Latest Episodes

Eddie Russ – See The Light (1976) (Audio)

Eddie Russ is an unfamiliar name in many jazz circles, but his sound is definitely one that you should know.

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Wendell B. Harris/Black Star – Chameleon Street/Brown Skin Lady (1989/1998)

Sampling from the world of cinema, Black Star adds another layer of social commentary via the understated brilliance of independent film, Chameleon Street.

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Grant Green – The Final Comedown (1973)

The Final Comedown motion picture soundtrack was a much different sound for both Grant Green and Blue Note Records

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Joe Henderson – Page One (1963)

Joe Henderson’s debut album “Page One” exemplifies the sound of Blue Note jazz in the 1960’s.

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Blink47 Breaks (Dilla Edition): DJ Spinna Speaks on “Little Brother” (Video)

Check out DJ Spinna as he gives his insight on his favorite Dilla beat. Shout out to Wajeed for the excellent production.

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Roy Ayers Project Beat Submission Compilation, Vol. 3 (Download)

We have been accepting and featuring producers from across the globe for over a year, and as a result, we are releasing Volume 3 of our Beat Submission Compilation.

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Roy Ayers – Stoned Soul Picnic (1968)

One of Roy Ayers earliest, and best recordings, “Stoned Cold Picnic” is a symbolic album with a legendary cast.

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Nathan Davis – If (1976)

A name who is unfamiliar to many, Nate Davis plays superbly on his 1976 album entitled “If”

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Marvin, Marvin: 10 Overlooked Classics From The Soulful Genius

In looking back at the life and times of Marvin Pentz Gaye, we examine some of his most overlooked, yet exceptionally brilliant, compositions.

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Lonnie Liston Smith and Dom Kennedy Are Just Cool (1980/2011)

Lonnie Liston Smith and Dom Kennedy come from two separate sides of the country, and are from two different eras, but they have way more in common than they might think.

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The Blackbyrds / Wiz Khalifa – Mysterious Vibes / Ink My Whole Body (1977/2008)

Wiz Khalifa’s tattoo anthem may sound arrogant to some, but one thing is for sure is that this song couldn’t have been made without this 1970’s classic song by The Blackbyrds.

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Gregory Porter – 1960 What? (Video) (2011)

An excellent song with visuals to match, Gregory Porter has an instant classic with this thought provoking song.

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Ayentee – Mos Common Thought (Remix) (Download) (2012)

Ayentee produces a great conceptual project, as he fuses the minds of three of the greatest emcees in the game.

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Bobby Hutcherson – Montara (1975)

Bobby Hutcherson’s most unconventional work proves to be his best. “Montara” is not only Hutcherson’s best work, but it could be one of Blue Note’s best releases.

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REL – Out Of View (Instrumental) (Download) (2012)

The crew of the Roy Ayers Project are respectively involved in other ventures, and camera man / editor REL has just released his instrumental project entitled “Out Of View”.

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Roy Ayers Ubiquity – Vibrations (1976)

“Vibratiions” was produced during the heart of Roy Ayers’ Ubiquity years, and this particular album is monumental for more reasons than one.

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Robert Glasper – Black Radio (Album) (2012)

Robert Glasper etches the future of music through a multitude of classic and contemporary sounds on his newest release, Black Radio.

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Esperanza Spalding – Black Gold (Video) (2012)

After her stunning Oscar performance, we take a look at Esperanza Spalding’s anthemic lead single, “Black Gold”

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Rhodes Scholars: 10 Fender Rhodes Songs You Need to Hear

The title says it all, as Brother Hayling gives us 10 Rhodes songs that we MUST hear, as well as audio examples so you can see why these songs are a must for your audio memory bank.

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Cal Tjader Quintet – Manhã de Carnaval / Guachi Guara (Video) (Circa 1965)

A rare look at the master of the Latin Vibraphone, Mr. Cal Tjader…and he brought a magnificent cast with him.

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Wes Montgomery – ‘Round Midnight (Video) (Circa 1960)

This video is an excellent window into a previous era, watching one of the greatest guitarists to ever pick up the instrument.

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Dilla says “TURN IT UP” (DET 2 LA) – Mixed by DJ Haylow (2007)

As a follow-up to James Yancey Productions, DJ Haylow gives us more Dilla to enjoy in this 2007 recording.

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Ahmad Jamal / Jay Dee / De La Soul – Swahililand / Stakes is High (1974/1996)

When you examine the combination of Ahmad Jamal, Jay Dee, and De La Soul, the perfect mesh that was created is undeniable.

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J Dilla – Vol. 2: Vintage (2003)

A sampling of J Dilla’s work from the mid to late 90s, this compilation features some of the most underrated compositions of an already illustrious songbook.

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BrotherSpanky – The James Yancey Sessions

On what has come to be known as Dilla Day, multi-instrumentalist/producer BrotherSpanky has unveiled his tribute to the late genius: a self-released project entitled The James Yancey Sessions. One...

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James Yancey Productions – Mixed by DJ Haylow (Download) (2005)

I have always liked Dilla. I liked him before his listeners became fans, and his fans became stans, and the stans became a cult. Like everyone, I bashed the...

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Lonnie Liston Smith & The Cosmic Echoes – Astral Traveling (1973)

Lonnie Liston Smith’s one of a kind sound shines through on his first recording with The Cosmic Echoes entitled “Astral Traveling”.

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Jneiro Jarel (Dr. Who Dat) – Beat Journey (2006)

“Beat Journey” is an instrumental album by Jneiro Jarel that is over half a decade old, but it still is a bench mark for producers and beat makers today.

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How Does it Feel?: Revisiting Voodoo Twelve Years Later

January 25th, 2012 marks the 12th anniversary of D’Angelo’s legendary album “Voodoo”, and our newest writer Hayling revisits the album and its relevancy even after more than a decade.

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Remembering Etta James

Remembering one of our most important artists, the late Etta James.

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Add-2 – Cotton Fields (with Lyrics) (Video) (2012)

In honor of Martin Luther King day, we would like to shed some light on Chicago emcee Add-2, and his more than relevant song and video entitled “Cotton Fields”.

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Donald Byrd – Black Byrd (1972)

Recorded in 1972, Donald Byrd’s “Black Byrd” album was ahead of its time in a variety of ways.

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Review: L’Orange – Old Soul (A Tribute to Billie Holiday) (Download) (2011)

Beat maker L’ Orange uses the great Billie Holiday as his inspiration for creating this project, which is available for free download.

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Bobbi Humphrey – Fancy Dancer (1975)

Bobbi Humphrey is synonymous with fusion, and her 1975 release Fancy Dancer is her at her best.

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The Redeeming Qualities of a Cold Holiday Season

While this time of the year is often connected with a certain melancholy, the sounds of the season serve as the holiday season’s redeeming factor.

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Art Blakey & the Afro-Drum Ensemble – The African Beat (1962)

Art Blakey teams up with the Afro-Drum Ensemble as he records a jazz album fused with a traditional African sound.

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Kool & the Gang – Winter Sadness (1975) (Audio)

This Kool & the Gang is an alternative to a summer time classic. It is one that you may instantly fall in love with…and the timing couldn’t be better.

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Cymande – Second Time Around (1973) (Audio)

This band may go overlooked when it comes to the genre of fusion, but they should definitely be on top of everyones list.

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Amerigo Gazaway – Fela Soul (2011)

Using the works of Fela Kuti and De La Soul, Amerigo Gazaway connects the rich musical tradition of the African diaspora.

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Fela Kuti and Africa 70 in Berlin (1976) (Video)

Fela performs “Cross Examination” in this excellent quality video, which also shows the magnificence of Africa 70 and Fela’s dancers.

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Roy Ayers Project Beat Submission Compilation, Vol. 2 (Download)

The Roy Ayers Project presents our second volume of our Beat Submissions Compilation, featuring producers from all over the world, available for free download.

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The Art of Emory Douglas

Emory Douglas’ art is truly one of a kind. Created in the 60’s, but ever so relevant today, his design is nothing less than revolutionary.

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Undun – The Importance of The Roots

The importance of the Roots newest album,Undun is outlined, as we take a look at the “concept album.”

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Erykah Badu’s Most Profound Song

Over 10 years later, Bag Lady is still a recording like no other, and here are a few reasons why.

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Lupe Fiasco – Life, Death & Love From San Francisco (Audio) (2011)

We have many things for which to be thankful this holiday season. In 1957, audiences were at their most adulatory, worshipping the sounds of Billie Holiday, Dizzie Gillespie, Thelonious...

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Herbie Hancock and the Fairlight CMI (Circa 1980) (Video)

Herbie Hancock is displaying his Fairlight CMI synthesizer with some extremely noteworthy company, making for extremely unique footage.

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Herbie Hancock – Directstep (Audio) (1978)

Herbie Hancock is a Jazz icon, and this particular album is a prime example why he is so revered for pushing the art form to the next level.

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McCoy Tyner – Today and Tomorrow (1963) (Audio)

Jazz legend McCoy Tyner has had an illustrious career. Here is a earlier recording from Tyner as a frontman when he was a youthful 23 years old.

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John Coltrane – Impressions (Video) (1961)

A legendary performance by a legendary artist. John Coltrane at his best, and this archived footage proves it.

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Pharoah Sanders – Love In Us All (Audio) (1973)

The iconic Pharoah Sanders displays his free form style and his melodic style as ‘Love In Us All’ is a whirlwind of jazz sub-genre.

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Artist Profile: Cordell Ross (illadelphsouL)

The face behind this particular piece, and the artwork for Georgia Anne Muldrow’s album entitled ‘Early’ is the one and only Cordell Ross, also known as (illadelphsouL).

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Donny Hathaway – To Be Young, Gifted, and Black (Audio) (1970)

A look into Donny Hathaway’s authentic interpretation of Nina Simone anthemic classic, “To Be Young, Gifted, and Black.”

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30 Artist Interpretations of Nina Simone

Nina Simone music is truly one of a kind, and her aura is an inspiration to artists all over the world.

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Ahmad Jamal / Common Sense – Resurrection (1970/1994)

We recognize the excellence of Ahmad Jamal as we celebrate the anniversary of one of Hip Hop’s most significant releases…Common Sense’s ‘Resurrection’ album.

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Roy Ayers Quartet – All Blues (1968)

Roy Ayers isn’t known for abstract jazz, but he goes far beyond the realm of traditional jazz in one of his earlier recordings, ‘All Blues’.

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Common / Joe Bataan – Play Your Cards Right feat. Bilal (1972/2006)

Hip-hop has taught me more about music than I could ever imagine. Today’s lesson comes courtesy of Common and Karriem Riggins.

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Revolutionary Thought – Connecting Heron to Du Bois

The road leading from Gil Scott-Heron to W.E.B. Du Bois is paved with the theories of timeless thinkers and set to a soundtrack consisting of hip-hop, jazz, and funk. In changing the world of today into the society of tomorrow, we must remember to appreciate both.

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Dela – The Robert Glasper Beat Tape (Download) (2010)

Producer dela is inspired by the talented Robert Glasper as he creates this instrumental album of extreme quality, available for free download.

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The Robert Glasper Trio – Think of One (Audio) (2009)

In a single moment, Robert Glasper explores Thelonious Monk, Ahmad Jamal, and De La Soul. That moment is called “Think of One.”

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Remembering Sylvia Robinson

Today, Robinson passed away at the age of 75. Her name is more likely to draw look of recognition from someone of my mother’s generation more so than my own. And yet, she is a figure who has in so many ways shaped my current investment in hip-hop music.

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Miguel Atwood-Ferguson Ensemble – Untitled/Fantastic (Video) (2009)

The Miguel Atwood-Ferguson Ensemble provides an orchestral interpretation of one of J Dilla’s timeless records.

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20th Anniversary of A Low End Theory (1991)

Let’s take a second to stop, listen, and REALIZE what this album did for us as individuals, for Hip Hop, and for music as a whole.

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Roy Ayers Ubiquity – Live from the Montreux Jazz Festival (1972)

Roy Ayers was brilliant in this recording of the 1972 Montreux Jazz festival, showing off his versatility at the earlier years of his career.

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The John Coltrane Quartet – Ballads (1963)

On a day in which we formally welcome autumn, we too celebrate the birth of John Coltrane. The symbolism of it all can be heard rather than seen. That is why, today, I listen to Ballads.

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Herbie Mann / The Pharcyde – Otha Fish (1967/1992)

As many people praised the fusion between Jazz and Hip Hop in the early 90’s, ‘Otha Fish’ by The Pharcyde is one that goes overlooked, and it shouldn’t.

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Weldon Irvine – Morning Sunrise (Audio) (1979)

The spatial relationship of Jay-Z to Weldon Irvine is as succinct as the momentary lapse between summer and fall.

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David “Fathead” Newman (Feat. Roy Ayers) – Lonely Avenue (Atlantic) (1972)

From Jazz, to Funk, to Soul, to Hip Hop, you can hear it all when you listen to “Lonely Avenue” by David Newman…and you hear some Roy Ayers, too!

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Donald Byrd – Kofi (Blue Note) (1969)

Donald Byrd’s 1969 album “Kofi” is an early introduction to Jazz Fusion, as it covers many different sub-genres of Jazz,

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Michael Jackson – King of Jazz

There is an alternate universe in which Michael Jackson is the King of Jazz. This is something of which I am quite sure.

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Roy Ayers Quartet – Comin’ Home Baby (Review) (Audio) (1969)

Our first installment of Roy Ayers Friday is one of Roy’s earlier recordings and also one of his first albums as a front man.

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Thundercat – The Golden Age of Apocalypse

Whether it’s trunk-rattling bass from Oakland’s newest rapper or the the mellow sensations of beachfront jazz, California has an undeniable charm. This appeal comes from a long lineage of gifted artists ranging from Roy Ayers to the Pharcyde. Few, however capture this essence quite like musician Thundercat.

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Dissecting Jay-Z’s “Dead Presidents” (Audio) (1995)

Forgotten by pop critics and revered by true fans, Jay-Z’s “Dead Presidents” is monumental in more ways than one.

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Nesby Phips & Ski Beatz – Blue in Green (Video) (2010)

If you don’t understand the relevancy of Kind of Blue today, allow me to introduce you to the sounds of Nesby Phips and Ski Beatz.

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George Benson – Bad Benson (1974)

Bad Benson is George Benson at his best. Pure guitar smoothness, mixed with an accompaniment of electronic and traditional instrumentation, this album has been revered by Hip Hop producers...

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Columbia Nights – Stormy Weather (Audio)

The art of covering is a complicated endeavor. It has the ability to alienate fans of the original artists, whilst creating a concrete standard of comparison. Most importantly, it demands an artist to be innovative using a product that already exists.

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Pete Rock & Jazzy Jeff inspired by George Benson

George Benson is one of Jazz’s most prolific guitarists, but when it comes to Hip Hop producers, he is considered one of the most influential.

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Roy Ayers Project Beat Submission Compilation, Vol. 1 (Download)

Producers from all over the world have contributed to making the beat submission process a success. Here are all of our highlighted beat submissions from the last four months, available for download.

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(Re)defining Amy Winehouse

Our newest blogger for 70/30 (royayersproject.com) is editorial writer Paul Pennington, and in this article, he reflects and redefines the road of a great musical talent who recently lost her battle with addiction.

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Wonway – Makossa Classics Vol. 2 (Mixtape) (Download) (2011)

Bay Area native and Roy Ayers Project contributer Wonway has many talents, one of which he displays on his latest mixtapes entitled Makossa Classics vol. 2.

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REL – Public Transit (Video) (2011)

70/30 (Roy Ayers Project) crew member REL releases a new visual masterpiece that acknowledges an aspect of the recent political climate in the Bay Area.

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Max Roach & the Hi-Hat (Video)

Max Roach’s signature solo using only a hi-hat cymbal.

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7 Jazz Versions of the M*A*S*H Theme Song, Suicide is Painless

It’s known as the M*A*S*H* theme song, but to the jazz community, it’s known as a favorite.

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Tribute to the Mizell Brothers (A Mix by Matthew Africa)

Matthew Africa pays excellent tribute to the Mizell Brothers through this wonderful mix that gives a whirlwind tour of their extensively soulful discography.

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Grant Green – Street of Dreams (1964)

Grant Green’s guitar can only be described as perfect on the album “Street of Dreams”, and the album cover contains a small piece of San Francisco.

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Sylvia Striplin / Erykah Badu – Can’t Turn Me Away (1981/2010)

Sylvia Striplin’s early 80’s classic has become a staple in 90’s Hip Hop, and is still being recreated today.

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Bobby Hutcherson – Components (1965) (Audio)

Bobby Hutcherson shows why he’s one of the greatest vibraphone players ever in his Blue Note release, Components.

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Roy Ayers – Daddy Bug & Friends (1976) (Audio)

Not everything released by Roy Ayers in the 70s was fusion. Daddy Bug & Friends is a classic Roy Ayers album that commonly goes overlooked

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Feel. George Duke Mix (1971-1980) Mixed by B+ (Download)

If you are unfamiliar with the sound of the legendary George Duke, here is your crash course provided by photographer/DJ B+

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Madlib/Quasimoto – Jazz Cats (Audio) (2000)

Madlib does a great song paying tribute to the great Jazz greats, but he forgets two extremely important names. Hear which musicians influence Madlib, and who he leaves out.

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Summer Time – Herbie Mann (1961) / Sublime & Pharcyde (1997)

Herbie Mann’s version of this seasonal classic is known beyond the realm of Jazz. Listen to his version, as well as many others and enjoy why this song has been a staple in music history.

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Horace Silver – Song for My Father (1965)

Song for My Father is Blue Note Jazz at its best.

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Eric Dolphy – April Fool (Visual Interpretation)

A great motion graphic visual from Defetto.

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Eric Dolphy – Out to Lunch (1964)

Arguably one of Blue Note Record’s best recordings, Eric Dolphy teams up with Jazz legends to create an abstract masterpiece.

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Alice Coltrane – Universal Consciousness (1971)

Alice Coltrane goes above and beyond the realm of Jazz in ‘Universal Consciousness’.

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Eric Dolphy (Artwork by Michael Symonds)

A beautiful oil painting of Eric Dolphy.

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Seu Jorge & Almaz – Everybody Loves the Sunshine (Live in São Paolo, Brásil)

Seu Jorge & Almaz live in Brásil performing their cover of the Roy Ayers classic “Everybody Loves the Sunshine”, an excellent production by Rafael Kent.

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40 Great Jazz Musicians that Didn’t Live Past 45 Years Old

This is a list dedicated to the great musicians that were lost at an early age, but they still lived a live worth remembering.

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Behind The Mic

Emma Fitzgerald

Show Host

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Joey Banjo

Show Host

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Mr. John

Show Host

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Zoey Smith

Producer

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When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few stray.

Steal into the inner sanctuary, I throw myself down among the tall grass by the trickling stream and, as I lie close to the earth, a thousand unknown plants are noticed by me. 

Join Thousands of Listeners Worldwide

When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few stray.

Steal into the inner sanctuary, I throw myself down among the tall grass by the trickling stream and, as I lie close to the earth, a thousand unknown plants are noticed by me.

When I hear the buzz of the little world among the stalks, and grow familiar with the countles

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