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Weekend Wax Bits

 
In this week's Wall Street Journal, I interview golf legend Arnold Palmer (go here), who talks about the two most important lessons he learned on the golf course growing up and how the the Arnold Palmer beverage came to be and what he adds to the tea-lemonade mixture today.  


 
Also in the WSJ, my chat with author Tama Janowitz on the Rolling Stones' Get Off of My Cloud (go here) and how she came to hear it on New Year's Eve in 1986 in the back of a Rolls Royce.

Louis Stewart (1944-2016), a lyrical Irish jazz guitarist who began his career in the 1960s and recorded his first leadership album in 1976 before touring with George Shearing in the 1970s, died on Aug. 20. He was 72. Stewart could play swing and bop, and he spent the balance of his career touring in Europe. He often was paired with touring American musicians (including Benny Goodman), and he recorded quite a few leadership albums, many of which are out of print. Here are three examples of Stewart's grace and time:
With Benny Goodman in Italy...
 
 
Benny Goodman featuring Louis Stewart "Rose Room"&"Honeysuckle Rose"
 
 
 
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Here's Stewart playing with bassist Peter Ind...
 
 
Louis Stewart/Peter Ind - Baubles, Bangles and Beads
 
 
 
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Here's Stewart three years ago playing But Beautiful with pianist Jim Doherty at a party...
 
 
Louis Stewart and Jim Doherty
 
 
 
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Billy Byers. Following my post last week on arranger Billy Byers, I received quite a few emails praising Byers's gifts as a trombonist and orchestrator. This one is from Brett Gold...
"I appreciated your post on Billy Byers. You may be interested in a video of arranger David Berger discussing arrangers' writing habits. The first person he discusses is Byers"...
 
 
David Berger - Jazz Composing & Arranging Habits
 
 
 
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Chubby Jackson. Following my post on bassist, songwriter and bandleader Chubby Jackson, I received three related links from Geri Reichgut...
Here's clip #1, featuring drummer Duffy Jackson, Chubby's son, with Lionel Hampton and his orchestra at Disneyland in 1984...
 
 
DRUM BATTLE: Lionel Hampton - Duffy Jackson
 
 
 
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Go here for an article on Chubby and Duffy.
And go here for my post on Duffy Jackson from 2014.

JazzWax milestone noted. Fradley Garner, the international editor of Jersey Jazz, the monthly journal of the New Jersey Jazz Society wrote a swell piece marking JazzWax's ninth anniversary. If you're curious about the publication edited by Tony Mottola, son of Tony Mottola Sr., the great jazz and pop guitarist, subscribe by joining the New Jersey Jazz Society here. Free journal covers and part-samples can be downloaded ther as well. The monthly journal covers jazz in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. [To enlarge the image above, click and then adjust by holding down your control button and tapping the + or - sign on your keyboard]

Franco Cerri. Jimi Mentis sent along two video clips of Italian jazz guitarist Franco Cerri. In the first, from 1967, Cerri accompanies Mina, the Italian pop singer...
 
 
Mina e Franco Cerri - CORCOVADO (1967)
 
 
 
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In the second, from 2015, the Frank Cerri Quartet plays Take the A Train. The band featured Franco Cerri (g), Alessandro Usai (g), Alberto Gurrisi (org) and Roberto Paglieri (d)...
 
 
Franco Cerri Quartet - Take the A Train - Live @ Blue Note Milano
 
 
 
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Tokyo jazz. Jimi Mentis also sent along this article on the jazz bars in Tokyo and their vinyl-loving proprietors.

Album of note. Bummed out when the Beatles broke up in 1970? Not Seth Swirsky, a renaissance mensch. Seth is a pop music songwriter (including the Grammy-nominated Tell It To My Heart), an author, a recording artist, a filmmaker, a political writer and a noted baseball memorabilia collector. But best of all, he's a recording artist. On his new album, Circles and Squares, Seth has captured the spirit and textured sound of the Fab Four in their late period. Seth plays virtually all of the instruments (go here). Here's Far Away:
Far Away
Books of note.

 
Softly, With Feeling: Joe Wilder and the Breaking of Barriers in American Music, by Edward Berger (Temple University Press). You know Joe Wilder's trumpet from his many recordings but you probably aren't familiar with the personality that went along with those high notes or how he climbed through the ranks of great players. In his new biography of the trumpeter, Ed Berger weaves together Wilder's career with extensive interviews that not only shed light on the life of an ambitious jazz musician but also exposes the hardships that African-American musicians faced. Each page offers insights and revelations, but ultimately, what you learn is that Wilder, in addition to being an extraordinary big-band and small-group trumpeter was a wise and gentle soul. Written free of the faux drama injected into some jazz biographies, the book is rich with judicious quotes from Wilder and it breaks new ground. Go here.

 
Altamont: the Rolling Stones, the Hells Angels and the Inside Story of Rock's Darkest Day, Joel Selvin (Dey St.). Inviting the Hells Angels to keep order at the Altamont Raceway free concert in December 1969 was probably the dumbest and smartest thing the Rolling Stones had ever done. Billed as the West Coast Woodstock when the concert was held, Altamont was a tragedy waiting to happen. Poorly planned and lacking the proper barriers and stage design that had kept hundreds of thousands of fans from rushing the stage at Woodstock four months earlier, Altamont exposed the era's biggest rock bands to risks of physical harm. The Stones' move to hire the Hells Angels was a reckless move because the motorcycle gang in San Francisco was a notoriously thuggish group with a seething contempt for the counterculture, viewing concertgoers as little more than pampered, drug-addled suburban runaways. But without the Hells Angels present in the front rows, performers might well have been victims of a horrible stampede or worse. In Joel Selvin's book, we learn the full story behind the concert and the deadly events that would unfairly tar the Rolling Stones for years as a careless self-absorbed rock band that went out of its way to court violence as part of its shows. Go here.

 
Jazz: The Iconic Images of Ted Williams (ACC Art Books). Ted Williams was among a handful of African-American photographers who documented post-war jazz musicians, from the 1940s through the 1970s. Williams wasn't the most flashy or dramatic photographer in the jazz space. Many of his images seem to have been taken on the fly without much advance thought to narrative or results. But what does come through is the humanity and social scene surrounding the musicians in bars, on stage and on the streets. This 352-page book documents Williams and his jazz images splendidly, and unlike the works of many photographers who were shooting for gloss and style, Williams had his eye on substance. His love for the artist's struggle is evident in every frame. Go here (coming in October).

 
What the heck. Here's a 1944 jitterbug short called Groovie Movie. The narrator is Pete Smith, and the title may be one of the first uses of the word "groovy"...
 
 
Groovie Movie (1944). Funny jitterbug instructional video.
 
 
 
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Oddball album cover of the week.

I'm not quite sure what exactly is vulgar about the British loo pictured on the cover of this U.K. album. Unless, of course, the word "vulgar" wound up in the wrong spot. Try this: "Vulgar Songs for Bathrooms."
 



 
 


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