It is neither Al Cohn’s birthday (November 24, 1925) nor the anniversary of his death in 1988. As on any day, it is simply a good time to listen to the great tenor saxophonist. We hear and see him in two festival performances filmed the year before he died. First, he was at Italy’s Sanremo Jazz Festival with pianist Rein De Graaf, bassist Harry Emmery and drummer Erik Ineke. They played a good old B-flat Blues, beginning and ending it with a chorus of King Oliver’s “Chimes Blues” from 1923.
Later that summer, Cohn appeared at the Newport Jazz Festival in impresario George Wein’s all-stars, with Wein at the piano; Cohn, Scott Hamilton and Harold Ashby, tenor sax; Norris Turney, alto sax; Warren Vache cornet; Slam Stewart, bass; and Oliver Jackson, drums. The piece is the Earl Hines perennial “Rosetta.”
So you see—any day is Al Cohn Day.
(note: The initial posting had the wrong videos. The miscreant Rifftides staffer responsible has been reprimanded and his remaining Christmas cookies confiscated.)