Larry Kart

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About Larry Kart

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  • Birthday 05/16/1942

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  • Location Highland Park, Il.

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  1. What Classical Music Are You Listening To?

    Can't find this on Amazon. How did you get it?
  2. Lou Mecca

    And do not miss out on Joe Cinderella. I'm not aware of any Cinderella on record apart from Melle, but what is there is choice. Interesting that Melle could hook up with two such individual and talented guitarists. Must have been New Jersey; I think both of them hailed from there. Mecca, as the track linked to above suggests, was very much into Tal Farlow, though I would never mistake him for Tal.
  3. Lou Mecca

    Having long admired his work with Gil Melle, and that of fellow Melle gjuitarist Joe Cinderella as well, I just picked up a Fresh Sound compilation of Mecca's 1953 Blue Note ten-inch LP, with Bill DeArango's EmArcy 10-incher, and the Chuck Wayne material with Brew Moore and Zoot Sims that came out on Savoy. Have listened so far to the Mecca -- boy do I like him:
  4. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    Maybe he was thinking "Not in my time" (that gig took place maybe eight years earlier) or maybe he was just sick of people thinking that they could address him because he was standing there and letting people in. Fortunately, the performance he was taking tickets for that night -- a band led by bassist-composer Alex Cuadrado -- turned out to be excellent.
  5. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    I wonder, too. Caught him live at the Jazz Gallery some ten years ago with a Mark Helias group that included Herb Robertson, Craig Taborn, and IIRC Eric Harland, and Shim and everyone sounded terrific. Also, a perfect NYC-attitude experience -- I was at the Jazz Gallery a few years ago and mentioned to the ticket taker at the door how mesmorable that Helias group performance was and how good Shim had sounded. He said with great certainty that Shim had never played at the Jazz Gallery. When I told him that I had in fact heard Shim there, he said, and not at all in a nice way (if such be possible), "You're lying." Too bad I really wanted to see the band I'd bought a ticket for that night; otherwise I would have torn it up and thrown the pieces in his face.
  6. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    OP can take care of himself. The point/problem with Wynton IMO is of a different sort. As I said above, it has to do with "his and his advocates' drive to reshape the course of the music" -- and that they did so and/or tried to do so through rhetorical and control-of-institution means, not merely or essentially through musical ones, as was the case with, say, the advent of bop. Nor am I aware of any precedent in jazz for the sort and degree of extra-musical social engineering that was pulled off by Wynton and the Wyntonians from the early '80s on. Further, when it comes to control-of-institution putdowns, those who watched the Ken Burns "Jazz" series (yup, THAT again) may recall Wynton's account toward the end of the series (probably in the final episode) of his attempt to come out the audience in the midst of a performance by Lester Bowie's Brass Fantasy and engage Bowie in a trumpet battle -- a "challenge" that Bowie, again was in the midst of a performance by his own band and also 20 years Wynton's senior, pointedly chose to ignore. Wynton's account of what happened then leads into the "Jazz" narrator's claim that Bowie and other AACM musicians never had a significant black audience in the U.S., and that they had to go to France to garner some positive response -- the clear implication being that this response was illegitimate because it was bestowed on them by white foreigners. Ugly stupid crap. See p. 230 of Paul Steinbeck's new book on the AEC, "Message To Our Folks," for chapter and verse on Wynton's "challenge" to Bowie and what it then led to in the Burns "Jazz" series.
  7. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    I see why you'd say so, and I certainly have no desire to dance around that maypole one more time. I just wanted it not to be forgotten (as I think it may tend to be) that Wynton, for whatever reasons, tried to/managed to transform himself (and in fairly short order) from one sort of musician into another. Yes, one evolves/grows, but in real time and otherwise, this seemed to be something different.
  8. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    To quote something I posted on FB yesterday (see from sentence two to the end) "Wynton came to be quite a jerk, and a dangerous one at that, given his and his advocates' drive to reshape the course of the music; but when I met him fairly early on (when he was with Blakey and shortly thereafter) he was undeniably talented and a nice guy. One of the odd and perhaps semi-forgotten aspects of his career is the way he distorted his own genuine musical gifts in an attempt to play like the Noble Young Prince of the Realm he was touted to be, when in fact (and/or IMO) his temperament was more or less that of a virtuosic trickster/imp -- a la, say, Charlie Shavers. A few recordings capture him in that mode -- as a sideman on Chico Freeman's "Destiny's Dance" (1981) and on "Jazz at the Opera House," from 1982, in a band with Wayne Shorter, Bobby Hutcherson, Herbie Hancock, Charlie Haden, and Tony Williams. As for Wynton's pompous, empty, and often technically inept work as a long-form composer -- don't get me started.
  9. "Mingus Three" pianists

    Listened to the Brigham-Land tracks. No clue there as to what Brigham was like; Land is the only soloist -- three "jump" numbers and a ballad. Land sounds kind of like Corky Corcoran, not much sense of who he would become, though what is there is not incompatible with his eventual journey to a personal style.
  10. Which Mosaic Are You Enjoying Right Now?

    What Mosaic am I NOT enjoying? "Ruby Braff -- Hi-fi Salute to Bunny" This is what I posted on Mosaic's site: Disappointing then, more disappointing now Bought this on RCA when it first came out in 1957 and felt that it was a surprisingly lifeless date, given the eminence of the young Braff and the quality, on paper at least, of the rest of the band [Peewee Russell, Benny Morton, Dick Hafer, Nat Pierce, Steve Jordan, Walter Page, Buzzy Drootin]. I attributed this lifelessness in part to the rather claustrophobic sound -- there seemed to have been virtually no resonance to the studio where it was recorded, and enough resonance is crucial to capturing Braff's fat sound -- and bought the Mosaic assuming/hoping that careful remastering would bring improvement. If anything, sound quality is worse than on my old LP; still just as airless -- was the album remastered at all? -- and Nat Pierce's piano even breaks up on several tracks. Wish I could return this one, don't think I'll ever listen to again. [Further thoughts] Whoever wrote the charts for this date (Pierce?) should be horsewhipped. Voicing Peewee in unison with three other horns is asking for big trouble. Instead, just leave him free to swirl about the rest of the ensemble as he sees fit; his instincts in such a setup are almost always right on the money. In any case, Peewee sounds very dispirited here. And to think that just a year before Ruby made that great album "Braff!" (Epic). FWIW, I think Fred Reynolds was the producer here. Horsewhip him, too, damn it.
  11. Lovano and Liebman play Coltrane

    Lovano and Liebman had a Coltrane-esque group, Saxophone Summit, with Markowitz and Hart and Cecil McBee and first Michael Brecker and then, after Brecker's death, with Ravi Coltrane. Wasn't optimistic about the idea or the personnel, but when I ran across the one with Brecker I was impressed, as I was later on by the one with Ravi. Some sincere, inventive, even if you will spiritual playing by all four hornmen. IIRC, Markowitz and Hart also are in fine form.
  12. "Mingus Three" pianists

    Based on the personnel listings of those LA-area jam/session concert recordings, and some studio dates of the time as well, my sense is that the Central Avenue etc. scene was fairly well integrated for the U.S. at that time. Art Pepper speaks of this in "Straight Life," saying that it was all about the music or something of the sort, but it's hard to take Art's word for anything at face value. Also, perhaps in line with Mike Weil's post above, I think that the L.A. scene of the time understandably sorted players out primarily on a "Who do I feel comfortable with?" stylistic basis. One was in the club if one knew the right tunes and the hip harmonic and rhythmic patterns -- these being transmitted in part through contact with Bird et al. while Bird was there and playing but probably for the most part through the not yet widely distributed Dial and Savoy recordings. IIRC, I believe Ross Russell has stated (like Pepper, not the most reliable source, though I trust Russell on this) that in the LA area these and the then-few similar bop recordings were available primarily if not exclusively at his local record store, and lots of musicians hung out there to check them out. Compared to NYC bop of the time, one shaping difference then might be that NYC players could check out key figures in clubs and the occasional concert, while in California information primarily came from the aforementioned recordings, what one's California colleagues were playing/how they were developing, with some regional stuff perhaps filtering in, a la what Jim mentioned above. P.S. Criss, Teddy, Edwards, and Harold Land too, plus at least one other San Diego guy, supposedly top-level trumpeter Froebel Bingham, who reportedly never played a gig outside that city. (There's at least one recording date from him, with Land, from 1949, on that "Black California" set; I need to check it out.) Actually, both Criss and Land may be examples of what I alluded to above -- both men clearly responding to bop but retaining some more or less Swing-Era (a la the Savoy Sultans' Rudy Williams, in Criss's case) habits longer than most of their NYC counterparts would or did. Of course, in Criss' case that may have just been because of who Criss was as a man and musician, but with Land I think that in addition to temperament it was the result of his California relative semi-isolation. I think he must have been an admirer early on of Coleman Hawkins (of course), Herschel Evans, Dick Wilson, and Chu Berry; that he retained much of his personal translation of that fuzzy-warm vibe for so long is among the reasons I like Land. In any case, if one could have whisked the young Land off the NYC in the late '40s, I don't think he would have been the same player in, say, 1955-7 that he turned out to be. P.P.S. Yes, Wardell too for Land, Dexter maybe not so much.
  13. "Mingus Three" pianists

    Jim's response counts as a good splash to me. Weird that I remembered that line from the animated "Peter Pan" after all these years.