Videos: Shorty Rogers, '80s


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Arranger and trumpeter-flugelhornist Shorty Rogers was one of the primary architects of West Coast jazz in the early 1950s. The dry, harmony-driven style reflected the enormous optimism and drive of superb young musician-arrangers, many of whom who settled in the Los Angeles suburbs and found abundant work in the studios and clubs just as television and new record formats emerged to create an explosion in interest and demand.

In the early 1980s, Rogers was a guest conductor for the National Youth Jazz Orchestra, a British jazz project founded by U.K. saxophonist Bill Ashton in 1965. Here's Rogers and NYJO in 1982 in Cork, Ireland...


Here's Rogers with the NYJO a year later on the BBC's Pebble Mill at One, a lunchtime televised jazz program...


And here's Rogers in Japan with the West Coast Giants, featuring Shorty Rogers (flh), Bud Shank (as), Jimmy Giuffre (ts), Bob Cooper (ts), Bill Perkins (bs), Pete Jolly(p), Monty Budwig(b) and Shelly Manne(d). I know, a staggering, swinging lineup...


JazzWax tracks: If you want one album that reflects the Shorty Rogers sound exhibited above, go with Cool and Crazy, one of my favorite ablums recorded in March and April 1953. You'll find it here. There also are downloads of the material on Rogers compilations at Amazon and other online retailers. There's also Spotify.

JazzWax clip: Here's the original Sweetheart of Sigmund Freud from April '53, featuring Shorty Rogers, Conrad Gozzo, Maynard Ferguson, Tom Reeves, John Howell (tp) Milt Bernhart, John Halliburton, Harry Betts (tb) John Graas (fhr) Gene Englund (tu) Art Pepper (as) [as Art Salt (as) ] Bud Shank (as) Jimmy Giuffre (ts,cl) Bob Cooper (bar) Marty Paich (p) Curtis Counce (b) and Shelly Manne (d)...

And here's Coup de Graas from the same album...

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This story appears courtesy of JazzWax by Marc Myers.
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