Mark Stryker

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Everything posted by Mark Stryker

  1. Richie Cole

    Also, this is out there. A good representation of the Jefferson/Cole barnstorming show. Note that this Sunday matinee on May 6, 1979 at the Jazz Showcase in Chicago was Jefferson's second to last performance. Two days later in Detroit, after finishing opening night Tuesday at Baker's Keyboard Lounge, he was shot outside the club in the wee hours of the morning of the 9th in a drive-by shooting. A 41-year-old unemployed factory worker who was also described as a frustrated dancer and had known Jefferson a decade earlier in New York, was arrested and charged with the murder, but a jury acquitted him after a three-week trial. Coda: The trio here are all became good friends of mine. Pianist John Campbell, bassist Kelly Sill, and drummer Joel Spencer. I can't believe how young they all are here . Here's how my paper, the Detroit Free Press, covered the initial shooting. (I was only 15 at the time and wouldn't joined the paper for another 16 years in 1995.) (I can't seem to get the rest of the story to post -- appears to be too large a file.)
  2. Richie Cole

    I always thought Cole sounded best right out of the gate with Buddy Rich. Otherwise, I was not a fan; often too corny. But I genuinely appreciated his drive to keep going, even after the jazz media moved on and he dealt with his own personal issues. Always respect a committed road dog. That cat spent a LOT of time in vans touring everywhere. Anyway, he gets some nice solo space on Buddy's "Keep the Customer Satisfied" LP in 1970, and here's some footage of him with the band that same year.
  3. Alto Saxophone/Guitar Duos

    Gang -- I'm trying to help a friend discover whether or not there are any recordings out there of alto saxophone/guitar duets. And if not alto/guitar, then perhaps tenor/guitar. I couldn't come up with any full albums off the top, though I pointed him to the Paul Desmond/Jim Hall recordings to see if there are individual tracks done as duos. I have since learned of a French radio broadcast from 1980 of three tunes pairing Konitz and Jimmy Raney. So, anything come to mind? Thanks.
  4. Alto Saxophone/Guitar Duos

    Thanks, all.
  5. Anthony Davis - X, The Life and Times of Malcolm X

    Nice social media marketing for the opera. Coda: Two of these musicians, saxophonist Marcus Elliot and bassist Marion Hayden are featured in “Jazz from Detroit.’
  6. Gang -- does anyone know if the trio of Grant Green, Larry Young, and Elvin Jones ever played any live gigs anywhere? If yes, can you point to some specific documentation or provide any clues that might lead me to some? Thanks.
  7. My latest for Jazz Times goes deep on Sonny Rollins” profound influence on Steve Lacy. Hell, yes, Lacy played bebop — for a hot minute.
  8. Anthony Davis - X, The Life and Times of Malcolm X

    This from Seth Colter Walls in the NYT. I'll be at the premiere on Saturday.
  9. Musicians don't typically diss their own work, but this 1980 Detroit Free Press interview with Carla Bley contains one of the nuttiest quotes you'll ever see: "It's going to be absolutely hideous. Horrible things will happen. Music stands will fall over and everybody will forget their parts.” The story itself is actually rather sad.
  10. Long profile of Flora Purim by Ann Powers.
  11. I would like to hear that promo record. Carla did one of the great Sidran on Record radio programs back in the day, and via one of Ben's oldest and closest friends, I got a copy of the entire unedited interview, not just the stuff that made it to air. It's hilarious, partly because Carla is so out there and some of the stuff she says is just charmingly nutty. It's hard to tell what, if anything is a put-on.
  12. David Baker R.I.P.

    David Baker's Indianapolis-based big band, 1958, including Freddie Hubbard, Larry Ridley, Buddy Baker, John Pierce, Paul Plummer, Joe Hunt. David wrote the charts. Many here would soon be working with George Russell -- David, Plummer, Pierce, Hunt. Here's a more personal connection for me: The bass trombone player in the band, Tom Ringo, who did a stint with Kenton in the early '60s, was someone I knew well growing up in Bloomington. His son, Tad, was a friend, and Tom taught history at my high school and coached baseball in the summer. Tom used to give me arranging advice when I started writing charts for my high school jazz band, and he would tell me stories about being on the road with Kenton. But Tom also took an interest in me and a couple of my friends who were also academically inclined. One summer he ran an American history colloquium for the three of us. He gave us weekly or biweekly readings from a college-level American history survey text -- "The Growth of the American Republic" (Commager/Morison) -- and we'd meet and talk about them. There is no question that experience led to my majoring in history in college. Tom was a sweet, generous man.
  13. Mingus & Cecil on a TV Show

    Not to high jack the thread, but this film was on my mind today as I put together a list of my 10 favorite Mingus records for his centennial. The same personnel played these same tow compositions at Monterey a week later and at UCLA two weeks later. The latter recordings shows up on my list. FWIW, here's what I came up with. Note that these are my personal favorites, not my view of the "best" or most "important" or "influential." When someone new to Mingus asks me where to start, I always default to "Mingus Ah Um." 1. Black Saint and the Sinner Lady (1963) 2. Let My Children Hear Music (1971) 3. Charles Mingus @ Bremen, 1964 & 1975 4. Mingus at Monterey (1964) 5. Music Written For Monterey, 1965, UCLA 6. Charles Mingus Presents Charles Mingus (1960) 7. Mingus Mingus Mingus Mingus Mingus (1963) 8. Tijuana Moods (1957) 9 Pre-Bird (1960) 10. If I don't say Mingus Ah Um (1959) I will get flamed Coda 1: Upon reflection, what I would like to do if the judges will allow it: Replace Mingus Ah Um with Blues & Roots -- BUT also take "Self Portrait in Three Colors" from the former as a single bonus track. Coda 2: Note that the Bremen concerts at No. 3 gets me early all of the Changes One/Two material by the Adams/Pullen/Walrath band in 1975, as well as a great concert by the '64 sextet with Dolphy/Jordan/Coles/Byard. (Of course, Dannie Richmond plays on both.)
  14. Mingus & Cecil on a TV Show

    The Mingus personnel: Lonnie Hillyer, Hobart Dotson, Jimmy Owens, Julius Watkins, Howard Johnson, Charles McPherson, Mingus, Dannie Richmond. (Three Detroiters here: McPherson, Hillyer, Watkins. McPherson and Owens are the only two still with us.) The cats are bringing it. So is Ellison.
  15. Studio Only Groups

    What are some of the influential, landmark or special ensembles in jazz that existed solely in the recording studio, or at most played just a few gigs. Armstrong Hot Five and Hot Seven -- I think the Hot Five appeared in public only once, at an event for OKeh Records. Miles' Birth of the Cool nonet played, I think, only one two-week engagement at the Royal Roost. (Somebody please correct me if I'm wrong.) What else comes to mind from any era, including recent decades. Particularly interested to more than one-off recordings bands (though those certainly count) but those that perhaps made multiple recordings but still didn't exist outside the studio. Opening the floor to examples ...
  16. Studio Only Groups

    Richard Davis turned 92 on Friday.
  17. Studio Only Groups

    As the original thread starter, I should jump in to say a few things. 1. It is certainly true that a sizeable percentage of all jazz recordings have been made by studio only groups, even if various players within those bands did in fact work together a lot both on record or live. A majority of the BN catalog, for example, is comprised of records like this. 2. I did try to narrow the field by stipulating "influential, landmark or special ensembles" though in retrospect "special" in particular is in the ears and eyes of beholder and so my caveat did not serve to limit the field in the way I was hoping. 3. What I should have been more insistent about stipulating was that I was MOST interested in groups that assembled MORE THAN ONCE in the studio without ever appearing in public (or only doing so on a single occasions or two). The Hot 5/Hot 7 qualify under this standard, so does Miles' Birth of the Cool band and, I think, the Ervin/Byard/Davis/Dawson quartet that was mentioned. 4. This was not aiming toward a column about producers -- though good idea, Jim -- but rather was born of my earlier query about whether the Grant Green/Larry Young/Elvin Jones trio existed outside of the four studio LPs it made for Blue Note -- Talkin' About, Into Something (with Rivers), I Want to Hold Your Hand (with Mobley), Street of Dreams (with Hutcherson). 5. I'm glad folks seem to be having fun, and I'm enjoying listening to tracks that I either haven't heard in forever or didn't know at all -- looking especially at you, Larry. 6. Ellington/Mingus/Roach and "Money Jungle" is another one-off that qualifies, though it would be better for my purposes had they made another record together. Carry on ...
  18. Small Batch from Craft Records

    "Steamin'" -- and I know the exact moment you're talking about. The Workin' and Steamin' twofer (red cover) that came out c. 1973 was among the first records I ever bought with my own money. I was 12, maybe 13. The liner note writer on that twofer goes into some detail about "Diane."
  19. Small Batch from Craft Records

    Everything you say is true, but as someone who would pay $40 for this particular reissue -- it's my favorite Miles record by this quintet -- but who is not willing to pay $100 for it, I would only add that "better sound" that makes "old music" that you love sound "better" is absolutely a reasonable justification for parting with one's money. We all have our price. Coda: I am self-aware enough to realize that while I snicker at the fools willing to pay $100 for this record, I recognize that others are currently snickering at the fool willing to pay $40.
  20. Studio Only Groups

    I think the Little/Dolphy 5 Spot band is an example of a one-off gig of a week or two that got recorded but the band never played together again on record or live. Sonny's "A Night at the Village Vanguard" is another example -- the trio with Wilbur Ware and Elvin Jones only existed for the Sunday night that got recorded. I think the Booker Ervin Quartet you mention may well fit my original premise; that's particularly interesting in that it the group made multiple LPs. Another example is the Grant Green, Larry Young, Elvin Jones trio, which -- despite the thread I started earlier and references to Cuscuna and Coryell that came up -- may not have played any live gigs. (I traded messages with Michael about this is and, without getting into the weeds here, he can't completely confirm that the trio played live. As it happens, I recently traded emails with the writer Mike West, who is doing research on Andrew Hill and was asking me about a gig Hill played in Ann Arbor in early 1967 that included Sam Rivers and a bassist and drummer he was still trying to confirm.
  21. Studio Only Groups

    Good one, thanks. To others: Like to see other examples of groups that made multiple recordings.
  22. As a coda to my thoughts above, I want to add that I consider the December 1949/January 1950 quartet sides with Sonny Stitt in the very top rank of Bud's work with the solos and trios mentioned previously.
  23. Respectfully, I disagree completely. Nothing is on a a higher plane of invention -- and I mean nothing -- than the 1951 solo piano tracks (The Fruit, Dusky 'N' Sandy, Oblivion, Hallucinations, etc.) and the 1949 trios on Clef/Mercury/Verve -- Celia, Tempus fugit, Strictly Confidential, Cherokee, etc, and the Blue Note trios 1949-51. I love the recordings with horns too, and it's certainly reasonable to lament that Bud didn't record more with horns, especially later. But if I want to hear Bud's genius as an improvisor and composer at its most concentrated and expressive, I'm listening to the solos and the trios every time, and I think if you asked any student of Bud's, from Barry Harris on down, they'd say the same thing.
  24. Apropos of this topic, I heard for the first time the other day the Bill Evans/George Russell LP on Columbia, "Living Time," taped in 1972. First of all, what a wild, unexpected recording; not sure how I missed it all these years. But the reason I bring it up here is that I noticed that David Baker is listed in the trombone section. I may have been vaguely aware that at some point his jaw healed to the point where he was able to return to the trombone, but I was not aware he had recorded on the instrument that late. Unless the personnel on the jacket is listed incorrectly.
  25. Geri Allen Has Died

    Ten to Get you Started The Printmakers Etudes Homegrown Open on All Sides Etudes (Paul Motion/Charlie Haden) The Nurturer Twenty One The Gathering Zodiac Suite Revisited Flying Toward the Sound