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Jazz from the Soul of New Orleans

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Album Review

Clarinetist/educator Dr. Michael White doggedly insists on the fresh creative potential of the very earliest jazz, and on this record he makes the case eloquently. Playing standards, crafty originals, and public domain spirituals, White emphasizes the polyglot nature of the New Orleans jazz heritage. The Spanish tinge of "Martinique" and "Calypso Girl," the gospel strains of "In the Beautiful Garden of Prayer," the good-time swing of "Fidgety Feet": White's fluttering, soulful clarinet directs it all, and his group responds with spirited, back-to-basics improvisation. (Thais Clark's bawdy vocal on "Horn Man Blues" is priceless.) One can hear echoes of White's old-but-new concept on more modern albums like Ted Nash's Sidewalk Meeting. ~ David R. Adler, Rovi


Born: 29 October 1954 in Houston, TX

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

Dr. Michael White is a multifaceted, multi-talented New Orleans-based musician who hasn't gotten nearly enough exposure outside of his native Crescent City. A musicologist, jazz historian, educator, clarinet player, and bandleader, White and his band make an annual trip to New York's Village Vanguard jazz club to perform on and around New Year's Eve. But owing to his responsibilities as a professor at Xavier University, he and his band don't get out of town that much. White began playing clarinet...
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