The most…

Coltrane At The Bridge

The longest John Coltrane solo available on recording is said to be the title track of One Down, One Up: Live at the Half Note made in the spring of 1965 in…

Musical Patriotism

With the ears of the body politic taking constant abuse from the choruses of recrimination echoing through and beyond White House and Capitol, we need the uplifting power of music…

Ryan Rocks

Ryan Rocks

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan slyly removed himself to the Heartland for the congressional recess and the outbreak of this week’s political firestorm in Washington. In truth, this latest…

The Rite Of The Pianola

It’s not just Rex Lawson’s bald head and spreading white beard that puts one in mind of Charles Darwin.  Both kindly and brilliant Brits demolished received wisdom, the latter informing…

Handel’s Executioners

The horrifying accounts of Thursday night’s execution of Kenneth Williams by lethal injection in Arkansas demonstrated not only the inhumane nature of this latest state-sanctioned killing, but also the power…

Raiding The Tomb of Lubitsch

Raiding The Tomb of Lubitsch

At the 1947 Los Angeles funeral of that genius of urbane film comedy, Ernst Lubitsch, fellow émigré Billy Wilder said mournfully, “No more Lubitsch.” The director William Wyler, yet another…

MOAB Music

MOAB Music

“The earth felt like a boat in a storm,” Mohammad Shahzadah said after the Mother of All Bombs hit the Achin district in Nangarhar province in Afghanistan yesterday after evening…

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