Harlem of the West – The San Francisco Jazz Era

Interview with Elizabeth Pepin and Lewis Watts


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You can order Harlem of the West – The San Francisco Jazz Era here

The Fillmore played a big part in my life.

In 1967, as a seven year old I used to take my 5 year old brother to school and we changed buses at Fillmore and Geary. Public transit. Different times!

Later I lived on California and Fillmore from 1990 to 1998, a glorious time to live in San Francisco.

During that period, I built one of the world’s first online-only museums and it was dedicated to – of course – the history of Fillmore Street.

Every shred of Fillmore’s illustrious jazz history had been stripped away by that point, but bit by bit I reassembled what I could.

Then along came Elizabeth Pepin and Lewis Watts who began an ongoing multi-decade labor of love documenting one of America’s great African-American communities and what at the time was one of the hottest jazz scenes west of the Mississippi.

Their book – now in a brand new addition with 100 brand new pages of photos and text – is luscious.

You can’t understand the history of jazz without having a feel for the “scenes” that made jazz possible and this may be the best capture of a 1940s+ era jazz scene ever.

My fervent wish is that every “scene” find archivists, historians, and story tellers with the same passion and dedication as Pepin and Watts to capture their story while it’s still possible to talk with the people who lived it. This is not just important jazz history, it’s important American history.

A great book for every jazz lover.

You can order Harlem of the West – The San Francisco Jazz Era here

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

P.S. Our unique programming is made possible by help from people like you. Learn how you can contribute to our efforts here: Support Jazz on the Tube
Thanks.

Music credit: The Jazz on the Tube podcast theme song is “Mambo Inferno” performed by The Manhattan School of Music Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra conducted by Bobby Sanabria from the CD ¡Que Viva Harlem!

Jazz from Detroit!

Interview with Mark Stryker


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Jazz on the Tube interviews Mark Stryker, author of the book “Jazz from Detroit.”

I put an exclamation point on this one.

Why?

Because if you don’t know the Detroit jazz story, it’s going to shock you.

But don’t take it from me…

“There is no other city like Detroit: the musicians, the vibe, the people.” – Sonny Rollins

“No city has meant more to American musical culture than Detroit.” – Pat Metheny

You want names?

How about Donald Byrd, Wardell Gray, Paul Chambers, Ron Carter, Howard McGhee, Major Holley, Gerald Wilson, Alice Coltrane, Al McKibbon, Billy Mitchell, Geri Allen, Lucky Thompson, and Kenny Burrell.

And that’s the short list from just one Detroit high school.

Click here for more info about Jazz from Detroit.

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

P.S. Our unique programming is made possible by help from people like you. Learn how you can contribute to our efforts here: Support Jazz on the Tube
Thanks.

Music credit: The Jazz on the Tube podcast theme song is “Mambo Inferno” performed by The Manhattan School of Music Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra conducted by Bobby Sanabria from the CD ¡Que Viva Harlem!

St. Louis – City of Gabriels

Interview with Dennis Owsley


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Ken McCarthy’s Jazz on the Tune talks with author and veteran jazz DJ Dennis Owsley about this favorite subject: The great jazz city of St. Louis.


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Playlist

1. Tom Turpin – St. Louis Rag (1903) – (00:00)
2. Charles Creath – Buttefinger Blues (1927) – (02:50)
3. Frank Trumbauer – Trumbology (1927) – (05:50)
4. Jimmy Forest – Night Train (1952) – (08:52)
5. Miles Davis – If I Were a Bell (1956) – (11:51)
6. Clark Terry – Undecided (1959) – (20:00)
7. Grant Green – Idle Moments (1963) – (23:14)
8. Charles “Bobo” Shaw/Joseph Bowie/Luther Thomas – Sequence (1979) – (38:06)
9. Hamiet Bluiett – Oasis (1981) – (40:34)
10. Lester Bowie – I Only Have Eyes for You (1985) – (46:14)
11. John Hicks – After the Morning (1985) – (54:10)
12. Greg Osby – Please Stand By (2008) – (01:04:00)
13. Oliver Lake – Spirit (2010) – (01:12:12)
14. Human Arts Ensemble – Under the Sun (1976) – (01:18:29)

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

P.S. Our unique programming is made possible by help from people like you. Learn how you can contribute to our efforts here: Support Jazz on the Tube
Thanks.

Music credit: The Jazz on the Tube podcast theme song is “Mambo Inferno” performed by The Manhattan School of Music Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra conducted by Bobby Sanabria from the CD ¡Que Viva Harlem!

The Boston Chronicles – Richard Vacca

Interview with Richard Vacca


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Looking for a great vacation where you can dig a lot of jazz?

How about New York, New Orleans, Chicago…or Boston.

Boston?

Yes, Boston.

A thriving local scene with deep historical roots, amazing schools (Berklee and New England Conservatory of Music), plus the “Boston-New York Pipeline.” Richard Vacca takes us by the hand and explains all.

For more info on the Boston scene and its singular history plus a great blog and info about guided tours visit Vacca’s TroyStreet.com website.

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

P.S. Our unique programming is made possible by help from people like you. Learn how you can contribute to our efforts here: Support Jazz on the Tube
Thanks.

Music credit: The Jazz on the Tube podcast theme song is “Mambo Inferno” performed by The Manhattan School of Music Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra conducted by Bobby Sanabria from the CD ¡Que Viva Harlem!

Remembering Eddie Durham with Topsy Durham

Recollections with Eddie’s daughter Topsy


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Jazz on the Tube is declaring 2020 the “Year of Eddie Durham.”

If you don’t know Eddie Durham (1906-1987), buckle your seat belts. He’s one the the secret sources of the music we call jazz.

Take Eddie out of the equation and a whole lot of things that made jazz jazz would never have happened.

He’s easily one of the most important musicians in the history of jazz and therefore one of the most important musicians in the history of American music.

Whose careers were nourished by Eddie Durham’s genius?

How about these for starters?

The Oklahoma City Blue Devils, Benny Moten, Jimmie Lunceford, Count Basie, Charlie Christian, Lester Young, Glenn Miller – and this is just the short list!

Click here to go to the Eddie Durham tribute site

Music referenced in this interview


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1. Moten’s Swing (1933) – (00:00)
2. Hittin’ the Bottle (1935) – (03:24)
3. Topsy (1937) – (06:24)
4. Good Morning Blues (1937) – (09:38)
5. Swinging the Blues (1938) – (12:26)
6. Countless Blues (1938) – (15:10)
7. Way Down Yonder in New Orleans (1938 – two takes) – (18:07)
8. Jumpin’ at the Woodside (1939) – (24:09)
9. In the Mood (1939) – (27:18)

Documentary about Eddie Durham by the Center for Texas Music History

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

P.S. Our unique programming is made possible by help from people like you. Learn how you can contribute to our efforts here: Support Jazz on the Tube
Thanks.

Music credit: The Jazz on the Tube podcast theme song is “Mambo Inferno” performed by The Manhattan School of Music Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra conducted by Bobby Sanabria from the CD ¡Que Viva Harlem!


The Annual San Marcos Texas, Eddie Durham Tribute Sponsored by the Calaboose African American History Museum

The secret creative “spark plug” behind the success of the Blue Devils, Jimmy Lunceford, Lester Young, Freddie Green, Charlie Christian and Count Basie. Arranger of Glen Miller’s “In the Mood” too!

2020: Saturday, August 22, at 8 PM EDT
Live streamed
Link: https://www.facebook.com/events/297414401339420/

Jazz secrets revealed


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Some essential gems of jazz history hidden in an obscure book I came across about about jazz in Kansas City

The book is built around dozens of great musicians who lived through its Golden Age telling the story…in their own words.

Some of the diamonds I uncovered:

* The essential differences between New Orleans, Chicago, and Kansas City-style jazz

* The very real trouble Lester Young had holding down a job and how Eddie Durham wrote arrangements specifically to make him and his unique tone employable

* What young Count Basie was like and why the extent of his genius is not fully appreciated

* A vivid picture of what a musical paradise Kansas City was in its prime and why it might have been THE most musician-friendly city in all of human history!

* The seldom-mentioned musical influences that produced a generation of master musicians in America’s Southwest – Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri – that fed Kansas City’s musical scene.

* A finely detailed description of exactly how Charlie Parker worked out his harmonic concept and two little-known musicians who coached him through the process.

* The extraordinary musical life of Mary Lou Williams from her teenage years on the road, to thriving in Kansas City, to mentoring young musicians like Thelonious Mon, Bud Powell and others and helping them work out their some of their classic compositions.

* A cogent argument for the case that Kansas City was where MODERN jazz was born.

Click here for music referenced in this reading

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

P.S. Our unique programming is made possible by help from people like you. Learn how you can contribute to our efforts here: Support Jazz on the Tube