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Big Band Report

Heigh Ho, Heigh Ho, It's Off To Jazz We Go . . .

By Published: October 9, 2011
If there is anything that could lure me across the country to East Stroudsburg, PA, it would be a festival honoring my all-time saxophone hero, Zoot Sims
Zoot Sims
Zoot Sims
1925 - 1985
sax, tenor
—which is why I'm sorry I can't be there November 13 for ZootFest, an afternoon of jazz and memories in honor of Zoot and his longtime colleague Al Cohn
Al Cohn
Al Cohn
1925 - 1988
sax, tenor
, whose memorial collection is housed on the campus of East Stroudsburg University. Musicians scheduled to appear include Phil Woods
Phil Woods
Phil Woods
b.1931
sax, alto
, Bob Dorough
Bob Dorough
Bob Dorough
b.1923
piano
, Bill Crow
Bill Crow
Bill Crow
b.1927
bass, acoustic
, Lew Tabackin
Lew Tabackin
Lew Tabackin
b.1940
sax, tenor
, Bill Goodwin
Bill Goodwin
Bill Goodwin
b.1942
drums
, Sam Stephenson, Ronnie Free
Ronnie Free
b.1936
and the COTA Festival Orchestra. If it were more than a one-day event I'd seriously consider going, but that's a long way to fly for an afternoon, especially on the heels of our trip to Los Angeles in October for the LAJI's four-day "Modern Sounds" event and day-long tribute to Stan Kenton
Stan Kenton
Stan Kenton
1911 - 1979
piano
. If you'd like details about ZootFest, phone 570-422-3828 or go online to www.jazzatesu.com

The Westchester (NY) Jazz Orchestra opened its 2011-2012 concert season September 24 with Grammy-winning saxophonist / composer Joe Lovano
Joe Lovano
Joe Lovano
b.1952
saxophone
as its special guest. Other concerts include Master Keys (December 3), a tribute to the music of Bill Evans
Bill Evans
Bill Evans
1929 - 1980
piano
, Ahmad Jamal
Ahmad Jamal
Ahmad Jamal
b.1930
piano
and Herbie Hancock
Herbie Hancock
Herbie Hancock
b.1940
piano
; Bossa! Tango! Flamenco! (January 28), hosted by WJO music director Mike Holober
Mike Holober
Mike Holober
b.1957
piano
; and The Music of Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder
b.1950
keyboard
and Ray Charles
Ray Charles
Ray Charles
1930 - 2004
piano
(April 14). For details, go to www.westjazzorch.org.

Composer / arranger / bandleader Russell Garcia
Russell Garcia
Russell Garcia
1916 - 2011
composer/conductor
, long a resident of New Zealand, returns to the States this fall to celebrate his ninety-fifth birthday (that's not a typo!) with visits to (and concerts in) Los Angeles and Oakland, CA, and New York City. Garcia will be onstage at Catalina's Bar & Grill in Los Angeles (October 26), Yoshi's in Oakland (November 1) and the Iridium Jazz Club in NYC (November 6), accompanied by singers Shaynee Rainbolt
Shaynee Rainbolt
Shaynee Rainbolt

vocalist
and Terese Genecco
Terese Genecco
Terese Genecco
b.1965
vocalist
, among others. As an aside, Garcia will also be leading his big band at the Los Angeles Jazz Institute's salute to West Coast jazz, "Modern Sounds," October 20-23. A rare chance to see and appreciate a living legend who has not only been a celebrated Hollywood studio composer and arranger but has worked over the years with Louis Armstrong
Louis Armstrong
Louis Armstrong
1901 - 1971
trumpet
, Frank Sinatra
Frank Sinatra
Frank Sinatra
1915 - 1998
vocalist
, Ella Fitzgerald
Ella Fitzgerald
Ella Fitzgerald
1917 - 1996
vocalist
, Mel Torme
Mel Torme
Mel Torme
b.1925
vocalist
, Sammy Davis Jr.
Sammy Davis Jr.
Sammy Davis Jr.
1925 - 1990
vocalist
, Anita O'Day
Anita O'Day
Anita O'Day
1919 - 2006
vocalist
, Julie London
Julie London
Julie London
1926 - 2000
vocalist
, Sarah Vaughan
Sarah Vaughan
Sarah Vaughan
1924 - 1990
vocalist
, Peggy Lee
Peggy Lee
Peggy Lee
1920 - 2002
vocalist
, Judy Garland, Cleo Laine
Cleo Laine
Cleo Laine
b.1927
vocalist
, the Gershwin brothers, Count Basie
Count Basie
Count Basie
1904 - 1984
piano
, Miles Davis
Miles Davis
Miles Davis
1926 - 1991
trumpet
, Johnny Hodges
Johnny Hodges
Johnny Hodges
1907 - 1970
sax, alto
, Stan Kenton, Maynard Ferguson
Maynard Ferguson
Maynard Ferguson
1928 - 2006
trumpet
, Harry James, Bette Davis, Fred Astaire, Eleanor Powell, Mickey Rooney, Henry Mancini
Henry Mancini
Henry Mancini
b.1924
piano
, Elizabeth Taylor, Charlie Chaplin, Marvin Hamlisch, Clint Eastwood
Clint Eastwood
Clint Eastwood
b.1930
piano
and Bill Holman
Bill Holman
Bill Holman

band/orchestra
. Mind you, that's only a partial list!

The 29th annual Frank Mantooth Jazz Festival will be held Saturday, February 4, at New Trier High School in Winnetka, IL, with special guests Nicholas Payton
Nicholas Payton
Nicholas Payton
b.1973
trumpet
and the Chicago Jazz Ensemble plus performances by the Marquis Hill Black-Tet, the Michigan State University Jazz Orchestra and the New Trier Jazz Ensemble. For details, go to www.ntjazz.com

Rollins, Jazzed Media Honored

Saxophonist / composer Sonny Rollins
Sonny Rollins
Sonny Rollins
b.1930
saxophone
is one of five outstanding artists chosen to receive the 2011 Kennedy Center Honors, to be presented December 4 at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, as a part of the 34th annual national celebration of the arts . The other honorees are singer Barbara Cook, singer / songwriter Neil Diamond, cellist Yo Yo Ma and actress Meryl Streep. Other jazz artists who have received the Kennedy Center honors are Ella Fitzgerald, Count Basie, Benny Goodman
Benny Goodman
Benny Goodman
1909 - 1986
clarinet
, Dizzy Gillespie
Dizzy Gillespie
Dizzy Gillespie
1917 - 1993
trumpet
, Lionel Hampton
Lionel Hampton
Lionel Hampton
1908 - 2002
vibraphone
,Benny Carter
Benny Carter
Benny Carter
1907 - 2003
sax, alto
, Quincy Jones
Quincy Jones
Quincy Jones
b.1933
producer
and Dave Brubeck
Dave Brubeck
Dave Brubeck
1920 - 2012
piano
. The Honors gala will be recorded for broadcast as a two-hour primetime special Tuesday, December 27, on CBS-TV. Rollins' latest CD, Road Shows, Vol. 2, was released September 13 on Doxy / Emarcy Records.


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