One of my favorite singers, Tessa Souter, is hoping to raise enough money through a Kickstarter fund drive to record her next CD. To hear her pitch and to contribute, go here.
In the Wall Street Journal this week, you'll find my "House Call" interview with novelist Janet Evanovich here on growing up in South River, N.J., in a house filled with relatives and how she went from being an artist to one of the country's most successful novelists. [Photo above of Janet Evanovich at her home in Naples, Fla., by Josh Ritchie for The Wall Street Journal]
Also in the WSJ, my "Playlist" column with historian Joseph Ellis, who explains why he loves Frank Sinatra's I've Got You Under My Skin from 1956 here.
And in case you missed my WSJ Arts in Review essay on easy-listening music earlier in the week, you'll find it here.
Blue Note book. Author Richard Havers has done it again. Following on the heels of his cinderblock-sized book on Verve Records (Verve: The Sound of America) in 2013, he has published Blue Note: Uncompromising Expression (Chronicle Books). There's plenty of history, images of artists and album covers, along with fabulous outtakes from cover photo sessions. The five-pound book runs 399 pages. You'll find the Blue Note book here. Here's a promo for the book...
Kim Loo Sisters. If you missed my post on the Kimmies, go here. Leslie Li, a Kim Loo offspring, is trying to raise funds to pay the licensing for use of the songs the sisters sing in her documentary. You'll be charmed silly. Donate what you can—a worthy cause. Go here.
Here's the promo video...
Howard Mandel's top 10. Unsure about the music of the late Ornette Coleman? Blogger Howard Mandel of Jazz Beyond Jazz selects 10 albums that will help ease you into the saxophonist's free jazz. Go here.
Jason Fine on Brian Wilson. In Rolling Stone, Jason Fine has a fabulous piece on Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys. Great access, great color and sensitive reporting. A wonderful writing job. Go here.
Bunny on the stand. Here's Bunny Berigan singing and playing Until Today with the Freddie Rich Band in 1936 with Benny Martell on guitar. Seems dubbed in, but who cares—great stuff all around...
Folk in Greenwich Village. Jim Eigo of Jazz Promo Services sent along a link to a video on Bob Dylan's New York: Greenwich Village Folk Scene & Beyond from 2008, which visits many of the original clubs. Go here.
Miles Davis radio. Between Miles Davis's great quintets of the late 1950s and mid-'60s, the trumpeter spent six years trying to find his way. Frustrated that he wasn't breaking new ground at a time of great social and cultural upheaval, Davis tried several different configurations of musicians before his second quintet was formed in 1964. Radio host David Brent Johnson recently took a look Davis's transitional period. To hear a podcast of his show, go here.
Lou Bennett. Following my post on organist Lou Bennett and his 1963 album Enfin, blogger Anton Garcia-Fernandez posted about Bennett's album with Spanish singer Núria Feliu in 1966 at The Vintage Bandstand. Go here.
Heading to Barcelona? Before you leave, be sure to check out the schedule of the Vol-Damm Jazz Festival in the city this summer and fall. Go here.
Oddball album cover of the week.
In 1967, if you really wanted people to buy your album in the European market, you had to do more than photograph a model in an unbuttoned shirt showing way too much leg. To clinch the deal, you had to include pastry. Or was it an apple or pear?