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Robert Baird Posted: May 21, 2015 0 comments
José James: Yesterday I Had the Blues, The Music of Billie Holiday
Blue Note B002283102 (CD). 2015. Yoshihisa Saito, exec. prod.; Don Was, prod.; Chris Allen, eng., mix. DDD? TT: 49:33
Performance ****
Sonics *****

Unlike the conundrum of today's country music, whose lyrics celebrate family and tradition even as the country-music community ignores and disrespects the giants of the music's past, jazz and rock have for the most part remembered and celebrated their musical pioneers and game changers, and the singular, monumental virtuosity of artists like Billie Holiday.

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Robert Baird Posted: May 15, 2015 6 comments
His long, single note leads gave new meaning to the word “stinging,”
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Robert Baird Posted: May 09, 2015 0 comments
What keeps Waterfall, the band’s seventh album and the first in four years, from sinking into a kind of earnest, overly precious, 1970s lite rock muck is that James’s many influences are a mist and not a downpour.
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Robert Baird Posted: May 01, 2015 12 comments
Deep into what Geddy Lee now calls their “kimono period,” the band wrote and recorded, 2112, ("Twenty One Twelve") a record that makes them incredibly pretentious dorks or prog rock gods (in kimonos).
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Robert Baird Posted: May 01, 2015 5 comments
While the mass ogling was in full swing and the sickly sweet aroma of jittery, prepubescent testosterone hung heavy in the classroom, I was equally interested in Miss Wagner’s musical selections.
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Robert Baird Posted: Apr 24, 2015 1 comments
After Breezin’ Benson’s well-known fondness for James Brown funk broke out into the open
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Robert Baird Posted: Apr 20, 2015 1 comments
Vinyl Rage! Prospect Expressway Jammed With Overamped Record Buyers Eager For Adam & The Ants, Gwar and Jethro Tull!!! It’s Record Store Day In Brooklyn!!!
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Robert Baird Posted: Apr 17, 2015 3 comments
Robert Baird Posted: Apr 15, 2015 2 comments
Violet- and orchid-colored LED banks shimmer across the room. Green and pink spots radiate out and back. A steady stream of beats and keyboards from other electronica luminaries rumbles out of the speakers. Let's dance! Or maybe just listen?

Onstage, Dan Deacon is busy tweaking his gear. Out on the floor, the audience is oddly antsy. To fight the waiting, one woman hangs on her boyfriend. Clumps of hipsters conviviate. Very strong drinks (a sponsorship deal?) flow for seven bucks a pop. Anticipation thickens. Impatience turns to pacing. Young men make solo air grooves.

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Robert Baird Posted: Apr 10, 2015 1 comments
After my Austin sojourn this year, I paid a visit to the more staid and adult universe of the Savannah Music Festival.

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