Kurt's Recent Press
"There is something fearless and true about jazz," President Barack Obama said in his opening remarks Friday (April 29) at the White House concert celebrating the fifth annual International Jazz Day — and despite the fact that the show was being recorded for broadcast on national television (it aired the following  ...read more…
JK: One of the standout things to me is that you have a wonderful breadth of projects. You are about to release a recording with Branford Marsalis, you are doing a concert with Lang Lang, you write for Steppenwolf Theatre. What inspires you and what path leads you to these  ...read more…
A few songs into the fifth International Jazz Day All-Star Global Concert, on the south lawn of the White House on Friday night, a pointedly multicultural coalition took the stage. Chucho Valdés on piano and Paquito D'Rivera on clarinet formed an eminent Cuban contingent. India had an  ...read more…
Grammy-award-winning saxophone legend Branford Marsalis has always been about inclusion, opening those doors to everybody — not just the physics- and harmonics-minded jazz brainiacs out there unduly focused on chops and technical precision. After meeting another Grammy-award-winning artist, jazz singer Kurt Elling, at a Thelonious Monk Institute competition two years  ...read more…
Jazz has gone to school for decades, and while there is debate about how much institutionalization is good for the music, there's no doubt that more well-schooled musicians have been brought into its purview than since the Swing Era. And there is much to teach and a lot of  ...read more…
Things are looking up for saxophonist Branford Marsalis and vocalist Kurt Elling, who will add a shared title to their respective discographies. The Branford Marsalis Quartet will release Upward Spiral, featuring Elling as a guest vocalist, on June 10. The album will be released via Marsalis Music on OKeh Records. The  ...read more…
We don't often appreciate the impact of someone's life until it's over. Many of late vocalist Mark Murphy's extended family and friends may have been meditating on this during the memorial for him at Saint Peter's (Mar. 14th), because it was abundantly clear by the  ...read more…