On January 28, 2016, I had the rare privilege of seeing / hearing / recording a duo session (under the aegis of project142) featuring the eminent Bill Crow — at 88 still a peerless string bassist, engaging raconteur, and surprisingly effective singer — and his friend and colleague, guitarist / singer Flip Peters. (Thanks to Scot Albertson for making this all possible!)
Here, in six parts, is that evening, one I won’t ever forget for swing, elegance, humor, feeling, and the joy of being alive, the joy of playing music. And here is what I posted about the evening as prelude — don’t miss Flip’s beautiful words about Bill.
Bill describes his childhood immersion with music — all the way up to hearing Nat Cole for the first time:
Bill’s sings and plays SWEET LORRAINE for Nat Cole; his arrival in New York, memories of Birdland, Lester Young and Jo Jones, of Charlie Parker and Stan Getz:
More about Stan Getz, Claude Thornhill, Terry Gibbs, and the Detroit players: Billy Mitchell, Paul Chambers, Curtis Fuller (with a wicked cameo by Miles Davis) — then Bill and Flip play YARDBIRD SUITE:
Working with Marian McPartland and with Gerry Mulligan, and a swinging vocal from Flip on NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT:
Studying with Fred Zimmerman, a concert with Duke Ellington, then (in tribute to Duke) ROSE ROOM / IN A MELLOTONE:
Bill on his writing career, tales of Zoot Sims and Al Cohn, and a touching bonus, his vocal rendition of a forgotten 1936 swing tune, SING, BABY, SING:
I hope some person or organization, seeing these videos, says, “Let’s have Bill and Flip spend an evening with us!” You know — for sure — that they have more music to offer and certainly more stories. And their rich musical intimacy is wondrous. To learn more about Bill, visit www.billcrowbass.com/. To find out about booking the duo, contact Flip at firstname.lastname@example.org or call him at 973-809-7149. I hope to be able to attend the duo’s next recital: watch the videos and you will know why, quickly.
May your happiness increase!