This is a busy week for birthdays of major jazz artists: On Tuesday it was Clifford Brown’s. Today belongs to two musicians who have been in the vanguard of the legion of alto saxophonistsoften called Bird’s childrenwho were inspired in the 1940s by Charlie Parker. One of the children, Herb Geller (pictured right) turns 84. The other, Phil Woods (pictured left), is 81 today. Both are traveling the world and performing regularly. Mr. Geller plays tomorrow night at Birdland in Hamburg, Germany, where he lives. Here he is about a year ago with pianist Pedro Guedes at the Centro Cultural de Belém in Lisbon as part of the Dose Dupla concerts.
Three months ago, Phil Woods appeared with his quintet at Dizzy’s Club Coca Cola in New York City. His colleagues are Bill Mays, piano; Bryan Lynch, trumpet; Steve Gilmore, bass; Bill Goodwin, drums. The piece is a beautifully crafted Mays arrangement of “The Very Thought of You.”