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Gavin Walker's "The Jazz Show"
My apologies to Gavin and the many fans of his CITR jazz show for not getting his September Jazz Features posted to the calendar.
The show's on every Monday night 9pm to Midnight at 101.9 FM in Vancouver or visit the CITR web site to tune in via the internet. (RealAudio)
Here's this month's lineup of Jazz Features, heard at 11:
September 5: “Without a Song” Sonny Rollins
September 12: Leonard Bernstein “What Is Jazz”
September 19: “An Introduction to Jazz” Narrated by Julian “Cannonball” Adderley
September 26: “Crescent” John Coltrane
Sept. 5: This album on tonight’s feature has been subject to much advance publicity as any new album by Sonny Rollins should as advancing years make his recordings less frequent. Rollins will be 75 on September 7 and the playing of this rather special disc is the Jazz Show’s way of saying “Happy Birthday” to Mr. Rollins. Enough biographical information is easily available on Sonny. Suffice to say that he was born in New York City of West Indian parentage. Sonny was also one of the few living recipients of Lincoln Center’s “Hall of Fame” awards.
This new album by Rollins has very special significance as it was recorded in concert just four days after 9/11. Rollins was in his New York studio apartment only a few blocks from the World Trade Center when the planes hit. He was confined to his building for a day and then evacuated amid the dust, rubble and toxic air. Once out and hurting from climbing flights of stairs and breathing the polluted air Rollins was fully aware of the horror of 9/11 but decided to keep a concert date in Boston on September 15. Sonny and his working band consisting of his nephew Clifton Anderson on trombone, Stephen Scott on piano and on kalimba on one tune, long time Rollins stalwart Bob Cranshaw on electric bass, Perry Wilson on drums and Kimati Dinizulu on conga and percussion performed this magnificent concert strongly motivated by the healing power of music. The audience was deeply moved by Rollins’ power and sound of his tenor saxophone and his interpretations of some of his favourite melodies. Rollins was not thinking of releasing this recording until he heard the music later and the usually self-critical Rollins realized that the evening of September 15 was very special and sanctioned the album’s issuance. Tonight’s feature is our birthday tribute to the world’s greatest living jazz saxophonist…..Sonny Rollins!
Sept. 12: With school starting and people in general getting into an educational mode we, here at the Jazz Show join the march to enlightenment for this evening’s feature and next week’s as well. “What Is Jazz?” is a classic educational recording done in the mid-fifties that is still valuable today. It is narrated by the one and only Leonard Bernstein who gives you a great idea of how jazz music is put together and a bit of it’s colourful history. Bernstein uses his piano and his (self admitted) horrible voice as well. As examples played by some very well known musicians to give you a mini history of jazz and some of the many devices used to make jazz truly unique. You will find his whole presentation very entertaining, funny and lucid. Later in the disc, Bernstein takes apart a “Standard” tune called “Sweet Sue” and breaks it down for you then shows how musicians take the same tune to improvise on and how players of different eras play the tune. The album ends with Miles Davis’ concept of “Sweet Sue”. As this wonderfully informative album was done in the mid fifties some of the references will bring a smile but all in all the love and respect for jazz by someone of Leonard Bernstein’s stature make this still a very worthwhile listening adventure.
Sept. 19: Education continues with this week’s feature with the presentation of “An Introduction to Jazz” narrated by the great alto saxophonist/educator/bandleader Julian “Cannonball” Adderley. Cannonball gives you a history of jazz through recorded examples right up to 1960 when this was recorded. Even though the examples stop in 1960 this is still a very valuable document as Adderley displays his verbal chops to make this album not only informative but entertaining as well. This disc has never been issued on CD and we, at the Jazz Show play this recording every year and every year get dozens of calls as to where one can get this album. Do what you have to do and make a date to listen to one of the show’s most popular features. A Jazz history lesson with Cannonball Adderley…..what can be better?
Sept. 26: Tonight we honour John Coltrane and celebrate what would have been his 79th birthday. Coltrane was born on September 23, 1926 in Hamlet, North Carolina and died in New York on July 17, 1967. Coltrane was one of the most important musical innovators of the past century and still is a very strong influence over most musicians playing today. He was lucky to have almost every aspect of his music documented right from his earliest sideman roles with Dizzy Gillespie and Johnny Hodges through Miles Davis and Thelonious Monk to his own groups right up to his untimely death. Almost every aspect of Coltrane’s music has been studied, analyzed and copied. Coltrane’s music continues to be to this day one of the strongest influences in jazz music.
Tonight’s feature is a classic by the “Classic Quartet” called “Crescent”. This album is a great favourite of many musicians including Gavin Walker, the host of “The Jazz Show”. It represents one of the many peaks of creativity that this group attained. It was done in two sessions in the spring of 1963. Coltrane plays tenor saxophone only and McCoy Tyner plays piano with Jimmy Garrison on bass and the great Elvin Jones on drums, playing a program of Coltrane compositions. Each member of this ground breaking band is featured extensively and this all reach astounding heights. Coltrane himself was said to be very happy with this album…..unusual for the self-critical Mr. Coltrane. We wish John Coltrane a Happy Birthday and still honour his musical legacy.
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