Pablo was Norman Granz’s baby, and while fans of Ella, Oscar, Basie, Zoot Sims, Milt Jackson, and Sarah Vaughan remain grateful for the wide variety of settings he produced them in, it was Pass who enjoyed a first and lasting brush with fame through Granz’s efforts.
Johnson, Colombo, and Dave McKenna will always be yoked as New England jazz greats who brought real luster to the region’s music scene for over a half century. They were also among that rare brand of bebop-oriented players who became stylists for all seasons and occasions.
2015 claimed the lives of several major figures in music, some of whom (B.B. King, Clark Terry, Ornette Coleman, Phil Woods, and Allen Toussaint) were […]
That Gary’s the best in the business on baritone saxophone is attested to by his perennial placement as #1 in all the polls, both Critics and, the ultimate endorsement, Readers, i.e., fans.
I spoke with Peter Guralnick on December 17 about his new book, Sam Phillips: The Man Who Invented Rock’n’Roll. Guralnick, who turned 73 on December 15, […]
The birthdays of two of the most soulful alto saxophonists of all time bookend the weekend. Friday was Houston native Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson’s 98th; Monday is the 81st of Memphis-born Hank Crawford.
I was moved the other night listening to Frank Sinatra’s performance of “Ol’ Man River” at his 1962 concert in Paris. He first sang the […]
When it came time to record it, he called on the redoubtable team of Ernie Freeman and Jimmy Bowen for an arrangement with a contemporary feel, one that his drummer Irv Cottler called “ballad rock.”
It’s Billy Strayhorn’s centennial today. The great composer was born in Dayton, Ohio, on November 29, 1915. He grew up in Pittsburgh, where he attended […]
Thank God, and Mr. and Mrs. David Cohn, for bringing Alvin Gilbert Cohn into the world 90 years ago today. It’s hard to measure the value of swing and soul, but I’m certain that jazz would feel considerably less buoyant and exciting if Al had never graced it with his musical ingenuity.