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Alex Potts

Bob Koester RIP

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Word from the Chicago Sun Times is Bob Koester has passed away. An absolute giant. Perusing the Jazz Record Mart during my teenage and uni years were such formative experiences. Can't imagine life without the music I stumbled across - purely through his efforts.

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RIP. Was Jazz Record Mart similar to Jazz Record Center in NYC? 

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I was in Chicago last week and stopped at the store and visited with Bob Junior. He said Bob had a "stroke" in December and was "in and out".

Bob offered me a job in the mid '60s and turned me loose. I will be forever grateful.

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Mixed memories, but he had a damn fine ear for good releases.

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Such sad news.

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Sad to learn this. My memories of Chicago largely revolve around record stores — and Penny's Noodle Shop — but JRM most of all.

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Spent three weeks in Des Plains doing a hotel gig and went to JRM once a week...probably could have literally lived there for a month and MAYBE have looked at all the inventory.

RIP, to all of it and them. Analog at its truest, these kids today just see the dying gasps and don't know what it means to not know anything but.

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3 hours ago, Chuck Nessa said:

Bob offered me a job in the mid '60s and turned me loose. I will be forever grateful.

We also are grateful that he saw what you brought to the table.

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Very sad.  RIP

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4 hours ago, trane_fanatic said:

RIP. Was Jazz Record Mart similar to Jazz Record Center in NYC? 

Yes, except the Jazz Record Mart was also the home base for Delmark Records.

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RIP. Loved my few and far between visits to his store, all made prior to my having any interest in jazz. The most Denise LaSalle records I've ever seen in one spot. 

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I never had a chance to meet him, but he had a reputation reaching over the pond. RIP.

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I would often visit Chicago and always made a point of visiting the Jazz Record Mart. Would always leave the shop with a sack of recordings.

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Condolences to his wife Susan and his kids, Katie and Bob. 

 

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I believe it was Koester who purchased the Sackville record label from the widow of my very close friend John Norris.

Koester is also the person (as I recall) who purchased the very very large personal CD  and record collection of the late John Norris.

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Are the Sackville recordings still in print?  

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38 minutes ago, medjuck said:

Are the Sackville recordings still in print?  

Not sure everything is in print but a bunch are.

Initially Bob purchased the masters Bill Smith owned and subsequently bought the balance of the catalog.

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My guess is that Bill would have owned the "avant-garde" recordings and John/Bill the rest. Or maybe just John.  An amazingly eclectic catalogue. I was fortunate enough to be present at a couple of the recordings. 

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23 hours ago, Chuck Nessa said:

Thanks for sharing that remembrance, Chuck.

I know that everyone is full of contradictions, but it sounds like Koester was particularly full of them.

 

I'll be in Chicago next month. Looking forward to visiting to the shop that Bob Jr.'s running now.

 

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