Tune in to the Jazz Show with Gavin Walker every Monday night,
Tonight we celebrate the Birthday of one of the great living saxophone players performing with his “Concert Ensemble” John Handy will be 87 this day. He has made history by performing with Charles Mingus and his own groundbreaking bands over the years. He has been a mentor and teacher to many and one of the very first people to fuse Indian classical music and Jazz with such players as Ali Akbar Kahn. He made three award winning albums for Columbia Records and tonight’s Feature was his final one. With John who plays alto saxophone, saxello and flute is violinist Michael White, pianist/composer Mike Nock, bassist Bruce Cale and drummer Larry Hancock in a program of original compositions by Handy, White and Nock. The album is entitled “Projections” and it’s compelling listening.
Tonight’s Jazz Feature is a special one recorded at San Francisco’s legendary Jazz Workshop by master drummer Max Roach and his Quartet. The group consists of tenor saxophonist Clifford Jordan, pianist Mal Waldron and bassist Eddie Khan. It consists of two long suites by the Quartet. The first is called “Speak, Brother, Speak!” and musically depicts civil rights speakers delivering their message of equality and freedom. The second suite is another fiery display of the band’s solo talents on “A Variation” both creations by Max Roach. An intense compelling listen is on tap tonight. This Feature will be in two parts with a message about the CITR Fundrive 2020 in between suites. Be sure to listen!
One of the world’s finest Jazz trombonists is tonight’s Jazz Feature. A rare recording by Frank Rosolino one of the indisputable masters of the trombone with a solid group of heavy West Coast Jazz masters. Frank leads tenor saxophonist Harold Land, pianist Victor Feldman, bassist Leroy Vinnegar and drum great Stan Levey in a program of quality standards and originals by Rosolino, Feldman and Levey. Hard driving and hard swinging music from Los Angeles. Frank Rosolino and “Free For All”.
Wrapping up this month is a classic by one of the overlooked masters of the vibes, Walt Dickerson. He has been described as “the Coltrane of the vibes” but that doesn’t really do it. His style is all his own and not beholden to anyone else and in this, his recording debut he demonstrates his mastery and maturity. He performs here with his own quartet made up of fellow Philadelphians with Austin Crowe at the piano, Bob Lewis on bass and also the recording debut of one of the finest and most creative drummers, Andrew Cyrille. We have presented this album before on a past Jazz Feature but it’s freshness and vitality never gets old. All six compositions on the date are by Dickerson. “This Is Walt Dickerson”…indeed!