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Last Call CD Of The Month: Rudresh Mahanthappa/ Bird Calls/ ACT Records

Acclaimed jazz saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa has released Bird Calls, an exciting new disc that has won wide acclaim. Mahanthappa's devotion to the legendary jazz saxophonist Charlie Parker is apparent on thirteen new compositions that are based on Charlie Parker songs or solos.

Mahanthappa creates a truly individual mix of western and Indian influenced jazz on his recordings. Powered by his total mastery of the saxophone, and his band of Adam O' Farrill, trumpet; Matt Mitchell, piano; Francois Moutin, bass; and Rudy Royston, drums, the band explores music inspired by Bird on exciting numbers such as "On the DL", "Chillin", "Maybe Later", and many more.

Saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa is an incredibly prolific artist. Bursting on the scene a decade ago, he has demonstrated his rich, sublime artistry on a series of compelling records. His Indian-American heritage informs this talented reedman whose voice is unlike any saxophonist heard previously by this reviewer--and is richly rewarding. Mahanthappa's appearance on the Grammy nominated 2008 Miles from India was further confirmation of his place on the international music scene. A performance at the 2015 Iowa City Jazz Festival demonstrated once again his total command of the saxophone in addition to his outstanding original songs and high octane band. The current release is Mahanthappa's best CD to date.

Previous recordings from Rudresh Mahanthappa that you may enjoy include Gamak(2013), Samdhi(2011), Apex(2010),Kinsmen(2008), Apti(2008) and Mother Tongue(2004).

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Chris Cooke has been a voice on public radio in Omaha since 1989. Working at KVNO-FM during college, Cooke hosted a weekend progressive jazz show on the station in addition to working as an on-air announcer. In November 1992, Cooke signed on at KIOS-FM and has been there ever since. He has hosted the Tuesday and Thursday editions of Jazz in the Afternoon since 1996 and has hosted Last Call since that year. A long time fan of jazz music, Cooke enjoys talking with the musicians who make jazz music and presenting those conversations with listeners. When not hosting or listening to jazz, on record or in person, Cooke maintains a busy schedule as a self-employed web design consultant.
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