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Best concert line-up ever?


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The 2 concerts had more numbers than Losin lists. (He shows what he knows was recorded.)   From what I can reconstruct from various sources, Lady Day was accompanied by a trio which was augmented on at least one number by two Ellingtonians:  Ray Nance and Jimmy Hamilton.  I haven't found out whether Dizzy appeared with his own group as well as guesting with Duke's band. 

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Is this for shows you witnessed?

Best I can recall would be a Lincoln Center tribute to Art Blakey after he died. I want to say three groups were utilized, two drummers were used, Elvin and I think Lewis Nash. There was a (more or less) recreation of the Bobby Watson/Wynton group, Mulgrew Miller and probably James Williams on piano, Jackie Mac, Curtis Fuller (weak solos and I caught him checking his watch at one point, very disappointing),  I don't think Wayne was in the 'old' group, I think it was Golson.  And there was a 'recent' group with Brian Lynch among others.

Far and away the largest agglomeration of talent seen in one night, one stage, one continuous show.  All the other shows I've ever made would be for single groups so nothing remotely compares.

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I presume the question is not "What's the best jazz concert you've attended," but rather "which concert had the largest number of star names to participate"?  The one that comes to mind for me was a tribute to Barney Kessel that was part of the 1997 Kool Jazz Festival.  Kessel had had a stroke, but he was in attendance.  Kenny Burrell (not in the picture) closed the show.  Johnny Smith said a few words from the stage praising Kessel, but did not play.  Also not in the picture is the supporting band.  I believe Winard Harper was the drummer.  I also remember seeing Russell Malone in a nearby coffee shop before the show, but I think he was just an attendee.  See: https://benedettoguitarsarchives.com/kudos-to-kessel/

Edited by mjzee
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On 3/4/2021 at 1:25 PM, JSngry said:

I would assume that the Carnegie Hall in-house recording facility was used? Which might be cause for hope that the entire night exists?


Maybe we can transfer this to the "unissued sessions" thread. 

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I was thinking about 'The Carnival of Swing' 29-5-1938 on Randall Island (NY). 25 bands in the line up. Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Stuff Smith (with Ben Webster), Artie Shaw, Ella Fitzgerald, and Gene Krupa as the closing act. But also Kay Kaiser and Vincent Lopez. Great bands for shure but jazz?. I could not find a complete line up.

Missing from the line up: Benny Goodman he played at the Steel peer (Atlantic City) that day.

Count Basie & His Orch. 1938 Randall's Island NYC - YouTube

Carnival of Swing: Uncovering an Historic Jazz Concert at Randall's Island Stadium, 1938 | The New York Public Library (nypl.org)

The poster  1938 Carnival of Swing Poster | Growling Hamster  is a recreation of how it might have looked.

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One of the best line-ups I ever saw live in a single evening was perhaps one of the first jazz concerts (maybe the first?) I ever attended in around 1968.

The Berkeley Jazz Festival- Max Roach with Abbey Lincoln, Archie Shepp, and closing with a solo set from Sonny Rollins...

There were many other ones- single days at Monterey, LAJI (Count Basie members),and Chicago and Detroit Festivals-but the Berkeley Festival I remember fondly.

Not so much, though, the hard brick stairs of the Greek Theater...;)

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One of the best line-ups that I saw live was the "Wiesen Jazz Festival 1983".

Art Blakey
Dizzy Gillespie
Jackie Mc Lean-Bobby Hutcherson-Herbie Lewis-Billy Higgins
Charles Lloyd
Richie Cole 
Gateway (Abercrombie, Dave Holland, Jack De Johnette)
VSOP II (Marsalis Brothers, Hancock,Carter,Williams)
Lionel Hampton
Ella Fitzgerald
Oscar Peterson 
Oregon (Ralph Towner)

Also very fine was "Hollabrunn 1985" which I also saw live:

Miles Davis
Astrud Gilberto
Tommy Flanagan Trio
Woody Herman All Stars
Jackie McLean
Lou Donaldson
Pharoah Sanders 
Joe Zawinul solo
Modern Jazz Quartet
Charlie Haden Libration Music Orchestra

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  • 5 months later...

I went to the Ann Arbor Jazz Festival in September, 1978. The lineup was:

Thursday night: Mary Lou Williams and Ronnie Boykins, duets; Max Roach Quartet; Stan Getz: Archie Shepp and Max Roach, duets.

Friday night: Johnny Griffin, Dexter Gordon; Johnny Griffin and Dexter Gordon together; Freddie Hubbard 

Saturday night: Kenny Burrell; Stanley Turrentine; Sun Ra and his Arkestra

Sunday afternoon: Marcus Belgrade and the II-V-I Orchestra (with a teenage Kenny Garrett as a featured soloist); Chico Freeman; Hubert Laws

Sunday night: Ellington Orchestra conducted by Mercer Ellington; Mose Allison; Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers.






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