Throughout the night, Billie was in superior form to what had sometimes been the case in the last years of her life. Not only was there assurance of phrasing and intonation; but there was also an outgoing warmth, a palpable eagerness to reach and touch the audience. And there was mocking wit. A smile was often lightly evident on her lips and her eyes as if, for once, she could accept the fact that there were people who did dig her.
The audience was hers from before she sang, greeting her and saying good-bye with heavy, loving applause. And at one time, the musicians too applauded. It was a night when Billie was on top, undeniably the best and most honest jazz singer alive. Both were less than two years from death. When she returned almost five years later, she made one of her last television appearances for Granada's Chelsea at Nine in London. Her final studio recordings were made for MGM inwith lush backing from Ray Ellis and his Orchestra, who had also accompanied her on Columbia's Lady in Satin album the previous year—see below.
The MGM sessions were released posthumously on a self-titled album, later re-titled and re- released as Last Recordings. In early Holiday learned that she had cirrhosis of the liver.
The doctor told her to stop drinking, which she did for a short time, but soon returned to heavy drinking. Friends Leonard Feather, Joe Glaser, and Allan Morrison tried to get her to check into a hospital, but she put them off. She was arrested for drug possession as she lay dying, and her hospital room was raided by authorities. Holiday remained under police guard at the hospital until she died from pulmonary edema and heart failure caused by cirrhosis of the liver on July 17, Her funeral mass was held at Church of St.
Paul the Apostle in New York City. She had been strikingly beautiful, but she was wasted physically to a small, grotesque caricature of herself. The worms of every kind of excess — drugs were only one — had eaten her The likelihood exists that among the last thoughts of this cynical, sentimental, profane, generous and greatly talented woman of 44 was the belief that she was to be arraigned the following morning. She would have been, eventually, although possibly not that quickly.
In any case, she removed herself finally from the jurisdiction of any court here below. Her distinctive delivery made Billie Holiday's performances instantly recognizable throughout her career. A master LP) improvisation, Billie's well- trained ear more than compensated for her lack of music education. Her voice lacked range and was somewhat thin, plus years of excessive drug use eventually altered its texture and gave it a prepossessing fragility.
The emotion with which she imbued each song remained not only intact but also profound. I would say that the most emotional moment was her listening to the playback of "I'm a Fool to Want You. After we finished the album I went into the control room and listened to all the takes. I must admit I was unhappy with her performance, but I was just listening musically instead of emotionally. It wasn't until I heard the final mix a few weeks later that I realized how great her performance really was. He told Ebony in about her impact:.
With few exceptions, every major pop singer in the US during her generation has been touched in some way by her genius. It is Billie Holiday who was, and still remains, the greatest single musical influence on me. Lady Day is unquestionably the most important influence on American popular singing in the last twenty years. The company's findings were published in the book Pop Memories — Several of Holiday's records are listed on the pop charts Whitburn created. Billie Holiday began her recording career on a high note with her first major release "Riffin' the Scotch" selling 5, copies.
Teddy Wilson, one of the most influential jazz pianists from the swing era,  accompanied Holiday more than any other musician. He and Holiday have 95 recordings together. In JulyHoliday began releasing sides under her own name. Holiday had 16 best selling songs inmaking the year her most commercially successful. It was in this year that Holiday scored her sole number one hit as a featured vocalist on the available pop charts of the s, "Carelessly".
InBillboard began publishing its modern pop charts, which included the Best Selling Retail Records chart, the precursor to the Hot None of Holiday's songs placed on the modern pop charts, partly because Billboard only published the first ten slots of the charts in some issues.
Minor hits and independent releases had no way of being spotlighted. Two of Holiday's songs placed on the chart, "Trav'lin' Light" with Paul Whiteman, which topped the chart, and "Lover Man", which reached number 5. Discography Main article: Billie Holiday discography.
Many of Holiday's recordings appeared on 78 rpm records prior to the long-playing vinyl record era, and only Clef, Verve, and Columbia issued Holiday albums during her lifetime that were not compilations of previously released material.
Many compilations have been issued Youd Be So Nice To Come Home To - Ben Webster her death; as well as comprehensive box sets and live recordings. In the group U2 released "Angel of Harlem" in her honor. Cerrar sugerencias Buscar Buscar. Saltar el carrusel. Carrusel anterior. Carrusel siguiente. Billie Holiday. Cargado por David. Compartir este documento Compartir o incrustar documentos Opciones para compartir Compartir en Facebook, abre una nueva ventana Facebook.
Denunciar este documento. Marcar por contenido inapropiado. Descargar ahora. Carrusel anterior Carrusel siguiente. The drawing power of the Harlem Express package was astounding. Complete families crammed into their Model T Fords and traveled one hundred miles or more to see the acts. When a thousand people turned out, it was considered a slow night.
Quite often it was over four thousand. Bass player Gene Ramey told how as a youth he went to a dance in Woodland. The venue was the old Masonic Auditorium. Olsen, a star since his recording of Who? During the week it played the theater, 12, people saw the program. Fisk University was another stop. He has been ever willing to do his part to LP) Fisk clubs and aid them in their program throughout the country.
Arranger Billy Moore Jr. And just like the management and the other music lovers, he had discovered that this unknown band really had a style all its own. So when the Harlem Express tour started, he already was a dedicated follower.
Now that his sweetheart was dancing with the show, he struck up a friendship with a couple of members of the orchestra. My wife was sort of intellectual, was always reading, spoke good French. She used to be an entertaining person herself. I just came in on her back. That was right up my alley, of course. She danced locally, around Boston. You know, it was during the Depression, and she was sure making a hell of a lot more money than I was making.
She peeked out of the cardboard house that Dusty was trying to invade. This was long before Fletcher put it on record. It became a hit for Dusty and a dozen other artists who covered the song. Whenever the band played the Boston area, Frank and Mae were present. They continued to be fans long after the Jimmie Lunceford Orchestra had ceased to exist. The Bonittos were just two of the thousands of young jazz adepts who LP) discovered the Lunceford bounce when the band broadcast from the Cotton Club, and subsequently saw the Harlem Express when it toured the nation.
These dances heralded the era that became known as the Swing Craze. At the end of a grueling cross-country tour, he hit gold with an ecstatic reception at the Palomar Ballroom, on Vermont Avenue, between Second and Third, in Los Angeles; the date was August 21, So it can be argued that it was Jimmie Lunceford, not Benny Goodman, who put the spark to the tinder. There are interesting similarities and differences between the two bandleaders. His family was poor, of PolishLithuanian descent, and at fourteen little Benjamin, a child prodigy, was earning enough money playing clarinet in dance orchestras to be able to support the family.
Not long thereafter he really started to make a lot of money when he became a much-sought-after studio musician in New York. His family had become relatively well-to-do, and he mastered an impressive array of instruments, including the clarinet, without really excelling on any of them. Before he started his own band, Lunceford had been a teacher. Both leaders were good businessmen and strict disciplinarians, but whereas Benny was perceived by many as being cold, absent-minded, and egotistical, Jimmie, though introverted, possessed a warmer personality.
Both men achieved their initial fame through series of radio broadcasts. Few people are aware that Jimmie Lunceford, too, did his share to integrate the music business. There were other black pretenders for the swing throne at the time when Lunceford was touring with the Harlem Express revue, bands that drew capacity crowds wherever they played.
Cab Calloway, like Waller, was a crowdpleaser; his band sounded tight, and he was able to reach both the black man in the street and the white Park Avenue crowd. It could swing hard and had a good rhythm section, exciting soloists, original arrangements, and a string of hit records. Moreover, for Ellington was a year full of grief.
His mother died and he sank into a deep depression. But the trumpet pioneer had spent most of the early s in Europe, and was recovering from an overstressed lip while Lunceford toured the United States. None of them was able to swing as violently as the Harlem Express. This versatility, combined with its unique stage show, sold the band. The rise to fame of the early swing big bands coincided with a number of changes in American society.
Not only the music reached a boiling point, but the entire United States was in for some fundamental changes. A general feeling of relief, of cautious optimism, began to emerge. The nation had made impressive strides in this respect before the Great Depression, and observers realized that the economic crisis might just be a temporary hiatus in that process. A strong collective sense of forward motion hovered over America.
However, the lean times were not over yet. Poverty was still everywhere. Furthermore, this was a period of political turmoil. The American Communist Party achieved new heights of acceptance and impact, fueled, among other causes, by the strong sentiments aroused by the Spanish Civil War. The big bands furnished the soundtrack for the era.
There had been a baby boom around —21, in size comparable to the more famous one of — The kids got their action from Benny the King, they got it from Tommy Dorsey, from Casa Loma, already a favorite at the college circuit, from Lunceford and in no time from hundreds of other dance orchestras turned into swing bands. And remarkably swiftly, these youngsters had developed an extensive youth culture. It consisted of a generously padded, wide-lapeled jacket that reached down to the knees, high-waisted, baggy pants, tapering down to the ankles, and two-tone shoes, topped by a wide-brimmed fedora.
In a zoot one looked like a cross-breeding of gangster, clown, and gorilla. Coin-operated music machines were not a novelty infor they had been around since the beginnings of the recording industry.
But that was the year the jukebox phenomenon really obtained a foothold in American society. Induring Prohibition, some 25, jukeboxes were in operation, a large percentage of them in speakeasies. The next year AMI, Seeburg, and Mills, the most prominent manufacturers of jukeboxes, turned out a total of 15, machines.
This was just before Wurlitzer and RockOla arrived on the scene. Before the end of63, Wurlitzers had been shipped to distributors. By then, approximatelypublic venues, ranging from bus terminals to ice cream stands, featured these hot slot machines. The jukebox was largely responsible for the recovery of the 78 rpm record: from on, sales went up, year after year. It was the Lindy Hop. And I said, what kind of dance is that, man. Nobody did that at my dances!
When I got to the Savoy, there was top people. They created what you call circles. I mean, these three couples, they were extra special dancers. Ballrooms grew bigger, and their numbers rose as well. The repeal in of the Volstead Act, which prohibited the manufacture, sale, or transportation of alcoholic beverages in the United States, had reversed the situation for the dancings, and between andtheir number doubled. As such, it had a unifying effect: the sons and daughters of older American families mixed with kids from recent immigrants and, in New York and other northern cities, even with blacks.
Among blacks, music and dancing always had been held in high esteem. In New Orleans, for instance, the number of pianos and phonographs per capita was higher in black neighborhoods than in the white sections. This whole shift in popular culture was about to happen when Lunceford hit the big-time. For twelve or thirteen years, roughly between andthe Jimmie Lunceford Orchestra was the most exciting and bestloved all-round dance band in the African American community.
Yet no other orchestra seems to have drifted further into the mists of collective oblivion. That, of course, goes for many good live acts. Radio air checks suggest the Harlem Express not only played looser—and faster! The vinyl reissue program from aroundin the French Jazz Heritage series, suffered from poor mastering and pressing. Only occasionally can one catch glimpses of the full dynamics, the subtle coloring, and the power.
Apart from these two CDs, some of the Jubilee shows, recorded during the war by the Armed Forces Radio Service, were reissued with good sound quality. Henry Wells, who played the trombone and handled the ballad singing, departed in earlyto go with the Claude Hopkins band. Wells was replaced by Eddie Durham, who did not sing, and Dan Grissom, who did not play the trombone. The latter sang and got around on the saxophone. He was nicknamed Dan Gruesome by his detractors, and not entirely without reason, though this kind of crooning does have some period charm.
Grissom, however, could and occasionally did sing in a more attractive ordinary tenor voice. He built a solo career after he left the Lunceford organization in When the orchestra members mounted the stage, they successively saluted the audience, their leader, and one another in a set way. Apart from the dancing and the choreographed movements of the musicians, now comedy bits were added, like Willie Smith putting on a silly hat and singing a nursery song, or Eddie Tompkins doing his Louis Armstrong impersonation.
Sometimes the orchestra would perform certain ballads or a hit like For Dancers Only behind a screen, in backlighting, the shadows on the screen enhancing the drama of the tune. All what Lunceford do [was] stand there, direct. Lunceford was asked back for the show, which again proved to be successful. This was, of course, good publicity as well. He had more class than Duke. Duke got the credit for having class—but Lunceford had class.
They cared for themselves, they were the sharpest band in the world. Twosided hits! Lunceford sold better than most other black orchestras. In the next chorus, the theme is transformed by the saxophones. They stretch it, compress it back into shape, and are followed by the brass, which continue this process in a more overt way.
Then a trio of aggressive trombones partake in the conversation. The solos by Crumbley, Smith, Wilcox, and Oliver are modest but functional: subservient to the overall orchestral sound. He designed a sophisticated arrangement, not just for the band, but also for the vocal Trio, consisting of himself, Willie Smith, and guitarist Al Norris. In this recording, the latter also plays the violin in the background. This clearly is not your ordinary vocal trio with instrumental accompaniment.
The vocals are orchestral in character, and their timing and phrasing are utterly hip. Starting with a simple yet dramatic introduction by the piano, evoking a wealth of expectations, the arrangement proceeds with inevitable logic and a pleasant impact. Willie Smith plays an attractive countermelody on the baritone sax.
My Blue Heaven is a classic big band performance, and it had mass appeal as well. Hundreds of amateur vocal groups must have tried to emulate the Lunceford Trio in gymnasiums or cellars, trying to blend and phrase just like their idols.
Gilbert in De Jazzwereld, a monthly magazine. Which is remarkable, to put it mildly, given the totally different nature of Swanee River and Nana. We have seen that it is essentially a two-beat rhythm.
In the course of the s, this two-beat rhythm was to evolve into a regular backbeat, which became the standard drum pattern of rhythm-and-blues bands. For example, he would have the trombones playing a pattern that really laid down a beat. Then he would have the saxophones going against that.
Al Grey had some enlightening remarks about this subject. When I went into Jimmie Lunceford, see, everything was played short. The rhythmic feeling, the line itself. Benny Carter would have said [hums the same phrase legato]. You see? Then when you go into a new band like that, and here you have been playing things long, and here there is chopping and shortening, you have to reacquire yourself. It enabled me to really stay up on top of the playing of the music. Trummy, in turn, had replaced Eddie Durham, who had been the most important new face in the band.
His rhythmic feeling was closer to K. However, as a musician with roots in old-fashioned minstrel shows, Eddie Durham had no problem getting adjusted to the more archaic rhythm.
One of his trademark devices was the use of wah-wah mute effects by the brass—a Swing Begins 97 style element that was not unusual in big band swing and that was picked up by Glenn Miller later.
Duke himself never recorded these compositions for a commercial label. Like the other arrangers, Durham was allowed to stretch out, and there were no boundaries. That way, he felt he was able to stay ahead of the audience all the time. The contrasts in his arrangement of Thunder bear this out. The arranger used multipart block harmony in Count Me Out and employed the double-barreled unison baritones of Carruthers and Smith in Running a Temperature.
In this piece he managed to generate a maximum of swing with the barest melodic material. Note also the twin baritone lead in this tune, in unison and two-part voicing. Here one hears how the arranger had the horns play decrescendo toward the end, only to come back full throttle for the last bar. The amazing, very visual Pigeon Walk, which sounds like it was written for a cartoon, was full of modulations. These intricate tunes, with their unusual modulations and surprising contrasts and effects, were daring for their time.
They gave the repertory a distinctive character and have not become dated. After the theme, the trombone trio play a chorus that is imaginatively timed and as varied as any hot solo created on the spur of the moment.
It was an ordinary wooden Spanish model, with a built-in conical tin resonator, about ten inches in diameter. Resonator guitars and the related all-metal steel guitars and smaller dobros were manufactured by the National String Instrument Corporation in Los Angeles.
During live performances Lunceford used to hold the solo microphone near the F-shaped sound hole of the guitar. Electric guitars were a novelty back in Only a few artists in jazz George Barnes and blues Memphis Minnie had dabbled with early models and home-built contraptions.
Still, it would take another couple of years before the new instrument really caught on. The swing craze was instrumental in this development. The ballrooms grew larger, and since public address, or PA, systems were still in their infancy, the bands had to grow in size to accommodate the halls. But before that, the poor acoustic guitar was drowned out in the violent roar of trumpets and drums.
Originally, he had a friend remodel a standard microphone, wired to a PA system, to be inserted in the F-hole of the instrument.
This apparently did not entirely satisfy the guitarist, so he designed a movable bridge, connected to a metal wire coat hanger. His electric model confronted Eddie Durham with a couple of problems. It was not unusual for his guitar to overload the mains of the hall, causing the lights to blow fuses.
He almost electrocuted himself a couple of times. Early in Durham, on the road with the Harlem Express, met a talented seventeen-year-old guitarist in Oklahoma City, named Charlie Christian. Charlie of course was still playing acoustic guitar, and Durham showed him how he could get a crisper sound by hitting the strings in downward strokes only.
During this campus tour, the musicians got stranded. On March 18, the radiator of the bus broke down near the small town of Smithville, Ohio. Alice Dunn was a little girl of nine who had accompanied her mother to the small family restaurant on the town square.
She was playing with the salt and pepper shakers, pretending it was her lunchroom, when she noticed a black man outside, sitting on a radiator. Black people were not a common sight in Smithville. Years later she recalled, He was well-dressed, wearing a cashmere topcoat, a slouch hat and unbuckled galoshes—and by the way he sat on the radiator, it somehow seemed likely that he had been wet and cold for a long time.
One of them seemed to be their leader. Our bus is stuck in the snow and in need of repairs. Would you mind if the men ate here in your restaurant and stayed in out of the cold?
With Mother and Dad taking orders as fast as they could, it was like watching a three-ring circus, so much was happening at once.
In those days, this was a small fortune, and the man allowed Alice to feel the bill. She was surprised to discover it felt just like an ordinary dollar. After the meal, the men thanked the Dunn family—in their own way. When they returned to the warmth of the restaurant, they brought along their instruments and an autographed photograph.
The music they played that afternoon was unlike anything I had ever heard. The man called Moses brought his stand-up bass. When Jimmie Lunceford entered a room or appeared on a stage, you just knew he was The Man. Six feet four, weighing pounds when he was in his early thirties at the time of his deathathletically built, impressive looking, dark and handsome.
He was a big guy anyway, as was Paul Whiteman. You know, in tuxedo. He did not possess the sophisticated charm of the suave Duke of Ellington. And he was not one of the boys, as was Basie. He looked like a teacher and he act like a teacher. Like a real teacher. As a rule, the leader never talked about himself, his background, his upbringing, or other personal issues. Lunceford kept a safe distance most of the time. Yet this shyness was not caused by feelings of insecurity; it was rather a natural disposition.
The often extroverted character of his music obviously did not mirror his mind. Still, most people thought Jimmie Lunceford was a charming man. Perhaps his inclination toward modesty was a family trait. Very humble. But he was also ahead of his time, too, in his own way. But he just did not have the desire or drive.
But Dad was quietly a tremendous musician. He had started dating Rose Crystal Tulli—the daughter of a newspaper owner—when they both studied at Fisk University. Jimmie and Crystal graduated together in the spring ofhe as a major in sociology, and she as a major in education, and she too had ended up in Memphis, as a teacher in English literature at Booker T.
Washington High School. Hamilton, used the money to buy typewriters for his school. He was convinced that it was necessary to play the sweet songs alongside the hot numbers, if only to build and retain an audience.
While he has hardly avoided the electric bass—The Stanley Clarke Band: Up Mack Avenuefrommakes ample use of the instrument—he said he never really studied it. Despite—or because of—the relative sparseness of solo repertoire for bass, he is writing a multi-movement piece for small group. And he is considering making time for solo engagements with symphony orchestras. When that might happen is up in the air. It seemed far away on that November night as he leaned into his computer screens and, affecting a squint, put music to scenes from Barbershop: The Next Cut.
Scoring the film, he said, he sometimes found it difficult to keep it as simple as the producers allowed. This man for all seasons is, by all indications, content with the turns his life has taken. Ponty recalled that he and Clarke first played together inwhen drummer Tony Williams invited the bassist on a European tour.
Most recently, the two joined forces in a revival of Return to Forever. The experience, for Ponty, was a positive one. The group, he explained, disbanded not over Scientology, as has been reported—both he and Corea have at one time or another been involved with the practice—but over artistic differences between Di Meola, on the one hand, and Corea and him, on the other. Al wanted to do more of the older tunes and keep it pretty much guitar-oriented, jazz-rock fusion stuff, which was cool.
And that was that. Hernandez flowed through endless clave permutations; Hidalgo, unable to hand-strike his six-conga set because of an infected finger, deployed sticks in a way that made them sound like a new instrument; Rubalcaba goosed the dance with darting lines, stacking and signifying upon the rhythms.
Then, Gonzalo was the centerpiece of everything—the arrangement, the improvisation. Now he shares more. He lets the others help. Concurrently, Hernandez migrated to Italy, then settled in New York. He immediately began to coalesce repertoire. Everyone has a strong relationship with jazz vocabulary and a deep connection to Cuban and AfroCuban roots, not only musically but spiritually and as a religion. Everyone has space to expose what they can do individually, but at the same time the band works as a band.
Our purpose is musical creation, not a commercial thing. Rubalcaba pushed hard to bring Avatar to fruition. Although Blue Note head Bruce Lundvall was a close friend, the label, itself circumscribed by sagging music industry economics, had long ceased to provide adequate infrastructural support for tours or album marketing, and was reluctant to provide Rubalcaba a budget sufficient to actualize the project to his exacting standards.
And yet, Rubalcaba decided to turn lemons into lemonade. The important thing was to connect with new musicians. One, who had known Rubalcaba in Cuba, asked the pianist to receive his boss backstage. Even when you are not totally comfortable with their ideas, you can always learn.
Life is a palette with many tastes and flavors and colors and moments. If one moment is not sweet or illuminated, you try to be part of the darkness and force yourself to turn it into something bright. Even early in my career, when I had media exposure and Blue Note spent a lot to give me the privilege to play before large audiences at big venues around the world, I never was drunk with the applause.
Their connection was immediate. You need to be doing this for some reason other than return on investment. To me, it was a no-brainer, because Gonzalo can produce the shit out of anything.
You just give him money, a studio, and help him call the right people. I want people to know who he is. What he does is divine. When he plays, he grabs your soul; you have no choice but to listen. Thus, Rubalcaba became a free agent. Galimidi and Rubalcaba discussed names for their new label. When you decide to live like that, the process is really long.
You can feel really alone. It contains a depth of spiritual understanding that speaks to a larger community than just musicians. Thomas Episcopal Church in Midtown Manhattan. He can no longer glean counsel and friendship from Lundvall, who died last year, or Haden, who died in We have to learn to continue life without the people we love—at least without seeing them every day. You have to find strong convictions about other ideas.
This is what keeps you working, dreaming, living, playing. Then in Moore seemed to disappear. As fate would have it, Moore kept the gig for 15 years and stayed on the West Coast for a few more, occasionally playing local gigs.
But now the London native has returned to New York and embarked on a flurry of activity. Harrell, who has known Moore for decades, also recruited pianist David Virelles, drummer Adam Cruz and bassist Ugonna Okegwo for the project. Moore, 59, is in a transitional period of his career.
He sat down with baritone saxophonist Claire Daly—a colleague and one-time Berklee classmate—to talk about his musical development and plans for the future. Tell us about the start of your musical life, as a kid growing up in London. I started on trumpet. My mom was cleaning the house and playing records, listening to Louis Armstrong.
I was stopped dead in my tracks. You need to do this. She took me to the pawnshop. I played it for about two years. My teacher also played tenor saxophone, and I fell in love with the tenor on sight. The following Christmas we went back to the pawnshop and got an old tenor. What was your experience like at Berklee? I studied with Andy McGee the first year.
I practiced all the time. Then I heard about Jerry Bergonzi. I took five or six lessons with him over the course of a year. It was like he took a can opener and opened my head up to a different way of approaching this music. This was I was 19 at the time. After I left Jerry, I never took another saxophone lesson. There was no need to. How did your move to New York City come about? What are you doing? Wednesday night they swung by with the van. I took my suitcase and my horn.
I took that into all the other situations I went into, and I felt like it was an edge because you can do a lot with just a few notes if you know how to place them. You can do so much more with so much less and not get caught up in the ramble. Roy Haynes was like a train coming down the tracks. He was always pushing ahead, never dropped a beat. I spent four or five years with Roy.
Within the first week I was working in a bakery. Jo Jones Jr. Both of these guys worked with Horace [Silver] at the time. I want to give him your name—I like the way you play. I went from Horace to a month in Europe with the Mingus Dynasty. Brutal tour, but I was beginning to get invaluable experience. Roy Haynes taught me how to swing. After about six months, I suddenly realized what he was doing with the time. My analogy is like this: You watch a football game, and the [receiver] is running.
After he taught me how to swing, Tell us about your time with Freddie Hubbard. Freddie Hubbard was a tremendous influence on me. What he could do was unbelievable and you just had to get used to being a sidekick. I ate, drank, slept and breathed Freddie Hubbard. I got to stand there night after night playing those lines with him. What was it like working with J. I began to get a sense of what I was worth as a sideman. I had leverage and I used it. What do you want to do next?
I was always the type of person that had my eye on things. I no longer see what lies ahead for me. For some, only the music matters. These individuals follow the same rules that lead to the same, often less-than-rewarding results.
But inwhile pondering his next album, Back At It, saxophonist Albert Rivera devised a shrewd, innovative marketing strategy. But jazz constitutes such a small percentage of all the music listened to in this country.
Rather than boycotting the services, we should use them to our advantage. He used Facebook, websites, blogs and free downloads to spread the word. Once Rivera had cash in hand and CDs to ship, he gave away the fruits of his labors. But give that same fan 10 CDs, and all his friends will become fans as well. My main focus was to get the music out there, not to make income from CDs. I wanted the album to be easy to find, cheap and accessible. I want everyone to have access to my music, not just the select few who are willing to buy the album.
But the reality with streaming services makes that hard. Why would people buy it when they can stream it for free? Like most artists, he wants to reach as many people as possible. With Back At It, I wanted to capture the feeling of a live club performance. My goal was to create a larger fan base and a more international reach.
Fortunately, both tracks created a great buzz and hit thousands of individuals a day. It all helps. Mixing and mastering was performed by tenor saxophonist Don Braden in his personal recording studio.
Then I gave away CDs on every gig. So I tried to limit how often I would post to Facebook. But I did increase posts near the end of the campaign. A carefully planned schedule of emails was key to the process. We did another email push two weeks before the GoFundMe campaign ended. Then I could see who contributed what amount.
Every three or four weeks prior to the release date I released an Internet single to the email list as a thank-you. Acknowledging greater profit when sold directly from his site, Rivera also spilled the beans regarding the licensing fees paid by the biggest streaming services.
I make 59 cents off an iTunes single, which is much better than Spotify, which is a joke when it comes to payment. You make less than one cent from Spotify. But his enterprising energy in getting his music to fans has paid off. We jump around from some heavy grooving funk to intense modal music to a jazz ballad with orchestral strings, and everything in between.
I have a lot of stories to tell. Diploma in one hand, your axe in the other, you try to figure out how to get your career underway as efficiently as possible. For bassist Colin Trusedell, the plan was simple: Join the U.
Air Force. Plus, he puts in two hours of practice every day. He wrote all the material. Why does he load his plate with so many responsibilities? Then all the gigs I do on the outside bring in more money to dump back into the businesses that I own. As musical director and tour manager for Blue Steel, the U.
He also tours with the Academy Band, performing at middle schools and high schools and on local TV to kindle interest among potential enlistees. Trusedell already had military musical experience prior to signing up with the Air Force.
Fresh out of high school in Indiana, he auditioned for and was welcomed into the U. Navy Band. I had to log 25 hours of practice time each week—on top of going to school eight hours a day. I was one of five guys who were invited to try out for the bass chair.
We shoot two videos in the following two weeks. And my wife is due on February You have to learn to be a webmaster. You can no longer just do one thing in the music industry. And keep in mind all the people who have helped you. Successful people want other people to succeed too. But while taking charge of your own creative work can be liberating, it is also a fragile and fleeting business.
One continuing success story and possible paradigm in the artist-run label universe comes out of Copenhagen, Denmark, in the form of ILK Music, which was founded in Stylistically, the ILK roster is a varied one that often leans toward the avant-garde, experimental and eclectic. The common bond has less to do with idiomatic dogma than a will to thrive and survive in a way powered by the ideal of self-determination, and a desire to collaborate both within and beyond the Danish jazz landscape.
Guitarist Solborg has been interwoven into the ILK story from its inception. We have succeeded in holding on to the [idea] that each of us represents the entire collective and has an obligation to maintain a high level of integrity and artistic quality. Also, there are a number of musicians putting a great deal of work in underground venues and inviting international colleagues to participate in concerts. It is important to cherish a personal voice, and to believe that even in a relatively small community like Copenhagen, people can build something strong.
Released inthe album generated international critical respect while emboldening her continuing sense of adventure. I collaborate with musicians [who have] different aesthetics than my own.
It creates a beautiful ambiguity in the artistic expression. With ILK, the artists have taken charge. The ILKs take part in all major decisions and have a label manager and an artist-based executive committee to execute things professionally, on a daily basis. All ILKs have complete artistic freedom—and the responsibility that comes with it. There are no big statements here, no big demonstrations or fireworks, but the music is full of surprises and delights from start to finish.
But he can also let his cymbals talk, something aided by a close, crisp recording, and he locks in with bassist Ben Street, a player familiar to Stewart from the John Scofield band, with precision.
His soprano can teeter on the edge of too sweet. Bill Carrothers proves himself a wonderful partner. Ordering info: pirouet. That group forms the core of this youthful, horn-laden piece unit. Overall, the focus here is on the ensemble and the through-line of Cuban musical history, which is a joy to hear.
Ordering info: tumrecords. Ordering info: jazzvillagemusic. The two-drummer thing seems harmless enough. As to the Blue Note return, the sentiment of a reunion is always worth noting as a reassuring link of continuity with the past.
The other reunion here is the one offered between Smith and Joe Lovano, who logged a few encounters on the Groove Merchant and Chiaroscuro labels nearly 40 years ago. It begins with a long introduction of post-apocalyptic despair before the familiar tune begins to emerge.
In the final four minutes it descends into a terminal single-chord drone that is simply boring. Extended works such as Ten Freedom Summers a four-disc affair with an elaborate string section and Occupy The World for a piece orchestra have been rightly cited for their scope. But the trumpeter-composer is also a master of the intimate collaboration. Relatively recent forays with drummer Louis Moholo-Moholo and pianist Angelica Sanchez have underscored his commitment to partnership.
Celestial Weather, a duet with bassist John Lindberg, is fetching stuff. You can hear their unity in the heady banter of these three discrete suites. Each is a cascade of curt phrases that manage to solidify as they align with those of their mate.
The music has a settled confidence and comfort. There are some wan moments, but in the large their probing is substantiated by some very inspired interplay. For folks who like to move. The raw and slick intermingle to produce a uninhibitedly sensual package. Smith whines, scampers, and growls with a pinched, sawtooth sound. Lindberg is a soft foil. They're mostly gorgeous, legato melodies. Their pure, quick-witted conversations are writ large against a terrain of haunting silence.
Lonnie Smith, Evolution Hipper than scads of hipsters, Smith's got a cool reserve that sets him apart —he knows how to hold back as well as let go. Plus scope, playfulness and more than its fair share of intrigue. Smith catapults the soul-jazz formula into new territory with surprise dynamics, orchestral textures and big-picture arrangements. It might also be the fact that the group, which expands to a sextet with the addition of Tarmure and violist Mat Maneri on one of two versions of a traditional wedding song, plays without artifice, whether they are mining Transylvanian folklore or paying tribute to Sun Ra.
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Louis Arena St. Nevertheless, due in large part to the DVD boom, the proliferation of DIRECTV, and the advent of webcasting, North American live music attendance continues to decline—roughly 3 percent annually1 since —without question, one of the most disastrous years in industry history.
That January, the Bottom Line, the Greenwich Village club famous for helping catapult the career of Bruce Springsteen, shut its doors after nearly thirty years. In June, the traditionally thirty—odd stop Lollapalooza festival was cancelled due to poor sales. According to industry magazine Pollstar, ticket sales for the first half of were up 20 percent over the first half of —this despite a corresponding But all it really proves is that concertgoing, typically identified with community, has, in fact, become a rather exclusive pastime.
In OctoberLake Group Media—a company that handles list management for promoterheavyweight Live Nation—put the average household income of Live Nation ticket-buyers at eighty-five thousand dollars. After a three-year recession, in the economy was finally showing signs of life.
But rather than restrain ticket prices to stimulate growth, promoters raced to recoup their losses by charging an average seven dollars more per head. And for what? About the only thing that passed for improvisation was a lipsynching snafu. And yet, these examples only further illustrate the degree to which visual media was altering even my once-stalwart notion of what expressly constituted the concertgoing experience.
All the same, unvarying set lists, obligatory encores, seats so remote you wound up watching the action on a big screen anyhow. Might as well stay at home, order it on Pay-Per-View, save the money, and spare the aggravation. Such was the apparent consensus among concertgoers, myself included. Until, that is, something happened to check my cynicism and restore my faith in the life-affirming, life-altering power of live music.
In early November ofI took an unpaid fashion internship with a pop culture glossy. No problem. I walked crosstown in the rain, dodging both the spray of passing cabs and obnoxiously oversized golf umbrellas. I was so busy wishing the day would end and feeling sorry for myself that, as I entered the elevator, I hardly noticed the diminutive, bald man exiting. Still, there was something familiar about him.
Before I could get a better look, the elevator doors closed. Big to be sure, with cathedral ceilings and an unobstructed view of the Hudson, presently obscured by darkness and rain. Not so quotidian were the bundles of concert tickets strewn across the carpet and coffee table and couch. I declined. You deserve something for walking all the way over here in that mess.
So that, while only passingly familiar with R. Of course, in explaining to her what had happened, I acted nothing but apologetic. Just how much better I never imagined. Then he examined me. My clothes were still sopping, my smile uncouthly wide, my eyes bulging in disbelief while darting feverishly between the surrounding glitterati, among them chef Mario Batali, tossing popcorn into the air and catching it in his mouth.
K— arrived just as the guitar techs were finishing their tune-ups. She wore a spangled, backless, black halter and her tight, black curls relieved of the ponytail favored around the office. In the narrow workplace, its walls lined with computers and fax machines and postage meters whose purchase he had if not outright authorized then at least petitioned for, D— cut an imposing figure, thanks furthermore to the dark-hued sportcoats ostensibly custom-tailored to his power-forward frame.
Unaided by the home-court advantage of Prince Street, however, he seemed affable enough. He asked where I was from. I told him Ohio. He grinned and shook his head. There followed a cadence-setting snare drum, then a burst of whirling primary colors from the spotlights above the stage. I jumped up from my seat, beer in hand.
Fortunately, he was too riveted by the opening number to notice. It was the first time R. No doubt, the gesture was intended as momento mori. For me, though, the tune was more hopeful than defeatist. Monday morning, I went into the office and took the golden retriever for its first walk of the day.
A month or so later, I got to write a seventy-fiveword album review. Though generally synonymous—as in my case with R. As for what standards led to the ensuing assemblage of writers, I had only one: I chose those whose work I admire.
This project gave me a reason other than mere adulation to keep Harvey Pekar on the phone for forty-five minutes and trade three-in-themorning e-mails with David Gates.
The ploy worked to equal effect on my biggest hero of all: my father. It took him four months, but he finally finished. Elvis was the most memorable concert I ever saw. Did I see him before my son was born or after? Was I still a copywriter or had I taken the marketing position? Were we still in the apartment or had we bought our first house? Why was I having so much trouble remembering? Heck, I can remember events from fifty years ago like they were yesterday.
How about Lynn Fisher, my first-grade crush? She taught me how to color. I played dumb, pretending crayons were candy, just to be with her. No, I can remember back, way back. She assured me we did, in fact, go together. Feeling better, I asked her if we had fun. We went with Ted and Karen. Before long, I started to remember details of the concert, including the fact I was not too keen on going. Never a great fan of Elvis, I preferred Motown. Smokey and Marvin owned me with their soulful sound.
I was thirty at the time, and Elvis was forty, almost over the hill in my mind. Ted, a good friend from Memphis who looked and sounded like the King, was the one who suggested we go. Reluctantly, I agreed. Our wives needed little convincing. On a hot summer night, July 11,the four of us left Akron and drove to the Richfield Coliseum. About ten miles from the arena, traffic slowed to a dead stop. The smell of perfume, not pot, permeated the air. At first, the event seemed more like a circus than a concert.
Barkers were hawking the Elvis profile on every item known to man, from toothbrushes to leather jackets. Finally, the lights went down, the music came up, and the women went wild as Elvis walked slowly on stage. Peering through binoculars, I could see him in his famous white-sequined jumpsuit. Elvis began to speak and the crowd went silent, not to miss a word. His down-home voice welcomed us and promised us a good time. And then he let it rip. Rock, blues, ballads, gospel—he nailed them all while wiping sweat from his brow with scarves and tossing them to a pool of frenzied females in the front rows.
The place was going crazy. During one pause, Elvis asked for the houselights to go up so he could see his fans. Come on down and get your kiss. But what I remember most about that evening was the way it ended. Have a good evening, and drive safely.
There have been many changes in my life and in the world. Somehow, I grew older, but Elvis stayed the same. And now, thanks to your story, so will you, Dad. It all started innocently enough. The money had been raised by the older members of the Y, merchants, professionals, and clergymen who were the informal government of black Buffalo, and who negotiated with the white government that wielded power in the community.
I was very active in high school clubs and had used the Y as a second home where I would go and swim and try to set down some chord changes on the piano. There were many eccentric characters who would come to the Y. One was a guy who called himself Lord Johnny. He taught me some blues chord changes that I later learned were the ones that Charlie Parker used.
Parker changes. Maybe to Chattanooga, where my mother and stepfather were born. Once to New York, where the highlight of the trip was a glimpse of the boxer Sugar Ray Robinson standing in front of his bar. I was a shy person and was embarrassed by all of the attention paid to those of us who were going on the trip.
We lived in the lowermiddle-class neighborhood on Riley Street, having moved from East Utica where my parents had rented. We lived in the projects before that.
There was a woman who lived across the street. She looked like a young Etta James. It was difficult to avoid looking into her bedroom from where I slept on the sun porch. I had some serious fantasies about her. My interest in women was beginning, but the ones to whom I was attracted were older than me. Walter Dukes, the basketball star at Seton Hall, was studying international law at the time.
For some reason, he had appointed himself my chaperone. We once went to a club in Pigalle, and watched nude dancers until we fell asleep over champagne. When we awoke, the club had emptied out and it was dawn. She pointed at us. I have a memory from the proceedings that shows how things were before the drive for civil rights. Some of the white kids who were members of the Southern delegation got angry. When I returned to Buffalo, I was a different person. I bought a trombone and began to play with a group of young musicians.
I had studied the trombone in high school and had played the violin in elementary school. I took up the violin, again, in high school and formed a string quartet there. We had a band that would play Stan Kenton arrangements. One of those on saxophone was Don Menza, who went on to play with Maynard Ferguson. The star among the young black musicians was an alto player named Claude Walker. He was a prodigy. But he liked jazz and was playing hard bop before there was a name for it.
Claude later died in a fire. Before that he had a shoot-out with the police. His was a talent snuffed out as a result of being unable to graduate to a larger stage. One of his friends was jazz pianist Wade Legge, who used to fascinate us with his stories about jazz musicians in New York. Wade died in his twenties. I still listen to Wade on the only solo album he made from Blue Note. He deserves more recognition. If our group had a god, it was Miles Davis.
People tell you what they were doing when Kennedy was shot or when the Twin Towers fell. The sound epitomized where I was and what I wanted to be. I played Birth of the Cool until it was all worn out. And so when we heard that Miles was going to perform in Buffalo, we were excited. The night came.
September 21, We were all standing on the corner when this cab drove up and Miles got out. The black men we were used to were really square. They were working-class types and professionals who were a part of an emerging middle class. Buffalo was, at that time, a backward, dull town where there was little to do. When Jazz at the Philharmonic came to town, there was a scandal at Kleinhans Music Hall because the boppers began to dance in the aisles. Ben Webster was LP) for possession of a few joints.
It was a conservative town, where people went around assassinating abortion doctors, the Catholic Church being very powerful there. This was before Leslie Fiedler, John Barth, and others came to town. Fiedler also got busted for pot. Miles was performing with Sonny Lockjaw Davis. Miles played these up-tempo numbers, and Lockjaw seemed to fumble around his keys in an attempt to keep up with him. My friends were scared to approach him.
But I had been to Paris. I was fearless and worldly. And so I asked Miles for his autograph as my friends looked on in terror. He obliged. I told him that he was well known in Paris.
I wanted him to know that I had been to Paris. A man knocked over his trumpet that was perched atop a piano. This guy is going to get it, we thought. But Miles was cool. He inspected the trumpet for damage, and seeing none he continued the break. Miles paused during his concert to listen to the fight. I was flabbergasted. Suddenly, standing before me was Kathleen Battle, the Diva.
Miles at this club on William Street in Buffalo. I think the name was the Casablanca. But Miles, in his sharp suit and dark glasses and cool sounds, convinced me that I wanted to be where all of that was taking place.
That my hometown could not hold me. That I wanted the world. I sat in the peanut gallery at Birdland, cover charge a dollar and Cokes a dime. My gods were Monk, Miles, and Mingus. My disdain was directed at anything popular. Bop was high art; pop was slop.
I was a pre-teen elitist who could recite the members of all five herds shepherded by Woody Herman. Then, when I was twelve, my dad was transferred. Texas was from another era. I was depressed in Dallas, a suburban city with no street life and strict segregation. The teen culture was fixated on football and cars. Only in the far reaches of black South Dallas, some twenty miles from my home, could you catch an after-hours jam session.
The only new music—new for me—that caught my ear was rhythm and blues and gospel. I liked it in spite of myself. My cathedral of high art came crashing down. In my second year of high school, at age fifteen, I started writing for the Thomas Jefferson Reveille, the student newspaper. The faculty advisor saw that I was drawn to non-conventional stories. Soon, she let me pick my own topics. I immediately chose music. Early on, I realized that my natural bent was for celebration.
I liked to praise. When I loved something, my prose improved. She suggested that instead of writing record reviews, I review a live performance.
I had long imagined what it might be like to engage Ray Charles or Bo Diddley in conversation—or at least sit in the same room with them. They would be open and friendly, appreciative of my interest in them, impressed with my knowledge of their music. The problem, though, was that this spring neither Ray nor Bo were due in Dallas.
But Jimmy Reed was. Back in the fifties, Jimmy Reed ruled the Texas airwaves. In my mind, Reed bridged the gap between backcountry and big city blues.
Reed seemed to have one foot in each camp. He sounded primitive as all hell, but the bad boys in my high school with their blue suede shoes had him blasting from their customized Chevys. In suburban Dallas, Jimmy Reed was part of the canon of white teenage rebellion. I was amazed. Even on a cool April night, the place was sweltering hot. And then the way he looked: a leopard-skinned guitar at his chest, a gleaming gold harp at his mouth, his slicked-back hair, his razor-sharp moustache, his lime green silk suit, his banana yellow tie, his white buck shoes.
Brenda Wootton With Robert Bartlett (2) - Starry-Gazey Pie (Vinyl, LP, Album), Come Saturday Morning, James Session - Woody Herman & His Herd* Vs. Harry James & His Music Makers - Battle Of The, Welcome Back - Various - Potential EP (File, MP3), Little Secrets - Sacred Warrior - Wicked Generation (CD, Album), Salve Pater Nominum - Exaudi Nos - Dominique Vellard, Emmanuel Bonnardot, Gerd Türk, Schola Cantorum, Metal Devil - Cage (4) - Hell Destroyer (Vinyl, LP, Album), La Fugue - Pierre Jacquemart - A Marie (Vinyl, LP, Album), Only My Heart Talkin - Alice Cooper (2) - Trash (CD, Album), Anche Ti Pizarre - Oblivione - Zahir (CDr, Album), Lames De Sel - Devianz - À Corps Interrompus (CD, Album), Hey Jude/Saved By The Bell - Klaus Wunderlich - The Collection Volume 2 (CD)