Syncopated Times 2020-07 July cover
Browse the July Issue
songs to grow on

Dinah, Keep Blowing Your Horn

Last fall I wrote an essay for The Syncopated Times titled, “Reconsidering “Dixieland Jazz”, How The Name Has Harmed The Music”. It encouraged the remaining

Kat Edmonson Boy Next Door

Musicians Hunker Down During COVID

New Yorkers think of themselves as a pretty tough bunch. But even the coolest, most nonchalant among them has to admit: they’ve never seen a

Andy Schumm & Jenny

The New Saturday Night

There is this old joke about two musicians catching up on the latest news, and the conversation goes something like this: Musician One: Did you

Bix Music Festival

Bix, West Coast Ragtime Fests Go Virtual

With the avalanche of festival cancellations and postponements that have occurred due to the coronavirus crisis this year, festival organizers are looking for possible ways

Don Vappie guitar via FB

Don Vappie: the Heart of Creole Jazz

I asked multi-instrumentalist Don Vappie some questions about his life growing up and becoming a musician in the Crescent City. (His latest release, The Blue

Roya Naldi

Roya Naldi: In Tune With the Past

Vocalist Roya Naldi, in her mid-twenties, is probably not a household name among Syncopated Times readers—yet. This interview will hopefully change that. She has just

hotdance 768x432 - Texas Shout #3 Hot Dance

Texas Shout #3 Hot Dance

Set forth below is the third “Texas Shout” column, reprinted from the February 1990 issue of The American Rag (then West Coast Rag). It was

Bessie Smith

Texas Shout #38 Jazz Singers

Set forth below is the thirty-eighth “Texas Shout” column. It first appeared in the April 1993 issue of the  West Coast Rag now The Syncopated

Paris Washboard

A Visit with Paris Washboard

The renowned French quartet Paris Washboard made a brief trip across the pond in February to play four concerts in my neck of the woods.

Matt Tolentino Mark Lenz Photo

A Visit with Matt Tolentino

At the West Coast Ragtime Festival in November I sat down for about half an hour for a wide-ranging conversation with multi-instrumentalist Matt Tolentino, who

Dancers San Diego Jazz

From the 2019 San Diego Jazz Festival

Combined with my trip to the West Coast Ragtime Festival as reported last month, I attended for the second time the San Diego Jazz Fest

Bud Freeman, Marty Marsala (Gottlieb_02951)

Bud Freeman: Profile in Jazz

The tenor-saxophone took a little while to be accepted in jazz. Unlike the alto-sax and C-melody which were considered lead instruments, the tenor did not

Wibur DeParis

Wilbur DeParis: Profiles in Jazz

In the 1950s, trombonist Wilbur DeParis led his New New Orleans Jazz Band, one of the most exciting groups of the era. Accomplishing his stated

Ben Pollack

Ben Pollack: Profiles in Jazz

Decades ago, a classic Fletcher Henderson four-LP set was titled A Study In Frustration. I always thought that that title was inaccurate as far as

Quarter Notes 1 768x317 - Jazz Festing in Place

Jazz Festing in Place

The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival’s 50th anniversary celebration was cancelled for the weekends of April 23-26 and April 30-May 3. The local radio

Richard Simon and the MBHS kids on stage at the school.

From the 2020 San Diego Jazz Party

The San Diego Jazz Party began in 1988 and recently celebrated its 32nd anniversary on the weekend of February 21st at the lovely Hilton San

Fresno Mardi Gras

From the 2020 Fresno Sounds of Mardi Gras

On the second weekend in February the Doubletree Hotel in downtown Fresno was filled with the “Sounds of Mardi Gras.” All four venues are located

Justin Ring trio (1922)

What We Don’t Know About Justin Ring

When researching, oftentimes what we don’t know about someone can be more interesting than what we do know. In this situation, it can allow our

Handsome Harry Dance

Fred Hager and ‘Handsome Harry’

This month’s article in this column will step away from the usual type of research done here; this month we will explore a bit of

Hylands and Held’s troupe enroute to England in 1913

Fred Hylands in Vaudeville

For researchers, scouring newspaper archives is an essential, yet at times tedious, process. Hours spent reading through century-old papers may yield only a small nugget

Social Distance Line

Keep Your ?#@*&%! Distance!

My eyes are drilling into a Walgreens cashier as she chats up a small boy with his family. I look to the other person in

Home-Despot Santa

Give a gig this Christmas

This year I saw a covert “holiday” laced commercial in August. The commercial might have been about hemorrhoid cream. I really don’t remember. I do

Jazz Club in a Box

Your Own Jazz Club at Home

Okay folks, we’re hitting three months of lockdown. And it seems like there’ll be no live music for some time now, at least not here

Read Em and Wipe

How to Survive Quarantine

Here we are folks—for most of us, it’s just another day in self-quarantine. How long has it been already? A month, a week, two years?

Johnny Hodges Rabbit Rabbit

Preparing for a Performance

When you see a jazz musician up on stage, baring their heart and soul to their audience, you’re witnessing something bordering the miraculous. The true


Thinking Positive

Like many reading this, I suspect you are nearly overwhelmed by the negativism accompanying the COVID-19 pandemic. It is a pessimistic time and for many

LBB PAGE 768x768 - Peter Lundberg’s Ragtime Odyssey

Peter Lundberg’s Ragtime Odyssey

One of the great ragtime adventure stories I ever heard was of Peter Lundberg’s tour of America in 1963, vising and interviewing ragtime greats across

Jerry Bruno

Remembering Bassist Jerry Bruno

Bassist Jerry Bruno (January 10, 1920 – June 22, 2020) graduated at the age of 100. He was born in Rochester, New York into a

Freddy Cole

Pianist Freddy Cole has died at 88

Pianist Freddy Cole died on June 27th in Atlanta, he was 88. Born in 1931 in Chicago, he had called Atlanta home for the last

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