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ART: Why I Stuck with a Junkie Jazzman by Laurie Pepper

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ART: Why I Stuck with a Junkie Jazzman Laurie Pepper 358 Pages ISBN: # 978-1494297572 Art Pepper Music Corporation 2014 About two-thirds the way through her memoir, ART: Why I Stuck with a Junkie Jazzman Laurie Pepper plants her spear in the dirt and declares the obvious: “A question I ask myself is if Art hadn't had me there constantly assessing his mood, taking his aesthetic temperature, would he then have had to push his vision by himself"? I think somebody else, another friend or lover, might have done ...

BOOK REVIEWS

Straight Life – The Story of Art Pepper by Art and Laurie Pepper

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Straight Life--The Story of Art Pepper Art and Laurie Pepper 506 Pages ISBN# 0306805588 Da Capo Press 1996 Writer's Note: Straight Life--The Story of Art Pepper is 35-years old and is a well-established piece of jazz reportage not requiring further comment, which has never stopped me. I have written this piece for a two-fold reason: one, to provide All About Jazz some commentary original to the magazine, and to anticipate Laurie Pepper's long awaited memoir, ART: Why I Stuck with a Junkie Jazzman (Art Pepper Music Corporation, 2014). These two books taken together ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Art Pepper: Unreleased Art - Vol. VIII (2013)

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After recovering from a hellish descent into drug addiction, crime, and incarceration, the legendary alto saxophonist Art Pepper resurrected himself as a player. He accomplished several fine recordings, a number of live performances on the US West Coast, a couple of important stops in New York, and a notable tour of Japan. Pepper thus had a few good years in the late 1970s and died all too soon of a stroke in 1982 at the age of 56. His comeback was not just a has-been's effort at squeezing out a few good shows. He achieved a genuine resilience, stretched the ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Art Pepper: Unreleased Art Vol. VIII - Live At The Winery, September 6, 1976

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Laurie Pepper, widow of alto saxophonist Art Pepper, has been shepherding the artist's discography since the turn of the millenia. Unreleased Art Vol. VIII: Live At The Winery, September 6, 1976 reveals there may be no end in sight for unreleased material from this important jazz musician. Ms. Pepper has done a couple of things different this time. One, she is releasing a performance by Pepper early in his comeback, after the release of Living Legend (Contemporary, 1975), Pepper's first recording since 1960's Intensity (Contemporary) and before his triumphant appearance at New York City's Village Vanguard, documented on The Complete ...

BAILEY'S BUNDLES

Art Pepper: Unreleased Art Pepper, Vol. VII and Neon Art

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Art Pepper (1929 -1982) is the story, but an important subtext is his widow, Laurie Pepper, who, since 2006, has been expanding the saxophonist's discography with unreleased live recordings from the 1980s. At the time, Art Pepper was enjoying his comeback, which began in 1975 with the release of Living Legend (Contemporary), hitting its stride in 1977 with his appearance at New York City's Village Vanguard (The Complete Village Vanguard Sessions (Contemporary, 1977)). The period between 1977 and the saxophonist's death in 1982 included successful tours of Japan, where Pepper was very popular. Unreleased Art Pepper Vol. VII is taken ...

HARDLY STRICTLY JAZZ

Art Restoration: Laurie Pepper and Widow's Taste Records

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It was F. Scott Fitzgerald who wrote, “In American life, there are no second acts," which means he clearly was not an Art Pepper fan.Pepper was one of the great alto saxophonist stars of the bop era, famed not only as a Stan Kenton sideman, but also for his own albums as a leader. In 1951, he placed second in the alto saxophone category in Downbeat Magazine's annual poll, losing by fourteen votes to Charlie Parker. Tragically, Pepper's drug habit meant that he spent way too much of the fifties in jail, despite playing some of the best ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Art Pepper: Live In The USA And Japan

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In 1971, alto saxophonist Art Pepper left the Synanon drug rehabilitation center in California. The first thing he did, according to Straight Life (Schirmer Books, 1979), his ironically titled autobiography, was get loaded. He began using heroin again, then cocaine and washed both down with phenomenal amounts of alcohol. He didn't use marijuana, said it made him nervous. What with Synanon and time served in prison for drug offences, Pepper had been off the scene for more than 15 years. He felt a need to “keep up" and shocked many of his admirers by abandoning his hitherto ...



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