Jazz Scanner: The Treme Life

Welcome to the Google music Jazz Scanner, where we surface the most exciting new music and reissued gems in jazz that you can add to your locker for free.

This week we kick off Jazz Scanner by diving into a couple of the vibrant New Orleans artists featured on HBO’s hit show Treme. We’ll also remind you of two ace jazz cuts that made it onto Magnifier’s Song of the Day series. Jazz doesn’t belong in a museum – it’s a living, breathing form that deserves to be listened to by anyone, anywhere and at any time.

"Why Your Feet Hurt" The Rebirth Brass Band

"Visitation" Greg Osby

"Big Booty Bounce" Jimmy McGriff

"Panama" Kermit Ruffins



Kermit Ruffins has long been a New Orleans institution (where he still holds down a weekly gig at Vaughan’s Lounge) but HBO has helped make him an international TV star. Like so many New Orleans musicians, Ruffins knows that just because jazz is an art form doesn’t mean that it can’t also entertain. Ruffins’ latest solo album, Happy Talk, shows the trumpeter and Louis Armstrong disciple excelling at everything from the thumping neighborhood NOLA music that he makes with the Rebirth Brass Band to Latin jazz to vocal standards to bop and beyond. On “Panama,” the album’s leadoff track (and your free Magnifier tune), Ruffins brings you right into the irrepressible good-time music that started in New Orleans and spread worldwide.

Ruffins also leads the Rebirth Brass Band, a group that limits its scope more than his solo sets without ever cutting back on the emotional breadth or all-out swagger of the material. Take a quick listen to the free Magnifier cut “Why Your Feet Hurt” and just try not to move your body or bob your head to the music. Forget programmed beats or cold synths--this tune fits any dance or celebration, funny put-down included.

The beloved Hammond B-3 specialist Jimmy McGriff called Philadelphia home but the Juilliard-trained musician never stopped believing in jazz’s power to feed the body and the soul. “Big Booty Bounce” is one of McGriff’s sophisticated funk cuts. We will be spotlighting his earthier, blues-drenched sound in future Jazz Scanner editions, so be on the lookout.

St. Louis’ Greg Osby moved to NYC, jazz’s second city, and came to fame as part of Blue Note’s young group of experimental visionaries who revived the storied label during the 1990s and 2000s. Known for flecking acoustic post-bop with elements of hip-hop, art rock and experimental electronica, Osby has now released an album featuring just his saxophone playing. Listen to just a few bars of Osby play the free Magnifier track “Visitation” and you’ll understand why the show Treme has followed some of its New Orleans-bred characters to New York City. Jazz, a living history, never sits still. -- Nick Dedina

"Why Your Feet Hurt" The Rebirth Brass Band

"Visitation" Greg Osby

"Big Booty Bounce" Jimmy McGriff

"Panama" Kermit Ruffins

2 comments:

Gert said...

Thanks for introducing me to these artists; Greg Osby is just what I needed right now! Little frustration though, I was hoping to be able to buy the entire record; preferably mp3, maybe directly into Goog Music, but the "buy" link doesn't really offer anything like that. I was slightly disappointed (as I suspected magnifier to have some sort of advertising goal) though I'm sure Ill find it somewhere else :)

Thanks for introducing me to these artists :)

Anonymous said...

Really love what I'm hearing! Thanx for sharing & introducing Kermit for Free. Going to grab the album. Perfect for Xmas time :)

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