Posts filtered by tags: Marc Myers[x]


 

Don, Oscar and Aretha

In The Wall Street Journal this week, I interviewed Don Chadwick, co-designer of the Aeron chair, for my "House Call" column in the Mansion section (go here). The ergonomic Aeron was first introduced in the late 1990s. Instead of upholstery, the chair's seat and back are constructed of a tightly woven two-way suspension system. It feels like you're sitting in a taut net. Don started out as a kid building model planes.  Here's Don on the Aeron... SiriusXM. If you missed me on SiriusXM'...
Tags: Japan, New York, Aretha Franklin, House, Smokey Robinson, Jazz, Miles Davis, Mansion, Wall Street Journal, Baker, Kenton, Chet Baker, Don, Charlie Parker, Smokey, Kenny Rogers


Documentary: Jackie McLean

For New Yorkers of a certain age, Gil Noble is a familiar name. Noble died in 2012, but from 1968 to 1986, he was seen often as an anchor on WABC-TV's Eyewitness News and as host of Like It Is, a long-running WABC documentary series on black artists. On July 28, 1983, Noble interviewed alto saxophonist and childhood friend Jackie McLean. A special thanks to Milan Simich for sending along the link. Here's Noble's interview with McLean...          [Author: Marc Myers]
Tags: Jazz, McLean, Noble, WABC, Jackie McLean, Marc Myers, Milan Simich, Gil Noble


Perfect Album: Pettiford in Hi-Fi

Back in the 1940s and '50s, Oscar Pettiford was one of the finest jazz bassists and cellists in New York. In the mid-1950s, he formed a big band with top musicians and arrangers and recorded two albums for Creed Taylor's ABC-Paramount label. The albums were Oscar Pettiford Orchestra in Hi-Fi, Vol 1. and Vol. 2. The first was recorded in June 1956. The compositions and arrangements on each and every track remain spectacular. The first of the three sessions for Hi-Fi Vol. 1 was recorded on June ...
Tags: New York, Jazz, Tommy Flanagan, Falcon, Thompson, David Amram, Nica, Horace Silver, Marc Myers, Oscar Pettiford, Jimmy Cleveland, Gryce, Lucky Thompson, Creed Taylor, Osie Johnson, Danny Bank


Anita O'Day: August 1960

In 1952, Norman Granz signed singer Anita O'Day to his Clef label. Clef became Norgran in 1954 and then Verve in 1955. Throughout the 1950s, O'Day recorded more than 20 albums for Granz's labels. Most of the recordings are quite good, but only a few are excellent. Two that stand out are Waiter, Make Mine Blues, arranged by Russ Garcia, and Incomparable, arranged by Bill Holman. Both were recorded in August 1960. The quality of O'Day's seductive voice and magic of her sassy approach often were ...
Tags: Spotify, Jazz, Bill, Marc Myers, Bill Holman, Al McKibbon, Billy May, Mel Lewis, Al Hendrickson, Barney Kessel, Frank Rosolino, Bud Shank, Norman Granz, Granz, Bill Perkins, Howard Roberts


The Sammy Nestico Sessions

The swingin'est arranger around today is Sammy Nestico. In fact, Sammy probably has held that title since the late 1960s, when he first arranged Count Basie's album Straight Ahead. My first encounter with Sammy's finger-snapping scores was in the early 1970s, when I was in high school. As member of the school's dance band, I recall that Mr. Lowery, the band's teacher and conductor, ordered Sammy's charts for the band. Music parts came in an envelope along with a floppy vinyl disc with all the s...
Tags: Jazz, United States Army, Sammy, Lowery, Marc Myers, Johnny Mandel, Sammy Nestico, Sammy All, Sammy Sessions IAN Formed, Noel Coward Tippin, Erskine Hawkins Frankie Johnny, Sammy my JazzWax, Sammy Sessions


Alice Darr and Kevin Gavin

Guitarist Mundell Lowe was a wonderful arranger with impeccable taste and intimate elegance. This was true of his big-band writing and those for small groups. Recently I posted on his Columbia albums for Joe Mooney (1963), his TV Action Jazz albums (1959), the score for Satan in High Heels (1961), Jerri Winters Again (1962) and J.J. Johnson's Broadway Express (1965). Two more beautiful examples of Mundy's touch were albums for singers in 1962—Alice Darr's I Only Know How to Cry and Kevin Gavin'...
Tags: Spotify, New York, Los Angeles, Broadway, Jazz, Las Vegas, West Coast, Columbia, Pittsburgh, Parker, Far East, Doris, Charlie Parker, Gavin, Dino, Left Bank


Itzhak, Junior and Paul

In The Wall Street Journal this week, I interviewed violinist Itzhak Perlman for my "House Call" column in the Mansion section (go here). Itzhak and I talked about how his parents met after leaving Poland just before the German invasion and the day as a child that he woke and realized he had polio. Itzhak enjoys playing the violin while watching baseball with the sound down and loves hot dogs with just a bit of mustard and ketchup. Here he is on The Ed Sullivan Show at age 13 in 1958, a perf...
Tags: New York, James Brown, Paris, Poland, Jazz, Art Blakey, Mansion, Wall Street Journal, Quincy Jones, Resonance Records, PAUL, Zev, Watergate, Kenny Rogers, Itzhak, Francis Wolff


Interview: Miles Davis, 1984

While Miles Davis was on tour in Baltimore in 1984, he agreed to appear on a daytime cable talk show called Cityline. For whatever reason, the hosts didn't bother to do a stitch of research and admitted as much to Davis. One of the hosts even asks Davis if he played with Charlie Parker. Astonished by the dopey questions, Davis eventually lets them have it. The interview is so bad, you see Davis start to feel sorry for them and those asking him silly questions on the show. Lazy hosts aside, Davi...
Tags: Davis, Jazz, Miles Davis, Baltimore, Charlie Parker, Marc Myers, Milan Simich


Perfect Album: Something Else

I was going to post today about a "Hot Track" but decided instead to simply start a new feature called "Perfect Album." Yesterday I was listening to Johnny Richards' Something Else, one of my absolute favorite big-band albums. Something Else was recorded for Bethlehem in Hollywood on August 2 and 3, 1956. What made Richards (above) special as an arranger was his fiery romanticism and percussive moodiness. A highly progressive writer, Richards thought big. Really big. And he loved his sections ...
Tags: Hollywood, Jazz, Bethlehem, Don, Blanca, Johnny, Shorty Rogers, Richards, Stan Kenton, Charlie Mariano, Marc Myers, Maynard Ferguson, Bill Holman, Frank Rosolino, Stan Levey, Johnny Richards


Gary Burton on Brad McCuen

Yesterday, I posted on Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis and Paul Gonsalves's 1968 album Love Calls. I noted that the recording along with two other RCA gems by Davis in the late 1960s were produced by Brad McCuen. Then I provided some bio information about McCuen and mentioned that he had produced eight of vibist Gary Burton's superb albums from that same period. The list includes Duster, a groundbreaking album from 1966. After my post went up, I received an email from Gary: "Marc, you struck a nostalgic ...
Tags: Atlantic, Davis, Jazz, Elvis Presley, Nashville, Sam, Barber, Joe, Rca Records, Time Machine, Mozart, Gary, George, Rachmaninoff, Jim, Brad


Lockjaw Meets Gonsalves, 1968

I love the three albums that tenor saxophonist Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis recorded for RCA in the mid-1960s. They maximized his badness perfectly, surrounding him with enormously talented artists and arrangers and songs that were perfectly suited to his take-charge sound. The first was Lock the Fox (1966), the second was The Fox & the Hounds (1967) and the third was Love Calls (1968). The wild part is that all three were produced by Brad McCuen, a leading RCA producer from 1948 to 1969 who spent muc...
Tags: Davis, Jazz, Nashville, Duke Ellington, Hanna, Count Basie, Henry Mancini, Gonsalves, Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis, Marc Myers, Gary Burton, Grady Tate, McCuen, Roland Hanna, Paul Gonsalves, Bill Dixon


Sal Salvador: Colors in Sound

Sal Salvador is best known as Stan Kenton's guitarist from 1953 to 1955, at which point he left the band to work as a freelance small-group leader and studio musician. In the late 1950s, with the advent of stereo, Decca signed him for a pair of big-band albums that took advantage of the new format's sound separation and wide, dynamic presentation. The Dauntless label tapped Salvador for a third album. Dauntless was a subsidiary of Audio Fidelity Records and managed by Tom Wilson, one of the few...
Tags: New York, Jazz, Continental, Decca, University Of North Texas, Salvador, Capitol, Tom Wilson, David Amram, Stan Kenton, Marc Myers, Eddie Bert, Maynard Ferguson, Bill Holman, Osie Johnson, Frank Rehak


Gisele, Burt and Miles

In The Wall Street Journal this week, I interviewed supermodel Gisele Bundchen for my "House Call" column in the Mansion section on her childhood in Brazi (go here). She talked about growing up with five sisters remai  best friends today. Her parents did something right. Gisele was discovered by a model scout in a Brazilian mall when she was 14. While I had her, I asked Gisele for two Brazilian album recommendations. Here's Tribalistas (2002)... And here's Maria Gadú (2009)... Black...
Tags: Japan, New York, Toronto, Davis, Jazz, Cbs, Miles Davis, Mansion, Wall Street Journal, Dick, Kenton, York, Miles, Nichols, Giulietta, FRANKFURT Germany


MJQ: On the Road, 1964 + '61

The Modern Jazz Quartet wasn't big on obvious excitement. They tended to be subtle and hushed, more introspective than explosive. But the more carefully you listen, the more you'll hear the tender swing and beauty of pianist John Lewis, vibist Milt Jackson, bassist Percy Heath and drummer Connie Kay. [Photo above of the Modern Jazz Quartet at Schiphol Airport in the Netherlands in 1961] Here's the MJQ in London in April 1964... And here's the MJQ abroad in the 1960s, thanks to Milan Simich. ...
Tags: Japan, John Lewis, London, Netherlands, Jazz, Schiphol Airport, Marc Myers, Milt Jackson, Modern Jazz Quartet, Percy Heath, Connie Kay, Milan Simich


Doug Carn: Black Jazz

In 1969, pianist Gene Russell and percussionist Dick Schory founded a revolutionary record label in Oakland, Calif., that personified a new sophisticated approach to jazz that embraced the era's black power and pan-African movements. The Black Jazz label featured young black artists and jazz that wasn't entirely acoustic but certainly not fusion. The music was culturally rich, geared to the newly emerging FM radio dial and guided by a new sense of what it meant to be creative, intellectual and ...
Tags: Florida, New York, Africa, Jazz, Lincoln Center, Adam, Oakland Calif, Doug, Jean, Bill Evans, Carn, Doug Carn, Marc Myers, Bobby Hutcherson, Gene Russell, Jean Carn


Kenton Presents: Al Belletto

In the early 1950s, just as the 10-inch album and 45 was becoming standard formats, Capitol decided to showcase artists who played in Stan Kenton's bands or artists Kenton fancied at the time. The label put Don Hassler in charge of producing the "Kenton Presents" series, which switched to the 12-inch format when the LP format expanded in 1956. Most of the artists who recorded for the line were familiar names. They included Claude Williamson (Keys West, Salute to Bud), Frank Rosolino (Frankly S...
Tags: Chicago, New Orleans, Jazz, South America, State Department, West Coast, East Coast, Kenton, Capitol, Jazzfest, Mabel Mabel, Russ Freeman, Jack Martin, Woody Herman, Playboy Club, Stan Kenton


Shirley Horn: Bern, 1990

Happy New Year to all of my JazzWax readers around the globe and to my Facebook friends and 10.7K Twitter followers! As a New Year's Day treat, I'm sharing a link that pianist Leslie Pintchik sent along featuring the splendor that was Shirley Horn. In the video, she sings and plays at the International Jazz Festival in Bern, Switzerland, in 1990, backed by bassist Charles Ables and drummer Steve Williams . Part 1 leads into the next five parts. So just sit back in your pajamas or sweats and en...
Tags: Facebook, Jazz, Bern, Bern Switzerland, Shirley Horn, Steve Williams, Marc Myers, Leslie Pintchik, Charles Ables


Chet Baker: '60s, '70s & '80s

The last day of the year always feels exhilarating and melancholy. Exhilarating, because we're on the threshold of a new year fresh with promise and hope. Melancholy, because another year is sliding from the present to the past, becoming a memory rather than a real-time experience. It's a day of sighs. The horn that sounds most to me like December 31st is Chet Baker's. It's innocent and melodic but there's enomrous sadness in there, too. Chet Baker died in 1988. Here are five videos of Baker i...
Tags: London, Sweden, Belgium, Jazz, Tokyo, Elvis Costello, Baker, Stockholm, Chet Baker, Stan Getz, Marc Myers, Ronnie Scott, Victor Lewis, Rene Urtreger, Franco Manzecchi, Jim McNeely


Kenny, Tippi and Chuck

This past week in The Wall Street Journal, I interviewed Kenny Rogers and Don Schlitz on The Gambler for my "Anatomy of a Song" column (go here). Don wrote the song and Kenny recorded it in 1978, sending The Gambler to #1 on Billboard's country chart and to #8 on the pop chart. Both Kenny and Don won Grammy Awards for the song. Here's Kenny on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson in September 1978, months before the album and single were released... Also in the WSJ, I interviewed film ...
Tags: Chuck, Minneapolis, Dave, David, Broadway, Jazz, Alfred Hitchcock, Wall Street Journal, Jj, Donald, Kevin Smith, Don, Jim, Kenny, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Duke Ellington


Rare Docs: Goodman and Byas

Two rare videos surfaced this week. The first is The Art of Performing, taped for television in 1967. It features Benny Goodman (cl), Clark Terry (tp,flglh), Zoot Sims (ts), Hank Jones (p), Gene Bertoncini (g), Milt Hinton (b) and Ed Shaughnessy (d). Earlier versions of this taping were bottle green and largely unwatchable. The second is a Dutch documentary called Homecoming, focusing on tenor saxophonist Don Byas and his one-time return to New York in 1970. The artist who Byas refers to as hi...
Tags: New York, Jazz, Ben, Clark Terry, Goodman, Maynard, Thad Jones Mel Lewis, Milt Hinton, Benny Goodman, Marc Myers, Hank Jones, Gene Bertoncini, Jaki Byard, Ed Shaughnessy, Don Byas, Byas


J.J. Johnson: Broadway Express

Back in the 1960s, jazz guitarist Mundell Lowe was busy. In addition to recording as a leader and sideman, he arranged and conducted sessions for his own band and for others, always with enormous taste. His albums as an arranger, conductor and player included Satan in High Heels (1961), a film score; Hey! This is Kevin Gavin (1962); Jerry Winters Again (1962); Alice Darr (1962); The Happiness of Joe Mooney (1963); The Greatness of Joe Mooney (1963); and two tracks on Peggy Lee's Is That All The...
Tags: Broadway, Jazz, Johnson, Warren Smith, Xanadu, Peggy Lee, Vic, J.J. Johnson, Francis Wolff, Richard Davis, Frank Wess, Broadway Express, Kenny Burrell, Mundy, Marc Myers, Hank Jones


Billy Eckstine: Mr. B in Paris

One of the least known albums recorded by singer Billy Eckstine is one of his best—Mr. B in Paris. Recorded for Britain's Felsted label while Eckstine was on tour in Europe between releases for Roulette, the album features the baritone singing 12 songs in French backed by the Bobby Tucker Orchestra. Mr. B in Paris was produced by Quincy Jones and arranged by Jones, Billy Byers and Bobby Tucker. The orchestra was recorded in Paris in 1957 while Eckstine's vocal was overdubbed in London in 1958. ...
Tags: Europe, England, London, France, Britain, Paris, Army, Manhattan, Jazz, States, Quincy Jones, Decca, Scott, Newark N J, Lui, Tucker


J.J. Johnnson: Broadway Express

Back in the 1960s, jazz guitarist Mundell Lowe was busy. In addition to recording as a leader and sideman, he arranged and conducted sessions for his own band and for others, always with enormous taste. His albums as an arranger, conductor and player included Satan in High Heels (1961), a film score; Hey! This is Kevin Gavin (1962); Jerry Winters Again (1962); Alice Darr (1962); The Happiness of Joe Mooney (1963); The Greatness of Joe Mooney (1963); and two tracks on Peggy Lee's Is That All The...
Tags: Broadway, Jazz, Johnson, Warren Smith, Xanadu, Peggy Lee, Vic, J.J. Johnson, Francis Wolff, Richard Davis, Frank Wess, Broadway Express, Kenny Burrell, Mundy, Marc Myers, Hank Jones


Julie London's Holiday Album

Today it's Christmas around the world, the day on which I traditionally feature the Julie London holiday album that never was. As JazzWax readers know, London is one of my favorite female vocalists. She had a captivating, cool singing style that never felt forced. Her satiny delivery, superb taste and sophisticated delivery was nocturnal and relaxed, and she routinely took on tough songs and aced them with an understated, whispery strength. I've long wondered why London resisted recording a cl...
Tags: London, Jazz, Julie London, Marc Myers, Liberty Records, Bobby Troup Did London


Shorty Rogers: Nutcracker

What do Shorty Rogers, Larry Clinton, Les Brown, Hal Mooney, Duke Ellington, Herbie Fields, the Nutty Squirrels and Gene Krupa have in common? All recorded a jazz interpretation of Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker. Of the bunch, Rogers's The Swingin' Nutcracker is probably the hippest and most fun to hear. It still jumps like caramel popcorn on a hot skillet. The album was recorded for RCA in three sessions—one with a sax quintet and two with a big band. Overture for Shorty, Nutty Marche, Dance Espre...
Tags: Jazz, West Coast, Rogers, Tchaikovsky, Shorty Rogers, Marc Myers, Gene Krupa, Bill Holman, David Langner, Mel Lewis, Jimmy Giuffre, Bud Shank, Bill Perkins, Pete Jolly, Chuck Gentry, Joe Mondragon


Eric, Nat and Sarah

In The Wall Street Journal this week, I interviewed chef Eric Ripert on growing up in France (go here). Several weeks ago, I went down to Eric's Manhattan restaurant, Le Bernardin, and we spent time in his office talking about childhood—how his mother helped him develop a refined pallet and the emotional issues he had to deal with after his parents divorced. [Photo of Eric Ripert at his Le Bernardin restaurant in Manhattan by Matt Furman for The Wall Street Journal ] SiriusXM. Last...
Tags: Spotify, Hbo, France, Karen, Italy, Manhattan, Jazz, Janis Joplin, Wall Street Journal, Sarah, Elena Ferrante, Capitol, Phil, Eric, Naples Italy, Matt Furman


Hot Track: Someone in Love

Unfamiliar with Shirley Horn? Like Someone in Love, from her album Embers and Ashes (1960), is as good an entry point as any. Horn sings and accompanies herself on piano, backed by Joe Benjamin (b) and Herbie Lovelle (d). The song was written by Jimmy Van Heusen, with lyrics by Johnny Burke, for the film Belle of the Yukon (1944). In the movie, the song was sung by Dinah Shore. Here's Shirley Horn singing Like Someone in Love... And here's Dinah Shore in a colorized Belle of the Yukon... ...
Tags: Jazz, Belle, Horn, Jimmy Van Heusen, Shirley Horn, Johnny Burke, Marc Myers, Dinah Shore, Joe Benjamin, Herbie Lovelle


Dan Adler: Friends on the Moon

As most readers know, I rarely feature new jazz albums at JazzWax. I simply don't have the time. My heart is in the music of the 1940s, '50s and '60s, and JazzWax is really an educational blog providing those in the know and those new to jazz with a roadmap and recommendations. Every so often, however, a track pops up that lures me into a knockout new-album experience. Dan Adler's new Friends on the Moon is one of those standouts. [Photo above of Dan Adler courtesy of Dan Adler] Dan's approach...
Tags: Jazz, Wes Montgomery, Dan, Tel Aviv Israel, Yardley, Marc Myers, Jimmy Raney, JazzWax, Dan Adler, Byron Landham, Arnon Palty, Donald Vega, Dan Born


John Thms. Williams (1929-2018)

John Thomas Williams, a spritied jazz pianist strongly influenced by Bud Powell and Horace Silver who recorded with the Stan Getz Quintet in the early 1950s before recording his two sole leadership albums for EmArcy in 1954 and '55, died on December 15. He was 89. Born in Windsor, Vt., Williams began as a church organist and played baritone horn in the Army before spending a semester at the Manhattan School of Music. In the 1940s, he joined Mal Hallett's band, which brought him to New York, an...
Tags: New York, Williams, Army, Jazz, John Williams, NICK, Jones, Stan Getz, Getz, Bud Powell, Frank Isola, Bill Crow, Cannonball Adderley, Horace Silver, Hollywood Fla, Manhattan School of Music


9 Nancy Wilson Video Clips

The late Nancy Wilson worked tirelessly during her long singing and acting career. Days off were rare. Weekends meant work and holidays meant work. If she wasn't touring to support one of her Capitol albums she was appearing at one of the country's top supper clubs. Or she was in Las Vegas or on television variety shows. Or she was acting in dramas. People forget that Nancy was quite a good actress. When she announced her retirement from touring in 2011, I spoke with her by phone. She said, "H...
Tags: Usa, Jazz, Las Vegas, Nancy, Burke, Nancy Wilson, Andy Williams, Marc Myers, Al McKibbon, Oscar Brown, Lou Levy, Hollywood Palace, Nancy Wilson Video Clips, Kenny Dennis Here