Recent Articles

Get ready for a carnival of musical delights.



Heading into this weekend and the next, an assortment of upcoming jazz related shows are set to take place at the Dakota. Get ready for a carnival of musical delights. Actually, it was trumpeter Russell Gunn who was to help kick things off at the Dakota last night, along with his quartet and vocalist Dionne Farris, but the gig was postponed. Farris and Gunn have a new live album, Dionne Get Your Gunn, which Farris released on her independent label, Free and Clear Records.  

One of my all-time Gunn favorites featuring him on electric trumpet and flugelhorn is his Live in Atlanta: Ethnomusicology, Vol. Continue Reading →

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PBS commemorates television show that featured the best in gospel music



By Charles Hallman
Staff writer


Over the course of three decades, the late Sid Ordower brought the greats and some-to-be greats in gospel music each week on local Chicago television. The likes of Albertina Walker, Mahalia Jackson, Mavis Staples — along with her sisters and their father, James Cleveland, and Otis Clay routinely appeared on Jubilee Showcase, a half-hour long show that ran from 1963-1984. Beginning November 30 and throughout the month of December, PBS will air a 50th anniversary commemorative television special on Jubilee Showcase, said his son Steve Ordower in a recent MSR phone interview. “He was an owner-operator [of his shows], which was pretty rare back in those days,” he explains. “Unfortunately, the first 13 episodes were erased, and he was livid. Continue Reading →

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Habakkuk Records spotlights emerging gospel artists

Label owner creates business plan through divine inspiration
By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer


In today’s up-and-down economy, when music consumers opt for digital downloads rather than purchasing CDs, April Washington’s Habakkuk Records, which she started in 2008, has weathered the economic turbulence. A seasoned veteran music executive, Washington says she applied what she learned from her years with major labels to her own label. “When I went to

Motown, I worked under Jheryl Busby,” she told the MSR in a phone interview. “He was a phenomenal executive. One of the things he taught us was really get on the ground…where the fan base [is]. Continue Reading →

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