Michael Fitzgerald

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Everything posted by Michael Fitzgerald

  1. The King Is Gone - Benny Carter RIP

    I am sad to pass on the news of the passing of one of the greatest musicians ever. Benny Carter - saxophonist, arranger, composer, trumpeter, bandleader, talent scout - died this morning in a Los Angeles hospital. His recording career stretched back to 1927 and he did it all. I can't begin to summarize what an incredible life he led and what an empty place this leaves in the world. www.bennycarter.com will be the place to check for details on memorial services. Mike
  2. J.R. Monterose

    Wrapping up another discography, this one of J.R. Monterose. Hoping someone can supply tracklist/timings for East-West 4004 George Wallington: The Prestidigitator, also composer for the tracks "Jouons" and "The Prestidigitator" and studio, if known. There will be a few other questions still to come. Preview found here: http://www.JazzDiscography.com/Artists/Monterose Thanks - Mike
  3. Randy Sandke

    Amazingly, trumpeter Randy Sandke has just issued *three* new albums on the Evening Star label (established by Benny Carter and Ed Berger). The first I listened to was "Outside In", which points to the ability that Sandke has for making music that is very much aware of the early jazz tradition (Bix, Jelly Roll, Duke, etc.) but also stretching the boundaries of jazz. I mean, one of the tunes is "Ornette Chop Suey" - you get the point? The band is remarkable: Wycliffe Gordon AND Ray Anderson on trombones; Marty Ehrlich, Scott Robinson, AND Ken Peplowski on woowinds; Uri Caine on piano; Greg Cohen on bass; and Dennis Mackrel on drums. Howard Alden plays guitar on one track. Some of the same guys are on the other CDs (The Mystic Trumpeter - Sandke, Robinson, Gordon, Ted Rosenthal, Cohen, Mackrel; and Trumpet After Dark - Sandke, Bill Charlap, Cohen, Mackrel with a viol consort, yes you read that right.) I'll have to listen more to the other records, but the first is really outstanding. There are pieces by Jelly Roll Morton and Ellington & Strayhorn, but majority are originals by Sandke (with one each by Anderson and Ehrlich). There are some wonderful sounds - occasionally reminiscent of Mingus at times, but then not. CDs are available from Cadence or from CD Baby and probably elsewhere too. For years I tended to lump Sandke in with the Concord Records white swing guys and that was my error based on the records I was exposed to and the gigs he was doing around NYC - playing with Buck Clayton, etc. When it came out in 1994, I really took notice of "The Chase", which had Mike Brecker and Ray Anderson - little did I know that those guys had a lot of history together. Mike Brecker and Sandke (and Ed Berger) attended Indiana University in the late 1960s. And here's a little blurb about Anderson from the Outside In notes by Sandke: "Ray and I go back a long way and went to high school together in Chicago. The school stage band had a rather remarkable trombone section: in addition to Ray we had George Lewis, who recently won a MacArthur grant for his significant contributions to creative music making. The third trombonist was a young African-American named Roscoe Giles who scored perfect 800s on his SATs and went on to become a leading architecht of chaos theory. As Ray notes, Roscoe was so smart he quit playing the trombone altogether." BTW, if you wanted to know more, try here: http://www.math.buffalo.edu/mad/computer-s...les_roscoe.html Anything with Scott Robinson is bound to be interesting and he delivers the goods, playing contrabass saxophone as the voice of God during Genesis 1 and Revelations 8-11. Elsewhere Robinson plays alto, baritone, clarinet, theremin, and waterphone - http://www.richardawaters.com/waterphone/ - an instrument which I was stunned to learn has appeared on about 30 jazz sessions. Everyone gets some space and there's a great opportunity to hear Ken Peplowski and Marty Ehrlich duel on clarinets. What is wonderful is that all these juxtapositions WORK. It would be nice if this kind of thing got more attention, because it really has more to it than so many other major-label things. One last quote going back to the dichotomy: "At concerts I would sometimes see both Joe Klee and Gary Giddins in the house, knowing that one only liked jazz with banjos and tubas and the other couldn't abide that stuff. So in effect I was assured of a bad review from one of them before I'd even played a note. Such are the professional hazards of being a jazz musician in this day and age. As I was writing this tune I thought, boy, Joe Klee would really hate this. But then again he could sometimes surprise you with an unexpected liberal streak. So I figured I'd surprise him with an unexpected musical acknowledgment, and hence, Blues for Joe Klee." Well worth checking out if you are a fan of the musicians involved and of creative jazz that moves the music into the future with a thorough understanding of the past. http://www.randysandke.com/ Mike
  4. He Helped Put The Blue In Blue Note - The History of Jazz Runs Through Rudy Van Gelder Super-typical article on RVG - not yet on the NYT website. It's an entire page - more than half of which is filled with Francis Wolff photos - and not the most common ones, either. It is indeed nice to see this in the NYT - their jazz coverage has declined in quantity and quality to a dismal level. This really isn't news, though. Mike
  5. Alan Bates - Freedom etc.

    Is there any clear history that can be laid out regarding what appears to be a convoluted mess of material - The following terms would be good to see in a response: Alan Bates Chris Whent Michael Cuscuna Polydor Fontana Debut Freedom Arista Arista/Freedom Black Lion (Candid) (Strata East) Date ranges might be good too. This may be a useful reference: http://www.jazzdiscography.com/Labels/freedom.htm Thanks! Mike
  6. OK, so I know I shouldn't have high expectations when I'm watching TV, but I just saw a commercial for a vacuum cleaner that uses the interesting scenario of a restaurant called "Flor" where people sit and eat off the floor. Clever, amusing - based on that old saying, "clean enough you could eat off it". However, there is a small type legal disclaimer "not a real restaurant". Oh really? I was hoping to book reservations. We now have to have "closed course, professional driver" for every auto commercial, etc. How stupid can people get? Can we look forward to constant disclaimers during every movie we watch? "this is a fictional character. Mr. Bogart has never owned a cafe in Morocco."? I'm all for truth in advertising but - really, now. Mike
  7. Bill Triglia

    Just noticed that today is the birthday of pianist Bill Triglia, born this day in 1924. I've done a Triglia discography on my website and I know that there are Triglia fans here. He's played with so many of the legends and is himself an underrecognized legend. He was also an early jazz taper, and not just of his own gigs - I'd love to learn more about what he's got in his collection. So let's wish him a happy 81st! Mike
  8. Straight No Filter LP contents

    Can someone supply the exact track sequence of the 1986 Hank Mobley LP? Not the original CD, not the later CD. Thanks - Mike
  9. Happy Halloween

    Either Texas or...... Delaware. http://edition.cnn.com/2005/US/10/28/mistaken.suicide.ap/ Mike
  10. sexy sax quartet

    Plus ├ža change.....
  11. Sax players with Miles after Shorter (70's only)

    Garrett played pretty well with Miles, but the never ending mimicking trades with their foreheads touching wasn't interesting even the first time. When I saw them I was wishing for Bob Berg again. Mike
  12. Stan Kenton - City of Glass

    Many thanks for the personnel! The Ebony Concerto was in the repertoire of Orchestra U.S.A. - they performed it at least twice (1963 & 1964, the second time with Bill Smith on clarinet). I haven't discovered tapes yet, but it would be great to hear those interpretations as the band was a blend of jazz and classical players. Mike
  13. Art Blakey's favorite/best messenger group

    Sometimes he would introduce groups as "the best dammned jazz messengers since 1963", so that one was pretty high up there. Although it redefined their sound and approach, the band with Golson didn't spend all that much time together. Mike
  14. Jazz 1986 hunger benefit recording

    I don't remember ever hearing of this before. Anyone? Did the instrumental version ever get made? Mike ======================================== http://www.loc.gov/rr/mopic/findaid/jazz/g-j.html JAZZ TO END HUNGER. Copyright Collection Jazz to End Hunger, Inc., 1986. 4 mins., color, 1/2" videocassette. VAA 7570 A press clip of the efforts of a collection of jazz personalities to help raise money for the hungry in the U.S., including moments from their performance of "Keep the Dream Alive" featuring a jazz ensemble, orchestra, and chorus. Includes short interviews with Larry Carlton, Billy Eckstine and Carmen McRae. ======================================== Benefit With a Jazz Twist Records, video to aid the hungry THE SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE February 17, 1986 Author: JESSE HAMLIN, CHRONICLE CORRESPONDENT Los Angeles After Band Aid, We Are the World, Live Aid and Farm Aid, it shouldn't come as a surprise that the jazz musicians have gotten together to make a benefit recording to feed hungry people. But unlike the big benefits for African relief, Jazz to End Hunger aims to raise money for starving Americans (skip the jokes about starving jazzmen). Some big names in jazz gathered here last week to make a record and video called "Keep the Dream Alive," a pop anthem jazzified by singers Carmen McRae, Billy Eckstine, Della Reese, Kenny Rankin, Mark Murphy, Sue Raney and others. They were backed by a studio choir of 35 and such venerable jazzmen as Ray Brown, Tom Scott, Ernie Watts, Stanley Clarke, Bill Watrous, Victor Feldman and Alan Broadbent. A pure jazz instrumental version of the tune will be recorded next month in New York with Gerry Mulligan, Miles Davis, Wayne Shorter, Louis Bellson, Clark Terry, Michael Brecker and others. Both versions should be on the airwaves by late spring. From the sale of 45 single recordings, short and long videos and the proceeds from benefit concerts later this year, the Jazz to End Hunger Foundation hopes to raise $10 million for the homeless and hungry in the land of plenty. "It's great to feed hungry people around the world," said singer Eloise Laws (flutist Hubert's sister), "but what about people starving right here in our own backyard?" Said Kenny Rankin, "I did a concert in Seattle, and on my way to buy some salmon, I saw a man reaching into the gutter and eating some discarded grapes. I'll never forget that. Some of us are privileged, but there's poverty all around us." Jazz to End Hunger proceeds will be funneled through Hands Across America, the Los Angeles-based Community Food Resources and other food banks around the country. Michael McIntosh, a 35-year-old record and concert producer, is the man behind Jazz Aid. He got everybody from the musicians to the unions, the sound engineers and the studios to waive their fees. He said he loaned the foundation $20,000 of his own money, and will donate his producer's fee to the cause. "The jazz community was overlooked by Live Aid and `We Are the World,' " said McIntosh, a Sacramento boy who played harmonica in San Francisco rock bands before leaving for lotus land. "There are legendary musicians who wanted to help but were never asked. Now they have the opportunity to say, `We're still alive and we have something to contribute.' `We Are the World' had stars, but we have legends. Cyndi Lauper is cute, but she'll never be a Carmen McRae." McRae grumbled a bit about having to hang around the Evergreen Studios in beautiful downtown Burbank all afternoon while the choir rehearsed, but she sang her heart out anyway. "It's an important cause and I want to help," she said. "And I think it's a real catchy tune, better than `We Are they World.' I played the tape for some square friends and they dug it." On the record, McRae swaps solo lines with Kenny Rankin, Lorenz Alexandra, Dianne Schuur and Billy Eckstine, who kept the singers laughing with Ben Webster and Count Basie stories, and his Fats Domino imitation. Mr. B. finally signed his release form after complaining that the bulky document was "a lot of junk to read for a benefit. It's all those `herebys' and "whereases' that worry me. OK, I'll sign it . . . Arthur Prysock." It is the singers' individual timbres and phrasing that gives the vocal version of "Keep the Dream Alive" its jazz flavor. No two takes sounded the same. "No, uh-uh, I don't like that one at all," said McRae after hearing the playback of her solo. "I like mine," chimed in Rankin, "can we keep it in?" Carmen did another take and seemed satisfied with it. Dianne Schuur, the young blind singer with the powerhouse voice, sang her lines from a Braille script. "I wanted to meet you," McRae told Schuur. "I like what you do." Said Schuur later, "I can't believe I'm here with all of these amazing people." "Keep the Dream Alive" was co-written by composers Andrew Belling and Don Grady, better known as Robbie on "My Three Sons." "We rewrote this song several times," said Grady. "At first they wanted it jazzier, then more poppish. It had to be hip, but not so jazzy it couldn't reach the non-jazz fans. Now it's kinda pop with a jazz feeling. "We won't make any money from it, but hearing these incredible singers doing our song is payment enough." PHOTO CUTLINE: (1) Kenny Rankin, Billy Eckstine and Carmen McRae at the recording session for `Keep the Dream Alive, (2) Singers held hands for the video of the benefit jazz record organized by Michael McIntosh (with goatee, second row back, far right) / PHOTOS BY EMILY LIEU
  15. Double Six of Paris

    True - late 1961 into early 1962 (as a singer, not as an organist). Mike
  16. Double Six of Paris

    Last Double Six was in 1964. They kind of evolved into the Swingle Singers. Here's some updates: Mimi Perrin (did not do the Swingle thingle) has been translator for the works of novelist John LeCarre. The most recent Christiane Legrand album I know of is 1989's "Nul Ne Sait" which includes Egberto Gismonti on a track. She was a member of the Swingle Singers and also had a group called Quire. Also in both the Swingles and the Double Six was Ward Swingle who afterwards lived in London, then the US for years, but apparently is back in France now. There still is a group called the Swingle Singers but he is behind the scenes. http://www.wardswingle.com/ Other good history info here: http://www.swinglesingers.com/history/beginnings_r.html Jean-Claude Briodin appeared on a 1992 album by Michel Legrand (brother of Christiane). There was a Double Six singer named Jacques Denjean - is the same JD who was later a pianist and conductor? Or perhaps just a common name. Mike
  17. Cream

    I think this reunion will go down in history, not because of the music, but because of the plethora of hackneyed newspaper article titles. Must have been thinking Traffic, not Cream - (Sometimes I Feel So) Uninspired. Mike BTW - I wonder if Clapton's comment might have referred to the previous tune: Pressed Rat And Warthog - which, until this reunion, really had never been done onstage, right?
  18. Stan Kenton - City of Glass

    Yes, I've got that one - and the bastards at RCA neglected to include the personnel details (OK, they do list Joel Weiskopf on the back cover and Tiberi and Riekenberg are mentioned on the insert). Could you supply? Mike
  19. Cream

    Ummm - he must have been smoking something. What exactly is track 4 on side one of Live Cream, Volume II? Mike
  20. Good Smell Perplexes New Yorkers

    Errr-ahhh..... the city of New York has ahh.... been officially declared to be ahhh... fragrant. Vote Quimby.
  21. Charles Tolliver Mosaic Select 20

    Tune goes all the way back to 1966 Charles Lloyd days as Wilpan's on "The Flowering Of The Original Charles Lloyd Quartet" but that was issued in 1971, I guess before the Music Inc. record (rec. May 1, 1970, issued as Strata East 1972 - in 1972). Also recorded a week earlier on April 26, 1970 at Left Bank Jazz Society, Baltimore, MD and issued as Roy Brooks: The Free Slave on Muse, where it was misspelled "Will Pan's Walk". Mike
  22. NEW, NEVER HEARD, DIZZY & BIRD FROM UPTOWN

    Yeah, it'll be record of the year until McDonough hears the new Coltrane at the Half Note set..... Mike
  23. Miles Cellar Door Update

    Man, Miles fired that MF and now he's calling the shots? Mike
  24. Coltrane

    http://www.mosaicrecords.com/prodinfo.asp?number=MS-016 Mike
  25. Coltrane

    It's all about the estates and whether they get the figure that in their heads they are entitled to. Throw enough money at them and anything is possible. Alice Coltrane works on the "dribs and drabs" principle, only allowing a little at a time, always holding something back. That's one way of doing it. The Andrew Hill approach is another. Mike