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East Wind (i)  


East Wind (ii)  

Record label. It was owned by the East Wind Trade Associates company, founded in 1984 in Hartford, Connecticut, by Steve Boulay, Ted Everts, and David Barrick with the assistance of Gerald A. Friedman. Its catalogue was devoted to Russian jazz in styles ranging from bop to jazz-rock. (E. Schmitt: “3 in Hartford Importing Records of Russian Jazz,” ...



Christopher Doll

Record company. It was established by CBS in 1953 as a subsidiary of Columbia Records. Although from the start its issues included jazz and pop, Epic for many years was known primarily for its recordings of George Szell conducting the Cleveland Orchestra (including those made with a young Leon Fleisher as piano soloist). In the latter part of the 1950s, as rock and roll began to overtake the industry, the company struggled to find itself artistically and commercially, accumulating an odd assortment of American, Australian, and European performers representing a wide array of classical, jazz, and popular styles.

The label’s fortunes began to change in 1964 with its participation in the British Invasion. Epic distributed the American releases of the Dave Clark Five and the Yardbirds and later those of the Hollies and Donovan. The true turning point for the company was the signing in 1967 of Sly and the Family Stone, whose critical and financial success helped redefine the label as a youth-oriented powerhouse. The company expanded through the 1970s, achieving unimaginable heights in the 1980s with Michael Jackson’s mature solo work (...


Epoque Quartet  

Ian Mikyska

Czech string quartet, founded 1999. Its line-up has remained constant since its foundation: David Pokorný and Vladimír Klánský on violins, Vladimír Kroupa on viola, and Vít Petrášek on cello. Although classical repertoire remains central to their professional lives, the Epoque Quartet is remarkable for the breadth and professionalism of its ‘crossover’ work. The quartet has performed with the leading artists of Czech popular music, arranged world music from various traditions (most recently with the clarinettist Irvin Venyš for their CD Irvin_Epoque), and given the premières of over 80 pieces, the style of which ranges from rock- and jazz-influenced music to contemporary art music, mostly by Czech composers including Jan Kučera, Petr Wajsar, Jan Dušek, Gabriela Vermelho, and others.

Their open-mindedness and long-standing interest in various musical fields allows them to perform stylistically in a way classically-trained ensembles often find problematic, particularly in terms of rhythm, feeling, and energy when performing jazz- and rock-influenced repertoire....


In + Out  

Gary W. Kennedy

Record company and label formed around 1989 in Freiburg, Germany, by Frank Kleinschmidt and Jürgen Schwab; it appears to have started recording operations in 1987, but its first issues began to appear only in early 1990. Featured artists include Chico Freeman, both as the leader of his own group, Brainstorm, and as a member of the group Roots (with Arthur Blythe, Sam Rivers, Nathan Davis, and Don Pullen, among others), as well as James “Blood” Ulmer, Buster Williams, and Urszula Dudziak. In the mid-1990s In + Out issued a 15-disc historical anthology (three boxed volumes of five CDs each) entitled ...


Inner City  

Barry Kernfeld

Record company and label. The company was founded in New York in 1976 by Irv (Irving) Kratka. A subsidiary of the MMO (Music Minus One) Music Group, Inc., it owned three labels, two of which were devoted to jazz. These were Classic Jazz (which should not be confused with the Swedish label Classic Jazz Masters) and Inner City. Although the company was concerned largely with reissuing material first made available by other companies in the USA, Japan (East Wind), and Europe (principally Enja), it also put out new recordings in early swing and bop styles on Classic Jazz and material ranging in style from bop to free jazz and jazz-rock. The company later became enmeshed in a legal dispute which ended its activities. Inner City should not be confused with a pop music label of the same name which was established in the late 1980s. (M. Segell: “Once More, Jazz is Big Business,” ...


Jazz at the Philharmonic  

Charles Garrett


Jazz Messengers  

Charles Garrett


McKinney’s Cotton Pickers  

John Chilton

Jazz ensemble formed in Springfield, Ohio, from the Synco Jazz Band, a group organized by the drummer William McKinney (b Cynthiana, KY, 17 Sept 1895; d Cynthiana, KY, 14 Oct 1969) shortly after World War I. In 1923 McKinney decided to conduct the band himself and consequently engaged the drummer Cuba Austin as its percussionist. At the behest of their agent the band became known as McKinney’s Cotton Pickers. With their musical versatility and inspired showmanship they blended comedy routines and light music with jazz numbers arranged by their trumpeter, John Nesbitt. From 1927, when the multi-instrumentalist don Redman became its music director and principal arranger, the band developed its own distinctive style, which highlighted the precision of the saxophones and brass and emphasized the buoyancy of the rhythm section.

The band’s first recordings, in July 1928, helped establish the group nationally and brought widespread praise for the brilliance of Redman’s arrangements and the solo improvisations of Prince Robinson on reed instruments. The Cotton Pickers’ golden era took place during their long residence at the Graystone Ballroom in Detroit (beginning in ...


Medeski, Martin & Wood  

Michael Baumgartner


Jazz fusion trio formed in New York in 1991 by the keyboard player (Anthony) John Medeski (b Louisville, KY, 28 June 1965), the drummer Billy Martin (b New York, NY, 30 Oct 1963), and the bass player Chris(topher Barry) Wood (b Pasadena, CA, 25 Nov 1969). Martin’s teacher, the drummer Bob Moses, who had previously performed with Medeski and Wood, brought the three musicians together. MMW began its career at the Village Gate as an acoustic jazz trio. While Wood continued to play acoustic bass primarily, Medeski began performing on several vintage electronic instruments—including a Hammond B-3 organ, Fender Rhodes, Mellotron, clavinet, and analog synthesizers—which gave the trio with its distinctive sound. MMW frequently crossed the boundary between jazz and rock music, appearing with Phish and on the alternative rock circuit. The trio also performed at conventional jazz festivals such as Newport, Monterey, Montreal, Montreux, and the North Sea Jazz Festival. Their prolific recording activity began with five albums for the independent labels Gramavision and Indirecto Records (...



Steve Larson

Jazz chamber ensemble. Its original members were Paul McCandless (oboe, english horn, bass clarinet), Glen Moore (double bass, violin, piano, flute), Ralph Towner (acoustic guitar, piano, french horn, trumpet, flugelhorn), and Collin Walcott (tablā, sitar, clarinet, percussion). They all played in the Paul Winter Consort before forming their own group in 1970; the percussionist Trilok Gurtu joined the group after Walcott’s death in 1984 and the drummer Mark Walker replaced Gurtu in 1993. Oregon’s style combines an eclectic mix of classical music, modern jazz, and non-Western musics and prefigured developments in what was subsequently marketed as world music; the timbre and sensitivity of their chamber style offered a sonic precedent for new age music. Their sensitive interaction in performance has allowed them to improvise collectively without assuming rigidly defined roles. Their recordings include pieces based upon complex harmonies, such as “Yellow Bell,” and others based on a drone or free improvisation. While the soaring oboe in “Icarus” is typical, the fact that the musicians play 60 to 80 different instruments has given the group a wide palette of sounds. The group was still performing and touring in the early 2010s and has continued to push and blur musical boundaries, as evidenced by their acclaimed collaboration in ...



Erik Kjellberg

Swedish band. Formed in 1926 by the violinist Folke “Göken” Andersson (1902–76), it had from six to nine members at various times. Among those who were members of the band were the trumpeters Gösta “Smyget” Redlig, Gösta “Chicken” Törnblad, and Ragge Läth; the saxophonists Sam Jacobsson, Tony Mason, and Olle Henricson; the pianists Nils Lind and Nils Soderman; the banjoists Curt Ljunggren and Jean Paban; and the drummer Anders Soldén. The Paramountorkestern was the first important jazz band in Sweden; it gave many performances on radio and made about 100 recordings (including ...


Sweatman, Wilbur  

Mark Berresford

(Coleman )

(b Brunswick, MO, Feb 7, 1882; d New York, NY, March 9, 1961). American clarinetist, bandleader, composer, and music publisher. His first professional engagement (c1897–8) was with a “pickaninny” band led by Nathaniel Clark Smith. In 1902 he was assistant leader of P.G. Lowery’s band with Forepaugh and Sells Circus and later that year joined Mahara’s Minstrels band under the leadership of W.C. Handy. In 1903 he formed his own band in Minneapolis, where he made the first recordings by an African American band. Sweatman moved to Chicago in 1908, where he led trios at the Grand and Monogram theaters. In 1911 he made his first vaudeville appearance, and in late 1916 made the first records recognizable as jazz performances. In 1918 Sweatman’s band was signed to an exclusive recording contract with Columbia, their records rivalling those by the Original Dixieland Jazz Band. He continued to work through the 1920s and early 1930s in vaudeville, and in ...


Union of God’s Musicians and Artists Ascension  

Charles Garrett


United Artists  

Mark Gardner

Record company and label. The company was established in New York in 1958 as a subsidiary of the film company of the same name. It quickly assembled a remarkably comprehensive catalogue that contained a wide variety of mainstream and modern jazz. Among its most notable recordings were the excellent album Money Jungle by Duke Ellington, Charles Mingus, and Max Roach, and the only recording made jointly by John Coltrane and Cecil Taylor. In addition the company released albums by Art Blakey, Roy Ayers, Count Basie, Billie Holiday, Bill Potts, Art Farmer, Curtis Fuller, Thad Jones, Mose Allison, Ruby Braff, Gerry Mulligan, the Modern Jazz Quartet, Betty Carter, Dave Lambert, Rex Stewart, Oliver Nelson, Benny Golson, Herb Pomeroy, Booker Little, Milt Jackson, Howard McGhee, Bud Freeman, Teddy Charles, Kenny Dorham, Zoot Sims, and Billy Strayhorn. This extensive repertory was produced by Tom Wilson, Jack Lewis, Alan Douglas, and George Wein. Around ...