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Record Label Profiles

Sackville: 40 Plus Years of Great Jazz

By Published: February 5, 2010
Sackville has also ventured outside of mainstream jazz. "Back in the late '60s and early '70s, we recorded some avant-garde. These sessions were designed by my partner, Bill Smith. When we reissued some of them, a few sound a lot more like jazz music than I remembered. We recorded Don Pullen, Anthony Braxton, Oliver Lake, Julius Hemphill, Anthony Davis, Ray Anderson and Barry Altschul. We featured most of those musicians in concert. Then the world got flooded with it when the European companies were paying huge amounts of money; our sales couldn't possibly justify what they were paying."

Norris doesn't have plans to retire, though he admits, "I'm 75, my wife wants me to work less. There are several reissues that should have already been out for our 40th anniversary last year. I going to put out a collection of Montreal pianist Milton Sealey—he's in between Oscar Peterson and Oliver Jones chronologically. He went to study in Paris in the '50s. While he was there, he recorded with Mezz Mezzrow in Paris, England and a trio in Montreal. I'm reissuing an Ed Bickert/Lorne Lofsky LP made for Unisson; we've added some extra tunes from a concert put on by a jazz radio station. There's a two-CD set of Vic Dickenson with Red Richards. The Saints and Sinners band made a record in 1967, that's how I got my start as a producer. They were playing at a club and it was frequented by people in the jewelry business. Ten of them put up $500 each to make the record. Vic told me I had to be the producer. I'm putting out a two-CD set of the remaining Buddy Tate material that hasn't yet been reissued, a duet with Jay McShann, one with Bob Wilber, Sam Jones and Leroy Williams, the third features the Ray Downs Trio. I'm also going to put out the very first night of the Café des Copains, a piano room which Jim Galloway and I booked for seven years beginning in 1983. Ralph Sutton was the opening act; every single person who played there was recorded for the radio station."

[Editor's Note: John Norris died from a stroke on January 31, 2010 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.]

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