Cliff Englewood

Grant Green: "Iron City"

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ha-HA!

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I've got the 52jazz re-issue of this. Is the Savoy five-four reissue an update in any way, ie different master, more sleeve info etc, (although it doesn't sound like any new info judging by these posts). Should I just get the Savoy for the original cover art? Bearing in mind this is my favourite recording...ever...accept maybe for Let Em Roll.....or Big John's 6cd set of the St. Mathew Passion at Covent Garden, arranged by George Butler!!!!!

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The 32Jazz CD is my third copy of this album. I have found balance problems with the two LPs I had before - and it's pretty unusual for me to worry about hifi stuff like that.

The Cobblestone version seemed to me to be tilted too far towards the organ, the Muse version too far towards guitar. The 32Jazz seems OK, however. So I'm not thinking of changing, unless someone points out big advantages in any other version.

MG

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The 32Jazz CD is my third copy of this album. I have found balance problems with the two LPs I had before - and it's pretty unusual for me to worry about hifi stuff like that.

The Cobblestone version seemed to me to be tilted too far towards the organ, the Muse version too far towards guitar. The 32Jazz seems OK, however. So I'm not thinking of changing, unless someone points out big advantages in any other version.

MG

I have yet another version on a UK label Fivefour which sounds great. They still persist in giving Patton as the organist though.

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The 32Jazz CD is my third copy of this album. I have found balance problems with the two LPs I had before - and it's pretty unusual for me to worry about hifi stuff like that.

The Cobblestone version seemed to me to be tilted too far towards the organ, the Muse version too far towards guitar. The 32Jazz seems OK, however. So I'm not thinking of changing, unless someone points out big advantages in any other version.

MG

I have yet another version on a UK label Fivefour which sounds great. They still persist in giving Patton as the organist though.

I think the Fivefour is the one I have as well, I was fairly impressed with the sound myself, nothing amazing but more than decent. They also say in the notes that Grant wrote the tune "Iron City" as well if memory serves me.

The thing is, I always thought this was a "live" session, was suprised not to hear any crowd noise when I first put it on.

Edited by Cliff Englewood

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Sorry guts how could I get 32jazz wrong and say 52. One of my favourite re-issue labels and sorely missed. I always thought the re-issue I have on 32 sounds great too. Just love this session so much I'd definitely buy a different remaster as well if i knew that Five-Four or Savoy had returned to the original source for their issues, rather than, (as I had presumed), just re-issued 32jazz's version.

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listened to this again last night and yes I feel it is much more Larry Young

than Patton. Did enjoy it though and read references to it in the Sharon Green book . The sound ain't so good on my copy ( 32 jazz) but it still cooks!

As a quick test I whipped it out and shoved in the Grant Green His Majesty King Funk from verve with Larry Young and it sounded just like the Iron City combo.....

mind you I have been wrong about it for this long (never noticed it before )

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Time to dig this up again.

I am in touch with British researcher David Grundy who is writing an article on Larry Young for the publication Point of Departure.

He was not aware of the Iron City debate, so I hipped him.

This made me want to go back and dig some more. I found Travis Klein on Facebook, the person who arranged the record date while Grant was playing at the Hurricane Lounge. He regularly posts historical music facts about Pittsburgh and said this:

On this date in Pittsburgh music history, January 18, 1965, Grant Green with his trio, Ben Dixon on drums and the monster "Big" John Patton on Hammond B-3 organ, appeared at the Hurricane Lounge in the 1500 block of Center Avenue on the Hill. One of the biggest thrills in my life happened that day. Billy Driscoll, who was managing Gene Ludwig at the time, came up to our store at 1811 Center and told me that Grant needed money to cop drugs and he would be willing to trade a recording session for the money.
I immediately called down to Gateway Studios, owned by the the Shapiro's of National Record Mart and located above their main location at 234 Forbes Avenue to arrange for the recording session. The songs on the album are "Samba de Orpheus", "Old Man Moses" (Let My People Go), "High Heeled Sneakers", "Motherless Child", "Work Song" and an untitled number that I named "Iron City" and became the name of the album.

So great, we have a date. All good, right? Think again. Larry was in Paris on that date!

So where do we stand?

1) Patton said it was not him but Larry, and Ben Dixon thought so as well.

2) Many people hear Larry, but experts like Bill Heid and Ed Cherry say it is Patton.

3) Is this date correct? Grant may have played several times at this joint, in fact I found another post where DMP suggests he saw Grant there in 1967 with Patton.

How can this be settled? Can we find reviews or gig listings in Newspapers? If there is at least one example of Larry playing at the Lounge with Grant, then it is still possible. Travis could be thinking of two different appearances, perhaps? What is odd is that Travis showed up for part of the session, yet cannot say who was at the session on organ. Very odd...

One thing for sure: Larry could not have been in Pittsburgh on 1/18/65. 

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Would they really have been playing the Love Supreme vamp on 1/18/65? The Coltrane was record was 5 weeks old...

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The reissues I've seen listed given 1967 as the recording year.

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just had a look at Grant Green in Philadelphia newspapers at newspapers.com... Green playing in the Hurricane Lounge was advertised quite regularly in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette... of course, these were only advertised lineups, not realized ones... no reports of disappointed clients because Green brought Larry Young instead of BJP or anything like that - but that wasn't to be expected... I also doubt that much can be made of the cases were no lineups were reported...

Hurricane Bar:

Grant Green (Guitarist on the Prestige Label, 18 January 1965)
Grant Green Organ Trio featuring John Patton, Ben Dixon (15 November 1965)
Grant Green Organ Trio featuring John Patton, Candy Finch (3 January 1966)
Grant Green Organ Trio featuring John Patton, Candy Finch (4 July 1966)
Grant Green Organ Trio featuring John Patton (held over, all this week, 11 July 1966)
Grant Green Organ Quartet  (25 Mar 1968)

Crawford Grill:
Grant Green Organ Trio featuring John Patton (9 big days, 12 Jan 1967)

here are some relevant passages from that Msc thesis on Patton hosted here (every paragraph is copied from somewhere else in the document)

The trio [Green Patton Dixon] also toured, a few of the places that Patton recalled were Hurricane's and Crawford's Grill in Pittsburgh, "all of the clubs in Rochester," Bonton's in Buffalo, the Cadillac Club and the Front Room in Newark. "We played a whole lot of clubs...whoooh-boy…it's not easy. I'm telling you. Drive, load, book…"

Over a year later, a listing from Baltimore's Left Bank Jazz Society's Chronological Concert Listings for a gig at the Crystal Ballroom in Baltimore on July 31, 1966 with Patton, Grant Green, Vick, and drummer Hugh Walker. At this point, Patton was still co-leading his group with Grant Green, usually a trio, though sometimes augmenting to a quartet. Ads from the Village Voice confirm they played regularly at Slug's Saloon in the East Village in 1966 and 1967, using different drummers at different times, including Walker, the late Otis "Candy" Finch, and Clifford Jarvis. Walker, a native of Oklahoma, had entered Patton's circle of musicians as a member of George Braith's band in 1963.[129] He would figure prominently in Patton's activities upon his dissolution of his long musical relationship with Grant Green in 1968.

There were several drummers who had preceeded Walker in the Patton-Green group after Ben Dixon quit working with the group regularly in 1965. "I got with Candy Finch when me and Grant started really touring, going up to Buffalo and Rochester and some different clubs on 125th St. We worked all around. We worked locally quite a bit. Candy and Grant were good friends...so we decided to take Candy on the road with us when we were doing tours."[130] The late Otis "Candy" Finch recorded one session with the group in December of 1965, Patton's Let 'Em Roll. Finch recorded with Dizzy Gillespie and Shirley Scott, among others. "This was after Clifford Jarvis. Clifford Jarvis was with me and Grant. Something happened with Clifford, I think he went back to Sun Ra." The Patton-Green group used several drummers, "whoever could make the gig," so to speak, including Grassella Oliphant, who enlisted Green's and Patton's services for his second album as leader The Grass Is Greener (Atlantic1484) in 1966.

1968 also marked Patton's dissolution of his longstanding, on-going, partnership with Grant Green.

 

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1 hour ago, Niko said:

just had a look at Grant Green in Philadelphia newspapers at newspapers.com... Green playing in the Hurricane Lounge was advertised quite regularly in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette... of course, these were only advertised lineups, not realized ones... no reports of disappointed clients because Green brought Larry Young instead of BJP or anything like that - but that wasn't to be expected... I also doubt that much can be made of the cases were no lineups were reported...

Hurricane Bar:

Grant Green (Guitarist on the Prestige Label, 18 January 1965)
Grant Green Organ Trio featuring John Patton, Ben Dixon (15 November 1965)
Grant Green Organ Trio featuring John Patton, Candy Finch (3 January 1966)
Grant Green Organ Trio featuring John Patton, Candy Finch (4 July 1966)
Grant Green Organ Trio featuring John Patton (held over, all this week, 11 July 1966)
Grant Green Organ Quartet  (25 Mar 1968)

Crawford Grill:
Grant Green Organ Trio featuring John Patton (9 big days, 12 Jan 1967)

here are some relevant passages from that Msc thesis on Patton hosted here (every paragraph is copied from somewhere else in the document)

The trio [Green Patton Dixon] also toured, a few of the places that Patton recalled were Hurricane's and Crawford's Grill in Pittsburgh, "all of the clubs in Rochester," Bonton's in Buffalo, the Cadillac Club and the Front Room in Newark. "We played a whole lot of clubs...whoooh-boy…it's not easy. I'm telling you. Drive, load, book…"

Over a year later, a listing from Baltimore's Left Bank Jazz Society's Chronological Concert Listings for a gig at the Crystal Ballroom in Baltimore on July 31, 1966 with Patton, Grant Green, Vick, and drummer Hugh Walker. At this point, Patton was still co-leading his group with Grant Green, usually a trio, though sometimes augmenting to a quartet. Ads from the Village Voice confirm they played regularly at Slug's Saloon in the East Village in 1966 and 1967, using different drummers at different times, including Walker, the late Otis "Candy" Finch, and Clifford Jarvis. Walker, a native of Oklahoma, had entered Patton's circle of musicians as a member of George Braith's band in 1963.[129] He would figure prominently in Patton's activities upon his dissolution of his long musical relationship with Grant Green in 1968.

There were several drummers who had preceeded Walker in the Patton-Green group after Ben Dixon quit working with the group regularly in 1965. "I got with Candy Finch when me and Grant started really touring, going up to Buffalo and Rochester and some different clubs on 125th St. We worked all around. We worked locally quite a bit. Candy and Grant were good friends...so we decided to take Candy on the road with us when we were doing tours."[130] The late Otis "Candy" Finch recorded one session with the group in December of 1965, Patton's Let 'Em Roll. Finch recorded with Dizzy Gillespie and Shirley Scott, among others. "This was after Clifford Jarvis. Clifford Jarvis was with me and Grant. Something happened with Clifford, I think he went back to Sun Ra." The Patton-Green group used several drummers, "whoever could make the gig," so to speak, including Grassella Oliphant, who enlisted Green's and Patton's services for his second album as leader The Grass Is Greener (Atlantic1484) in 1966.

1968 also marked Patton's dissolution of his longstanding, on-going, partnership with Grant Green.

 

The author of the Patton thesis was one of the musicians who ultimately helped verify that my "John Patton" with Percy France recording really is Big John on piano. That thesis is a great accomplishment I hope people take time to go thru it.

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Posted (edited)

200708_064_depth1.jpg

Was the drummer from this photo from 1966 WBGH Boston TV session ever identified. Ben Dixon, Candy Finch? 

His Majesty King Funk with Larry Young was recorded on May 26th 1965.

The version of Willow Weep For Me on the King Funk album sounds very much like the performances on the Cobblestone album to me, a little more stretching out on the tune perhaps than some of the Iron City tracks, but very much that darker, heavy vibe.

The photo of Grant and Larry Young playing a club with the Feelin The Spirit album in the shot certainly looks like it could be from 65 or 66.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/61578214@N00/169312879

It's hard to argue with Bill Heid and Ed Cherry though. Especially as Ed Cherry played and recorded with John Patton. 

I have also read Lonnie Smith refer to Grant's working trio circa this time as including Larry Young and Candy Finch. He also says he made a no show to two booked Grant Green sessions where he was expected to play. The unissued Verve album in jazzdiscog  claims two sessions from Aug and Sep 65 have at least three tunes recorded for the Iron City session. One tune supposedly titled Iron City March? Which seems odd if Travis Klein takes credit for the title on the Cobblestone album. Although if the Iron City session was recorded before the unissued Verve session then maybe Grant held on to the title for the same or similar tune recorded later in the year for Verve? 

Edited by robertoart

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Posted (edited)

Great job Niko and Roberto!!!

1) Ed Cherry is now on the fence. Bill Heid brought it up two years ago when I last saw him and was adamant it could NOT be Larry. I will follow up.

2) 1/18/65 has no personnel listed. But it can't be Larry, he was in Paris.

3) Totally possible that Travis got the January and November gigs confused. November is a possible candidate, with Larry subbing for John at the last minute. It is the only one with Dixon. Only hitch: the Verve session is before so that makes the song title issue problematic.

4) The later dates are more doubtful - Larry was in another bag by then. The Cobblestone did claim 1967, but that might have been made up to avoid negotiating with a label. In 1967, Grant had no label, but in 1965 it was Blue Note then Verve. Odd that he switched labels so fast.

Datewise, it seems to be Patton. But Patton and Dixon say it is Young. And more people think Larry than John. Anyone want to give some specific examples? For me, the Love Supreme vamp points to Larry, although Grant starts it! Early 1965 is doubtful because of the vamp.

More work is needed. Would be nice to get the scoop on the photo. I plan to get a newspapers.com account, long overdue. Niko, do you have the $8/month or $20/month option? Sounds like the upgrade gives you a lot more. How long did that search take? Do you have to go Newspaper by newspaper, there is no central search engine? During the 7 day free trial, I plan to test these four obscure heroes of mine: Booker Little, Herbie Nichols, Tina Brooks and Larry Young.

Edited by bertrand

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Posted (edited)

thanks Roberto on the reminder re where we stand!  agree with your summary Bertrand, it's most likely from the second half of 1965, it's almost certainly from a time when Patton was the regular organist in Patton's band - but that doesn't say anything about who might actually show up playing the organ on a given gig

re newspapers.com, which version you need totally depends on the concrete newspapers you use in your research. If you do family history and your family always lived in a town whose local paper is in the cheaper package you can be lucky... for "my jazz research" I often need e.g. the SF Examiner which is in the more expensive package... similarly, GG at the Hurricane Bar is in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette which is in the more expensive package. I took the free trial, cancelled near the end and then resubscribed a few weeks later. If you take it for half a year, you pay only 12.50 per month rather than 20... re how long it took and the quality of the search engine: Making that list of GG gigs took me about 10 minutes but I was in a hurry so possibly didn't work super carefully (e.g. for some residences there were multiple ads but I only list one without trying to figure out how long they stayed each time). In my view, the search engine is extremely well made: You can look at individual newspapers but also all papers from cities, counties, states or sets of states - depending on what you need. SImilarly, you can give fairly precise time windows. What is especially nice is that usually with each search result you get a small picture of the page surrounding it which makes it easy to decide which ones need further investigation

 

 

ggviji2.jpg

this is a snapshot of results for Grant Green in Pennsylvania between 1960 and 1980 for instance... and you see immediately which one are what we are looking for... and then you could click on the last one (from 1977) to see the full ad. It's also really easy to make pictures of parts of articles like this

pittsburgh_post_gazet6ikmm.jpg

(what I don't know is how to make this smaller in the forum editor... this is from the Pittsburgh Post Gazette 3 Jan 1966)

as you can see, I am a fan, this has really made my last few months a bit brighter...

Edited by Niko

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been thinking about that photo as well... apparently it was originally posted by George Heid on flickr

Grant Green, J.C. Moses, Larry Young

link, he writes "Grant Green, J.C. Moses, Larry Young, taken 17 June 1966. All three were ascended masters of the music, playing in Pittsburgh in the 1960's. On the right, Larry Young was, without a doubt, the most advanced artist of the Hammond B-3... and with the greatest jazz guitarist of all time, Grant Green. On Drums is J.C. Moses. There aren't words to describe the music that was going on in this club that evening."

now that places the picture - and thus a Grant Green live band including Larry Young on organ in Pittsburgh at about the right time... Heid is from Pittsburgh so he should recognize the club - a pity he didn't name it... Elsewhere in his account he ahs other bands from both the Crawford Grill and the Hurricane Bar - and they look quite different... Mid June 1966 is possible but not super plausible given that the Green band was also in Pittsburgh in the first half of July for an extended stay... so I would take that date with a grain of salt... what this picture does seem to prove is that Green played with both Young and Patton in Pittsburgh in 1964-67

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That album cover throws me on the date given for the photo but I don't think there is any reason to assume that Grant used both organists at different times in the general time frame. 

As for Newspapers.com I have only used the free trial period for my research and just made sure to concentrate my time during. If you're going to do general research or want the ability to search for whatever, whenever then obviously you need a membership.

The one big disappointment I have had with newspapers.com is that the search engine isn't perfect in my experience. I have had many "hits" that when you open up the link it says "0 of 0" and there's no actual hit for your search term on the page.

At least eventually I figured out that if you don't want yellow highlighter on your snip, you need to use their snipping tool to save what you find, rather than your PC snipping tool.

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I get rid of the yellow highlighter by just clicking cancel in the search window after I've found what I want and the yellow disappears... and then I can use their print/save button (or alternatively the PC's) and get nice clippings without yellow... alternatively, I guess you can use their tool, too, but I never tried to save those clippings... Re the membership, I have noticed for myself that I get a lot of fun out of reading those old newspapers - easily worth those 12$ per month...

Of course, there are also nice free tools like familysearch.org, some free newspaperarchives like

https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/

or the archive of Downbeat until 1961 (and archive.org in general)

https://archive.org/details/pub_down-beat

(click on "search text contents" before searching...don't know if the functionality is the same everywhere in the world)

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1 hour ago, Niko said:

 

or the archive of Downbeat until 1961 (and archive.org in general)

https://archive.org/details/pub_down-beat

(click on "search text contents" before searching...don't know if the functionality is the same everywhere in the world)

Woh! "Percy France" hits, and not just for Home Cookin'  either. Thanks, Niko, had no idea about this source.

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2 hours ago, Niko said:

been thinking about that photo as well... apparently it was originally posted by George Heid on flickr

Grant Green, J.C. Moses, Larry Young

link, he writes "Grant Green, J.C. Moses, Larry Young, taken 17 June 1966. All three were ascended masters of the music, playing in Pittsburgh in the 1960's. On the right, Larry Young was, without a doubt, the most advanced artist of the Hammond B-3... and with the greatest jazz guitarist of all time, Grant Green. On Drums is J.C. Moses. There aren't words to describe the music that was going on in this club that evening."

now that places the picture - and thus a Grant Green live band including Larry Young on organ in Pittsburgh at about the right time... Heid is from Pittsburgh so he should recognize the club - a pity he didn't name it... Elsewhere in his account he ahs other bands from both the Crawford Grill and the Hurricane Bar - and they look quite different... Mid June 1966 is possible but not super plausible given that the Green band was also in Pittsburgh in the first half of July for an extended stay... so I would take that date with a grain of salt... what this picture does seem to prove is that Green played with both Young and Patton in Pittsburgh in 1964-67

Awesome pic!

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Posted (edited)

Nothing definitive to add, but some historical context from Lonnie Smith interview recollections that I think are firmly rooted in this 65ish time era, Lonnie Smith talks about Grant Green wanting Lonnie Smith to be his Organ player at the time the Benson/Smith band was getting together. Jimmy Boyd was managing them as well as managing Grant Green. Lonnie Smith recalls Jimmy Boyd putting his foot down and telling Grant Green that he already has his trio with Larry Young and to keep Benson and Smith playing together. Lonnie Smith has told this story re-Jimmy Boyd in a few interviews and always mentions Larry Young as Grant's trio organist around this time. 

https://www.chicagojazz.com/post/dr-lonnie-smith-feature-interview

Also in the wonderful, long form interview with Lou Donaldson by Ted Panken, Lou Donaldson mentions that he took John Patton on the road with him. Not sure if this would have been in the 65 period or maybe a bit earlier in 63/64, but it would account for John Patton having other commitments with Lou Donaldson's band at some point. On the Argo/Cadet Donaldson albums from 64/65, Patton is on Possum Head but Billy Gardner on the other ones. 

Edited by robertoart

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I can see that story, too... at some point Green/Patton/Dixon were Lou Donaldson's rhythm section, but that was a bit earlier... and then from some point in 1965 onwards until some point in 1968 there was a relatively stable Patton/Green band, initially also with Dixon... but it doesn't look like this was a case of a rhythm section leaving their leader continuing as a trio... there probably was a less stable phase in between... we know less about Green's working bands before late 1965 when a Patton-Green band is first mentioned... the Indianapolis Star of 4 December 1964 advertises a Green Organ Trio with a completely different lineup (Jimmy Watson, org, Buck Jones, dr)

the_indianapolis_starr7k3g.jpg

 

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