タグ別アーカイブ: DukeEllington

The biographies of “Bass clarinet” heroes(2)

April 28.2017

Photo above of (from left),Quentin Jackson, Harry Carney and Britt Woodman
courtesy by Pinterst

Yesterday I posted about Omer Simeon.

Today I would like to introduce Harry Carney.

As another historical side note, Harry Carney also played bass clarinet with Duke Ellington.

Harry Carney was born April 1, 1910 in Boston, Massachusetts.

His virtuosity on the baritone saxophone influenced generations of subsequent players.

He also performed on clarinet and bass clarinet, as well as alto saxophone in the early years of his career.

When he began to play alto saxophone His idle was Johnny Hodges.

Also he was influenced by Buster Bailey and Don Murray and Coleman Hawkins and Adrian Rollini.

Photo above of Don Murray by courtesy of The Pop of Yestercentury

About his idles, I quoted his speaking from HARRY CARNEY’S ADMIRATION SOCIETY

My first influences [on clarinet] were Buster Bailey with Fletcher Henderson, and Don Murray with Jean Goldkette. As a brash kid, I always wanted to play faster than anyone on clarinet, and both Buster and Don Murray were great technicians. Too bad I didn’t stick with them! Perhaps I’d be a clarinetist today. Buster has always sounded to me like a perfect man for the symphony, and on those up-tempo numbers with Fletcher Henderson he always showed what a well-schooled musician he was.

After playing a variety of gigs in New York City at the age of 17, Carney joined Ellington in Boston in 1927.

Harry Carney focused mainly on the baritone saxophone for the remainder of his career, doubling bass clarinet, and less frequently clarinet.

Barney Bigard was the featured clarinetist with Ellington from 1928-1942.

Occasionally he took a solo on clarinet.

Photo courtesy by Visual discography of Billie Holiday

In addition he played clarinet with Teddy Wilson’s Brunswick sessions with Billie Holiday.

So Harry Carney performed a rare bass clarinet solo with Duke Ellington in 1934.

“Saddest Tale” was a rare recording of Duke’s voice, along with Harry’s bass clarinet.

Photo above of Harry Carney

今日はHarry Carneyを紹介したいと思います。Harry CarneyはDuke Ellington楽団でbass clarinetを吹いた録音を残しています。彼のclarinet演奏に影響を与えた先輩については下記に引用します。

「私の最初の影響は、Buster Bailey と Jean Goldkette楽団でのDon Murray でした。私はいつもクラリネットを誰よりも速く吹きたいと思っていました。
Buster Bailey は常に完璧で Fletcher Henderson楽団でのアップテンポ・ナンバーはミュージシャンにはとても参考になる演奏です。」

1928-1942年、Ellington楽団のクラリネット奏者はBarney Bigardでした。
しかし、Harry Carneyも時にはクラリネットソロを演奏していました。
特筆すべき録音としてBillie HolidayとのTeddy WilsonのBrunswickセッションでクラリネットで参加しています。
又、Ellington楽団 で録音された“ Saddest Tale” はDukeの朗読とHarryのbass clarinetが貴重です。

the commentary by Stanley Dance,Japanese translation by 野口久光

Here is Duke Ellington with Harry Carney play “Saddest Tale”.

Here is It’s Teddy Wilson with Billie Holiday play “It’s like reaching for the Moon”.(1936)
Jonah jones(tp), Harry Carney(clarinet), Lawrence Lucie(g), John Kirby(b),Cozy Cole (ds)

Svend Asmussen(RIP)

March 13.2017

Last November I posted some jazz violinists.

Please refer to my blog,(November 2016, from 15 to 23).

Jazz violinist(1) ~ Jazz violinist(8)

At that time I did’nt post about Svend Asmussen.

Svend Asmussen was born 28 February 1916 in Denmark.

Asmussen started performing professionally at the age of 17.

In 1943, he was arrested by the Gestapo and imprisoned in Berlin.

Fortunately he survived.

As a result,he became a versatile entertainer and artist.

Svend Asmussen’s jazz violin style is truly unique and instantly recognizable.

His idols were Stuff Smith, Ray Nance and Stephane Grappelli.

He was one of the handful of violinists who in the 1930s proved the instrument capable of swing and emotional expression at the highest jazz level.

In the late 1950s, Asmussen formed the trio Swe-Danes with singer Alice Babs and guitarist Ulrik Neumann.

The group became very popular in Scandinavia for their music hall style entertainment and also toured the United States.

In 1963 Asmussen was invited by Ellington to play on his album ‘Duke Ellington’s Jazz Violin Session’, on which he can be heard playing alongside Stéphane Grappelli and Ray Nance.

In 1966 Asmussen appeared alongside Grappelli, Stuff Smith, and Jean-Luc Ponty in a jazz Violin Summit in Switzerland.

Also he had recording with Toots Thielemans, John Lewis and Jean-Luc Ponty.

Here is Svend Asmussen and Stephane Grappelli play “PARISIAN THOROUGHFARE” (1965).

Here is The Swe Danes with Alice Babs, Ulrik Neumann and Svend Asmussen(1958).

Here is Toots Thielemans and  Svend Asmussen.

Here is Svend Asmussen Quartet play “It Don’t Mean a Thing If It Ain’t Got That Swing”.
Kenny Drew(p); Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen(b); Ed Thigpen(ds) at the Club Montmartre in Copenhagen.

Jazz Club in Boston(2)

January 31.2017

Photo above of the Hi-Hat Club by BostonDrinks.com

Photo above of the Hi-Hat Club by BostonDrinks.com

On broadcast Sadao Watanabe(渡辺貞夫)  choised two tunes,“Cool Blues and Laura” from “Bird in Boston by Charlie Parker.”

The performances were recorded at the Hi-Hat Club in Boston.

Sadao said that he didn’t know the Hi-Hat Club.

Because it closed in March of 1959 after a fire destroyed the building.


The Hi-Hat Club had been opened among the jazz clubs of Boston s South End district, at the corner of Columbus and Massachusetts Avenue.

Performers included Sammy Davis Jr, Duke Ellington, BB King, Sonny Stitt, Miles Davis, Billie Holliday, and many others.

It prospered from the mid 1940s until 1959.


In those days it was the only club featuring a consistent policy of presenting modern jazz.

Between 1953 and 1954 Charlie Parker made several visits to Boston.

He had played often with local musicians at the Hi-Hat.


Also the Savoy Club located at 410 Massachusetts Avenue.

When Roy Haynes was 15 years old, he started to play at the Savoy.

Because he was born in the Roxbury section of Boston, Massachusetts(March 13, 1925).

I refer to Richard Vacca’s “Troy Street”. Go Here

Here is Charlie Parker’s Radio broadcasts from the Hi Hat Club(1953)
Charlie Parker(as),Herbie Williams(tp),Rollins Griffith(p),Jimmy Woode(b),Marquis Foster(ds)

Here is Sonny Stitt plays “Tri-Horn Blooz” At The Hi-Hat In Boston“(1954)
Sonny Stitt (baritone,tenor,alto saxophones) Dean Earle (p) Bernie Griggs (b) Marquis Foster (ds)

Here is Miles Davis with The Hi-Hat All-Stars play “Hi-Hat Club”(February 1955).
Miles Davis (tp),Jay Migliori (ts),Al Walcott (p [out on -1]),Bob Freeman (p [on -1 only]),Jimmy Woode (b), Jimmy Zitano (ds)

The legendary bassist Jimmy Blanton(5)

December 17. 2016


While on tour with the Duke Ellington Orchestra in late 1941, Blanton became seriously ill.

Unfortunately he was diagnosed with tuberculosis.

In 1943 he moved to receive medical treatment Duarte Sanitarium, near Los Angeles.

He had no family there.

Jimmy Blanton passed away in Monrovia, California on July 30, 1942.

If he had not passed away in 1942, most musicians suppose that Blanton would have been at the forefront of the bebop movement.

I found an  invaluable photograph from a collected papers of Journal of Jazz Studies.


Journal of Jazz Studies (Winter 2014-2015) Of Icons and Iconography: Seeing Jimmie Blanton Matthias Heyman Blanton and Johnny Hodges, (photograph by Otto Hess, original appeared in Metronome, January 1941.Every effort has been made to identify and acknowledge the rightful owner of this photograph).

Here is Duke Ellington and His Famous Orchestra play “Jack The Bear”.

Ray Brown played the duo recordings such as reminiscent of Duke’s work with Jimmy Blanton three decades before.

Here is Duke Ellington and Ray Brown play “TRIBUTE TO JIMMY BLANTON ´72”.

The legendary bassist Jimmy Blanton(4)

December 16. 2016

album-duo-jimmyblanton-bassdukeellington-piano %e3%83%80%e3%82%a6%e3%83%b3%e3%83%ad%e3%83%bc%e3%83%89-2

Duke EllingtonとJimmy Blantonの歴史的な録音は6曲が残されています。



Today I want to post about a historical duo recording of Duke Ellington and Jimmy Blanton.

Jimmy Blanton had developed a new bass technique of playing lines that sounded more like a horn.

He played the greatest performance with Duke Ellington at duo recording.

Also he showed his musical identity and superb skill to the full.

They had recorded only six tunes at duo in RCA and Colombia Records.

RCA Victor Records
“Mr.J.B.Blues”,”Body And Soul”,”Pitter Panther Patter”,”Sophisticated Lady”.

CBS Colombia Records
“Plucked Again”,”Blues”.

Recently I found their historical recordings in “Internet Archive”.

Duke Ellington The Jimmy Blanton Era (1939-1941). Go here

In addition Even Japan we can hear their duo recordings in a free Spotify jukebox .(including another takes)

Here is Duke Ellington and Jimmy Blanton play “Mr.J.B.Blues”.

Here is Duke Ellington and Jimmy Blanton play “Pitter Panther Patter”.

Here is Duke Ellington and Jimmy Blanton play “Plucked Again”.

The legendary bassist Jimmy Blanton(3)

December 14. 2016


Today I want post about his distinguished performance.

Jimmy Blanton (1918-42) was a musical originator of modern jazz bass.

Blanton established the possibilities of using the bass as a melodic instrument.

Until then bass player had primarily engraved accurate rhythm.


Photo above of Slam Stewart

In swing era Slam Stewart was the first bassist to make the bass a solo vehicle for improvisation.

Jimmy Blanton took the bass to a new level.

He played a horn-like solos in duets with Duke Ellington.

Blanton had developed a new bass technique of playing lines that sounded more like a horn than like a bass.


I quoted from “The Swing Era by Gunther Schuller” (New York :Oxford. 1989)

“Most importantly, he was the first to develop the lone tone in pizzicato… Blanton maximized the natural resonance of the string by using as much of the fleshy length of the finger as possible—plucking the string with the finger parallel to the string”

When Duke Ellington first heard Blanton’s performance, Ellington was impressed with his advanced techniques.

Consequently an arrangement of Duke Ellington had been changed by his joining.

I think it is a case where an outstanding instrument player has evolved jazz.


Here is Duke Ellington and his members play “C Jam Blues”(1942).
Duke Ellington (p),Barney Bigard(cl),Sonny Greer(ds),Ray Nance (violin),’Tricky Sam’ Nanton(Tb),Rex Stewart(tp),Ben Webster(ts),Jimmy Blanton(b)

Here is Jimmy Blanton plays “Sepia Panorama”(his rare bass solo)

Here is Duke Ellington & Jimmy Blanton play “Jive Rhapsody”.


The legendary bassist Jimmy Blanton(2)

December 13. 2016


I will post about on the encounter between Jimmy Blanton and Duke Ellington.

I referred to “The Duke – Where and When”.

Jimmy Blanton was born  October 5, 1918 in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

He originally learned to play the violin, but took up the bass while at Tennessee State University.

In 1939 he was working in Fate Marable’s band in St.Louis.


Photo above of the Coronado Hotel(by Landmarks Association of St. Louis)

Fortunately he met Duke Ellington at  the session by chance.

Duke Ellington and his members were playing the Coronado Hotel in St.Louis.

He had playing with the band during Club Caprice between October 21 and November 2 in those days.


St. Louis Coronado Hotel Club Caprice Postcard from amazon.com

Duke Ellington and members bands were playing the Coronado Hotel in St.Louis.

Naturally Duke went back to the hotel to sleep, and all the musicians went to an after-hours session.

After the gig one night, Billy Strayhorn and Ben Webster and other members landed up in a hot spot. They jammed with a young bass player – Jimmy Blanton.

At once they went back and woke up Duke Ellington, and brought him to the session.

Duke decided to hire Jimmy on the spot.

He sent a telegram to his mother, time stamped 11:23 p.m. November 2,telling her he was leaving [St. Louis] next morning to join Duke Ellington’s band.


1939年、St.LouisのCoronado Hotelで公演していたDuke Ellingtonと偶然出会うことになった。10月21日から11月2日まで、彼は「クラブカプリス」のバンドで演奏していました。バンドのメンバーは地元のジャズメンが演奏している「クラブカプリス」に行きました。そして、その場で演奏している若いベースプレイヤーにびっくりしました。彼らはすぐにホテルで眠っているDuke Ellingtonを起こし、親分を連れ出しました。Dukeは迷うことなく(ベースが二人になることを承知で)、その場でJimmy Blantonを雇うことを決定しました。

Here is Duke Ellington & His Orchestra with Jimmy Blanton play “In A Mellow Tone”.

The legendary bassist Jimmy Blanton(1)

December 12. 2016


Photo above of Jimmy Blanton

Yesterday I took part in a regular meeting of  the Osaka jazz-lovers’ club at jazz cafe “DEARLORD”.

Mr.Nose who is an experienced jazz fun explained “Jazz in the 1940s” of this monthly theme.

He introduced my favorite record “Johnny Hodges / Rex Stewart – Things Ain’t What They Used To Be”,RCA Victor Vintage Series “LPV-533.


He selected four pieces of music from among this record,”Squaty Roo”,”Day Dream”,”Linger Awhile”“Mobile Bay”.

Jimmy Blanton accompanied on all four tunes.

Also I introduced  a legendary recording by Duke Ellington and Jimmy Blanton.


I selected two pieces of music from among “Transition Years” by CBS SONY,“Blues”,“Plucked Again”.

Jimmy Blanton’s superb performance I’ve heard for a long time.

So this week I want to post his great achievement.

Here is Johnny Hodges plays “Squatty roo”

Here is Johnny Hodges plays “Day dream”.

Here is Rex Stewart plays “Linger Awhile”.

大阪放出駅前にあるジャズ喫茶「DEARLORD」で開催された大阪ジャズ同好会に参加しました。今回の特集テーマは野瀬氏解説による「1940年代のジャズ」でした。野瀬氏が紹介したレコード「Johnny Hodges / Rex Stewart」のベーシストであったジミー・ブラントンは伝説のジャズメンです。今週はジミー・ブラントンの歴史的録音について投稿したいと思います。

Billy Taylor(2)

May 12.2016


I quoted precious interview from JazzWax.[April 06, 2009]

He listened many jazz records by Wallace Conway, who was his friend and lived nearby.

Wallace Conway’s father painted movie posters for all the black theaters in our neighborhood.

Wallace Conway’s father and Duke Ellington had gone to school together as art students when they were teenagers.


Therefore it seems that he became to like Duke Ellington.


His house was so close to famous ‘The Howard Theater’ in Washington, D.C.

He said:

”Many of the other big-name bands had come into the Howard once or twice before Duke came for the first time. So when he played there, it was a really big deal. His music was so different from everything else you heard. And everything about Duke was special. I remember standing outside and watching the guys in his band.’’

Fats Waller was his idols.

He deeply regretted not having talked to Fats Waller.

He said:

”As I’m standing backstage, Fats passed by with his entourage, and I just stared at him. I didn’t have nerve enough to say anything. […]
Fats went around the corner on U Street to a hamburger place. I came in soon after and took a seat as close as I could but far enough not to be noticed. I just sat and listen to him tell some stories. Then he and his group got up and left. And I hadn’t said a word. ”

Memories of Mr.Okada

December 22. 2015



IMG_1408 (4)

Toyoharu Okada died in August 8. He was famous as Ellington collector who was a senior of university jazz club.

He had been collecting records of Ellington from his university days.After graduating from university, he worked in the famous record store.

1971,he fulfilled his dream and opened a record store.[Record Shop Okada]

I have been to his store and learned a lot of things in relation to jazz.I received a valuable reference materials of jazz from Mr.Okada.
I was blessed to seniors.

It will showcase in this blog.

“Handwriting-list of Victor vintage jazz series”