If anyone has earned the right to mess around with Vivaldi’s Four Seasons it is Nigel Kennedy, the violin world’s Marmite violinist. Remember how fresh he made this music sound on his recording of a quarter-century ago? This latest version offers a ferment of all he’s played since – concertos, jazz, Jimi Hendrix. It’s affectionate and irreverent in equal measure, and Kennedy and his Orchestra of Life never sound less than riveting. Pretty much all Vivaldi’s notes are there; around, above and in between them come interjections, overlays and linking passages involving guest musicians from jazz and rock: Orphy Robinson, Damon Reece, Z-Star and others. Spring is welcomed in by a distant-sounding intro on an electric-guitar. Summer’s storms bring forth bursts of crazily sampled static. Autumn tears off at a cracking pace, but with a jazz trumpet sauntering lazily over the top. It all sounds like a colossal jam session from the inside of a Botticelli painting.
Marlena Shaw was the first female vocalist signed to Blue Note and this album, from 1973, was her second for the label. As the title hints, Shaw blends soul with jazz on this material that includes R&B hits from the era alongside Randy Edelman and Fox and Gimbel compositions, even an original tune from Shaw. The album was produced by famed jazz producer and music executive Dr. George Butler who put together a line up of great musicians to support Shaw including Ron Carter on bass, Grady Tate on drums and guitarist Hugh McCracken.
Burn Your Fire for No Witness is the second studio album by American singer-songwriter Angel Olsen. It was released in February 2014 under Jagjaguwar Records. Forgiven/Forgotten, Hi-Five and Windows were released as singles. A deluxe edition was released on November 18, 2014 with five additional tracks.