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Thursday, January 31, 2013


JAZZ SCENE U.S.A. #15

CAL TJADER QUINTET



MONDAY, OCTOBER 15, 1962

CBS TELEVISION CITY, LOS ANGELES, CA

Commentary © James A. Harrod, Copyright Protected; All Rights Reserved


Cal Tjader appeared with his current quintet on the 15th program taped for Steve Allen’s JAZZ SCENE USA series.  As noted on the production script, the group performed as a quartet doing straight ahead jazz numbers and was joined by the conga player for tunes with a Latin beat making it a quintet.  Tjader’s quintet for the show included: Cal Tjader, vibes; Lonnie Hewitt, piano; Freddie Schrieber, bass; John Rae, drums and Bill Fitch, conga.




Cal Tjader began his jazz career as the drummer in Dave Brubeck’s Trio with two releases on the Coronet label.  The Trio would release three 10” LPs on the Fantasy label and during the course of Tjader’s association with the Dave Brubeck Trio he demonstrated his adept facility on bongos and the vibes as recalled in the Dave Brubeck interview that follows:


Ted Panken Interview with Dave Brubeck, July 23, 2007




For instance, Ellington wrote with the voices of his musicians in mind. Were you writing with Paul Desmond’s voice in mind? Or was Desmond or anyone you’re playing with supposed to play your vision? How did it work?

Well, with Cal Tjader, he started playing vibes with my trio. I didn’t even know he could play vibes. As soon as he started playing vibes, then Armando Peraza was stranded because Slim Gaillard abandoned him after bringing him from Cuba, and he was working this club in San Francisco where we were playing. The owner said, “I keep him here because Slim has just left him, and I feed him and let him sleep here in the club,” and he swept up and did odd jobs. He said, “He’s a helluva bongo player; why don’t you let him sit in with you.” So I did it, just because the guy was abandoned. And boy, he broke the place up. So Cal started playing bongos because of that, and Paul bought a pair of bongos. So we had three guys up there on the stage playing bongos.

But Peraza knew what he was doing.

Oh, yeah. Then Cal became so intrigued with it, and then he became a big star in Caribbean music. But I’m not answering your question. Things happen, and you move. Like, I didn’t know he could play vibes. I didn’t know he would be a great bongo player. You just use where somebody is great, and you incorporate it into things. With the trio, it was easier to answer that question. The quartet was the trio with Paul Desmond playing solos on the same arrangements. That’s the way it had to start, because we didn’t have time to organize or rehearse. We just had a job, and I thought it was well enough to play. I was so bad off that they had to go into a blackout so I could stand. I had to pull myself up on the piano bench and just stand there for a while. I shouldn’t have been playing, but I had to play. There was no way out. But with Paul, I started thinking in terms more of counterpoint, because he and I naturally played counterpoint together. So what does somebody bring into the group?


When Cal Tjader exited the Dave Brubeck Trio he recorded a few sessions for the Weiss brother’s Galaxy label before spending some time with the George Shearing group that also included Armando Peraza. The Galaxy sessions included John Marabuto on piano and Jack Weeks on bass.  Weeks had played bass on the Dave Brubeck Octet sessions that included Cal Tjader on drums. Vince Guaraldi replaced Marabuto on some of the Galaxy sessions and would team up with Tjader later on some of the Tjader jazz sessions for Fantasy. Tjader’s solo album for Savoy, CAL TJADER-VIBIST (MG 9036), included a combo with Armando Peraza who would continue to appear on several recordings that Cal Tjader cut for Fantasy Records as he fine tuned his Latin groups.


Oscar Brown, Jr. featured Tjader’s recent Verve album celebrating the music of Mexico and Brazil and pointed out the influence that the music from Marcel Camus’ BLACK ORPHEUS by Antônio Carlos Jobim and Luiz Bonfá in the current Bossa Nova craze.  The Tjader Quintet then performed  CARNIVAL from the film.

Here is the trailer from the movie:
MARCEL CAMUS - BLACK ORPHEUS





Production credits: Host: Oscar Brown, Jr. 
Executive Producer: Steve Allen 
Producer: Jimmie Baker 
Director: Steve Binder 
Associate Producer: Penny Stewart 
Associate Director: George Turpin 
Technical Director: Jim Brady 
Lighting Director: Leard Davis 
Audio: Larry Eaton 
Art Director: Robert Tyler Lee 
Jazz Consultant: John Tynan 
Title Films: Grant Velie 
Cameras: Bob Dunn, Ed Chaney, Gorman Erickson, Pat Kenny

















Monday, January 14, 2013


JAZZ SCENE U.S.A. #14

SHORTY ROGERS & HIS GIANTS


MONDAY, OCTOBER 1, 1962

CBS TELEVISION CITY, LOS ANGELES, CA

Commentary © James A. Harrod, Copyright Protected; All Rights Reserved

Shorty Rogers’ first album as leader was on the Capitol label, MODERN SOUNDS, SHORTY ROGERS & HIS GIANTS.  The session was produced by Gene Norman and licensed to Capitol for release.  Shorty’s compositions and arrangements on this album would come to typify the west coast sound.  The “Giants” description of Shorty’s sidemen would apply to any number of musicians that Shorty would assemble for concerts and recording sessions depending on who was in town and available at the time.  When Shorty was approached to record the fourteenth segment of Jazz Scene U.S.A. his “Giants” included Lou Levy on piano, Gary LeFebvre on tenor sax and flute, Gary Peacock on bass and Larry Bunker on drums.  Later that fall Shorty & His Giants would appear on Frankly Jazz, a short lived TV series on Los Angeles television, and the “Giants” on that show included Joe Maini, Pete Jolly, Max Bennett and Mel Lewis.

Shorty’s latest album on the Reprise label, BOSSA NOVA (Reprise R-6050), was featured on the program when Oscar Brown, Jr. held the album cover before the camera.  The Bossa Nova craze was sweeping America and every major record company had several Bossa Nova albums in their catalogue to tempt record buyers.  In this case Reprise used the same bold title and model for the album cover that had been used on the Barney Kessel album featured in the previous Jazz Scene U.S.A. program #12.

The Shorty Rogers segment was paired with the Shelly Manne program and released by Shanachie on VHS, and later on DVD.



The four numbers performed by Shorty Rogers & His Giants on Jazz Scene U.S.A. have been uploaded to YouTube by Gary LeFebvre and are shown below:

SHORTY ROGERS & HIS GIANTS - GREENSLEEVES 


SHORTY ROGERS & HIS GIANTS - TIME WAS

SHORTY ROGERS & HIS GIANTS - MARTIANS GO HOME

SHORTY ROGERS & HIS GIANTS - THE OUTSIDERS


Shorty in later years with his Flugelhorn (© Ray Avery/CTSIMAGES)

Production credits: Host: Oscar Brown, Jr. 
Executive Producer: Steve Allen 
Producer: Jimmie Baker 
Director: Steve Binder 
Associate Producer: Penny Stewart 
Associate Director: George Turpin 
Technical Director: Jim Brady 
Lighting Director: Leard Davis 
Audio: Larry Eaton 
Art Director: Robert Tyler Lee 
Jazz Consultant: Leonard Feather 
Title Films: Grant Velie 
Cameras: Bob Dunn, Ed Chaney, Gorman Erickson, Pat Kenny





















Friday, January 4, 2013

STAN KENTON



JAZZ SCENE U.S.A. #13

STAN KENTON AND HIS MELLOPHONIUM ORCHESTRA


MONDAY, OCTOBER 1, 1962

CBS TELEVISION CITY, LOS ANGELES, CA

Commentary © James A. Harrod, Copyright Protected; All Rights Reserved




Oscar Brown, Jr. opens the program with a capsule history of the arrangers who have been an integral part of the evolution of the Stan Kenton Orchestra and displays on camera photographs of Pete Rugolo, Bob Graettinger, Gerry Mulligan, Johnny Richards, Willis “Bill” Holman, Gene Roland and Lennie Niehaus who Oscar points out wrote the arrangement of the theme music by Steve Allen that opens the program, Give Irving My Love.  




Two recent albums by the Kenton Orchestra are highlighted with the covers displayed on camera, ADVENTURES IN JAZZ (Capitol S/T 1796) and WEST SIDE STORY (Capitol S/T 1609) with the selections played on the program drawn from these two albums. Oscar Brown, Jr. makes a point of mentioning the arranger of each selection that is performed by the orchestra. "Give Irving My Love" by Steve Allen (theme), arranged by Lennie Niehaus; "Limehouse Blues" by Douglas Furber, Philip Braham, arranged by Bill Holman; "All the things you are" by Oscar Hammerstein II, Jerome Kern, arranged by Stan Kenton; "The waltz of the prophets" composed and arranged by Dee Barton; "Maria" by Stephen Sondheim, Leonard Bernstein, arranged by Johnny Richards; "Malaguena" by Ernesto Lecuona, arranged by Bill Holman.

In another segment Oscar Brown, Jr. draws attention to the recent September 27, 1962 issue of Down Beat magazine with a photo of Stan Kenton on the cover and a feature article that focuses on Kenton’s work with young musicians and the importance of the jazz clinics in training the jazz musicians of tomorrow.  The cover and article are reproduced below, © Maher Publications, Down Beat.




The Kenton program is available on VHS and DVD as released back in the 1990s by Shanachie.



The following segment is from the end of the program.  There are other video segments from the program available on the internet.






Personnel:
Stan Kenton and his Mellophonium Orchestra:- Conte Candoli, Marvin Stamm, Bob Behrendt, Dalton Smith, Keith LaMotte, trumpet; Bud Parker, Tom Ringo, Bob Fitzpatrick, trombone; Jim Amlotte, bass trombone; Dave Wheeler, bass trombone, tuba; Dwight Carver, Joe Burnett, Lou Gasca, Ray Starling, mellophone; Gabe Baltazar, alto sax; Don Menza, Ray Florian, tenor sax; Allan Beutler, bar-sax; Joel Kaye, bar-sax, b-sax; Stan Kenton, piano, leader; Bucky Calabrese, acoustic double bass; Dee Barton, drums.

Production credits:

Host: Oscar Brown, Jr.

Executive Producer: Steve Allen

Producer: Jimmie Baker

Director: Steve Binder

Associate Producer: Penny Stewart

Associate Director: George Turpin
Technical Director: Jim Brady
Lighting Director: Leard Davis
Audio: Larry Eaton
Art Director: Robert Tyler Lee
Jazz Consultant: John Tynan
Title Films: Grant Velie
Cameras: Bob Dunn, Ed Chaney, Gorman Erickson, Pat Kenny