K. Lawrence Kemp
My Jazz Story
I love jazz because it's music that touches the soul
I was first exposed to jazz as a child when my Dad would play records
of the Dukes of Dixieland and Chris Connor. Then as a high school
senior we went to see Benny Benack play at the Riverboat Room at the
William Penn Hotel after our Senior Prom in Pittsburgh.
I met Maynard Ferguson, Bobby Shew, Ross Barber of the 4 Freshmen,
Karyn Allison, Walt Harper, Harold Betters, .
The best show I ever attended was Maynard Ferguson's Orchestra in the
mid-1970s at the Harmar House near Pittsburgh, Karyn ALlison's shows
between 2000 and 2005, I saw her twice and meeting her was a treat. I
also liked the shows by Richard Groove Holmes and Ray Bryant which
were in intimate night clubs.
The first jazz record I bought was Maynard Ferguson's first album on
Columbia in 1970 followed by a Ramsey Lewis and a Gene Ammons
My advice to new listeners listen to a variety of different musicians
and styles of jazz.
Or whatever else you have in mind. I've been fortunate to see and
hear the musicians live as well as collect a massive library of
recorded jazz from Dixieland through the present time. For a couple
of years I was even paid a salary to play jazz and talk about it.
- Maynard Ferguson- Trumpet Rhapsody
- Kenny Burrell-Guitar Forms
- Karrin Allyson-Sweet Home Cookin'
- Oscar Peterson- Broadway
- Rick Gallagher-Sweet Potato Eyebrows
- Houston Person-Personified