Tag Archives: Facebook

MORE FROM THE NATIONAL ATTICS: BG, GENE, LEE, LOUIS, EDDIE and FRIENDS

Artifacts and relics and remembrances!

BG autographs 1935

A very prescient autograph collector captured Benny, Gene, Helen, and Frank Froeba (at the “piana”) in mid-1935.

Lee Wiley 1933 frontFor a newspaper story, Miss Lee Wiley in 1933, billed as “Indian radio singer.”

Lee Wiley 1933 back

The other side of the news story: “Just as I finally learned how to knit.”THE FIVE PENNIES Israel poster

An Israeli film poster!

CONDON'S postcardFrom Facebook, thanks to Stephen Hester: someone made a pilgrimage!  Cutty Cutshall, Freddie Ohms, Walter Page, Wild Bill Davison, Edmond Hall, and the Master himself.  “Good luck” for sure.  And “Best regards.”

May your happiness increase!

THE WONDERS CONTINUE!

A few hours ago, I was able to see silent color footage of Sidney Bechet on the Eddie Condon Floor Show — check it out here — and now I can tell you that there is a Facebook page devoted to Adele Girard and Joe Marsala, harpist and clarinetist, wife and husband — created by their daughter Eleisa Trampler in honor of Adele’s upcoming centennial.  Facebook has eaten up at least ninety minutes of every day, but this is one of many reasons to join in.

What next?  Stores selling Rod Cless t-shirts?  Frank Teschemacher refrigerator magnets?  The Complete Works of Frank Melrose?

I can only imagine!  (“I ‘like’ it, I ‘like’ it!”)

May your happiness increase!

FOUR FRIENDS SWING FOR US

My guess is that you might not have heard of these four fellows.  But that isn’t a terrible thing: I post this to remind people that gratifying improvised music is being created all over the world — not just by stars in concert halls and clubs in big cities.  Here’s a truly swinging version of CHEROKEE created by four fellows in Bologna, Italy, in July 2012:

Davide Brillante, guitar; Stefano Sorace, drums; Matteo Raggi, tenor saxophone;  Rob Beneventi, string bass.

They know how to pulse, how to lay it down in the most relaxed manner, how to intertwine and how to stay out of each others’ way — gentle convincing swing mastery!

I wish I could travel all over the world and meet musicians like this . . . it happens for me, but not as often as I would like.  BUT . . . Davide Brilliante will be visiting New York City this summer — so I hope some of my musician-readers find him on his Facebook page  and say, “Come on and sit in when you visit!”

May your happiness increase.

JACK TEAGARDEN, ALL BY HIMSELF, CONTINUES TO ASTONISH

The deeply talented musician Jean-Francois Bonnel just called our attention to these two solo performances — Jack Teagarden, recorded backstage — improvising on LOVER (his famous solo) and the blues (looser). They are astonishing displays of what Jack always did — make the absolutely impossible look, if not easy, at least plausible.

LOVER:

THE BLUES:

The brass players in the audience will be able to tell us just how superheroic that playing is.  The rest of us will simply have to smile and marvel.  Jack’s been gone almost fifty years — but he hasn’t been equalled or replaced.

(Bless Jack for sharing his talents so open-heartedly, and bless the recordist!)

May your happiness increase.

LOUIS and EDDIE FISHER at the HOLLYWOOD BOWL (1954)

Thanks to Alberto Lancia — of Facebook — for bringing this gem to our attention.  How remarkable to see this, nearly sixty years later — with Gordon Jenkins having the time of his life behind Louis.

Yes, you can point out all the negatives: that the BOPPENPOOF SONG was divisive (Lee Konitz said it turned him away from Louis for years.  More’s the pity.)  You can say that Eddie Fisher was a minor talent.

But the fact remains that the deep good humor in this medley is like the sun chasing the darkness.

May your happiness increase.

YOWSAH! CONNEE, VET, and MARTHA JOIN FACEBOOK

I like this.  And I “like” it, too.  Here’s the good news from Kyla Titus — enough to make anyone want to shuffle off to Facebook.

The Boswell Sisters.com* is now on Facebook. Please like us, and please suggest your family friends like us too by forwarding this announcement!  Click here.   We are also on Twitter for those of you that tweet…please follow us there as well: https://twitter.com/thesistasdotcom.

And be sure to check out January’s featured article Remembering Vet by David W. McCain.

*Welcome! to the newest website dedicated to honoring the music, lives, and times of the world’s foremost harmonists, The Boswell Sisters!** I would be honored if you would find the time to peruse the pages, offer comments and suggestions, partake in the blog, and please do sign the guestbook or fill out the contact form at the bottom of the home page. You may also wish to subscribe to the site via a feed reader, so you can be aware of any new postings/responses to the blog. And please feel free to forward this email to your contacts! Thank you for your interest and I hope you enjoy the site, but more importantly, I hope you enjoy The Boswell Sisters timeless and extraordinary music!

You can write to Kyla here.  She knows what she’s talking about: she is Vet Boswell’s granddaughter.

**”Who were The Boswell Sisters? They were three extraordinarily gifted musicians who emerged from the wellspring of the jazz movement in New Orleans in the early part of the 20th-century. They were icons, pioneers in music and early radio with influences that extend far beyond their own time. As Maxene Andrews once said, “They took the idea of jazz and did it vocally.” And they did it with such blending and precision that it has never been equaled since. Widely imitated around the world, they are musician’s musicians, and list of those who were influenced by them and their style is very long indeed. If you enjoy vocal groups in particular, or popular music in general, then you owe a great deal of tribute to The Boswell Sisters.

“What is presented in this website is less analysis of their style and influence on the development of popular music, and more exploration of the personal lives and journey of these three pretty little musical geniuses of the South. Presented primarily by a direct descendant this site–and in far more detail the new book poised for publication–contains information on the Boswell Sisters that does not exist anywhere else, through meticulous study of their private letters, films, records, and other career and personal ephemera. This information is important because it not only gives us clues on the development of a unique musical style, but an understanding of our American heritage and culture–and therefore a better understanding of ourselves.”

And even if you’ve had enough Facebook for the moment, don’t pass this page by — it has the most beautiful (previously unseen) photographs of the Sisters . . . and more to come.

May your happiness increase.

SHE BROUGHT THE SUN TO US

This beautiful photograph — new to me — was taken in 1954.  The source is “Apic / Getty Images,” but it appeared on the Facebook page VintageBlackGlamour.

This is the iconic image for me — not the martyred heroin addict, bone-thin, clutching a glass of gin, but a woman in complete control of the music she is creating.

With Lester Young, Buck Clayton, Edmond Hall, Jimmy Sherman, Freddie Green, Walter Page, Jo Jones in 1937: an art that needs no one to remix it:

May your happiness increase.

YOU’D BETTER LOCK YOUR DOOR!

Wise advice from James Young and Ted Buckner on the subject of keeping one’s domicile safe — Homeland Security in its most local usage — delivered irresistibly by Fats Waller and his Rhythm in 1941.  Thanks to cdbpdx  on YouTube for posting this, Tom Collins and Ricky Riccardi for bringing it to our attention:

d,

Three thoughts.

First, JAMES Young might very well be our own Trummy, who was witty in his own right — he and Ted Buckner were members of the Jimmie Lunceford Orchestra in 1941.

Second, I have no proof for this beyond an intuitive hunch — but I think that “twenty-four robbers” as an expression is a euphemism for a massive hangover rather than a burglary.  Play the video again and see if you can’t imagine two people, bedraggled after an exuberant night:

“Man, what happened to you?”

“I don’t know.  But I feel like twenty-four robbers broke into my house.”

Third, can we all marvel once again at the delightful exuberance of Thomas Waller?  He’s not clowning, not showing off — he’s just swinging himself and the band better than anyone before or since.  I was reminded of the Ralph Sutton story: if you told Ralph he sounded better than Fats, he was well and truly annoyed because he thought NO ONE sounded better than Fats.

As for me, I’m going to play this video again.

May your happiness increase.

MARTY GROSZ LETS US KNOW IT (2012)

I wouldn’t go so far as to say that (I’LL BE GLAD WHEN YOU’RE DEAD) YOU RASCAL YOU expresses the guiding philosophy of Martin Oliver Grosz . . . and anyway the malice here is good-humored and swinging.

This nicely done video captures Marty and friends at a recent appearance at the Mermaid Inn — Danny Tobias, cornet; Joe Midiri, clarinet; Gary Cattley, string bass.  The video comes from GEO SOUND — created by award-winning filmmaker / composer George Manney.  Find out more about his work here.

And — wonder of wonders! — there’s a Marty Grosz Facebook fan page, where you can learn all about the great man’s comings and goings, including future gigs at the Mermaid Inn.  I hear tell he will be at the 2012 Jazz at Chautauqua, too.  The fan page is here.  And Marty will be leading another small group at the Mermaid Inn on Friday, June 8 — including ace brassman Randy Reinhart.  All you rascals should be there!

May your happiness increase.

LUCY’S SECRETS

If you saw this young woman on the street, you would think, “She has a nice smile,” but you might not know that she has several secret lives.

All will be revealed about Lucy Weinman in this post.  She doesn’t have multiple-personality disorder, her own lingerie business, nor a quiz show with Garry Moore.  Her Columbia University transcript would show that she is majoring in biology, is a research fellow at the Kelley Lab — far beyond the high school biology I knew.  You might also encounter her as an enthusiastic swing dancer at a number of venues or a delighted audience member at jazz concerts by people like Dennis Lichtman and Gordon Au.

But this is how I first encountered Lucy.  In full flight and in good company — with Dennis Lichtman and Chloe Feoranzo, Kevin Dorn and other notable souls:

Notice the trumpet attached to our Miss Weinman.  To quote Eddie Condon, she owns it and she plays it.  In fact, Lucy is a really impressive hot trumpeter with a large sound, a truly swinging conception, and a good deal of spice.  She, Jeff Weinman (guitarist / pianist / and also Lucy’s father) and Miss Cherry Delight (vocals) make up the Big Tent Jazz Band with a variety of ringers and sitters-in.  Their Facebook page is http://www.facebook.com/pages/Miss-Cherry-Delight-and-The-Big-Tent-Jazz-Band/343542389217?v=info&sk=info.

That should be enough.  BIO WHIZ GIRL ALSO HOT TRUMPETER would be a nifty headline on an imagined newspaper in a Thirties movie.  But Lucy has more surprises for us.

One is the Columbia University Semi-Formal Swing Dance — coming up on December 9, 2011.  Here (in excited prose I didn’t dare edit) are the details:

CU Swing Dance – This Joint is Jumpin’
: a stompin’ swing dance fiesta featuring New York’s own Grand Street Stompers. Feel-good New Orleans jazz, lovely dancing, lovelier company, and good times will abound. Show up in your semi-finest attire and stretch out those hamstrings cause THIS JOINT’S GONNA BE JUMPIN’!
How it’s gonna go down:
8:30- 9pm – A beginner swing dance lesson provided by CU Swing Dance (No prior experience or partner necessary, ya dig? You got no excuse!)
9pm-12am – The band JUMPS and so do we. It’s that simple.
CUID holders: $8
Non-CUID: $10
*The Grand St. Stompers is a swinging-hot traditional jazz band led by rising young trumpeter Gordon Au and featuring the evocative and joyous vocals of Tamar Korn. With one foot stomping in vintage tradition and the other in modern style, they’ll throw down everything from Louis Armstrong hits and New Orleans standards to Gordon’s exciting originals to surprisingly swinging adaptations of classical pieces and Disney tunes. The bottom line is this: whenever they play, it’s a helluva show.
**Directions: Take the 1 train to 116th St. Walk north on Broadway to Barnard’s Gates at 119th St. Enter campus, turn right, and look for the orange building (The Diana Center). Go down one floor to LL1. Give money to the smiling Columbia students, get your hand stamped, and dance to your heart’s content!

But wait!  There’s more.  WKCR-FM (the radio station of Columbia University, also accessible streaming live on the web at http://www.wkcr.org) is known for seventy years of jazz programming.  One of its long-standing programs — I remember listening to it as far back as the early Seventies — is OUT TO LUNCH, a weekday jazz show from 12-3.  This radio station plays the whole range of recorded jazz from 1917 to the present, from the ODJB to the world of free.  Splendid!  But often — not surprisingly — what’s known as “traditional jazz,” loosely defined as New Orleans, Chicago, early Swing — is left to the very scholarly divagations of the Dean of New York Jazz Radio, Phil Schaap.

Some weeks ago, I was driving home in the early afternoon on a Tuesday, and I turned on my car radio, whose first preset is 89.9, WKCR.  I forget what exactly was coming out of the speaker — was it I MUST HAVE IT by King Oliver or was it FAREWELL BLUES by the New Orleans Rhythm Kings? — but it was a delicious jolt.  The “disc jockey,” the archaic term for the person choosing what records to play, stayed out of the way of the music for a good long time.  Then she announced herself as “Lucy,” and the veils dropped from my eyes.  I am not embarrassed to say that I called the station and said, mock-ominously, “WHAT are you doing playing all that good hot jazz?  What’s the matter with you?” or words to that effect.  Then I introduced myself — Lucy and I know each other from Radegast and The Ear Inn — and we both started laughing happily.

Lucy Weinman is on the air every other Tuesday — her next show is December 13.  She has a clear voice, can pronounce the musicians’ names correctly, and her love for the music comes right through the speaker.  Today, when she was through playing a nice long set of Louis and Earl from 1928, including KNEE DROPS, she began her commentary with a hushed, “Oh, my God.  Louis Armstrong and Earl Hines,” which is proper reverence.

She has at least three or four brilliant careers in front of her, and JAZZ LIVES salutes her varied endeavors — while unmasking her secrets, which is the privilege of Hot Jazz Journalism.  Find out more about her lives at http://www.facebook.com/Lucy.Rae.W.  And if you’re lucky, she’ll bring her horn to a gig.  Pleasant surprises await!

“JAZZ LIVES” and SOCIAL NETWORKING, TENTATIVELY

I have stayed away from Facebook for as long as possible, thinking that the hours I spent at the computer didn’t need to be added to . . . but at the urging of the Beloved, JAZZ LIVES now has its own Facebook Fan page.  Do I know what this means?  Hardly.  Does it inspire confidence?  Not exactly.  But in the spirit of the twenty-first century, I am announcing something I don’t know much about . . . so that you, my devoted readers, can tell other people who might “like” this blog and what I do . . . and on into the sunset. 

Click on the Facebook logo on the right to “like” JAZZ LIVES.  (Who knew that my blog had, of its own accord, become so insecure?) 

Wish us luck.

MICHAEL McQUAID’S RED HOT RHYTHMAKERS 2008

This is a wonderful young stomping band from Australia, playing PANAMA (a homage to the ferocious Luis Russell Orchestra of 1929-30) at a gig in Ireland.  If that doesn’t say that jazz is thriving, internationally, I don’t know what evidence would do it.  McQuaid is one of those youthful heroes who can play a shopful of instruments, in the fashion of the late Tom Baker.  Someone to watch (on YouTube, MySpace, and Facebook — he’s the very model of modernity even though he knows his jazz history from the inside)!