This is the website of The Jazz Culture Newsletter, seen in 80 countries every month spreading and sharing news of jazz life. This website will write about jazz in NY and include birthdays, performances and certain notes about performances. See current activities of some members below.
Don’t Miss This Special Event: JAZZ AND BLUES SHOWCASE PROUDLY PRESENTS OCT 14th
Two sets 7:30 and 10pm
Joe Magnarelli trumpet
Frank Basile baritone Sax
Akiko Tsuruga organ
Joe Strasser drums
1 Winchester Court, Tabernacle, NJ
LORD OF LIFE CHURCH
609 268 0108
CHARLES DAVIS OBITUARY
Charles Davis, Saxophonist, Composer, (May 20, 1933-July 15, 2016) was born in Goodman, Mississippi. He came of age in Chicago and went to DuSable High School, a high school famous for its music program, and the Chicago School of Music. Mr. Davis was one of the great saxophonists in bebop, progressive and post bop jazz, a quiet and succinct gentleman.
During a 65 year career, Mr. Davis went through roughly three periods: The Chicago, Philadelphia and New York. He played with many giants of jazz, beginning in the 50’s with Billie Holiday, Dinah Washington and Ben Webster and Sun Ra; in the 60’s Elvin Jones, Jimmy Garrison, Illinois Jacquet, Freddie Hubbard, Johnny Griffin, Steve Lacy, Ahmad Jamal, Blue Mitchell, Erskine Hawkins, Coleman Hawkins, John Coltrane and Clifford Jordan; in the 70’s, he was in a musical collective with Hank Mobley, Cedar Jones, Sam Jones and Billy Higgins; he worked with Clark Terry’s Big Band and Duke Ellington’s Orchestra under Mercer Ellington. In the 80’s he worked with Dameronia, Philly Jo Jones, Abdullah Ibraham’s Ekaya, and did a Savoy Salute to Benny Goodman. In the 90’s-to the 21st century, Mr. Davis performed with Barry Harris in quartets throughout the jazz club circuit, including the album Reflections. In the 90’s Charles Davis recorded and toured with the Clifford Jordan Big Band, with the Apollo Theater Hall of Fame band with Nancy Wilson, Ray Charles and Joe Williams, was music librarian for Spike Lee in Mo’ Better Blues, a Netherlands tour featuring the music of Kenny Dorham, and the North Carolina Jazz festival at Duke University, and with Larry Ridley’s Jazz Legacy Ensemble; appeared in clubs, at concerts and festivals throughout Europe and New Orleans, Chicago, and Connecticut. In the 21st century, Mr. Davis was featured at the Blue Note in Berlin, Italy Spain, and was a featured artist at the Jazz & Image Festivals. He performed and recorded with the El Mollenium Band (featuring Elmo Hope’s work). He worked at Sweet Basil and Birdland with Barry Harris. Mr. Davis performed with Peter Washington, Cedar Walton, Joe Farnsworth, Tardo Hammer, Joe Magnarelli, Jimmy Wormsworth, Lee Hudson, Sam Yahel, Tom Kirkpatrick, Claus Raible, Ron Ben-Hur, Giorgios Antoniou Bernd Reiter in recordings made in the 21st century. He also performed throughout Europe. Mr. Davis was married for many years to Lori, to whom he dedicated a cd: “For Love of Lori.”
Mr. Davis enjoyed a long running relationships with the Spirit of Life Band, Archie Shepp, Kenny Dorham, the singer Joe Lee Wilson and Sun Ra. In Rome he worked as leader of a quartet at festivals in Rome, Sardinia, La Spezia and Bologna.
He was a producer too and was musical director of a club called the Turntable; he co led the Baritone Saxophone Revue; he was musical director of the ID nightclub and presented Gene Ammons, max Roach and Randy Weston. He was director of a music boat ride that presented Art Blakey, Etta Jones and George Benson. On TV he appeared with Ruby Dee, Ossie Davis, Archie Shepp and Lucky Thompson. Mr. Davis also taught at P.S. 179 in Brooklyn, Jazzmobile for over 25 years, and privately at the New School and Lucy Moses. He was recorded by Silva, Red, Strata East, Reade Street and West 54 labels. He is survived by a number of relatives.
Awards: He won a Downbeat Award in 1964, a BMI Jazz Pioneer Award in 1984. In the words of Ben Ratliff, Charles Davis “owned the secrets of the past.”
Michael Weiss with the late great Joe Wilder
The Michael Weiss Trio at the Django, in the Roxy Hotel,
Two Sixth Avenue (Franklin Street subway stop in Tribeca)
Michael Weiss, piano, Mike Kairn, Bass, Jason Tiemann, drums
The Michael Weiss Trio played at the Django Jazz Room at the Roxy Hotel on Wednesday, October 12, 2016. The first song for that set was “The Griffith” or Top to Bottom.” The Griffith, of course, was Johnny Griffin, the legendary tenor saxophone player whom Michael Weiss recorded with four times. It was played at a tempo of about 175=quarter note, a lively swing with a percussive, progressive bop feel, short motifs on the A section and a scalar bridge whose notes were echoed in a very live room. Mr. Weiss’s solo extended the theme with imaginative licks, with some whole step ideas, which seemed to ask questions, like an eager beaver pursuing a trail and never letting up a playful yet propulsive energy. At that tempo, a sort of universal joy captivated the audience. The bassist had a good centered tone mostly in the middle upper register; he was tight with the drummer. The bassist seemed to enjoy making surprising lines off the basic motif. The drummer Mr. Tiemann was dynamic with a good technique and a good sound on his toms. The band kept the same tempo without letting it fall or rush.
The next song was “We Love Horace,” referring of course to Horace Silver. Played at about 140=quarter note a lovely melody replete with triplets wittily interspersed, reflecting the history of bop and hard bop. Mr. Weiss played with some bluesy licks in a storytelling, intriguing style. The lines unfolded in a soulful groove with personal articulation, perfect phrasing, a gorgeous solo reflecting all Michael Weiss knows about the blues, especially when played by the swing and bebop giants before him. He also was able to fracture the rhythm in unexpected ways by finding new edges in his rhythmic ideas. The Bassist placed his notes well and called and answered in curving melodic lines from the mid bottom to mid upper registers; in a solid tone. The pianist returned with the humility, sweetness and rocking heartbeat of the blues, bursting from his phrases, anticipating the beat in his comping. The band took out the song in a tribute like manner that ended in a flourish.
“La Ventana,” a samba followed. What do you see through your window? The composer asked. A lovely melody with contrasting motifs that climbed the piano registers and swept down in the B section like a turbulent hurricane in a river of sound. In his solo, Mr. Weiss quoted a children’s song, seeming to catch the flow of life passing by one’s ‘window:’ the turbulence, energy, dancing vitality and joy. Mr. Weiss played a rapturous solo full of melodic invention. He is one of the star composers of his generation. The trio sounded like a whole orchestra of sound, expressing the eternal in life, captured in a moment viewed through a window, and perhaps commenting that all art is a window. Mr. Tiemann uses the whole drum set and has excellent technique and power, without ever getting loud, focusing his sound on the middle register. He played ebbs and crescendos dying away, throwing in a few rim shots, like decoration on a cake, yet maintaining strong and precise support. Mr. Weiss then repeated the lovely theme and ended in a cascading, dramatic finish.
At about 68= quarter note, a lovely ballad followed, a variation on “Skylark” by Hoagy Carmichael, the melodic invention as delicate as snow descending, with perfect phrases that came from the emotional rhythm of the song. Mr. Weiss was able to pick out certain melodic gems within the piece, developing them in a natural and inviting way. The drummer could play a swinging ballad; the rhythm section doubled the tempo under Mr. Weiss’s solo, that became like the flight of a bird searching high and low. The bass solo had a solid tone, yet he used space well, pausing within phrases. Taking “Skylark” out, Mr. Weiss played a blues infused variation of the melody, succinct and using effective clusters in the right hand, with a dramatic ending, rolling the last chord into a glissando, as if the flight of the bird had ended midair, suspended in space.
The last song was “Second Thoughts,” delivered at varying tempos, 145, 120, then doubled to 240 by Mr. Weiss, then relapsing for the final chorus. Mr. Weiss doubled into brilliant 16th note lines, (just as Peter Bernstein, the guitarist walked in) with easy virtuosity and perfect articulation (that he projects with energy coming from his seat), alternating short melodic ideas deftly, having mastered the art of the short memorable lick of 2, 3, 4 and then 5 notes, ideas that are sometimes connected by a hand rolling scalar segue. Sometimes the bass player takes a chance, juxtaposing large intervals with the small and a little surprise is the result. He then repeated the theme, with a three note motif that was later bridged by flowing connecting phrases.
Michael Weiss is one of the answers to the question: What will happen to jazz? He is one of the leading composers of songs of his generation.
The Roxy Hotel is home to the Django Jazz Club, (a re-branding of the Tribeca Grand that opened in 2015), that tips its hat to the Grand Roxy Movie Theater with 5,920 seats where Gloria Swanson held forth in 1927, that presented glamorous stage shows through the 1950’s. It also references the Roxy Nightclub in Chelsea circa 1990. Hence its romantic and dramatic décor. The Django is a jazz club in the basement with high arched ceilings reminiscent of certain clubs in Paris. The Django downstairs has an inverted bell shaped crystal chandelier, and each round table has a small bell; the shaped candle holders, against a yellow and orange walls, tones that echo the palette of a Toulouse Lautrec painting; in a friendly atmosphere.
The Jazz Culture Newsletter mourns with the rest of the jazz community the passing of DAWN HAMPTON.
DAWN HAMPTON OBITUARY
By Lionelle Hamanaka
“All in the Family”
Dawn Hampton, dancer, singer, saxophonist, composer, (born 1928 in Middletown, Ohio, died September 25, 1026 in NYC) cabaret artist and teacher, was a shining light for the jazz dance and cabaret community in New York City. Her career spanned over 80 years. Dawn Hampton was a warm and dramatic person, a great role model and teacher who was born into the profession of theater and musicians. She had a singular personality and knew how to captivate an audience with one flick of her body. She started in show business at age 3 in Clark Deacon Hampton’s family band and vaudeville act, playing ragtime, blues, Dixieland and polkas and traveling around the country. The name of the band was “Deacon Hampton and the Cotton Pickers.” The group settled in Indianapolis and the children went to the McArthur School of Music.
Ms. Hampton was part of a smaller group, called “The Hamptonians” with her sisters, Carmalita, Aletra and Virtue during World War II. After the war she worked in brother Clark “Duke” Hampton’s jazz combo on saxophone touring the west and south. In 1950 she played at Carnegie Hall, the Apollo Theater and the Savoy Ballroom. Ms. Hampton worked with her sisters again in The Hampton Sisters. She also played in Cincinnati’s Cotton Club. Nine Hampton family members were part of a 14 piece group that concertized at Carnegie Hall. Dawn Hampton played alto and tenor saxophone, sang and also danced in the group.
Dawn Hampton moved to New York City after the group broke up in 1958. Here she landed a role in the Off-Broadway play, “Greenwich Village, USA” at the Bon Soir and performed on the record. In the 1960’s she settled in for a residence at the Lion’s Den, which used to feature music. Ms. Hampton composed a well known song, “Life Is What You Make It.”
In the 1970’s Dawn Hampton worked at the Continental Baths with Cab Calloway, Bette Midler and Barry Manilow. In the 80’s she worked with Frankie Manning, a hero of swing dancers, in Spike Lee’s “Malcom X.” There was a gala in New York for her 80th birthday produced by the George Gee Orchestra, with whom she performed multiple times at Swing 46, a famous gathering place for swing dancers in New York City. Many dancers from all over New York came to see her and dance in the same room with Ms. Hampton.
Ms. Hampton received the Lifetime Achievement Award in Cabaret, and was nominated in 1988 for the Distinguished Achievement for Director/Composer Award in the National Association of Cabarets. Her contributions are included in “Swingtime USA” in the UK, Century Masters, Jazz and Swingtime in Indiana, and individual portraits by journalists around the country. A documentary on the Hampton family, including herself and distant cousin Slide Wellington Hampton, the trombone virtuoso, “The Unforgettable Hampton Family, that has been seen nationally, ” documents the contribution of one of the most outstanding territory bands in US history.
OBITUARY RICK STONE: guitarist, composer, family man, teacher.
RICK STONE was born in Cleveland, Ohio and died in New York City on July 29, 2016. He attended Berklee College of Jazz. After he came to New York City he went to Barry Harris’s Jazz Culture Theatre, where he sat in with Clarence “C” Sharpe, Tommy Flanagan, Lionel Hampton and Junior Cook and studied improvisation with Barry Harris. At Queens College he received an MA in music, where he studied with Tony Purrone, Ted Dunbar, Jimmy Heath, Donald Byrd.
A sought after teacher, Mr. Stone won two awards from IAJE for Outstanding Service to Jazz Education. He taught at Hofstra University on Long Island and Jazzmobile. A nationally recognized musician, he won several NEA performance grants. He toured South America and South Africa with his own trio, and toured Italy as a guest artist. He performed regularly at Sette MOMA. He worked with Sol Yaged’s combo for several years. At a gig at Swing Café, he performed duos with noted guitarists Peter Bernstein, Mark Elf, Freddie Bryant, Roni Ben-Hur, and Peter Leitch. He performed at Birdland, The Smithsonian Institute and Carnegie Recital Hall. He performed with musicians like Kenny Barron, Richard Wyands, Eric Alexander, Vernel Fournier, Dennis Irwin, Billy Hart, Harvie S, and Joe Strasser. He wrote for Just Jazz Guitar, Guitar Life and Mel Bay music books.
As a player, he had exquisite virtuoso technique, clean lines, but was able to play with tenderness, sensitivity, contrapuntal propulsion and grittiness. Rick Stone achieved that sought after prize as a jazz artist, a distinctive voice as an improviser and his own sound. Sometimes he became abstruse, using many substitutions because he was erudite. A number of his compositions are among the finest of his generation, and he added to the collection of jazz standards, both recorded and left to posterity on paper. His personal spirit always uplifted those around him on the scene. Although not a native New Yorker, he acquired a sense of humor based out of New York City. One of the most gifted and well loved jazz musicians of his generation, he leaves a place behind that no one can fill as he developed his gifts into a unique and sincere voice.
Several albums, “Blues for Nobody,” “Fractals,” “Far East” and “Samba de Noviembre” won acclaim and were nationally recognized on the airwaves. An adoring husband and father, he is survived by his wife Idelle and children, Alexander and Ilessa. He died July 29, 2016, in New York at the Bellevue Hospital Hospice from a rare brain cancer. A well loved member of the New York jazz community, friends are now compiling archives produced in his own studio of performances and original compositions.Jazz Culture Subscribers:
Richard Clements: Pianist, 11th Street Bar Mondays, 8
George Gee Orchestra at Swing 46, every Tues, most Fridays 9:30; also Small’s in the Village at 4:30 on Sundays in April; also First Fridays at the Ballroom 4 West 43rd Street 8:30
Loston Harris: Bemelmans Bar at The Carlyle; Tues - Thur 9:30pm - 12:30am, Fri-Sat 9:30pm-1:00am The Carlyle,
John Mosca & Michael Weiss, Vanguard Orchestra every Monday at the Village Vanguard 8 p.m.
David Pearl: Mondays at the Thalia, 95 St. bet. B’way & West End 8 p.m.
Bill Saxton: Every Friday and Saturday Bill’s Place 133 Street
Murray Wall, bassist, 11th Street Bar most Mondays, 8 p.m.
ENGLAND: John Watson Trio @palm-court.co.uk John Watson Tel: 01442 217825 ww.johnpianoman.co.uk JohnPianomanWatson
First Weds. Oct Valery Ponomarev Big Band at Zinc Bar 2 Weds (82 West 3rd Street, btw Thompson & Sullivan in Greenwich Village, New York City, NY 10012, tel. 212-477-ZINC 9462)
Birthdays: Larry Ham, Jack LaMonte, Rick MacLaine, Akemi Kinukawa, Sumi Tonooka, Richie Vitale, Chuk Fowler, Alan Kamen, Maria Romano, Kenyatta Beasley, Lil Phillips, George Gee, Eric Lemon, Randy Noel, Stafford Hunter, Bob Mover, Dave Schnitter, Noriko Ueda, Frank Senior, Katie Collins, Lonnie Hillyer, Kenny Gates, Ilya Lushtak, Richard Benatar, Alex Stein, Dealva Divine, Jim Eigo, Gene Perla, Brian McMillen, Neal Miner, Leroy Williams, Kiani Zawadi, Juini Booth, David Gibson, Elizabeth Tamboulian. Carol Fredette.
The Jazz Culture Newsletter: Jazz Tours in NYC are available; also music teachers in various countries for students & jazz lovers. email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Ads are available in The Jazz Culture Newsletter. The Jazz Culture Newsletter has been read in 80 countries. Brian McMillen is a contributing Photographer. Connie MacNamee, Kumiko and Arnold J. Smith have contributed their writing.” Countries: US, UK, Albania, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium, Bangladesh, Belize, Brazil, Burma, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Chile, Colombia, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Holland, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mexico, Moldova, Montenegro, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Romania, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Seychelles, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Vietnam