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Julius Watkins

Julius Watkins was an American jazz musician, and one of the first jazz French horn players. He won the Down Beat critics poll in 1960 and 1961 for "miscellaneous instrument" with French horn named as the instrument. Watkins was born in Detroit, Michigan. He started playing French horn when he was nine years old, having played the trumpet, the recognized jazz instrument, for the Ernie Fields Orchestra in the mid-1940s. By the late 1940s, however, he had played some French horn solos on Kenny Clarke and Babs Gonzales' records. After moving to New York City, Watkins studied for three years at the Manhattan School of Music

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Quincy Jones And His Orchestra: Live In Ludwigshafen 1961

Read "Live In Ludwigshafen 1961" reviewed by Dan Bilawsky

Artistic dreams and financial realities are rarely in alignment. That's a sad fact that the great Quincy Jones learned the hard way at the dawn of the '60s. Jones was in Europe at the time, directing a dream orchestra that he put together for the musical Free And Easy. When that show closed in February of ...

Rare and Unusual Instruments in Jazz

Read "Rare and Unusual Instruments in Jazz" reviewed by Hrayr Attarian

Historically the cornet was the quintessential jazz instrument but over a century of its evolution other instruments have also become part of the regular jazz armamentarium. These include common ones such as the piano, saxophone, bass and drums to the more occasionally appearing violin, clarinet and other percussion instruments. There are few, however, that exhibit unique ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Dwayne Burno: Tradition

Read "Dwayne Burno: Tradition" reviewed by George Colligan

[ Editor's Note: The following interview is reprinted from George Colligan's blog, Jazztruth] Dwayne Burno is one of the great bass players of his generation. Originally from jny: Philadelphia, Burno has been on the New York and international jazz scene since 1990. He has played with so many of the great legends of jazz: ...

ARTICLE: BIG BAND REPORT

Swingin' on a Riff . . . Hangin' by a Thread?

Read "Swingin' on a Riff . . . Hangin' by a Thread?" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Betty and I returned to Albuquerque on Memorial Day after attending Swingin' on a Riff, the latest in a series of marvelous semi-annual events presented by Ken Poston and the Los Angeles Jazz Institute for more than twenty years at venues in and around L.A. This one was held May 23-26 at the Los Angeles Marriott ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Ed Puddick Big Band: Guys and Dolls

Read "Guys and Dolls" reviewed by Robert J. Robbins

In the hands of the twenty-something bandleader and arranger Ed Puddick and his equally young, London-based seventeen-piece ensemble, Frank Loesser's classic Broadway score joins the ranks of those which have been adapted for big band (Stan Kenton's West Side Story, Les Brown's South Pacific, and Ted Heath's The Sound of Music all come to mind). Puddick's ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Thelonious Monk: Thelonious Monk

Read "Thelonious Monk" reviewed by Chris Kompanek

The remastered Monk is actually two mini-sets melded into one with the first quintet consisting of the underrated trumpeter Ray Copeland, tenor saxophonist Frank Foster and bassist Curly Russell, with the legendary Art Blakey holding it all together on drums. These first four tracks (including a beautiful rendition of the Jerome Kern classic “Smoke Gets in ...

Mike Vax Big Band / Dave Siebels / Phil Woods / London Horn Sound

Read "Mike Vax Big Band / Dave Siebels / Phil Woods / London Horn Sound" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Mike Vax Big Band Sounds from the Road Summit Records 2009 As Bob Hope and Bing Crosby entertained millions with their “road" movies in the 1940s, so the Mike Vax Big Band has its own “road show," arguably as entertaining but playing to much smaller audiences than Hope ...

French Horns For My Lady

Label: Philips
Released: 1962

Les Jazz Modes

Label: Philips
Released: 1957


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