Thanks to Bob Young of Jazz Boston for adding Rifftides to the links from the site, which chronicles jazz people and events in the Boston area and includes Carol Sloane, Joe Lovano, Danilo Perez, Terri Lynn Carrington and Charlie Kohlhase on its board of artistic advisers. They must be giving good advice; it is a web site with good design, sensible organization, extensive information and hip background music .
Thanks to Mr. Young, also, for including among Jazz Boston’s links one to a collection of pieces Tony Gieske has written and illustrated with his photographs over the years. Gieske, once with The Washington Post, now writes for the Hollywood Reporter. His site is called Remembrance of Swings Past. It has columns, essays, and anecdotes about Woody Herman, Miles Davis, Tiny Grimes, Jimmy Rowles, Ravi Coltrane, Bob Brookmeyer, Sam Rivers, Peggy Lee, Charles Lloyd Conte Candoli, Chet Baker, the young trumpeter Maurice Brown and a couple of dozen others. Gieske is good at description:
Brookmeyer poked the mike deep into the bell of his instrument and began producing that drawly, equable sound of his, buzzy and furry and intimate. The brilliant guitarist Larry Koonse, immaculate and cool, gave the sound a silvery core as the two exposed the text of whatever familiar theme they had chosen.
Gieske has an ear for quotes, like this one from a profile of Annie Ross, the heroine of Lambert, Hendricks and Ross:
The other day I was walking along Madison Avenue and I passed a police station and a black policeman came out off duty and he’s walking up the street singing ‘Moody’s Mood for Love.’ He did the female chorus, the whole thing, walking along Madison Avenue. Out of sight! I was thrilled.
And this one from Tiny Grimes recalling New York in 1944:
I had a little job with my quartet down on 52nd Street, and Charlie Parker used to come in, and I used to let him play, you know? He couldn’t get a job nowhere because nobody at that time understood the music. But I could dig it. I just couldn’t play it that well.
But Bird was there every night. He was there so often, they thought he was workin’ there. And then when I got this record date for my group, the producer at Savoy over in New Jersey – he really didn’t want him. I talked him into it. It was Parker’s first real record date, where somebody let him play.
I am adding Jazz Boston and Remembrance of Swings Past to the links in the right-hand column. Pay them a visit. Don’t forget to come back.