Etta James at Estival Jazz Lugano, July 5, 1991. Were you there?
Etta James at Estival Jazz Lugano, July 5, 1991. Were you there?
Vocalist and alto saxophonist Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson (1917–1988) had his breakthrough in 1941 when he joined Cootie William’s band as vocalist. In 1945 he split from Williams and formed his own band. Vinson had hits on Mercury as well as on King records in the late 1940s and the early 1950s. Then Vinson somewhat left the spotlight for a while before becoming a welcome attraction on the european jazz festival circuit from the early seventies on.
I found some footage from this later period of Vinson’s career on old VHS cassettes from the Otto Flückiger collection and thought you might enjoy them.
So here from the 1974 Montreux Jazz Festival come slightly more than 25 minutes of Cleanhead with Hal Singer (ts), Jay McShann (p), Jo Wright (g), Jerome Rimson (b), Peter Van Hooke (dr). They are playing:
“Just A Dream”, “Home Boy”, “Laura”, “Hold It Right There” and “Person To Person”.
The second clip I found has 32 minutes from an all star gathering at Grand Parade Du Jazz in Nice from July 8 and July 16, 1978. On stage are Eddie Cleanhead Vinson (as, voc); Hank Crawford (as); David Newman (ts, fl); Jimmy Rowles (p), George Wein (p); Milt Hinton (b); Alan Dawson (dr).
They are playing:
“Tenor Madness” (thanks, Trane!), “Autumn Leaves”, “Cleanhead Blues”, and a further unidentified tune (maybe someone knows it’s title?).
Of course the jazz world always knew what it had and has in composer and pianist Randy Weston. Many of his compositions have become standards. Weston’s deep undesrstanding of african music led him to an unique way of connecting african rhythms to modern US hard bop that has proved very influential.
In 1989 Weston became quite popular also amongst the non-afficianodos, when Verve took him under contract and released a series of CDs that were welcomed by the non-specialist press. As if Weston hadn’t been making fine music all the time.
Anyway his relative popularity at the beginning of the nineties led to Weston being invited onto the european festival circus. In the vast archives of Otto Flückiger I found some 18.30 minutes of Randy Weston’s African Spirits with Weston (p), Alex Blake (b), Idris Muhammad (dr) and Eric Asante (perc) filmed at the Jazzfestival Bern in 1991.
There is a second clip from that day featuring a duet of Weston and piano master Tommy Flanagan who apparently was also appearing at the festival in another cotext. Beware though that the first two minutes of this video are quite embarassing. Why would they do this to artists? Neither Flangan nor Weston seems to be very happy about what seems to have been the festival’s organiser’s idea. They both make the impression of having been pushed into this. But then there is the beauty of the musing emerging from the hands of these two greats:
In the 1970s the Montreux Jazz Festival alwas presented at least one solo piano concert. For example in 1974 there were concerts by Earl Hines and by Cecil Taylor, which I did present here. Since I noticed that that blog entry gathered some interest, I decided to look if there’s some more solo piano from Montreux in the vast collection of my late friend Otto Flückiger. And there is!
First from June 23, 1972, we have Ray Bryant’s appearance. At least parts of his set were released on this Atlantic LP
Since I do not own this LP, I can not tell you what parts of it are in the TV footage. Both the record and the video start with Gotta Travel On.
The other solo piano clip from Montreux I found comes from July 20, 1975. This concert by Andrew Hill also resulted in an LP:
But again, I am not able to compare the contents, also because I do not know Hills 1970’s repertoire very good.
After this, this and this post, I was sure that I had digitized all of the McCoy Tyner videos I could find in Otto Flückiger’s VHS collection. But I was wrong. Because recently I found two 1986 TV broadcasts featuring a Tyner band with Freddie Hubbard, Joe Henderson, John Scofield, Louis Hayes and Avery Sharpe.
So here to definitely close the series of Tyner clips up are nearly 30 minutes of the band at the Jazz Festival in Montreux, Switzerland on July 14, 1986:
And here, from a day later, is almost an hour of the same group at the Jazz Festival in Umbria, Italy, on July 15, 1986.
I managed to see the Sun Ra Arkestra under the direction of Marshall Allen three times this year (more about that on this blog soon). The last concert I saw was in Lugano on July 11, where after the concert I had the chance to talk to percussionist/tour manager Elson Nascimento for a while. Elson remarked that the last time he played in Lugano was in 1990, when Sun Ra was still on this planet. I told him that there was footage from the 1990 concert on youtube as well as from the Arkestra’s 1985 Lugano appearance. I was wrong about the 1985 concert though. I thought I had seen it there, but maybe it has been taken off again.
So I have put it up again. Boring technical problems unfortunately made me cut it into three parts. Furthermore there are some fade-ins and fade-outs – but with really not much missing in between tracks.
The Arkestra on this date: Sun Ra (ldr, p, synth, voc), Ronnie Brown (tp), Tyrone Hill (tb, voc), Marshall Allen (as, fl, picc, perc), John Gilmore (ts, cl, timbales, voc), Ronald Wilson (ts, picc), Danny Ray Thompson (bars, fl, bgo), James Jacson (bassoon, fl, Infinity Drum, Eloe Omoe (bcl, as, perc), Bruce Edwards (g), Rollo Radford (eb), Avreeayl Amen Ra (dr), unidentified (dr), June Tyson (voc, dance tambourine); unidentified (dance).
When the weather is hot like it’s now, there only two kinds of music I can listen to: Old school dub reggae or the Blues. Since I guess there might be some people among my subscribers who love the Blues as much as I do, I am offering you a bunch of rare concert clips – some of them actually quite long – featuring masters of classical electric blues playing.
The first clip features something different though: Legendary singer Jimmy Witherspoon who is more out of the vintage r’n’b /jazz school. Here is Witherspoon in Nice on July 9, 1979 .
Witherspoon is accompagnied by Eugene Edwards (g), Roy Alexander (org) and Maurice Simon jr. (dr). They are playing Everyday I Have The Blues,I’d Rather Drink Muddy Water, See See Rider, and Jimmy Reed’s Big Boss Man.
And here are 26 minutes from the same festival featuring the Muddy Waters Blues Band on July 10, 1977
With Clark Terry (tp) as a guest on one track (I had published that on youtube before) , Bob Margolin (eg), Guitar Junior (eg), Pinetop Perkins (p), Calvin Jones (eb) and Willy “Big Eyes” Smith (dr).
They Are Playing:
Honeydripper Intro, Soon Forgotten, Baby Please Don’t Go, What’s the Matter with the Mill, Stormy Monday Blues (feat. Clark Terry) and Everything Gonna be Alright
The next clip comes from still the same festival. Here multiinstrumentalist Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown is featured with the Wallace Davenport New Orleans All Stars giving us some Street Corner business.
Gatemouth Brown appeared at the festival again on July 14 1977 accompgnied by Billy Mitchell (ts); Lloyd Glenn (p); George Duvivier and J.C. Heard (dr). I had already put up a part of that gig on youtube and had presented it in this blog entry. In this part here they are playing: Lets Groove (you know that ain’t it’s title) and If You’ve Ever Been Mistreated in which Brown changes to violin. Gatemouth Brown deserves to be much better known!
Next up is half an hour of B.B. King from the 1984 Montreux Jazz Festival. A lot of B.B.’s Montreux apperances are already on youtube, but this one wasn’t up to now. If you know who is playing with B.B. here, please let me know. I do not have the patience to check the setlist right now, but I know you enjoy checking it yourself:
And here is another one from Montreux, this time from 1989: The man with the Flying V, Albert King. Playing with Albert are Amar Sundy (guitar); Nate Fitzgerald, Steve Wilson, Wayne Preston (horns); James Washington (keyboards); Lonnie Turner (bass); Joe Turner (drums) (Thanks, Marc D.!)
And finally from Chicago here is Otis Rush, filmed in an unidentified venue somewhere in Switzerland around 1986 (not from Montreux as far as I can see). Otis is playing with Professor’s Blues Revue: Professor Eddie Lusk (keyboards), Anthony Palmer (guitar), Fred Barnes (bass), Eddie Turner (drums). (Thanks to Mark D. for information!) Beware though: It takes a while before Mr. Rush appears.