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All About Jazz: The web's most comprehensive jazz resource


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  • David wrote on July 24, 2011 report

    My Godfather, R Kamuca, was the sweetest guy. He was always so congenial, sweet to the kids around him (I was a child, adolescent and early teen when I knew him), and always had something nice to say. He and his wife Doris were a great pair.
    As for a saxman, he really did swing, and he was definitely underappreciated for his talent. We know that some of that related to the struggles with alcohol and such- a myriad of players, including my father (Stan Levey, early on) had these issues; you can be certain your playing, as well as interpersonal relationships and business skills will be affected by this as well- likely decreasing one's 'penetrance' and effectiveness in any business- and the 'music bizz' is not excluded.
    I went to visit him in the hospital and he was kind, serene, but very ill. Dad took me because he knew I cared about him, tho I was only 14 or so. It made a huge impression on me. Dad would take him in the car out to the Pacific ocean just to sit in the wheelchair and gaze, chat, reminisce. They were wonderful friends, and it was a real loss to us and Richies' family, as well as the music world at large. I still remember that larger than life smile - He was great. Losing him in his 40s was such an impossible waste.

    This should be seen as a tribute to a wonderful guy. What I would give to have them both here, sitting on the couch, cracking their dry, one liners to each other...
    David Levey