Posts Tagged ‘University of California Press

13
feb
12

Basie’s jam with Ray and Jimmy in “Nob’s Blues”.

Through his involvement in the famous Montreux Jazz Festivals Norman Granz used the ample opportunities the festival gave him to promote his Pablo musicians. As someone said, “Granz is not an innovator but a popularizer”. That remains to be seen in the light of history but fact of the matter is that through Montreux he used a lot of commercial opportunities like selling records and video’s / DVD’s of the festival. In 1977 he put together a group of musicians lead by Count Basie. In this video we hear the announcement of Norman Granz introducing the Basie Trio with Ray Brown and drummer Jimmie Smith in a brilliant jam playing Nob’s Blues.

Source: Hershorn, Ted  – Norman Granz – The Man Who Used Jazz for Justice – University of California Press 2011 – ISBN 978-0-520-26782-4

12
feb
12

Norman Granz introduces the Clark Terry Sextet at The Montreux Jazz Festival.

Ella and Norman (on the background Joe Pass)

In 1975 Norman Granz got heavily involved in the Montreux Jazz Festival In Switzerland when director Claude Nobs gave Granz three nights of programming as a showcase for his Pablo Records artists. The Montreux Casino was equipped with television capabilities, so the proceedings were videotaped. Granz’ involvement in Montreux lasted till 1983 during which period he relased video’s and recordings of this main jazz event. In the video below we see a group of musicians performing in Montreux in the best JATP tradition. It is The Clark Terry Sextet with Terry on flugelhorn, Milt Jackson (vibes), Joe Pass (guitar), Ronnie Scott (tenorsax), Oscar Peterson (piano), Niels-Henning Pedersen (double bass) and Bobby Durham (drums) in a nice swinging composition called ” Minor Blues”.

Source: Hershorn, Ted  – Norman Granz – The Man Who Used Jazz for Justice – University of California Press 2011 – ISBN 978-0-520-26782-4

06
feb
12

Last JATP concert Tokyo 1983.

In 1983 the Jazz At The Philharmonic series came to an end after Norman Granz started the first JATP in 1944 in Los Angeles. The concerts were held in Japan by invitation of a large Japanese music publisher. JATP had toured Japan a number of times and Granz selected the musicians which had been JATP core members for so long, Ella Fitzgerald and Oscar Peterson. The line up was completed with Joe Pass, Harry Edison, Clark Terry, Zoot Zims, Eddy ‘Lockjaw” Davis and J.J. Johnson. Listen to this incredible version of ‘On Danish Shore” with Oscar Peterson’s Big 4 with Joe Pass, Niels Pedersen en Martin Drew.

Source: Hershorn, Ted  – Norman Granz – The Man Who Used Jazz for Justice – University of California Press 2011 – ISBN 978-0-520-26782-4

28
jan
12

Oscar,Niels and Joe: The Trio.

As Norman Granz was the business manager of both Oscar Peterson and Joe Pass it was logical he would bring the two giants together on his new founded Pablo recording label. He did so by recording and releasing the album The Trio with Joe Pass and Niels Pedersen on doublebass. The albums showed how seamlessly Pass had combined his own playing with the highly competitive dialogue of Petersen and Pedersen. The album won a Grammy Award. Here is a video recorded twelve years later in Italy where the trio performs “Cake Walk”. It is a witness of the longtime period this fantastic trio worked together.

Source: Hershorn, Ted  – Norman Granz – The Man Who Used Jazz for Justice – University of California Press 2011 – ISBN 978-0-520-26782-4

16
jan
12

“Delightful counterpoint and thrilling ballads – the last JATP US Tour

Jazz At The Philharmonic (Google / Life Images)

In the fall of 1957 Norman Granz organised the last JATP tour in the US. After fourteen succesful years the audience numbers had been down since the opening of  the show’s twenty-one city tour in New York in September that year. The Swing Era was coming to an end and new forms of jazz events like the Newport JazzFestival were emerging. For this last tour Granz had put together a stellar line up with Ella Fitzgerald, The Oscar Peterson Trio, J.J. Johnson, Coleman Hawkins, Roy Eldridge and newcomers The Modern Jazz Quartet and tenorist Stan Getz. Especially the Stan Getz and J.J.Johnson combination was a big success  as can be heard on this recording of the last 1957 JATP tour in the US, of course on Granz’s own Verve Records label.

As a critic said:” Their [J.J.Johnson and Stan Getz] counterpoint was delightful and their individual ballads were thrilling”. They were accompanied by the Oscar Peterson Trio and MJQ’s drummer Connie Kay.

Source: Hershorn, Ted  – Norman Granz – The Man Who Used Jazz for Justice – University of California Press 2011 – ISBN 978-0-520-26782-4

02
nov
11

Norman Granz: The Man Who Used Jazz for Justice.

Norman Granz (1918 - 2001)

Recent verscheen bij de University of California Press het boek: Norman Granz: The Man Who Used Jazz for Justice. Het boek is een geautoriseerde autobiografie over Norman Granz, wellicht de meest succesvolle jazzpromotor ooit in de jazzgeschiedenis. Een geschiedenis die een aanvang neemt in 1939 als Granz voor het eerst “Body and Soul” hoort in een uitvoering van saxofonist Coleman Hawkins. Vanaf dat moment besloot hij zijn  leven in dienst te stellen van de jazz en met succes. Hij werd de initiator van de beroemde jamsessions “Jazz At The Philharmonic” (JATP), werd platenproducer die als eerste live opnames op de mark bracht, was oprichter van Verve Records, de eerste die landelijke en wereldwijde concerttours organiseerde en was businessmanager van jazzmusici waaronder Ella Fitzgerald en Oscar Peterson. Maar hij was ook een fervent aanhanger van gelijke rechten in Amerika en zette zich zijn hele leven in voor gelijke rechten van zwarte musici, of musici van welke herkomst dan ook. Hij besloot dat zijn passie voor jazz en zijn strijd tegen rassendiscriminatie goed te combineren waren met succesvol zakendoen. En zo is het gegaan. Auteur is Tad Hershorn die archivaris is aan het instituut voor jazzstudies aan de Rutgers University. Het boek geeft een uitermate boeiend beeld van de jazzwereld zoals die zich ten tijde van Granz ontwikkelde en geplaatst in de context van de Amerikaanse samenleving van toen. Een aanrader voor alle jazzliefhebbers. Je moet wel het Amerikaanse Engels redelijk beheersen anders is het lastig te lezen. Als ik het boek heb gelezen kom ik er zeker in een serie artikelen op dit blog op terug.

Hershorn, Tad: “Norman Granz – The Man Who Used Jazz for Justice, 2011 University of California Press, ISBN 978-0-520-26782-4.




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