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Harry "Sweets" Edison

Harry "Sweets" Edison is one of the few players in the history of jazz trumpet who could be instantly identified after only a few notes; along with Bobby Hackett, he was acknowledged as one of the few master trumpet accompanists. Born in Columbus, Ohio, Edison moved to Louisville, Kentucky to live with his uncle. It was his uncle who first exposed Edison to music, first teaching him to play a pump organ. Edison later found an old cornet in the house and taught himself scales. He cited early exposure to recordings of Louis Armstrong backing up Bessie Smith as important influences on his playing. When he was eleven Edison almost died from typhoid fever

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Nat "King" Cole: Hittin’ the Ramp: The Early Years (1936-1943)

Read "Hittin’ the Ramp: The Early Years (1936-1943)" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer

While he achieved fame and fortune as a pops crooner of the 1950s-60s, Nat “King" Cole firmly occupies a place in jazz history. Unlike Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Rosemary Clooney and others who began their careers as singers, Cole started out as a pianist, composer/arranger, and band leader, working small clubs in Chicago, soon adding vocals ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Nat "King" Cole: Nat "King" Cole: Hittin’ the Ramp: The Early Years (1936-1943)

Read "Nat "King" Cole: Hittin’ the Ramp: The Early Years (1936-1943)" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

Before pianist/vocalist Nat King Cole had a career as a pop crooner—his many hits included “All for You," “The Christmas Song," “(Get Your Kicks on) Route 66," “(I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons," “Nature Boy" and “Mona Lisa" (the No. 1 song in 1950)—he led a successful jazz trio which featured both his piano playing and ...

ARTICLE: RADIO

The Songbooks (1950 - 1959)

Read "The Songbooks (1950 - 1959)" reviewed by Russell Perry

Songs from what came to be known as the Great American Songbook, have been part of jazz perhaps since The Original Dixieland Jazz Band began recording Irving Berlin compositions. In the 1940s, singer Lee Wiley recorded several collections of 78s, known as “albums"--a name that stuck into the LP era, focused on the work of individual ...

NEWS: VIDEO / DVD

Harry Edison: The Swinger

Harry Edison: The Swinger

Trumpeter Harry “Sweets" Edison is perhaps best known for providing chrome-tinged obbligatos behind jazz-pop singers. His muted trumpet can be heard playing tightly wound touches on the albums of singers such as Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald. When they paused between verses, arrangers had Edison fill the space. At times, he mirrored the vocalist's phrasing before ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

The DIVA Jazz Orchestra: Special Kay!

Read "Special Kay!" reviewed by Jack Bowers

WOW! No, it is definitely not advisable to open a review with an unequivocal superlative (for one thing, it sort of gives the game away, doesn't it?). But on Special Kay!, its ninth impressive album in twenty-four years, DIVA--the gold standard among all-female big bands since its inception--really gives a commentator no reasonable ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Debby Moore: My Kind Of Blues

Read "My Kind Of Blues" reviewed by James Nadal

For the record hounds (you know who you are) out there that seek and scavenge the garage sales and flea markets for old albums, there is such a thing as redemption. After scoring My Kind Of Blues by singer Debby Moore at a flea market for one dollar, further research revealed a mysterious back story with ...

ARTICLE: INTERVIEWS

Denise King: Making the Tradition New

Read "Denise King: Making the Tradition New" reviewed by Victor L. Schermer

Denise King is a jny: Philadelphia vocalist who has made the world her oyster with her unique ability to navigate between rhythm and blues and sultry jazz standards. Discovered in the 1980s by an R&B songwriter-producer, King quickly found her way in the City of Brotherly Love with some of the top musicians in both popular ...

NEWS: RECORDING

Charlie Shavers: Blue Stompin'

Charlie Shavers: Blue Stompin'

I like measuring jazz trumpeters on the heat scale. Imagine Chet Baker and Bix Beiderbecke all the way over on the cool left end and guys like Freddie Hubbard and Woody Shaw on the other end. You can almost plot all trumpeters along this line. In the case of Charlie Shavers, I'd probably put him to ...

Red Norvo: Four Classic Albums

Read "Red Norvo: Four Classic Albums" reviewed by David Rickert

Red Norvo played the vibes while leading his own band during the swing era and grew into smaller groups in the forties and fifites once the practicality of leading a large ensemble became too much. He was one of the first to specialize of what has always been somewhat of an unusual instrument for jazz, but ...


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