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Jimmy Giuffre

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I have been having a mini Jimmy Giuffre marathon on the turntable tonight, Free Fall, 1961, The Jimmy Giuffre Clarinet and Western Suite is spining right now. I have always been a sucker for the clarinet, but there is something about his tone and the sparse thoughtful pace that just sucks me in.

I know that he has been battling Parkinsons for some time now, does anybody know how he is doing?

Bill

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I would also love to know about any additional written information on Mr. Giuffre.

I am familiar with the chapter in Ted Giola's West Coast Jazz, the Rex Butters Cry Freedom article as well all the little mini bios that can be found with a basic google search. Last night I found this article, which is the only long format interview I have been able to chase down.

Thanks,

Bill

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It is too bad that the man was under-recorded for so many years.

Western Suite is in my top 10 of all time favorite albums.

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Giuffre has not been doing well health-wise for quite some time. This article is from 2003: http://www.allaboutjazz.com/php/article.php?id=901

Western Suite is an incredible album. The Jimmy Giuffre 3 even more so. Then he went on to record the great Fusion and Thesis. It's amazing to chart his progress from the quiet clarinet and foot-tapping of the Jimmy Giuffre Clarinet to going off the deep end in Free Fall.

It is a shame he went un-recorded for so many years. I find his post-1960s recordings enjoyable, though not as great as the four mentioned above.

In regards to info on Giuffre, CELP released a Talks and Plays 2-CD set a few years back with 1 disc of Giuffre's recollections and another of solos and duos with Andre Jaume.

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I was not aware of the Talks and Plays (I am assuming this is the same as "Riverstation") untill last night, I will have to add that to my wish list.

I am also trying to find the my ultimate copy of The Jimmy Giuffre Clarinet. I have two copies of the the original black label Atlantic and even a copy of the jazzlore edition. It is just one of those recordings that the little pops and clicks start to bug me. I have read that the Collectables Jazz Classics CD may not really be an improvement. The japanese pressings I have are fantastic, but I have never seen a japanese pressing of the Clarinet lp.

Trav'lin Light is now spinning with The Three & The Two next in line.

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I was not aware of the Talks and Plays (I am assuming this is the same as "Riverstation") untill last night, I will have to add that to my wish list.

I am also trying to find the my ultimate copy of The Jimmy Giuffre Clarinet. I have two copies of the the original black label Atlantic and even a copy of the jazzlore edition. It is just one of those recordings that the little pops and clicks start to bug me. I have read that the Collectables Jazz Classics CD may not really be an improvement. The japanese pressings I have are fantastic, but I have never seen a japanese pressing of the Clarinet lp.

Trav'lin Light is now spinning with The Three & The Two next in line.

Talks and Plays is the same label as River Station, but a different album. It's not a great release, but worth having if you are a completist like me.

As I write this, "So Low" just started playing on the iTunes party shuffle.

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Giuffre has not been doing well health-wise for quite some time. This article is from 2003: http://www.allaboutjazz.com/php/article.php?id=901

Western Suite is an incredible album. The Jimmy Giuffre 3 even more so. Then he went on to record the great Fusion and Thesis. It's amazing to chart his progress from the quiet clarinet and foot-tapping of the Jimmy Giuffre Clarinet to going off the deep end in Free Fall.

It is a shame he went un-recorded for so many years. I find his post-1960s recordings enjoyable, though not as great as the four mentioned above.

In regards to info on Giuffre, CELP released a Talks and Plays 2-CD set a few years back with 1 disc of Giuffre's recollections and another of solos and duos with Andre Jaume.

I picked up and then sold the Jaume / Giuffre duo on hatOLOGY, as it was not what I was hoping for. I have nothing but respect for the man for doing new and challenging things -- it just didn't catch my ear.

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jazz wikipedia sez he has parkinsons disease and doesnt play anymore. that sux!! how did just a sharp jazz mind get parkinsons anyway. that is nutz. out of all the arrangers i would immagine to get parkinsons he is definetly at the bottom of the list

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Who would be at the top?

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Who would be at the top?

Buddy Bregman?

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oh shucks i dunno who would be the most likely alzhemiers case latter in life for jazz arrangers, i dunno what about that one who was hired by kenton who held his pants up with a string of rope and arranged on graph paper w/ coloured pencils and only ate bananas and had a mustache

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Bob Graettinger? Dead at 34. No mustache. Not sure about the bannanas or the rope.

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arrangers.jpg

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Western Suite is an incredible album. The Jimmy Giuffre 3 even more so. Then

I'll add Brookmeyer's Traditionalism Revisited to make this a winning triumvirate.

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on the bley, iai (label), quiet song, is some of the most beautiful thoughtful playing i have heard.

there is a a short solo tenor interlude that is beautiful beyond belief................

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I'm not a sucker for the clarinet but The Jimmy Giuffre Clarinet was one of my first jazz experiences and I've loved Giuffre ever since. The Mosaic set has the best stuff imo but there's a lot more, especially his arranging for McKusick and others during the mid 50s. Giuffre's name as arranger usually guarantees fine music.

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I'm not a sucker for the clarinet but The Jimmy Giuffre Clarinet was one of my first jazz experiences and I've loved Giuffre ever since. The Mosaic set has the best stuff imo but there's a lot more, especially his arranging for McKusick and others during the mid 50s. Giuffre's name as arranger usually guarantees fine music.

I am not that familiar with McKusick, but from a quick scan of AMG it looks like "Jazz Workshop" is the place to start for some McKusick/Giuffre, or not?

Bill

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oh shucks i dunno who would be the most likely alzhemiers case latter in life for jazz arrangers, i dunno what about that one who was hired by kenton who held his pants up with a string of rope and arranged on graph paper w/ coloured pencils and only ate bananas and had a mustache

johnny richards-but the music was beautiful

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I am not that familiar with McKusick, but from a quick scan of AMG it looks like "Jazz Workshop" is the place to start for some McKusick/Giuffre, or not?

Bill

I'd go first for the three things Giuffre arranged for Hal McKusick's Cross Section - Saxes, "Sing Song", "Yesterdays", and especially "It never entered my mind".

There is a Japanese reissue of this album, and "It never entered..." is also in "Now's The Time" (GRP, now OOP)

F

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Jimmy Giuffre THE EASY WAY (Verve) has been re-issued recently on CD. It might be available on yourmusic for $6.

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I am not that familiar with McKusick, but from a quick scan of AMG it looks like "Jazz Workshop" is the place to start for some McKusick/Giuffre, or not?

Bill

I'd go first for the three things Giuffre arranged for Hal McKusick's Cross Section - Saxes, "Sing Song", "Yesterdays", and especially "It never entered my mind".

There is a Japanese reissue of this album, and "It never entered..." is also in "Now's The Time" (GRP, now OOP)

F

Thanks, I will be looking.

Bill

Jimmy Giuffre THE EASY WAY (Verve) has been re-issued recently on CD. It might be available on yourmusic for $6.

It has also been re-issued on vinyl, and is still available here and there.

Bill

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No one seems to have mentioned the fabulous (sparse) arrangements that Jimmy did for two Lee Konitz albums, both are now available, one on Verve, and the two together on a recent Lonehill reissue. The arrangements for the Anita O'Day album are sublime, as is the album for Herb Ellis on Verve .... There are so many wonderful Giuffre arrangements around ... and, of course, the Mosaic box contains a pristine (no click) version of the "Clarinet" album, complete with the foot tapping ...

The neglected "Music Man" album has great arrangements, and should be listened to much more closely than most critics seem willing to do ...

Also .. let us not forget the arrangement for Herman's "Four Brothers" ...

Garth.

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Not good news regarding Jimmy's current health status. Jimmy and his wife Juanita live in W. Stockbridge, Massachusetts, in the Berkshires, an area he fell in love with while Lenox School of Jazz was happening. Jimmy used to commute into Boston to teach at NE Conservatory.

I recieved this reply from Jimmy's former bass player Bob Nieske.

Jimmy is still hanging in there, unfortunately I guess.

I spoke with Juanita a couple weeks ago trying to plan a visit with Jimmy and George Russell later this month.

Jimmy is basically in a wheel chair and can't talk. I think he's been like that for a few years now.

Makes me think national health care is a great idea. Juanita needs help but they can't afford.

She also doesn't trust nursing homes even if they could afford one.

Edited by stevebop

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Stevebop,

Thanks for the information, as heartbreaking as it may be. I am more familiar with Alzheimer's as my father-in-law was diagnosed with Alzheimer's at the age of 60, we live three blocks from my in-laws and see them almost every day. Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s are cruel diseases that not only slowly destroy the person with the disease, but also take an unimaginable toll on the family and caretakers. My heart goes out to Juanita, Jimmy and the family members and friends who are helping them at this time.

Bill

Edited by (BB)

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