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Cecil Payne R.I.P


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#1 Cyril

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 08:48 PM

Dec. 14, 1922 - Nov. 27, 2007


Baritone saxophonist Cecil Payne, who asserted the baritone’s role in bop, died Tuesday morning of cancer in New York.

Payne was born in New York City on Dec. 14, 1922.

He started his musical life singing and playing guitar.
After hearing Young on a recording with Count Basie, Payne asked his father, who played tenor, for a horn and received an alto.
His father thought the light, airy playing of Young was done on the alto.
Payne mastered that as well as the clarinet, which he played in army bands from '43 to '46.

In '46 Payne made his debut on baritone sax with a band led by Clarence Briggs, and his last recording on alto on a session led by J.J. Johnson.
After a stint with Roy Eldridge, Payne established himself as a bop saxophonist in Dizzy Gillespie's big band.

Settled in New York City, he played in bands led by James Moody and Tadd Dameron; freelanced from '49 to '52; toured with Illinois Jacquet from '52 to '54; and made notable recordings with Duke Jordan and Randy Weston.

Payne retired from the jazz scene during the late '50s but acted and wrote songs for Jack Gelber's play The Connection in the early '60s.

Payne returned to music as a soloist in Machito's Afro-Cubans and with Lucky Thompson's octet.

After touring Europe with Lionel Hampton in '64, he again left the scene, only to return a couple years later to play with Weston, Woody Herman, and Gillespie.
After a two-year stint with Basie, Payne formed a quartet which was active well into the '80s. Payne also recorded with Nick Brignola in '79 and formed a trio with Bill Harman and Richard Wyand in '86.

Recently, Payne began playing gigs in New York after six years in seclusion due to blindness.
He reunited with friends, Quincy Jones, Ron Carter, Frank Foster, Freddie Hubbard, Candido, Ray Baretto, Clark Terry, Frank Wess and so many others, when he played the annual "Great Night In Harlem" Benefit Concert for the Jazz Foundation at the Apollo.
After this, Cecil found time to perform in the local nursing homes in the Somerdale area, entertaining elderly patients for free.


Down Beat Magazine


"I was going blind and couldn't see to shop or cook, I was living on two cans of SlimFast a day for over a year and a half...
The Jazz Foundation saved my life"

- Cecil Payne

http://www.jazzfoundation.org/

Edited by Cyril, 27 November 2007 - 08:52 PM.


#2 alocispepraluger102

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 08:58 PM

http://images.google...htt...=off&sa=N

#3 AllenLowe

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 09:01 PM

great saxophonist and a very nice man - only met him once or twice, but he was a very soft spoken, modest guy and very easy to talk to -

Edited by AllenLowe, 27 November 2007 - 09:01 PM.


#4 Holy Ghost

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 09:16 PM

RIP. I have a few recordings where he appears and enjoyed his contributions there.

#5 White Lightning

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 09:37 PM

RIP. He was much loved in this house. I will spin some of his Delmarkd today.

#6 Kevin Bresnahan

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 09:48 PM

Cecil was a great guy. I saw him several times and made sure I got a chance to talk to him between sets.

RIP Cecil. The be-bop generation is almost gone.

#7 clifford_thornton

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 10:01 PM

Sad news.

His recordings for the Charlie Parker and Strata-East labels are not to be missed. Unfortunately, I stupidly skipped out on a gig he was playing in Topeka when I lived in Lawrence.

RIP.

#8 Stereojack

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 10:03 PM

Many years ago I saw Cecil at a club here in Boston. I went up to him between sets to ask him to autograph an LP, and was caught off guard with how friendly he was.

He signed it "Love and Be-Bop, Cecil Payne"

#9 J.H. Deeley

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 10:48 PM

Back in the late 80's/early 90's I got to see him perform a bunch of times at Ortlieb's here in Philly. Always a treat.

R.I.P.

#10 JSngry

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 11:07 PM

Stay on it.

R.I.P.

#11 B. Goren.

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 11:23 PM

Very sad news to start the day with. RIP Mr. Payne.

Edited by B. Goren., 27 November 2007 - 11:55 PM.


#12 Guest_Bill Barton_*

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 11:48 PM

This is indeed sad news.

R.I.P.

I never had the pleasure of meeting him or hearing him perform live but his Zodiac LP remains a personal favorite.

#13 Big Al

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 11:55 PM

RIP. I particularly enjoyed his work on Jimmy Smith's SIX VIEWS OF THE BLUES. Perhaps my favorite performance of his was on Dizzy Reece's "Spiritus Parkus" from ASIA MINOR.

Edited by Big Al, 27 November 2007 - 11:57 PM.


#14 chewy

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 12:14 AM

a horrible tragedy for bebop. i just played his connection snd'trk on charlie parker records. that isinteresting he was w/ machito. maybe thats why KD used him on his Afro-Cuban lp!

#15 brownie

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 01:18 AM

Very sad news. :(

He was one of the last survivors of the BeBop era!
And a baritone saxophone master!

#16 BruceH

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 02:22 AM

Sad news indeed. RIP

#17 EKE BBB

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 02:41 AM

Sad news indeed!

Here's a nice picture by Spanish photographer Esther Cidoncha (her website + her blog), taken in 1992:

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#18 Hardbopjazz

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 07:22 AM

So long Cecil, and thank you for the music.

#19 AllenLowe

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 08:21 AM

truly a great player - I've always felt his playing on the 1950 Savoys (with Kenny Dorham?) was very individual and very personal - an approach that had some of the lightness of Chaloff with a little more aggression - wonderful musician, one of the Brooklyn guys, along with Max and Duke Jordan, so this makes a sad trio of loss this year -

#20 king ubu

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 08:54 AM

very sad news!

#21 Christiern

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 09:14 AM

Cyril, thanks for including the link to The Jazz Foundation. Wendy Oxenhorn is its driving force and a remarkable person. This is a charity that deserves every penny it gets--I'm glad that they were able to help Cecil.

#22 JohnS

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 09:16 AM

Sad news.

#23 John Tapscott

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 09:28 AM

RIP, Cecil. A very fine player. I have a couple of his Delmark CD's which I enjoy very much. Also a Muse LP with Duke Jordan called "Brooklyn Brothers."

#24 mikeweil

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 10:22 AM

R.I.P.
Sound-wise, by far my favourite baritone player.
Duh - just back from Sicily, and such sad news .....

#25 ghost of miles

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 11:41 AM

Caught that post earlier this a.m., Clem--I figured Brooklyn would be calling for Mr. Payne. Very nice tribute. I'll have to track down/check out that Strata East album.

Bummed about this, even if he did live a long life and all that--going to spin the records with Weston this p.m.

Edited by ghost of miles, 28 November 2007 - 11:42 AM.


#26 Big Al

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 12:00 PM

Caught that post earlier this a.m., Clem--I figured Brooklyn would be calling for Mr. Payne. Very nice tribute. I'll have to track down/check out that Strata East album.

Bummed about this, even if he did live a long life and all that--going to spin the records with Weston this p.m.


Man, if ever an artist deserved an hour of NIGHT LIGHTS, it's Cecil Payne!

#27 ghost of miles

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 12:43 PM

Caught that post earlier this a.m., Clem--I figured Brooklyn would be calling for Mr. Payne. Very nice tribute. I'll have to track down/check out that Strata East album.

Bummed about this, even if he did live a long life and all that--going to spin the records with Weston this p.m.


Man, if ever an artist deserved an hour of NIGHT LIGHTS, it's Cecil Payne!


Yeah, I know--he's on "The Connection" show (that version of the score--non-Freddie-Redd--that he did with Kenny Drew for Charlie Parker Records), but he really does serve a fullblown program. We work pretty far ahead, but maybe I can put something together over the weekend and post it online as a kind of supplemental program.

I'm sure there'll be quite a few jazz radio tributes in the next several days.

#28 ValerieB

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 02:24 PM

i was crying at work when i read this news yesterday but he had a good life and gave and received a lot of love. and given what i knew his health to be for at least the last decade or more, i guess he was fortunate to be with us for this long. i only met him on a couple of occasions but his sweetness always impressed me, as well as his huge talent.

may the "powers that be" continue to bless Cecil and bless Wendy and the Foundation as well! if all goes as i hope it will, he will have tons of his friends greeting him!

#29 sidewinder

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 03:46 PM

Very sad news but he seems to have lived a good life and the nice comments in this thread about him are impressive. Only sorry I never heard him play live, although like CT I came close. By strange chance I was just viewing a video of him with Nick Brignola and Ronnie Cuber just a couple of days ago.

#30 Peter Friedman

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Posted 29 November 2007 - 01:22 PM

Just put on the Fresh Sound re-issue of 2 Cecil Payne sessions (Performing Charlie Parker Music / The Connection) on one CD.

R.I.P. Cecil



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