“Seaman John Coltrane, reporting for duty, sir!”
Would the history of American music have been different, if John Coltrane had stayed in the Navy way past his enlistment date of 1945? Read this and speculate.Read More
Miraculous: Musical Treasures of Roy Eldridge Salvaged from Hurricane Sandy
It’s amazing that musical goldmines like this are still being located worldwide. This latest rescue mission involved recordings and tapes from the collection of Roy Eldridge and Columbia University’s radio station stalwarts, Phil Schaap and Ben Young. I heard some of these recordings during WKCR’s Roy Eldridge birthday festival and they are remarkable treasures.
-Scott WenzelRead More
Old and New Dreams: Carrying the Flag for Ornette Coleman’s Tradition
Four major exponents of the music of Ornette Coleman — trumpeter Don Cherry, reed player Dewey Redman, bassist Charlie Haden and drummer Ed Blackwell — carried the flag for Ornette Coleman’s music in their group, Old and New Dreams. Here, they are captured playing Ornette’s composition “Happy House.” The mastery of all is clear on this recording; yet only Charlie Haden, now in ill health, lives today.View Video
Treasure Trove of Sun Ra, as Close as Chicago
We’ve encountered many in our travels who just cannot get enough of Sun Ra. These enthusiasts are in luck: they need journey no further than Chicago to dive into an impressive collection of research materials on Sun Ra (“Sunrabelia,” perhaps?) spanning the period from 1945 to 1961. This looks more than promising: someday, we may book a vessel for our own visit.Read More
Not Just any Conductor: Butch Morris RIP
Conductor Butch Morris died on January 29. Yet Butch Morris was not just any conductor; he practiced conduction: conducting as an improvisational art. In this NPR interview, he clearly, concisely and patiently explains his art form of conduction. As you would expect, Butch Morris’s charismatic personality informed his singular art. Will conduction as a practicing art form go into eclipse with his departure? We hope not.
-Nick MoyRead More
Roy Eldridge and Anita O’Day, Together
To wrap up our day honoring the birthday of Roy Eldridge, here’s an often seen Soundie, featuring the 1941 Gene Krupa band with Anita O’Day and Roy Eldridge recreating their OKeh Records hit of “Let Me Off Uptown.” Although this particular clip does not have the original beginning credits, it does carry the banter by Anita and Roy before the first vocal chorus. Some prints of this have that portion excised (possibly for those Soundie machines down South).
Thanks for joining our day-long serial Roy Eldridge birthday observance.View Video
Roy Eldridge’s Way with a Ballad
Roy’s improvisations retain legendary status when it comes to uptempo numbers (he was a formidable figure at jam sessions), yet he was equally fiery on ballads. Here’s a recreation of his famous 1941 recording of “Rockin’ Chair” with the Gene Krupa band. This version is from a 1956 Verve LP, with a studio group led by Krupa.
Posts on Roy Eldridge here on the Gazette throughout the day, to celebrate Roy Eldridge’s birthday!View Video
Memories of Roy Eldridge: From his Biographer, but We Remember Too
Trailblazer is an appropriate term when describing Roy Eldridge. I was lucky enough to hear him at Jimmy Ryans and was even invited to his 66th surprise birthday party in a place called Little Richards in Port Chester, N.Y. When I bumped into him a few weeks later in the City he immediately recognized this 16 year old and we chatted for awhile. John Chilton recalls much of the “Little Jazz” persona in this interview.
One of my favorites is the alternate take of “Wabash Stomp” which I heard for the first time on a WKCR Eldridge festival back in the mid-1970s. The master take is heard in this YouTube clip.
More posts on Roy Eldridge here on the Gazette throughout the day, to celebrate his birthday!Read More
Roy Eldridge, All Day on WKCR
Here is a must for anyone interested in Roy Eldridge and his music: WKCR Radio’s Roy Eldridge Birthday Broadcast, all day January 30. Listen at 89.9 FM in the New York City region, or stream online at wkcr.org. Phil Schaap, who should know, divulges that the broadcast will include “the live broadcast of Roy in various discussions at The West End on his 76th birthday (1/30/1987) will be aired at 8:20am ET and a much longer interview done on his 77th birthday (1/30/1988) will be aired at 6:00pm ET.” Eldridge interviews are pretty scarce, so listen in, immerse yourelf, and enjoy.
More posts on Roy Eldridge here on the Gazette throughtout the day!Read More
Happy Birthday, Roy Eldridge
Today we celebrate the birthday of jazz trumpet great Roy Eldridge, born January 30, 1911, who would have been 102 years old today. Throughout the day today, the Daily Jazz Gazette wil be posting features on Roy Eldridge, reflecting on his life, his music and his legacy. To get the festivities under way, this feature shares this brief biography of Eldridge.
Scott Wenzel comments:
Roy Eldridge was a champion trumpeter and vocalist whose legacy, prescribed through the years by critics and historians, was that of being the link between Louis Armstrong and Dizzy Gillespie. Although there were many others who could lay claim to being a link, Eldridge certainly was in the upper echelon in terms of technique and range and most certainly was a major idol and inspiration to many.
More on Roy Eldridge to come.Read More