Since arriving on the jazz scene as a leader with 1996's East Coast Love Affair, guitarist Kurt Rosenwinkel has established a unique voice and place for the guitar in jazz in the 21st century. His nine previous studio recordings have explored different facets of his fluid, yet highly individual style. Some of his earlier records – 2000's The Next Step, 2003's Heartcore, and 2009's Reflections – have revealed how expansive Rosenwinkel's reach is, whether it's exploring space, melody, creating massive grooves, or swinging right from the tradition. As fine as those records all are, it is perhaps Star of Jupiter that makes a definitive case for him as a major voice in the 21st century, as a guitarist and as a composer. Star of Jupiter features a new band, with pianist/keyboardist Aaron Parks, bassist Eric Revis, and drummer Justin Faulkner.
Eric Clapton was the opening act of his own Crossroads Guitar Festival on April 12. He took the stage at New York's Madison Square Garden just before the official starting time of 7:30, as if he couldn't wait to get the night going. Seated with an acoustic guitar, dressed in shades of gray and wearing glasses, Clapton performed a short set with his current touring band, starting with an earthy stroll through Charles Brown's
The Crossroads Guitar Festival hit Madison Square Garden in April this year with tickets selling out in the blink of an eye. It's no wonder either, with some of the best guitarists in music history making up the line-up at the 2013 event including the Allman Brothers Band, Jeff Beck, Keith Richards, Keith Urban, Gary Clark Jr., Vince Gill, John Mayer and, of course, festival organiser Eric Clapton. Clapton has been curating this event since 2004 with talent-filled festival taking place every 3 years in aid of the Crossroads Center Antigua - a private drug rehabilitation centre founded by the artist himself.
Since the 70s, trumpeter Tom Harrell has branded a prolific stature within the annals of modern jazz as an artisan who possesses an enviable technique marked by his exquisite phrasings, silky tone and fluid progressions. Even during pieces constructed on gutsy or penetrating ensemble work, Harrell has an uncanny way of dishing out ferocious licks with heartfelt overtones and a penchant for eloquently rebuilding themes and regenerating numerous slants on a given melody. Here, the trumpeter lines up with celebrated and eternally versatile bandleader, saxophonist Mark Turner (Kurt Rosenwinkel, OAM Trio).