The Albuquerque Jazz Orchestra Meets Fred Sturm
The first is The Pat Metheny Interviews: The Inner Workings of His Creativity Revealed, by Richard Niles. According to the jacket, "In 2007, composer, arranger [and all-around Renaissance man] Niles wrote, produced and hosted a three-part radio series for the BBC titled Pat MethenyBright Size Life." The book includes Niles' interviews with Metheny for those programs along with others he has held with the guitarist over a period of years. Also included are rare photos, music examples, a discography and comments from Lyle Mays, Gary Burton, Jack DeJohnette, John Patitucci, Mike Metheny and the late Michael Brecker. For Metheny fans, a sure winner.
The second book, larger in size and scope, is titled DownBeat: The Great Interviews, a 75th Anniversary Anthology. The book is a compendium of "historic and groundbreaking" interviews printed in the magazine since DownBeat was introduced in July 1934. Also included are classic photos and covers including many shots that have remained unseen since their original publication. As for the interviewees, they range from Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, Charles Mingus, Lester Young and Billie Holiday to such modernists as Ornette Coleman, Jimi Hendrix, Van Morrison, Carlos Santana, Frank Zappa, Tom Waits, Captain Beefheart and dozens more. In addition, there are features written by Louis Armstrong, Cannonball Adderley, Chet Baker, Benny Goodman, Wayne Shorter and others, not to mention the notorious article by Jelly Roll Morton in which he confronts W.C. Handy about who really "invented" Jazz, and articles by such noted writers as Studs Terkel, Nat Hentoff, Ira Gitler, Leonard Feather and more. The anthology was compiled and edited by DownBeat's Frank Alkyer and Ed Enright. It is conveniently divided into decades, from the 1930s through the 2000s, and closes with an interview of Dave Brubeck by David French. I looked for an index but couldn't find one. The hefty and attractive softcover edition runs for 352 pages and looks so inviting that I may even read some of it.
Trumpeter / composer Lyle "Rusty" Dedrick, who played with a number of big bands including those led by Red Norvo / Mildred Bailey, Ray McKinley and Claude Thornhill, died on Christmas day 2010 at his home in Summitville, NY. He was 91 years old. Dedrick's other credits include writing and / or playing with Don Elliott, Urbie Green, Maxine Sullivan, Lee Wiley and Lionel Hampton, as well as television work with Arthur Godfrey, Ed Sullivan and Sid Caesar, among others. A pioneer in jazz education, Dedrick joined the faculty at Manhattan University in 1971 as director of Jazz Studies. In 1996, he was music director of the Smithsonian Institution's American Songbook series devoted to Fats Waller and Andy Razaf.
And that's it for now. Until next time, keep swingin'!
New and Noteworthy
1. Mike Barone Big Band, Flight of the Bumblebee (Rhubarb Records)
2. Peter Hand Big Band, The Wizard of Jazz (Savant)
3. Roy Hargrove Big Band, Emergence (Emarcy)
4. New York Jazz Repertory Orchestra, Le Jazz Hot (Planet Arts)
5. Chuck Owen and the Jazz Surge, The Comet's Tail (MAMA)
6. Lasse Lindgren Big Constellation, Spirits (Imogena)
7. Chicago Jazz Philharmonic, Collective Creativity (3Sixteen Records)
8. Charles Tolliver Big Band, Emperor March (HalfNote)
9. Altsys Jazz Orchestra, Watercolours (Swingin' in Time)
10. Richard Galliano / Brussels Jazz Orchestra, Ten Years Ago (Milan)
11. St. Johns River City Band, Silver Threads (no label)
12. Mike Irwin Johnson, 8 Legged Monster, Vol. 2 (Pursuance Records)
13. Mt. Hood Jazz Band / Combos, 2nd Time Around (Sea Breeze Vista)
14. Swiss Jazz Orchestra / Michael Zisman, Close Encounter (SJO)
15. The Aggregation, Groove's Mood (Edjalen Music)