Provide any jazz fan with the first name “Benny” and leave the surname blank . . . and most listeners will respond with “Goodman.” Some will think of “Morton,” “Moten,” and stump-the-band types might reply “Meroff.” But how many people will immediately think of the brilliant, short-lived trumpeter Benny Strickler, who distinguished himself both in Bob Wills’ Texas Playboys and the early Yerba Buena Jazz Band . . . before dying of tuberculosis in his twenties.
I knew of Strickler as a legendary figure — revered by two of my jazz scholar-friends, Chris Tyle and Hal Smith — but I’d never had a substantial opportunity to hear his work before a friend told me about Dave Radlauer’s fascinating series of radio profiles, now available online here. Radlauer’s approach goes beyond assembling rare records and telling us their personnel: he has spoken at length with musicians who knew his subject — including Bob Helm, Bill Bardin, Danny Alguire. And the series goes in reverse: detailing Strickler’s playing days in San Francisco, then returning to his work with Wills in Tulsa. The delights of these programs are substantial: we get to discover a musician few of us knew, we hear first-hand testimony from people who were on the scene, and we hear both rare recordings by Strickler and later evocations of his compact, relaxed yet energized style, his shining sound. Dave’s JAZZ RHYTHM site presents four half-hour programs on Strickler, full of delightful music and deep research.
Do visit Dave Radlauer’s site here — you will find programs on everyone — famous and rare — from Charlie Christian to Eddie Condon, Spud Murphy, Emmett Miller, Bix, gypsy jazz . . . and more.
May your happiness increase.
Posted in "Thanks A Million", Awful Sad, Bliss!, Hotter Than That, Ideal Places, Irreplaceable, Jazz Titans, Jazz Worth Reading, Pay Attention!, Swing You Cats!, That Was Fun!, The Heroes Among Us, The Real Thing, The Things We Love, Wow!
Tagged Benny Strickler, Bill Bardin, Bix Beiderbecke, Bob Helm, Bob Wills, Charlie Christian, Chris Tyle, Danny Alguire, Eddie Condon, Emmett Miller, Gypsy jazz, Hal Smith, Jazz Lives, JAZZ RHYTHM, Michael Steinman, Spud Murphy, Yerba Buena Jazz Band
A hot band is good to find. And this splendid evocation of romping big band jazz is a special treat — led by pianist / scholar Keith Nichols at the 2012 Whitley Bay Classic Jazz Party on October 28, 2012, it evokes King Oliver’s Dixie Syncopators, a particular favorite of the guiding genius of the Classic Jazz Party, Mike Durham.
Alongside Keith, there are Duke Heitger (trumpet, vocal), Andy Schumm (cornet); Kristoffer Kompen (trombone); Gavin Lee, Matthias Seuffert, Rene Hagmann, reeds, with a guest appearance from Norman Field; Martin Wheatley (banjo); Phil Rutherford (brass bass), Josh Duffee (drums).
DEEP HENDERSON (the reference in the title is to a river, not to Fletcher or Horace):
SNAG IT (with vocal refrain by Mr. Heitger):
SOMEDAY SWEETHEART (with a guest appearance by Mr. Field as Mr. Dodds):
WANG WANG BLUES:
SUGAR FOOT STOMP:
SHAKE IT AND BREAK IT:
For Mister Mike. And, as always, tickets are on sale to the 2013 Party, the garden of delights, here.
May your happiness increase.
Posted in "Thanks A Million", Bliss!, Generosities, Hotter Than That, Ideal Places, Irreplaceable, Jazz Titans, Pay Attention!, Swing You Cats!, That Was Fun!, The Heroes Among Us, The Real Thing, The Things We Love, Wow!
Tagged Andy Schumm, Duke Heitger, Gavin Lee, hot jazz, Jazz Lives, Johnny Dodds, Josh Duffee, Keith Nichols, King Oliver's Dixie Syncopators, Kristoffer Kompen, Martin Wheatley, Matthias Seuffert, Michael Steinman, Mike Durham, Norman Field, Phil Rutherford, Rene Hagmann, Whitley Bay Classic Jazz Party