As promised, the third set.
I’ve written elsewhere on this blog about the glorious music and friendship that I experienced for a few short months in 1974 at Brew’s, a place (pub? bar? restaurant?) that had divine small-group jazz under the gentle leadership of my friend, the late Mike Burgevin, a splendid drummer and occasional singer.
Mike encouraged me to record the music, and although Kenny Davern had to be persuaded that I was not the enemy, this night was one of the results: three sets by a trio of Kenny, soprano saxophone; Jimmy Andrews, piano; Mike, drums. I’d borrowed my friend Stu’s Tandberg reel-to-reel recorder, and with two Shure microphones, I recorded the whole evening in stereo (except for the first track, ON THE ALAMO). You can hear Kenny ask, early on, “Isn’t that too close?” or words to that effect, referring no doubt to where I had placed one of the microphones — near the bell of his soprano saxophone, I am sure. But he had no other objections, at least ones he voiced aloud.
Almost fifty years later, here’s the music.
DANNY BOY / WABASH BLUES / IF DREAMS COME TRUE / YOU’RE LUCKY TO ME / SEPTEMBER SONG:
I think you will hear the pleasure of the musicians — Kenny, free to go his own ways without other horns and with the benefit of a friendly empathic rhythm section — and the audience. And for me, the pleasure is doubled and tripled. I can’t go back to 1974, nor would I really want to, but the glowing soundtrack is here, undimmed.
And if you missed my previous posting, here’s the first part of the evening:
Something else needs to be said, and that is the absolute excellence of pianist Jimmy Andrews and drummer Mike Burgevin. Kenny Davern, bless him, received justified attention (call it a kind of jazz stardom) and opportunities to record: he remains unique. But Jimmy and Mike were never sought out by the record companies of the time; they weren’t well-known outside the tri-state area. They deserved better. And they remind us that good music isn’t always created by the people who will be written about in jazz histories, that we should celebrate the superb creators who don’t find international fame. Art and the machinery that publicizes it are two separate things, and only occasionally do they work in tandem.
May your happiness increase!