Charlie Parker’s Birthday

Charlie Parker was born in Kansas City on this date in 1920. The Rifftides staff debated whether to observe the occasion by publishing a 5000-word essay tracing Parker's musical heritage, analyzing the components of his style and evaluating his influence on several generations of musicians. You'll be happy to know that we decided instead to take Bird's advice in the film below and let his music speak for itself. This is the only known clip of Parker actually playing. In several others he is seen … [Read more...]

Correspondence: Bruno And The Singer

Jack Brownlow has been dead nearly two years, but stories about him keep surfacing. Among his other attributes, the pianist was admired for his harmonic ingenuity, chord placement, taste and timing in accompanying instrumentalists and vocalists. At Brownlow's memorial service in the fall of 2007, drummer Phil Snyder told several stories about his musical adventures with the man known to his friends as Bruno. He forgot to tell one, though, and sent it to share with Rifftides readers. As you … [Read more...]