This is the 92nd anniversary of Dizzy Gillespie’s birth. There are many ways to celebrate it. The Rifftides staff offers two. The first video is from the Bern Jazz Festival in 1985. The band is Dizzy, James Moody, Gene Harris, Ray Brown and Grady Tate. The tune is “Ow.” It was made famous by the great Gillespie big band of the 1940s. So were Moody and Brown.
The second clip is from the 1979 Newport Jazz Festival in Nice, France. With Gillespie are Arnie Lawrence, alto sax; Stan Getz, tenor sax; John Lewis, piano; George Duvivier, bass; and Shelly Manne, drums. The piece is Ellington’s “It Don’t Mean a thing if it Ain’t Got That Swing.”
Jazz On The Tube has strung together nearly a score of Gillespie videos, including his only known TV appearance with Louis Armstrong and his gig with The Muppets. Happy Dizzy’s birthday to you.