Lew Shaw

Lew Shaw started writing about music as the publicist for the famous Berkshire Music Barn in the 1960s. He joined the West Coast Rag almost thirty years ago and has been a guiding light to this paper through the two name changes since then as we became The Syncopated Times.  47 of his profiles are collected in Jazz Beat: Notes on Classic Jazz. Volume two, containing profiles from 2013-2016 will be available on Amazon soon. He taps his extensive network of connections and friends throughout the traditional jazz world to bring us his Jazz Jottings column every month.
Jazz Jottings October 2021

Jazz Jottings October 2021

Called “one of the most catastrophic hurricanes to ever make landfall in the United States,” Hurricane Ida did a number on three historic landmarks in

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Jim Fitzgerald and Sorta Dixie

Jim Fitzgerald and Sorta Dixie

Jim Fitzgerald was happiest when he was on the bandstand playing for an appreciative audience. Speaking of that special connection between musician and listener, he

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Peter & Will Anderson Live at Songbook Summit

Jazz Jottings July 2021

Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks were together for the first time in 15 months on June 10 for a recording session at The Power Station

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 Jazz Jottings June 2021

 Jazz Jottings June 2021

Sad news that Arthur’s Tavern, the historic blues and jazz club in New York City’s West Village for over 70 years, has officially closed. The

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Texas Shout #63 Festival Bands and Repertoire

The Return of the Festivals

Here’s the post-Valentine’s Day wish of every jazz musician: Roses are Red, Violets are blue— We just want some gigs (And a festival or two).

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Muggsy Spanier and his V-Disc All-Stars

The Story of V Discs

As someone who has had a lifelong love affair with jazz, an interesting question came up in a ZOOM interview I recently had with Dan

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Bria Skonberg and Molly Ryan

Jazz Jottings March 2021

Joining Scott Whitfield as a 2021 inductee into the American Banjo Museum Hall of Fame is Brad Roth, who for the past 20 years has

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Texas Shout #12 Women in Dixieland

Jazz Jottings February 2021

Pop music has had its popular sisters’ vocal groups over the years: the Boswell sisters from New Orleans, known for intricate harmonies and rhythmic experimentation;

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Shotgun Jazz Band Porch Concert

Jazz Jottings January 2021

In late November, the City of New Orleans announced regulations regarding the permitting process to host live entertainment in indoor and outdoor settings. All live

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Dick Maley

Jazz Jottings December 2020

With just about all of the 2020 festivals and jazz parties scheduled since March going virtual or being postponed until late 2021 or 2022, the

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From The 30th Annual Arizona Classic Jazz Festival

Finding the Way Forward

After eight long months of cancellations and dark venues, there is at last a glimmer of light at the end of the proverbial tunnel. With

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Richard Simon

Musicians on Their Music

As most of you know, I’ve been writing musician profiles for various publications for the past 35 years. The musicians who were interviewed candidly discussed

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Jazz Beat Encore cover

More notes from the Jazz Beat

My “beat” for this newspaper over the past 35 years has been to travel about the country chronicling jazz events, attending festivals and jazz parties,

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evan-and-scout-by-voon-chew

Jazz Jottings May 2020

As panic over the coronavirus sweeps the globe, much of the focus is on the broader economic effects on businesses or venues that have had

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Barbary Coast Jazz Band on paddleboat

Jazz Jottings February 2020

The Barbary Coast Dixieland Jazz Band holds a special place in Minnesota music history—and not just because its members were inducted into the Minnesota Music

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Evan Arntzen at Cafe Bohemia opening night Joseph A Rosen Forbes

Jazz Jottings January 2020

Longtime pianist-arranger John Sheridan has assumed leadership of the Jim Cullum Jazz Band, which will continue its bi-weekly gigs at San Antonio restaurants as well

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Rebecca Kilgore

Jazz Jottings May 2019

When Sam Pilafian was 11, he was told that if he switched from the accordion to the tuba, he would always have friends. When he

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Jazz Appreciation Month

April is Jazz Appreciation Month

Jazz Appreciation Month (JAM) is celebrated every April in recognition of the significant contribution that jazz music has made to society. First established in 2011

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Evan Christopher Portrait

Jazz Jottings April 2019

As the High Sierra Jazz Band closes out its 42-year run on the festival circuit this month at their home base in Three Rivers, California,

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Jazz Jottings March 2019

Jazz Jottings March 2019

In a One Day University lecture, University of Maryland professor of music Anna Celenza identified three musical masterpieces that changed America. Stating that “music does

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Ed Metz, Jr.: Versatility, Great Drive, Swings like Mad!

Jazz Jottings February 2019

It is apparent that the story about bandleader Glenn Miller’s disappearance over the English Channel during World War II has no end. The latest version

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Jazz Jottings January 2019

Jazz Jottings January 2019

For the past 20 years, Dave Robinson has been the leading advocate in promoting the concept that traditional jazz should be a vital part of

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Jazz Jottings December 2018

Jazz Jottings December 2018

It’s a special time for festival goers when they are introduced to a band they haven’t heard before that suddenly gets everyone excited, fills the

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A Jazz Band by Miguel Covarrubias (plate from Blues by W.C. Handy, 2nd Ed., 1926)

The Harlem Renaissance

The Harlem Renaissance was a cultural, social, and artistic explosion that took place in Harlem, New York and spanned the 1920s into the mid-1930s. It

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