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It’s time for a new installment of Revive Music’s original literary series: Order is Everything! This is a how-to guide for music lovers looking to keep reading »

The Revivalist met up with singer Zara McFarlane to discuss some of the duos she’s worked with and some legendary ones that have influenced her own style.

When assessing the faculties of most singers, it would make sense to describe the essential tenets of a talented vocalist—command of register, an extended range, or perhaps even a mastery of form, say melisma or legato. With Wilson, however, it is not that simple. And this is not to say that these qualities do not apply. I could espouse the countless virtues of Nancy Wilson’s technical virtuosity in the traditional sense. That could work. But, Nancy Wilson is not just any singer.

Artists can’t be afraid to really touch on other subjects and comment on the orders and disorders of the day. I think that’s important. Let people know what you feel and keep it real. It doesn’t mean we’re only making flowers here. You have to talk about the dirt as well.

When John Coltrane’s blistering soprano sax led in on “My Favorite Things,” audiences were captured by Coltrane’s investigations into modal jazz and his complex re-workings of harmonies. More fascinating still, is that Coltrane chose to leave bop behind and explore this new musical territory- seen in hindsight as a pivotal turning point in the history of jazz – on an instrument that had almost become obsolete in jazz, the soprano sax. Seemingly out of nowhere, the soprano sax returned to center stage once again and proudly claimed its unique position in the story, tone and texture of jazz. Although Coltrane is one of the most famous players in jazz’s history and the history of the saxophone, there are countless more who made waves in different ways on both the alto and soprano. For this week’s Evolution of An Instrument we take you from Sidney Bechet, arguably the first jazz saophonist, through the beautiful alto tones of Lee Konitz, and up to the Carnatic intensities of Rudresh Mahanthappa. We talked with countless musicians to bring you a comprehensive list that reflects the scope of jazz history. We hope you enjoy this segment and stay tuned for Tenor and Bari next week!

It’s important to gain an understanding about the role of the electric piano and how it made its way into the jazz world in the 1960s. Although Ray Charles and Sun Ra both recorded on electric pianos in the 1950s, Zawinul was one of the first to bring the instrument to the forefront of popular music.