Innova Recordings Profiled

From All About Jazz:

Minnesota’s Innova Records is one of the more prolific and longer-standing independent labels working in the US. An extension of the St. Paul-based American Composers Forum, Innova has been issuing a healthy number of discs in a surprising array of styles since 1982. Formal and quirky composed works sit alongside extended improv and teenager radio dramas in the label’s catalogue of over 700 titles. But as with any healthy eclecticism, it isn’t the point but a byproduct of people following their instincts.

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Songlines: Small Is Beautiful

The Songlines label is profiled.

This month’s jazz quiz: Name the most underappreciated independent label in jazz.

Ooooh. Tough one. There are so many. Most jazz, these days, is released on small labels, few of which are generating any kind of boffo profits. A few, like ECM, develop a historic identity over time. Others, like Pi in New York and Cryptogramophone in California, develop a stable of players and a laser following.

But the correct answer this time around is: Songlines.

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Indie labels deliver the goods: 2008 in Review

The Denver Post provides yet another best of list.

I didn’t have to strain to come up with 10 winning jazz discs from 2008. Actually, I had to edit down from at least 25 — that must mean it was a terrific year for the music, chiefly due to artists making uncompromising, heartfelt sounds on independent labels.

A lot of adventurous stuff rose to the top this time, and while it wasn’t my intent to showcase the more avant- garde material, that’s just what happened.

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