Archive for Elmer Gill

Elmer Gill and Mario Schneeberger

Posted in clips, Elmer Gill, jazz, Mario Schneeberger with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 30, 2012 by crownpropeller

Two weeks ago I spend an evening at the monday meeting of the Jazz Circle Zurich, where Mario Schneeberger was giving avery interesting lecture on the 1953 Lionel Hampton Tour and playing a lot of commercially unissued tracks from that tour. As some may know, Mario is not only a fine jazz researcher (he contributed a lot to the 1946 Don Redman tour page), but also a very fine alto saxophonist (Mario used to be called “Little Bird” by his friends).

Mario was a close friend of deceased jazz researcher Otto Flückiger, who always took his camera with him when Mario was playing somewhere close. And Otto also had befriended  Elmer Gill (1924–2004) who, born in Indianapolis, later settled in Seattle and Vancouver. Gill – who is mostly known for having played with Lionel Hampton’s orchestra in 1952 and 1953 – in the 1980s and 1990s could often be heard in switzerland. And on some of this occasions Mario Schneeberger took the opportunity, to sit in with the band.

As I had promised in this post to bring some more about Elmer Gill, i have just put up two clips with Mario and Elmer filmed by Otto on different occasions.

First here is Mario sitting in with the Seattle Reunion Quintet at the “Birdland” (in fact the Restaurant Fasan) in Emmen, Switzerland on May 5, 1992. The Seattle Reunion band consisted of veterans Elmer Gill (p, vib), Jabbo Ware (ts), Floyd Standifer (tp), Buddy Catlett (b), and Patty Padden (d). On “Cherokee”, which I am presenting you here, Jabbo Ware does not play.

The second clip was filmed five years later at the Ortsmuseum (Local Museum) in Zollikon, Switzerland on January 12, 1997. Otto had curated an exhibition about the history of jazz at the museum and this concert was part of the program. Here Mario is playing “Perdido” with Elmer Gill’s trio which consists of Elmer (on a Roland piano), swiss bassist Vince Kummer and (Elmer Gill’s son) Donald Gill on drums.


Elmer Gill on 45rpm

Posted in 45 rpm, Elmer Gill, jazz with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 29, 2012 by crownpropeller

In the ususal discographical sources there are only very few entries for Canadian pianist and vibist Elmer Gill who used to play with Lionel Hampton for a while in the early fifties, in the period after Milt Buckner had left Hampton’s band. The listings of records under Gill’s name usually start with The Three Sides Of Elmer Gill, the rare LP Gill recorded with bassist David Friesen and drummer Al Johnson around 1968 in Vancouver for Canadian label Aragon (the third side of Elmer Gill is his singing).

Elmer Gill, 1995 probably
in Otto Flückiger’s garden

I met Elmer Gill when I portrayed him for the no longer existing swiss cultural magazine Stehplatz, that must have happened around 1997. Someday I will look up in the attic if I can find a copy to present it here.
I also witnessed Gill at some place in Switzerland, where he was playing with his son, drummer Donald Gill, and a bass player I cannot recall.
My friend Otto had befriended Elmer Gill who was splitting his life between Vancouver and a place in Switzerland, that I seem to have forgotten. Otto gathered a lot of material about Elmer Gill which I am going to present here sooner or later.
Meanwhile, while going through the 45 rpm records in the archives, I discovered two 45rpm records by the Elmer Gill Trio that were recorded much earlier than Gill’s earliest discographical entries– at least one of them. I present them here for your listening pleasure. Please excuse the slight hum, my amplifier is being revised, and it’s replacement – well it hums! The first record is an EP on Chet Noland’s Celestial label, based in Seattle.
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