Paul Desmond was born in San Francisco, California, on November 25, 1924. Readers around the world tell me that they remember Paul every time his birthday and his 1977 death date roll around. This is the 13th year that Rifftides has celebrated his birth. We customarily make Paul’s music a part of the birthday remembrance, and all the good things about him come rushing back. If there were other things, I don’t remember them. Below is Paul reunited with his longtime partner Dave Brubeck in a 1971 concert, playing a piece that the two old friends had explored together for more than twenty years. Their companions were Gerry Mulligan, baritone saxophone; Jack Six, bass; and Alan Dawson, drums.
I am frequently asked about availability of the biography of Paul that I published in 2005. The hard-cover edition sold out long ago. It is available here as an ebook, complete with all of the photographs, end notes and indexes.
An earlier version of this post had to be taken down because a record company declared after the fact that the music it contained was “unavailable.”