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Riffs: Music News from Out and About

Riffs: Music News from Out and About

By Patricia Myers

“Mind Over Music” is a Phoenix Symphony program that uses music to teach children science, math, engineering and other skills. Instead of learning only from textbooks, musicians bring instruments and an oscilloscope into classrooms to demonstrate those concepts via measurements of pitch and vibration.

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Riffs: Music News from Out and About

Riffs: Music News from Out and About

By Patricia Myers

“Is music the key to success? What is it about serious music training that seems to correlate with outsize success in many diverse fields?” were questions presented in a recent article in the New York Times Sunday Review. Author Joanne Lipman cited high-profile politicians and business professionals who had studied music, linking that to high achievement.

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In Memoriam: Bob Cranshaw, jazz bassist, musicians union advocate

In Memoriam: Bob Cranshaw, jazz bassist, musicians union advocate

By Patricia Myers

Melbourne Robert “Bob” Cranshaw, 83, who had an active career in music that included 50 years with saxophonist Sonny Rollins, also was known for his proactive involvement with the New York Musicians Union. The longtime Blue Note Records artist, who died Nov. 2 in Manhattan from stage 4 cancer, was a strong advocate for the rights of jazz musicians during more than two decades.

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Riffs: Music News from Out and About

Riffs: Music News from Out and About

By Patricia Myers

Amid the conflicts and accusations of this Presidential Election year, it’s important to note that jazz is essentially non-political regarding party affiliation and support. “The art form itself takes no sides on matters of political philosophy or social policy,” stated writer Douglas Groothius a year ago, when the activity already was well underway.

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Devon Bridgewater’s New Nuance

Devon Bridgewater’s New Nuance

By Patricia Myers

An expanded repertoire and new personnel have evolved from Devon Bridgewater’s original Nuance trio, launched 25 years ago to become an esteemed jazz-swing ensemble. The New Nuance embodies freshly diverse and buoyant sounds to represent all that jazz was and still is, performed by a well-honed trio of veteran Phoenix musicians.

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Riffs: Music News from Out and About

Riffs: Music News from Out and About

By Patricia Myers

Have you ever been listening to a great piece of music and felt a chill run up your spine, or goosebumps tickle your arms and shoulders, reactions called “skin orgasms”? Many can identify with the phenomenon of feeling a thrill followed by a chill, and doctoral student researcher-author Mitchell Colver of Utah State University wanted to know why.

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Riffs: Music News from Out and About

Riffs: Music News from Out and About

By Patricia Myers

The Buzz: The third annual Tucson Jazz Festival has scored a coup: George Benson is the 2017 headliner, performing Jan. 19 at the Fox Theatre. Tickets go on sale later in the fall for one of his rare “home-state” concerts. Benson continues to tour nationally and internationally, especially since the 2013 release of his Nat King Cole tribute-album.

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Riffs: Music News from Out and About

Riffs: Music News from Out and About

Petersen performed with scores of highly regarded musicians, starting in 1957 when he toured Europe with the Hal McIntyre Orchestra and became an in-demand studio musician. At 82, he’s still known for his inventive ability to reinvent chord progressions — and his clever wit. Petersen is considered the architect of guitar labs at three institutions of higher learning, as the first fulltime guitar teacher at Berklee College of music (1962-65), guitar artist-in-residence at the University of North Texas College of Music (1976-1988) and resident artist-associate professor at University of North Florida (1988-1995); he moved to Prescott in 2003.

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