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Morton Shlabotnik

On Flying Carpet, the German world music ensemble Quadro Nuevo collaborate with Cairo Steps, a German jazz band, on an album that explores the music of the Middle East. more

Sep 5, 2017 2:50 PM Album Reviews

Morton Shlabotnik reviews a pair of books published by Minnesota's Adventure Publications, Tall Ships: History Comes to the Great Lakes and Wisconsin Day Trips by Themes. more

Nov 3, 2016 9:27 AM Books

Roddie Romero and the Hub City All-Stars display command over the basics of rock ’n’ roll on Gulfstream, and offers echoes of New Orleans R&B, Creedence Clearwater Revival swamp boogie and zydeco shuffles. more

Aug 23, 2016 2:50 PM Album Reviews

The Great Circus Parade has been a summer event in Milwaukee on and off since the 1960s—the kind of thing that draws fanatics who camp out the night before along the route, lest they lose their f,Books more

May 13, 2016 1:33 PM Books

Django Reinhardt and the Hot Club of France defined Gypsy jazz ages ago, but now an Italian group rises to claim the mantle. The Naples septet operates on the progressive end of jazz-rock with a steady tempo as the platform for improvisatio... more

Nov 3, 2015 5:39 PM Album Reviews

The bass is upfront in the mix on Brinks, the debut by Daniel Fortin, and little wonder. He’s considered one of Canada’s best bassists for his side work in pop as well as jazz. For Brinks he focuses on jazz, with studiously developed melodi... more

Nov 3, 2015 5:38 PM Album Reviews

For anyone who suspects that contemporary jazz has descended into tiresome virtuosity, the Rotem Sivan Trio offers proof that the old formats can still come alive. A New Dance conjures classic-era jazz guitar music and takes the form in les... more

Oct 6, 2015 6:43 PM Album Reviews

Klezmer, Baroque and tango are all at home on the eponymous debut by Big Galut(e). The group is comprised of classically trained musicians intensely absorbed in the Jewish tradition. more

Sep 29, 2015 6:31 PM Album Reviews

Israeli-born, British-based Gilad Atzmon has enjoyed a varied career as saxophonist for everyone from Pink Floyd to Ian Dury, Robert Wyatt to Paul McCartney. His main love is jazz. On The Whistle Blower, the eighth album with his band, The ... more

Sep 15, 2015 5:02 PM Album Reviews

The members of Chico Trujillo started by playing punk and ska, but like some of their brethren in the U.S. who fooled around with polka for kicks, they turned to the old music of their region as a fun marker of local identity. Reina de Toda... more

Jul 7, 2015 8:55 PM Album Reviews

Formed in the San Francisco Bay area, the Grammy-nominated Wayne Wallace Latin Jazz Quintet maintains tempi solid enough to fill dance floors at salsa clubs but sufficiently fluid in changes to please jazz fans. Intercambio is their latest ... more

Jun 16, 2015 8:55 PM Album Reviews

Drummer-composer is still an unusual hyphenation, but Devin Gray—along with saxophonist-clarinetist Chris Speed, pianist Kris Davis and bassist Chris Tordini—proves the combination can be done well on RelativE ResonancE. more

Jun 16, 2015 8:53 PM Album Reviews

Norske Nook Bakery and Restaurant’s owner Jerry Bechard and manager Cindee Borton-Parker share some of their prized recipes in a new cookbook, The Norske Nook Book of Pies and Other Recipes. more

Apr 7, 2015 8:28 PM Eat/Drink

The Paris-based Ajoyo brings together a gaggle of expatriates from North Africa, West Africa and the Middle East under an Afrobeat groove on their eponymous album. The polyrhythms sweep along the solos in a structure musically flexible enou... more

Mar 24, 2015 9:05 PM Album Reviews

Based in France but international in origin, the members of The Afrorockerz represent what Afrobeat has become in the 21st century—their eponymous album is a smooth dance-floor mix comprised of pumping West African guitars, funky rock rhyth... more

Jan 28, 2015 7:50 PM Album Reviews

The slightly melancholy, often madcap sound of Balkan brass bands has assumed a more international feel along with a global audience. The U.S.-based Cocek! Brass Band might not sound entirely out of place more

Oct 21, 2014 11:28 PM Album Reviews

Simo Lagnawi came to attention busking on London streets. Even in that polyglot capital he must have stood out for his colorful tribal garb and music. The Moroccan Berber expatriate maintains a thrumming, hypnotic groove throughout his late... more

Sep 17, 2014 5:33 PM Album Reviews

Seattle will long be remembered as ground zero of grunge, but that’s not the only music the city has nurtured in recent times. The Bad Things are an Americana group with a particular perspective, which includes conjuring ghosts of the city... more

Sep 8, 2014 11:11 PM Album Reviews

A feast of beautiful women’s voices is served in the latest release by Moira Smiley & VOCO. With the inspiration of polyphonic chorales such as the Bulgarian Women’s Choir, Smiley began as a Balkan song collector and has only widened her gr... more

Sep 2, 2014 7:24 PM Album Reviews

The award-winning pianist Fred Hersch returns with a new album of jazz a la Dave Brubeck. Intricately knotted melodies, angled sideways to the rhythms, are delivered with cool panache throughout Floating. Hersch focuses on his own compositi... more

Jul 29, 2014 11:07 PM Album Reviews

Broadway and London West End star Lea Salonga of the Philippines soundly delivers a true “labor of love,” recording 16 traditional songs sung in six Filipino languages. more

Nov 28, 2017 4:29 PM Album Reviews

Saxophonist-bassist Mark Zaleski along with a group of dynamic long-time collaborators has released an album of high-energy post-modern jazz. more

Nov 21, 2017 2:38 PM Album Reviews

This graphic novel written by Vincent Zabus and delightfully illustrated by Thomas Campi is an imaginative attempt to get inside the head of surrealist painter René Magritte. more

Nov 21, 2017 1:35 PM Books

East meets west through jazz and raga on saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa and his Indo-Pak Coalition’s second album. more

Oct 31, 2017 2:17 PM Album Reviews

Banda Magda’s Tigre’s cosmopolitanism amplifies many of the sounds that waft around New York, Brazil, Greece and points east. more

Oct 17, 2017 4:43 PM Album Reviews

Field Roast Grain Meat Co.’s head chef, Tommy McDonald, shows what can be done using European charcuterie traditions infused with Asian traditions of using wheat as the primary protein instead of animal flesh. more

Oct 3, 2017 3:30 PM Eat/Drink

On Flying Carpet, the German world music ensemble Quadro Nuevo collaborate with Cairo Steps, a German jazz band, on an album that explores the music of the Middle East. more

Sep 5, 2017 2:50 PM Album Reviews

This weekend’s Street Eats food and beer truck event in Milwaukee’s Third Ward will have an Irish theme. more

Jul 25, 2017 1:50 PM Short Order

Laura-Jane Koers’ vegan recipe book, Cook Lively!, contains recipes that can be made sans animal-derived ingredients without too much fuss. more

Jun 13, 2017 2:33 PM Eat/Drink

On Duende Libre, the bass-drums-keyboards trio Duende Libre puts a glossy finish on instrumental music that includes tantalizing bits of melody as well as compositional flair and echoes of past music from Cuba and the Caribbean. more

Apr 11, 2017 4:28 PM Album Reviews

Electric guitar-vocal duos aren’t common in jazz anymore, but back in the day, Joe Pass and Ella Fitzgerald made several albums in that format. To mark the centennial of Fitzgerald’s birth, singer Patrice Williamson and guitarist Jon Wheatl... more

Apr 11, 2017 4:23 PM Album Reviews

As the album title suggests, Bhangra Pirates is a wild take on contemporary Indian street music whose horns and booty-shaking marching beats will remind some listene,Album Reviews more

Mar 21, 2017 1:40 PM Album Reviews

The harp is seldom heard in contemporary rock or pop, but the instrument casts a bewitching spell over Amelia Romano’s debut album, New Perspectives, a fresh take on an ancient instrument. more

Mar 7, 2017 2:49 PM Album Reviews

With the exception of several ’70s progressive rock bands that caught the ears of prog fans, Italian rock has been a local phenomenon. Italy’s Zucchero has sold millions of discs around the world, and collaborated with the likes of Eric Cla... more

Mar 7, 2017 2:45 PM Album Reviews

Illustrated by photographs as well as painter Geri Schrab’s watercolor impressions, Hidden Thunder: Rock Art of the Upper Midwest tours 11 rock-art locations in Wisconsin and Minnesota. Although far from exhaustive, Hidden Thunder will serv... more

Feb 28, 2017 2:46 PM Books

Tenor saxophonist Keith Oxman leads the trio heard on East of the Village, but he shares the spotlight with Jeff Jenkins on the mighty Hammond B3. The tracks are standards or at least familiar numbers in the jazz repertoire—melodies the cla... more

Feb 14, 2017 2:17 PM Album Reviews

Canadian pianist Brian Dickinson has been a prolific recording artist. On his 11th album, The Rhythm Method recorded by the Brian Dickinson Quintet, the music is original but much of it is obviously dedicated to the artists that inspired hi... more

Feb 7, 2017 3:05 PM Album Reviews

The April 2014 sinking of a ferry with the loss of 300 lives off the coast of South Korea inspired Jihye Lee to compose April, a six-song suite for jazz orchestra. more

Feb 7, 2017 3:02 PM Album Reviews

The Stone House by Wingfield Reuter Stavi Sirkis should appeal to fans of latter-day King Crimson, whose guitarist Robert Fripp seems to provide at least partial inspiration. more

Jan 17, 2017 3:05 PM Album Reviews

Not unlike Chris Connor or any number of less-remembered jazz singers from the 1950s, Lauren Bush on All My Treasures swings at a post-bop tempo, her voice gliding easily across the tricky turns. more

Nov 15, 2016 2:02 PM Album Reviews

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