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JamesAHarrod

Miles at the Haig

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I am reading the recently published autobiography of Walter Hopps, The Dream Colony. Hopps died in 2005 and had been working on the book for several years. Much of that work consisted of audio tapes of Hopps recalling his life. Thanks to those tapes the editors of the book, Deborah Treisman and Anne Doran, have pieced togther a narrative that I am enjoying immensely. Hopps spent some time in Laguna Beach and some of his relatives figured prominanetly in the history of Laguna Beach. His great-great-uncle, Harry Woods, built a Tudor style ocean front manse that was sold to Bette Davis when the Woods family died out. The area is still known today as Woods Cove. 

 
Hopps was an avid jazz fan and regularly visited clubs to hear Billie Holiday, Charlie Parker, Gerry Mulligan, Dave Brubeck, Paul Desmond, etc. In December of 1953 Hopps and Jerry Perenchio presented a concert at UCLA that featured the Lighthouse All Stars, Shorty Rogers Giants, The Dave Pell Quartet, Don Ewell, Barney Kessel, John Graas Modern Jazz Ensemble, and the Chet Baker Quartet. William Claxton mounted an exhibition of his jazz photography in conjunction with the concert. Later in the 1950s and early 1960s Claxton became part of the west coast art scene when Hopps and Edward Kienholz founded the Ferus Gallery.
 
He double dated with Chet Baker and recalled one night at the Haig when Gerry Mulligan stopped the music and told the audience that Miles Davis had just entered the room. According to Hopps Mulligan asked Chet to lend his trumpet to Miles, and Chet sat in the audience while Gerry and Miles completed the set. Hopps does not date the event but stated that shortly after that Gerry spent several months at the Honor Farm in Castaic.
 
At the recent Los Angeles Jazz Institute event Ken Poston presented a survey of Gerry Mulligan’s time in California. The audio clips that Ken played for the audience included some recently discovered/acquired tapes of the Mulligan Quartet at the Haig. Ken said that some of this music would be part of the LAJI Members Bonus CD that will be available later this year. We can only hope that an avid jazz fan had a tape recorder running when Miles appeared at the Haig, and that it will surface one day.
 
I highly recommend this book to members with an interest in the west coast art scene of the 1950s. The jazz content was an unexpected bonus for me.

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The primary jazz fan who was actively recording jazz groups in the clubs around this time was Bob Andrews. I believe that he had tacit approval from the owners and did so without concealment or hiding his activity. Dick Bock was the gate keeper at this time and most likely granted permission or approval of this activity.

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On 14/11/2017 at 4:32 PM, JamesAHarrod said:

I am reading the recently published autobiography of Walter Hopps, The Dream Colony. Hopps died in 2005 and had been working on the book for several years. Much of that work consisted of audio tapes of Hopps recalling his life. Thanks to those tapes the editors of the book, Deborah Treisman and Anne Doran, have pieced togther a narrative that I am enjoying immensely. Hopps spent some time in Laguna Beach and some of his relatives figured prominanetly in the history of Laguna Beach. His great-great-uncle, Harry Woods, built a Tudor style ocean front manse that was sold to Bette Davis when the Woods family died out. The area is still known today as Woods Cove. 

 
Hopps was an avid jazz fan and regularly visited clubs to hear Billie Holiday, Charlie Parker, Gerry Mulligan, Dave Brubeck, Paul Desmond, etc. In December of 1953 Hopps and Jerry Perenchio presented a concert at UCLA that featured the Lighthouse All Stars, Shorty Rogers Giants, The Dave Pell Quartet, Don Ewell, Barney Kessel, John Graas Modern Jazz Ensemble, and the Chet Baker Quartet. William Claxton mounted an exhibition of his jazz photography in conjunction with the concert. Later in the 1950s and early 1960s Claxton became part of the west coast art scene when Hopps and Edward Kienholz founded the Ferus Gallery.
 
He double dated with Chet Baker and recalled one night at the Haig when Gerry Mulligan stopped the music and told the audience that Miles Davis had just entered the room. According to Hopps Mulligan asked Chet to lend his trumpet to Miles, and Chet sat in the audience while Gerry and Miles completed the set. Hopps does not date the event but stated that shortly after that Gerry spent several months at the Honor Farm in Castaic.
 
At the recent Los Angeles Jazz Institute event Ken Poston presented a survey of Gerry Mulligan’s time in California. The audio clips that Ken played for the audience included some recently discovered/acquired tapes of the Mulligan Quartet at the Haig. Ken said that some of this music would be part of the LAJI Members Bonus CD that will be available later this year. We can only hope that an avid jazz fan had a tape recorder running when Miles appeared at the Haig, and that it will surface one day.
 
I highly recommend this book to members with an interest in the west coast art scene of the 1950s. The jazz content was an unexpected bonus for me.

Thanks for that piece of info. Will have to pursue it when possible.

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