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Grammy Awards Preview: Jazz


There are some new faces in this year's jazz competition, including trumpeter Roy Hargrove for Best Contemporary Jazz Album, Strength. The 35-year-old leader of the soul-funk unit The RH Factor goes up against guitarist Bill Frisell; saxophonist Jan Garbarek; pianist Don Grusin; and smooth jazz group Fourplay.

No stranger to Grammy Awards, keyboardist Herbie Hancock grabbed a nomination in the Best Jazz Instrumental Solo category for "Speak Like A Child," one of 11 tracks from drummer Harvey Mason's trios album, With All My Heart.

Grammy-nominated pianist Herbie Hancock, featuring Dave Carpenter on bass and Harvey Mason on drums, with "Speak Like A Child." Other nominees for Best Jazz Instrumental Solo include guitarist John Scofield; clarinetist Don Byron; pianist Alan Broadbent; and saxophonist Donny McCaslin.

The Branford Marsalis Quartet is one of five nominees for Best Jazz Instrumental Album.

Saxophonist Branford Marsalis is vying for his first-ever Grammy Award with his album Eternal. The Quartet's competition for Best Jazz Instrumental Album, Individual or Group includes an eclectic mix of jazz veterans: drummer Roy Haynes; McCoy Tyner with Gary Bartz, Terence Blanchard, Christian McBride ands Lewis Nash; the Bill Charlap Trio; and the Keith Jarrett, Gary Peacock and Jack DeJohnette Trio.

For Best Jazz Vocal Album, meet one of the unsung heroes of jazz singing, Andy Bey.

At 65, Andy Bey is getting some well-deserved recognition for his Grammy-nominated album American Song, featuring such standards as "Satin Doll." Having performed alongside some of the greatest names in jazz for more than five decades, Bey seems surprised by the recent slew of accolades, saying, "I never went away, actually." Also competing for the Best Jazz Vocal Album award are Nancy Wilson; Queen Latifah; Al Jarreau; and British newcomer Jamie Cullum.

In the Best Latin Jazz category, the nominees are percussionist Raphael Cruz; Jerry Gonzales y Los Pirates Del Flamenco; bassist Charlie Haden; the Conrad Herwig Nonet; and trumpeter Diego Urcola.

The nominees for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album offer a variety of styles, including Latin, bebop, modern jazz and, of course, big band. Competing in this category are the Maria Schneider Orchestra; the Bob Brookmeyer New Art Orchestra; trombonist Slide Hampton; saxophonist David Sanchez; and the John La Barbera Big Band.

The 47th Annual Grammy Awards will be presented on February 13 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California.

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