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Junior Mance RIP


cliffpeterson
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Sad news!

I saw him twice, not long before he became a leader and soon after. The first time was at the St George's Hall, Bradford in 1959 with the Have Trumpet Will Excite Gillespie quintet. It was a package show with the Brubeck quartet and a Buck Clayton group that included Emmett Berry, Dicky Wells, Earl Warren and Buddy Tate. Quite a night! The second was a few years later in Leeds when the Mance trio with Bob Cranshaw was packaged with the George Shearing group, much to the dismay of me and my cool friends. :lol:

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Ten (maybe 20?) years or so ago, Junior Mance did a concert in Tokyo.  Some tunes were played as piano duo with Cyrus Chestnut.  I don't remember anything except the music was fine, and Junior and Cyrus somehow looked like two bumble bees...

Anyway, my personal favorite Junior Mance are:

  1. Junior (Verve) -- Well, Ray Brown steals the show, but Junior's piano is still very good.
  2. Soulful Piano (Jazz Land) -- Very nice mature Junior.
  3. Holy Mama (East Wind) -- That Mellow Feeling.
  4. Deep (JSP) -- A little known gem.
  5. Softly As in Morning Sunrise (Enja) -- Good playing & recording.

RIP.

 

 

Edited by mhatta
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My first exposure to him was on some Atlantic record that did not reach me at all, so I filed him away in my mind as one of those commercial guys who just took a pop song and played "bluesy" over it and that was supposed to be all that was needed....years later, reality came calling. OOPS! MY BAD!

RIP.

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There is a swing dance club here in the Albany NY a/k/a Capital Region area.  About 10-15 years ago that club hired Junior Mance to appear with a trio at a local Elks-type club building (now gone).   There were 10-20 jazz fans on folding chairs up close to the stage while the club members dance behind us. The dancers were not happy that we took some of the dance floor away from them.  The dancers did not seem to appreciate who they had playing for them that day.   Don't remember what Junior played but it was all good.  I still find it funny to think about seeing him for the only time in such a venue. 

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