Saturday, February 13, 2016

Lighthouse All-Stars: Live In The Solo Spotlight

© -  Steven A. Cerra - copyright protected; all rights reserved.


By the end of 1952 Howard Rumsey had transformed a small local bar in Hermosa Beach, California into a name known around the world. The Lighthouse became the centerpiece of the West Coast Jazz scene and the Lighthouse All-Stars became international jazz celebrities. Situated just a few yards from the beach with the cool ocean breeze and the smell of salt water in the air, it was the picture perfect setting for what would become known as "West Coast Jazz." But that wasn't always the case.


In 1949 when Howard first came upon the Lighthouse there wasn't anything about it that would foresee its future success. It was small and dingy, primarily catering to a rough merchant seaman crowd and it was close to going out of business.


Howard suggested to owner John Levine that he try putting on a Jazz jam session on Sunday afternoons. The Lighthouse had been having live music with a variety of local musicians but it hadn't made much of an impact, plus in 1949 it was universally accepted that Sunday was the worst day of the week for the liquor business.


Luckily, Levine was a gambler and figured he didn't have anything to lose at that point, so on May 29,1949. Howard presented his first Sunday session at the Lighthouse and recalled "We propped open the doors and started blasting and within an hour we had more people in the place than Levine had seen all week."

The success of that first Sunday established the weekly Sunday Jam Session policy and became a tradition that helped catapult the Lighthouse into its role as the center of West Coast Jazz.


Over the next couple of years Howard was able to replace the merchant seaman crowd with college age kids coming in off the beach to hear the live jazz and Sundays continued to be the featured attraction. The sessions started in the afternoon and ran until 2 in the morning. The Lighthouse All-Stars served as the core group with different guest musicians sitting in each week. The guest artists ran the gamut from local up and coming artists to established stars including big name out of town visitors.


Fortunately for fans of Jazz on the West Coast and for posterity, Bob Andrews and Donald Dean, two local Jazz devotees, frequented the Lighthouse with their tape recorders and some of what they recorded has been issued on CD under the auspices of the Los Angeles Jazz Institute headed up by Ken Poston.


The sound quality varies from track to track and while not professional recordings they are extremely important historical documents of those Sundays in Hermosa Beach. All of the recordings are previously unissued. You can locate more information about the LA Jazz Institute and its CD reissue program by visiting its website at: www.lajazzinstitute.org.


The audio for the following video features Maid in Mexico one such Sunday Jam Session track which was recorded on 9/13/1953 by Chet Baker(tp), Rolf Ericsson(tp), Bud Shank(as), Jimmy Giuffre(ts), Russ Freeman(p), Howard Rumsey(b) Max Roach (dr). Solo Order: Giuffre, Baker, Shank, Ericson, and Freeman.


This recording took place during the infamous "Crazy Sunday" and is one of the tunes played that day that has remained unissued until this point. Crazy Sunday is often remembered because of the presence of both Miles Davis and Chet Baker and the fact that an almost bewildering number of musicians showed up at the club that day.


Bbut it also marked the debut of the "new" Lighthouse All-Stars which included Bud Shank, Bob Cooper (there since the early days but now a regular), Rolf Ericsson, Claude Williamson and Max Roach. Maid In Mexico features the new All-Stars with three guests: Chet Baker, Jimmy Giuffre (no longer a regular) and Russ Freeman.




Thursday, February 11, 2016

Louis Armstrong: Views of "Pops" By 7 Jazz Trumpeters

© -  Steven A. Cerra - copyright protected; all rights reserved.


“Genius is the transfiguring agent. Nothing else can explain Louis Armstrong's ascendancy. He had no formal training, yet he alchemized the cabaret music of an outcast minority into an art that has expanded in ever-widening orbits for sixty-five years, with no sign of collapse. He played trumpet against the rules, and so new rules were written to acknowledge his standards. His voice was so harsh and grating that even black bandleaders were at first loath to let him use it, yet he became one of the most beloved and influential singers of all time.


He was born with dark skin in a country where dark-skinned people were considered less than human and, with an ineffable radiance that transcends the power of art, forced millions of whites to reconsider their values. He came from “the bottom of the well, one step from hell," as one observer put it, but he died a millionaire in a modest home among working-class people. He was a jazz artist and a pop star who succeeded in theater and on records, in movies and on television.


Yet until he died, he traveled in an unheated bus, playing one-nighters around the country, zigzagging around the world, demanding his due but never asking for special favors. He was an easy touch and is thought to have handed out hundreds of thousands of dollars to countless people down on their luck. Powerful persons, including royalty and the Pope, forgave him a measure of irreverence that would have been unthinkable coming from anyone else. Admirers describe him as a philosopher, a wise man, someone who knew all the secrets of how to live. …


But few people knew him well, and many of those who were most possessive about his art were offended by his popularity. The standard line about Armstrong throughout his career, rendered in James Lincoln Collier's 1983 biography, goes like this: Louis Armstrong was a superb artist in his early years, the exemplar of jazz improvisation, until fame forced him to compromise, at which point he became an entertainer, repeating himself and indulging a taste for low humor. …


A jazz aesthetics incapable of embracing Louis Armstrong whole is unworthy of him, and of the American style of music making that he, more than any other individual, engendered.”
- Gary Giddins, Satchmo


The editorial staff at JazzProfiles can’t get enough of “Pops” on these pages. The above quotations from Gary Giddins’ superb biography of Louis Armstrong and the following feature excerpted from the January 8, 1959 issue of Down Beat magazine are intended to add more archival materials to the blog about an artist of whom it can truly be said - “No him, no Jazz.”


“In the world of jazz, Louis Armstrong is more than king.


He is a living legend and a symbol of the music.


To gauge his influence, and to obtain a new perspective on him, Down Beat gathered opinion and recollection from seven top brassmen from all areas of jazz.

Assembled around the Down Beat roundtable are veteran cornetist Rex Stewart; trumpeter-arranger Quincy Jones; lyrical cornetist Bobby Hackett; modern trumpeter Art Farmer; the melodic Ruby Braff; trumpeter-bandleader Maynard Ferguson; and trumpeter, major influence on the horn, and close friend of Armstrong's, Dizzy Gillespie.


Gillespie: "The first time I ever heard Louis was in 1935, at Fay's theater, Philadelphia. I must have been about 17. My brother-in-law was a fan of his, but I wasn't too interested in him. I liked Roy [Eldridge]. I got to admit I was impressed. I don't think I had heard him on records before that. Records were scarce at home."


Hackett: "I remember listening to Louis' records as a kid in Providence. I've never been the same since. I was just starting to fool around with the horn. The first time I heard him live was at the Metropolitan theater in Boston. We went up on the bus and stayed the whole day. He used to close the show with a spiel for the musicians in the audience. He tell us he was going to hit 400 high Cs, and he'd do it. He'd end up on a high F."


Jones: "Louis' was one of the first name bands I ever saw. That was in Bremerton, Wash., and I was about 14 or 15. I remember I was in the high school band, and I sneaked in the back door of the dance carrying my baritone horn. He wasn't so much of a legend then as he is now. And I guess I hadn't read the book on him."


Stewart: "I first heard him on records. It was in 1923 or 24 when I first heard him. What did I do? I flipped! I'm not sure what the tune was, maybe it was Mabel's Dream."


Braff: "When I was a little kid, I used to listen to the 920 Club on the radio in Boston. One guy would play 15 minutes of records by an artist. That's where I first heard him. In person, the first time was at Mahogany Hall, downstairs from Storyville."


Farmer: "I guess I first heard Louis about 1948, in person. On records, I'd heard him a lot earlier."


Ferguson: "I was about 13 when I first saw Armstrong. He came to Montreal with a big band, and played in the auditorium that's now the Bellview Casino. I had heard him on records prior to that. My mother bought me his theme song, Sleepy Time Down South, and I also had Struttin' With Some Barbecue."


At this point, everyone agreed on the scope of Louis' influence.


Braff: "He influenced everyone's playing. Lester Young . . . everyone.”


Farmer: "His playing was an influence on mine, but not directly. It's like hearing someone who plays good, and who makes you want to get the most out of your horn."


Ferguson: "I never really had one hero, but quite a few of them. Louis was one. I felt he enjoyed what he was doing more than the others."


Stewart: "He's an influence on everyone who plays a horn. He definitely influenced my playing. I think most in the conception. He taught the world how trumpet should be played."


Jones: "At first, I think he did influence me. For the first few years, anyway, in things like attack and the living part of his playing. But this was just before the era when it became hip to be cool . . . about 1948. Right after that, I went over to Diz."


Gillespie: "Louis' playing influenced mine in a roundabout way, through Roy. Roy got a lot from Louis' conception, and I got a lot from him."


Hackett: "His playing influenced everybody. His conception, his ideas . . . everything. To me, he's the perfect hot trumpet player."


There was less general agreement on Armstrong's biggest contribution to jazz.


Hackett: "I think it's his performance. He's been heard all over the world, and he has influenced anyone who is interested in music."


Gillespie: "His music is his biggest contribution, for my personal taste."


Jones: "I wish I had been around more. I'd like to have been around 45 years and be about 16 years old now. But I'd say Louis biggest contribution is that he was first. He wrote the book on trumpet. There's a lot of things in his playing that you've got to respect today."


Farmer: "Louis' contribution, I think, has been that he was really playing horn at a time when not many people were doing it. He was a good instrumentalist; one of the first and one of the greatest. And he started something . . ."


Stewart: "Well, I'd say his biggest contribution was getting me the job with Fletcher Henderson. Seriously, I really feel that without his influence, I couldn't imagine what trumpet   playing   would be like. He showed there was more range than high  C, and more  drive  than  the syncopation used before him. He did so many things.”


Ferguson: "Since Louis is associated with the word, jazz; he has made the public conscious of jazz. That shouldn't be ignored or put down. People love Louis. He's the hot jazz trumpeter off the river boat. He has a very beloved name."


Braff: "His biggest contribution was in just being. He happens to be the mother and father of music. And he's more important than Bach."


As it must in every conversation about Armstrong, the subject soon becomes a treasured performance. Sometimes it's a record. Sometimes it's an in-person appearance.


But always it's a memory to be relished for trumpet men.


Ferguson: "I guess I like Struttin' With Some Barbecue because the band is out of tune and raggedy, but Armstrong is carrying the whole thing, and he's wailing."


Stewart: "My favorite is Hotter Than That. Fireworks! And that came from the period I enjoyed him most in."


Farmer: "I can't right now think of the name of the tune, but it was made around 1927, and I always liked it because it sounded contemporary as far as his line of melody and his sound was concerned."


Jones: "I was in Hamp's band, and we were playing opposite Louis in Washington, D.C. This was in 1952. The song was Indiana, and Louis just amazed me. He played high G’s, and he was just smoking. I like his record of Chinatown, and, of course, West End Blues."


Gillespie: "I like the way Louis sings. I like his record of that French tune, C'est Si Bon. He reminds me of a conversationalist singing. He sort of talks in different ranges. It sounds like he's talking to me. Now, that's the way I'd like to sing . . . if I could sing. That phrasing, like the way I talk ... I'd like to sing that way. Louis sings the way he talks."


Hackett: "I just like everything he touches. Struttin' with Some Barbecue on Decca . . . the things with Luis Russell's band ... for vocals, I like If Could Be With You.


Braff: "For me, there's no such thing as a favorite performance by Louis. Anything with his name on it, that's all. The only things that make them weak are, maybe, the other people on them. But he always played the greatest with the weakest and corniest background. It's as if he can turn off the band he's with. He seems to be constantly playing with another band. I wish I could hear that band!"


Our round-tablers dig Armstrong for more than his music. Many are personal friends, with whom Armstrong has had good times off-stand as well as on.


Hackett: "I think he's just about the greatest guy who ever lived. When he's in town, I go over to his house and we sit around and talk about a hundred things. There's another wonderful thing about him that nobody knows. He's a very generous person. He gives to a lot of charities. And he likes to help people, and not exploit them."


Gillespie: "Louis is not two-faced. He's one of the most sincere people you'll find. You always know what he thinks. He doesn't bite his tongue, although sometimes he puts his foot in his mouth. But he's honest. That's the quality I admire in him."


Stewart: 'I'd like to say I feel Louis truly was the direct turning point . . . the reason for this wonderful music. He was the creator, the innovator, and at the same time one who gave the world much more than he received."


Jones: "He has been one of the most original figures ever on the scene. He's been a very strong voice in jazz."


Braff: "That cat is loved all over the world. And better than any of the political leaders.""

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Chesky Records 2015 Yearly Review

The editorial staff at JazzProfiles receives loads of information about new releases, both self-produced and commercially released by a record company. Over the past twenty years, one label that it has been consistently impressed with in terms of the quality of the music it issues is Chesky Records.

Here is an overview of what Chesky was up to in 2015.

For a look at what's ahead, please visit the label directly at www.chesky.com.



 News
  Chesky Records Yearly Review and Preview




                                              
TAKE A LOOK BACK AT CHESKY'S 2015 RELEASES

IF YOU WOULD LIKE PROMO COPIES FOR PRESS OR RADIO, PLEASE CONTACT JEFF@CHESKY.COM

FROM THE MOUNTAINTOP
The New Appalachians
Folk / Bluegrass

Billboard Top 15 Bluegrass Album

Featuring a full seventeen songs whose history can be traced back decades or even centuries through the Appalachian region, From The Mountaintop, and renowned Cellist, Dave Eggar, assemble an all-star cast of musicians set to treat your ears and transport you to the Appalachian region of years long passed.

"If you're a fan of this type of traditional music (and I very much am), From The Mountaintop is a must-hear album, and perhaps my favorite album of the year. The Binaural+ capture is like being there." - Jude Mansilla, Head-Fi

"A long-overdue contribution to this important genre. My highest recommendation for both musical content and for the quality of the production." - David Robinson, Positive Feedback
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INTERPLAY
Mark Sherman and Kenny Barron
Jazz

This stellar inter-generational collaboration between vibraphonist Mark Sherman and National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master Kenny Barron, showcases their remarkable interplay on nine well-chosen standards and two originals. “Kenny’s harmonic sense and just the way he serves the music is at the highest level,” says Sherman. “I was transcribing Kenny Barron solos when I was 16, 17 years old, so you can imagine how much it means to me to be recording with him.”

"A great meeting between jazz piano legend Kenny Barron and the younger, brilliant vibes player Mark Sherman – Barron being a veteran of top notch duo settings, and Sherman newer to it – but Sherman succeeds here mightily! Interplay couldn't be a more fitting title, as the pair are perfectly simpatico – working together on a range of material and a lone Barron original, it's wonderful from track-to-track – feeling like one of the coziest, strongest late night jazz club sessions you'd ever be lucky enough to see. Includes nice takes on the tried-and-true "Afternoon In Paris", "Dear Old Stockholm" and "Indian Summer", the Barron composed waltz "Venture Within", Dexter Gordon's "Cheese Cake", the Charles Mingus gem "Orange Was The Color Of Her Dress, Then Blue Silk", "Polka Dots And Moonbeams", "Without A Song" and more."  ~ Dusty Groove, Jazz Chill Music

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PRIMAL SCREAM 
David Chesky and
Jazz in the New Harmonic
Jazz


Once again pianist/composer David Chesky courts a dark muse on this second outing by his Jazz in the New Harmonic quintet. The noirish atmosphere prevails from his first dissonant stabs at the keyboard on the opener, “Check Point Charlie”, to the final moody strains of the closer, “Sleepless in New York”. This is a different kind of cool jazz, one that grooves along steadily. Featuring Billy Drummond on drums, Javon Jackson on tenor sax and clarinet, Jeremy Pelt on trumpet and Peter Washington on bass. Close your eyes and you can fell a fundamental groove-and-riff formula that is not unlike what Eddie Harris was putting down on “Listen Here” or Herbie Hancock on “Cantaloupe Island”.

Four Star Review: "This is a cool, calm and collected set, dry as a martini and nearly as subtle." - John McDonough, Downbeat

"...that steady-strolling groove and the overall lack of pretension and unncessary flamboyance keep things centered, resulting in music that suggests an almost zen-like contemplation on the dialectic between control and freedom." - David Whiteis, JazzTimes
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IN AN AMBIENT WAY
POWERHOUSE
Jazz

POWERHOUSE is a jazz super group that set its sights on interpreting Miles Davis’ groundbreaking album In A Silent Way using modern recording technology and sonic textures as a contribution to the improvisation. Not only is the texture of the room taken into consideration for the choice of music, but also the prime placement of each instrument within the matrix of the captured sound, all of which added to the input of inspiration that makes the music more alive and interactive.


Featuring: Wallace Roney (trumpet), Bob Belden (soprano sax & flute), Oz Noy (guitar), Kevin Hays (Fender Rhodes), Daryl Johns (bass) & Lenny White (drums)

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DUNNUN KAN
Mangue Sylla and
The All-Star Drummers of Guinea
World


Dynamic percussionist Mangue Sylla returns to his West African roots, first visited on his 2007 debut recording Kon Koura. The Guinea native’s traditional drumming style showcases his profound mastery of the country’s distinctive percussive instruments: the sangban, doundoun, and djembe. Dunnun Kanis rich with the great strides made by Sylla in the eight years since releasing Kon Koura; his playing is more masterful and electrifying than ever before, yet he still delivers the familiar history and rich stories of his native Guinea, drumming like an artful archivist.

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JOY and SORROW
David Chesky
Classical

While in Poland attending the performances of his opera The Mice War at the Krakow Opera, David Chesky and conductor Yaniv Segal took a life changing trip to Auschwitz and Birkenau. Emotionally shaken by the experience, David wanted to create works not only depicting the sorrows of the death camps, but the joys and celebrations that encompass all aspects of Jewish life. David took the Eastern European musical language of Klezmer and used it as the building blocks to construct these modern Jewish works for The Chelsea Symphony featuring soloists Artur Kaganovskiy (violin), Ethan Herschenfeld (bass), Moran Katz (clarinet), and Kristina Reiko Cooper (cello).

"Among discs of Chesky's music, this one is a winner, and, as one would expect from this label, the engineering is superb, featuring binaural recording technology."   Raymond Tuttle, Fanfare Magazine

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TEARS AND RUMBA
Xiomara Laugart
Latin


On her third for Chesky Records, Xiomara Laugart steps up to the plate with her own distinctive style to interpret some Cuban classics from the golden era of the 1920s.Tears and Rumba is a fine introduction to the singer-songwriter’s driven trova style from the city of Santiago and features works by two extremely influential composers of that era, Maria Teresa Vera and Miguel Matamoros. Laugart grew up listening and singing these tunes with her father, who encouraged her to sing starting at the age of five. “We heard these songs on the radio and everybody listened to the radio then,” she said of her Havana childhood.  As the title of the record suggests the songs that Laugart interprets so elegantly range from the moody trova style standards like Vera’s  “Ausencia” to the danceable son montuno of Matamoros’ “La Mujer de Antonio.” The heart wrenching lyrics of “Ausencia” speak about a love that will never be. Mixed with Yunior Terry’s stirring acoustic bass, they will have you sobbing in your mojito. But not to worry, Laugart, who has been influenced by Chaka Khan as much as by Vera and Matamoros, will have everyone packing the dance floor in a New York minute with her swinging versions of “La Mujer de Antonio” and “Nadie Se Salva de la Rumba,” made popular again during the 1980s by Celia Cruz.

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YOU'RE SURROUNDED
Various Artists
Misc.


Dr Chesky says......"Is it possible to hear an all natural 360 degree soundstage with just headphones and no artificial processing?"
The answer is maybe. It depends on a few things. Everyone's ear pinnas are different, just like your fingerprints. In other words, people that have pinnas that closely match our B & K Binaural human shaped head microphone’s "ears" will hear the most precise and immersive sound field; those whose pinnas don't match exactly will still hear an immersive soundfield. We have recorded a great selection of music and tests to demonstrate that it is possible to be enveloped in a 360 degree soundfield with just a pair of headphones, without any ARTIFICIAL processing or additives, just all natural 100 percent organic Binaural. Of course, all headphones sound different and the immersion may vary, depending on the design of the headphone, and how it matches your pinnas. So if you have the chance, try listening with different full-size headphones as well as in-ear headphones. We wish you great listening.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Julian "Cannonball" Adderley - The Barbara Gardner Interview

© -  Steven A. Cerra - copyright protected; all rights reserved.


In the following interview, Cannonball brings out some interesting expectations on the part of Jazz club owners and patrons about the “working conditions” of the times.


When I first started playing Jazz clubs, the first set began at 9:00 PM and the last set ended at 2:00 PM because the venues had as their prime focus - not the music - but the selling of booze.


Musician owned clubs like Shelly’s Manne Hole and Ronnie Scott’s in London, may have been exceptions to this rule, at least initially, but for the most part, the emphasis was not on the music or on the welfare of the musicians.


Under the circumstances, as Cannonball points out, there was simply no way that any musician could maintain a high level of creativity.


At the time of this its publication in the October 15, 1959 edition of Down Beat magazine Barbara Gardner was described as follows in the About the Writer insert:


“Barbara Gardner is a young Chicago writer who was born in Black Mountain, N. C. She was educated at Talladega College in Alabama, where she took a double major — English literature with a journalism minor, and education with a sociology minor.


In 1954 she moved to Chicago. She has an almost encyclopedic knowledge of jazz musicians. "I don't know how it happened. I just seemed to meet them all the time," she says. "And of course I was intensely interested in the music ever since I can remember."


Julian and Nat Adderley are her good personal friends, which adds an extra element of insight to her article on the gifted alto saxophonist. This is her first appearance in DOWN BEAT.”


“Jazz is currently enjoying — or suffering through — the most controversial era in its comparatively short history.


Great armed camps stand against each other. They are for or against traditionalism, modernism, progressivism, and even criticism. When critic meets writer, or Loyal Swing Fan meets Progressive True Believer, the blue tonalities and augmented chords are sure to fly until one camp has slashed the other sharply on its B-flat, and heaven help the bystanding neutral music lover who is audacious enough to intervene.


Underneath this furor, the musicians, of course, quietly go on about the business they feel is urgently important — the creation of music. But the critics and fans, not satisfied with dissecting the various "schools" and classes of jazz, have by now turned to taking apart individual performances. Here, the crisis shows itself — often in the form of open hostility as the jazzman loses patience at being scrutinized to determine whether he is a creator or an imitator, a miracle or a mirage.


Since 1955, one musician has been the object of this kind of examination and cross-examination perhaps more than any other. Wherever musicians or fans gather to discuss modern American music, his name crops up again and again. Dismissed hotly by some as unprogressive or acclaimed fervently for rugged individualism, "Cannonball" is fired into the debate. Here, say his admirers, is the man to be reckoned with as the leading altoist today.


The advent of Gannonball Adderley on the jazz scene was as instantaneous and forceful as his name might seem to suggest. If no one can remember his struggles for recognition in the cold and unexcitable city of New York, it is because he never struggled. His musical acceptance, achieved without effort, goes counter to all the accepted legends about heartbroken, unrecognized genius. He has, of course, worked consistently and hard. He has worked always in jazz, and with the greatest musicians. But his efforts did not go unrewarded; when he arrived in New York, he sat in one night with a group of name musicians in Greenwich Village — and was instantly recognized as a remarkable talent.


Yet the nickname "Cannonball" was not acquired as a symbol of the way he struck New York, bowling everyone over. Actually, it dates back to his high school days. His schoolmates, searching for a term that most aptly described his mammoth appetite, came up with "Cannibal." Time and the American propensity for word corruption gradually twisted this into "Cannonball."


Born simply Julian Edwin Adderley in Tampa, Fla., Cannon represented a talent always inherent in the Adderley clan. His father, Julian F, Adderley, was a noted jazz cornetist who presumed from the start that one of his two sons would play the same horn he did. But Cannon was not to be the one. After dabbling briefly with trumpet in high school, he turned to alto saxophone when he was 14, and it was left to his younger brother, Nat, to become the second famous cornetist in the Adderley family.


Cannon and Nat were something of a musical phenomenon in Tampa. Prior to their studies of instruments, the brothers were a temporary sensation as boy sopranos.
Nor was music the only area in which Julian's precociousness revealed itself. Academically, he skimmed along at a rapid pace, graduating from grammar school at 10, from high school at 15, and from Florida A&M. College at 18. At 19, an age when many adolescents are still going through preliminary bouts with the electric shaver, he was music instructor and band director of Dillard High School in Fort Lauderdale.


He grew up fast in every way. This was wartime and, he recalls, "we didn't have any adolescence. I was a fast young musician with plenty of money in my pockets, the men were away at war, and the boys were left around to fill in until they came back."


By this time, Cannonball had been working for three years in local nightclubs and on weekend gigs. Even when he began teaching, lie took advantage of every possible opportunity to blow his horn in the free musical atmosphere of jazz bands and combos.


But his dual existence continued. He went on teaching at Dillard High, and his students were fortunate in having an instructor who was proficient on trumpet, flute, clarinet, tenor saxophone, and, of course, alto. But the bright lights and dreams of fame and fortune continued to pull at him.


His indecision was temporarily settled for him in 1952: he was drafted. Yet, even in the service, his singlemindedness toward music never faltered. He led both a small combo and a big band. And meantime, he was creating a strong impression on jazz musicians who heretofore had never heard of the youthful terror of Tampa. One of them was Clark Terry. Later, Terry was to bring Cannon to the attention of one of the leading recording firms.


When he was at last separated from the army, Cannon went for a time to the U.S. Naval School in Washington, D. C., to study reed instruments. Then, in 1954, he went back to Florida, determined to wipe the bright lights out of his eyes and resume teaching.


But by now the pull toward jazz was too strong. And in the summer of 1955, the Southland lost another of its sons to the glamour of that self-appointed jazz mecca of the world, New York. Cannon arrived in Manhattan at the same time as his brother Nat, who had just left the Lionel Hampton band. He lost no time making his presence known. A stroke of luck helped.



The night after his arrival, tenor saxophonist Jerome Richardson, then with Oscar Pettiford, was late for work at Greenwich Village's Cafe Bohemia. At the urging of musicians who had heard "of" Cannonball, Pettiford — with some reservations - allowed the young man from Tampa to sit in. The musicians' trick of "wasting" the newcomer by playing a difficult arrangement was tried on Adderley.


The musicians were astounded at the outcome of the trick, which is as old as jazz. Cannon romped through the rapid ensemble segment of I’ll Remember April, then established his authority with a long, well-executed solo. By the end of the night, there was no doubt about it. the Tampa Cannonball was in — a welcome soulbrother.


This dramatic impact on the musicians of New York was remarkably parallel to that of Cannon's major source of inspiration, the late Charlie Parker, who came to the big city in the late 1930s, after considerable woodshedding, and astounded musicians and critics alike with his fantastic mastery of his instrument. This parallel, however, taken with the fact that Cannon plays alto with the finely developed sense of timing, the well-defined beat and the flowing melodic sense that had been the stamp of Bird for more than a decade, helped form the only cloud over his career: critics and writers pitted him time after time against Parker in their comparisons.


The musicians' grapevine, second only to the housewife's back fence as a high-speed conveyor of information, spread the word about the new arrival from Florida. Within days, on the strength of this reputation, Cannon was on his way. Arranger Quincy Jones and Cannon's army buddy, Clark Terry, had brought the altoist's prowess to the attention of EmArcy Records. He was signed to a contract.


For a time, he continued to work with Oscar Pettiford. Later, he formed his own group, featuring brother Nat. But it was in 1958 that he began one of the associations for which he is best known: he joined the Miles Davis quintet for the Jazz for Moderns tour. He remained with Miles until last month, and became in the interim friend, business manager, and mediator to the gifted and individualistic trumpeter.


Miles' temperament is, of course, legend in the music business. A complex, seemingly contradictory man whom many persons find difficult to deal with, he is the subject of much talk and speculation. Cannon bristles if the subject is raised.
"I don't understand what all this is concerning Miles," he said. "Miles is just what he has always been. He doesn't try to be the way he is because he is a famous musician. He would be the same type of person if he were a truck driver. He is just
himself, and he doesn't feel that he has to conform for the sake of conformity."


The question of Miles" personality cannot, however, be dismissed that easily. For one thing, there is the observation that Billy Taylor recently made during a Blindfold Test (Down Beat, Sept. 3). "I have been interested," Taylor told Leonard Feather, "in Miles' effect on his side men; how, for instance, he changed Cannonball's way of playing and his approach to music . . . "


There are indications that Miles also had an effect on Cannon's personality, though the changes are subtle. Miles has the rare ability to impose not only some of his approach to music but also some of his personality on his men. Thus, while Cannon is by nature a warm, gregarious individual, he seems to have acquired, in a superficial way, some of the forthright sharpness that is an innate and natural trait in Miles.


Thus it will be seen that the decision to leaves Miles' group is a decisive one for the alto man. He retains a tremendous respect for the trumpeter as a creative force in music and, consciously or unconsciously, uses Miles as his norm in discussing other groups or individual performers.


The effects of Miles obviously were not in the main bad. For Cannonball is currently enjoying a steadily rising appreciation among critics, musicians, and the lay public.


After having been named in almost every leading poll in this country, and mentioned repeatedly in European voting, he capped it this year by winning the poll that many authorities think is the significant one: the International Jazz Critics' Poll conducted by Down Beat. He walked off with the New Star plaque for alto.


Cannon shares with many musicians the paradoxical position of denouncing all polls for their serious omissions and inconsistencies while at the same time admitting that he has long hoped to win one.


"Yes, I'm very proud to be a winner in this poll," he confessed self consciously.
"Everybody wants to feel that people are accepting their work." Then, as if he needed a more practical justification for his pleasure, he added: "Then, too, the polls represent your popularity, really, and your drawing power. When the public is aware of you, you can command better conditions for your efforts."


The "better conditions" would surely include an improvement in the working conditions in nightclubs where, he feels, there is little room  for creative playing. And that, after all, is what Cannonball is after.


"The nights are just too long in most places," he said. "And the conditions generally are bad — small crowded stages and poor sound systems.


"After the first couple of sets, there isn't too much happening in the way of real creativity. You can't just turn talent on and off all night for six or seven hours. They expect you to get up there and create something new seven times a night. "It just isn't possible.”


Now 31 years old, Julian Adderley is a tall man whose heavy build makes him an imposing figure. He has been on a diet of late, and has cut his weight from 300 pounds to a less cumbersome if not exactly svelte 230.


An articulate and extremely well-informed conversationalist, he has a disconcerting habit of spicing his speech with short, earthy expletives traditionally thought appropriate to the conversation of sailors. Of this profanity, he says: "Once in awhile, when you're among friends, you like to let your hair down and just tell it as it is."


Still a bachelor, Cannon thinks that maybe he'll settle down "in about five years." Meantime, he says, "I don't have time for permanent entanglements. When I do, all this travelling and nonsense is going to stop.


"I don't have any definite philosophy of living. I am just beginning to get things straightened out in my own mind. But I do believe that a person has a responsibility to do whatever makes him happy. Nowadays, you can't always take time to reason — or regret what is past.


"You just have to live each day for what it's worth."


He reflected a moment, then went on. "I've seen so many people in this business who just couldn't get their minds together because of worrying whether they should or should not do something. Sometimes they worry about what people are going to think of their actions.


"If you are going to worry, then you shouldn't do a thing in the first place."


For the present, Cannonball has his work and his challenge cut out for him. The departure from Miles gave him the chance to do what he had never really stopped thinking about: setting up another group featuring brother Nat. After touring as stars of the Newport Jazz Festival concert tour, Cannon and Nat hit the circuit Sept. 21 in Philadelphia.


As he and Nat prepared to go out with the group, he was noticeably excited about the chances, about the possibility of finding that new sound that musicians are always seeking.


He was aware, of course, that uncertainty is a stark reality of the jazz world. The artist is never allowed to relax on his laurels and be carried along on the wings of deeds remembered. There is no time allotted or assistance given to those who have been so indiscreet as to fall from favor. They have to step quickly and quietly out of the path as the procession moves resolutely on.


Vivid examples of such tragedies are plentiful in the history of jazz. But there is a possibility that the new generation of jazzmen, of which Cannon is a part, has learned a lesson from its less fortunate predecessors.


"This is a funny business" said Cannonball, summarizing his attitude to music and to his new group. "One day you're right up there on top, and the next day you can't find a job.


"I want to be protected against that kind of future."