Harold Johnson Sextet Recaptures Magic In Reunion Concert


posted by blues2jazzguy    Robert J. Carmack

Harold Johnson Sextet Reunion Jan.14, 2016

Harold Johnson Sextet Reunion Jan.14 2016 photos by Leonard Olive

Recently at the jazz club Catalina’s in Hollywood California, a crowd of fans, former schoolmates, neighbors, teachers all came together for a reunion concert by The Harold Johnson Sextet. Johnson is an accomplished producer,writer and arranger whose Jazz group kicked off their early music careers with a “hit album” right out the gate in House on Elm Street released in 1967..the album was not only popular in Los Angeles which is Harold’s native city,but it enjoyed heavy rotation on Jazz and soul radio stations all over California and beyond.

The Reunion concert was an idea spawned from the latest CD released by Harold Johnson Sextet entitled, “Back on Elm Street” Reunion, featuring some of the original members of the band . David Crawford on Flute, and hit-songwriter,producer and highly sought after drummer, Leon Ndugu Chanceler.

Rounding out the Reunion band’s personnel ; Munyungo Jackson Percussionist, Welton Gite Bass, Gemi Taylor Guitar, The Vincent Sisters vocals and Olivia Reese vocals.

There was a particular buzz in the room as the swelling audience began to feel the electricity of the evening that was building as the show’s Master of Ceremonies, Robert J. Carmack , founder and editor of Hipster Sanctuary.Com began to warm up the audience with a little welcome cheer.

After the introduction of Harold Johnson ,the bandleader appeared alone on stage at the piano and began the evening’s festivities with a gospel-tinged solo composition, Pass It On. Johnson then started into another fanfare piece as he brought on-stage each member of the band and vocalists. Upon the first few notes the audience recognized the popular and finger-poppin’ melody of House on Elm Street title-track with original member David Crawford lit into swirling trills,grace-notes and sweet arpeggios on Flute. Crawford’s solo was followed up by the leader Harold Johnson on Electric piano. Over 40 of Harold Johnson’s songs have been recorded by major hit-makers over the years like LTD, Diana Ross, Stephanie Mills, Dennis Edwards,Thelma Houston,Jeffrey Osbourne, OJays,Temptations and many more.

Bobby and Mike Dolphin

L-R. L.A. Central Ave. Jazz Festival Producer-Michael Dolphin, Hipster Sanctuary.Com Founder/Editor, Mike Shead – Jazz Enthusiast  photos by Emmett Williams

We were entertained with a trip down memory lane of jazz and R&B songs from the many hits he wrote for other artists. He also introduced us to cuts from the new CD, BACK ON ELM STREET REUNION, “Main Squeeze” and “Til’ We Meet Again”. In addition to a reunion of band mates were local school alumni who attended school with Harold Johnson or his band personnel.

 HJ Sextet member ,David Crawford- Flute with fellow Centennial High Alums

HJ Sextet member ,David Crawford- Flute with fellow Centennial High Alums

I spoke with Johnson about future projects plans and actions, he mentioned that He’s already in motion for a “Back On Elm Street Reunion Volume 2. we can hardly wait.

Harold Johnson NOW  at the Board

Harold Johnson at Studio

 

 

 

 

David-Crawford

David Crawford

gemi-taylor-NOW 01

Gemi Taylor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ndugu-3

Ndugu Chanceler

 

Welton Gite NOW

Welton Gite Bass

 

wozny.com

Darryl “Munyungo” Jackson

 

 

For More information or you want to purchase go to http://www.cdbaby.com and search

Harold Johnson Sextet-Back On Elm Street Reunion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GROOVIN’ ON ELM STREET…AGAIN ~ THE HAROLD JOHNSON SEXTET


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_WGIq9EuK4I

posted by Robert J. Carmack    #blues2jazzguy

When this writer was a very young kid he use to watch these old black and white movies with Mickey Rooney where the friends all wanted to get the band together and do shows. Years later, Now in high school he performs in talent shows and weekend  parties. He meets others like him who are talented and want to pursue their dreams of reaching their music and entertainment goals.

Harold Johnson is one of those people who dreamed about one day making it in the entertainment. While most of us teenagers was chasing girls around the campus or showing off on the athletic field, Harold Johnson and a close-knit group of guys were huddled up “talking sharps and flats” in the music room. Then on weekends they would jam at each other’s parent’s den or garages , trying to get tight so they could get a gig. the “Ultimate”  for any budding young musician.

harold Johnson album pix 2015

Harold Johnson

Along the way there were great music teachers and people of influence, one such person that taught young Harold was the late Jazz Crusaders piano, Joe Sample…apparently Joe taught him well… about theory, performance and production, including the “Business” part of the music world.

harold Johnson quintet

 

In the middle of the “Motown Era” circa 1966 a group of high students got together with a mature 16-year-old Harold. They secured the funds to go into the studio, and come out with a Hot product(“Sorry ‘Bout That“) which began to pick up traction on the local radio scene. Along with live concerts at the high schools,community centers and anywhere they could get a crowd and play, soon a large record label(REVUE) came along and  pushed out an album that commanded  major air-time. Even the major jazz and soul stations played the 45.

It was heard at college stations, high schools, on Juke boxes in cafes, barber shops, there were few places you didn’t hear House on Elm Street. Even Cats from the Nam‘ had heard about it and shared the music overseas . I was lucky enough to see them live at the beginning of their musical journey…I was in the Centennial High School Band with one of the members, David Crawford, Flute , who at that time already had “Hubert Laws/Herbie Mann skills” reputation around campus ala the very talent rich school shows in the mid-1960s. members of recording band were Jimmy Nash on Bass,Alfred Patterson Alto sax,Eddie Synigal Alto sax, Mike Shaw Tenor sax,Ronald Rutledge Drums,Billy Jackson Congos/percussion, David Crawford Flute, and Harold Johnson leader/Piano.

The hot album , House On Elm Street released in 1967, made Harold very popular on his high school campus at Washington High School in Los Angeles. while being another school chock full of talented student musicians  (Darryl”Munyungo” Jackson, Nate Morgan). By the second album, Everyone Loves a Winner, some new players joined the group or recorded with Harold , a very young Leon “NDUGU” Chanceler, drums, Vibes with Larry Nash,(brother of Jimmy Nash).

Harold sextet love a winner

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Currently,Harold T. Johnson Sr. is an accomplished Producer, Writer and Arranger. He’s a California State University Dominguez Hills Graduate, with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Music Education. Also a Gold Album recipient for Thelma Houston’s “Anyway You Like It” Album and the 5th Dimension “Star Dancing” Album and Platinum Album recipient for the Temptations Christmas Classic “Give Love At Christmas.” Major hits writer for LTD  Concentrate on You & Atlantic Starr  “Get Closer (than Close) just to name a couple.

While a Producer, Writer and Arranger: Over forty of Harold’s songs were recorded by Artists such as Diana Ross, Marvin Gaye, Stanley Turrentine, Devastating Affair, Smokey Robinson, Sylvester, Nate Dogg, Harold Johnson II, Natalia Johnson, Stephanie Mills, Olivia Reese, Liz Mc Comb, Jerry Butler, 21st Creation, Three Ounces Of Love, Dennis Edwards, Z.Z. Hill, Thelma Houston, Tata Vega, Michael Wycoff, Atlantic Starr, Rockie Robbins, Gloria Gaynor, LTD and Jeffrey Osbourne, The OJAYS, The Temptations and more.

Harold Johnson NOW  at the Board

 

 

 

Through-out his illustrious career as “industry-behind-the-scenes” legend, He also worked as an educator inside the LA Unified School district. Capturing a NAACP image award nomination for a Musical-2005 ~ “At the Lincoln”

After 50 years as a professional entertainer,producer,arranger & musician.. He’s still hungry for new music and creating new songs, but his real passion is now “pastoring” his own flock at his church,just as his father did before him..Bravo Harold T. .Bravo!!

Catch Harold Johnson & Friends at Catalina’s Bar & Grill.
Harold JOHNSON Sextet & Company “Back On Elm Street Reunion” w/ Harold Johnson(keys, vocalist & writer)
Feat: David Crawford(flute), Ndugu Chanceler(drums), Welton Gite(bass),, Munyungo Jackson(percussions), Gemi Taylor(guitar), Rickey Woodard(saxophone),  vocals by Deborah White, Joyce Wilson, Pamela Vincent & Olivia Reese

Thursday, Jan 14, 2016 8:30 PM

Catalina Bar & Grill, Hollywood, CA.

6725 West Sunset Blvd.
Hollywood California 90028
Phone: (323) 466-2210
(one block EAST of Highland Ave.)
ENTRANCE on McCadden

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SPIRIT OF CAL TJADER:SOUL SAUCE LATIN JAZZ BAND


“SUPPORT LIVE JAZZ..MUSIC NEVER SLEEPS”

HIPSTER  SANCTUARY

 

SOUL SAUCE LIVE !!

SOUL SAUCE LIVE !!

posted by  Robert J. Carmack   #blues2jazzguy

Many years have passed since Cal Tjader made his transition, but his loyal fan base and new fans of this genre can not get enough of that sound. One group in Los Angeles is doing their part in keeping the legacy of latin jazz brightly illuminated, and Cal Tjader’s spirit alive and honored . SOUL SAUCE!  The Long Beach California Jazz establishment, Seabird Lounge.  They’ve been presenting top shelf jazz for quite some time now in the Southern Californian area. Soul Sauce is “in-residence” for the month of January at the Seabird Lounge in Long Beach until further notice.Concerts are Free at the door , 5PM music starts each Sunday afternoon.  Say Hello to Don Littleton and the Fellas This Sunday at 5PM ..

Don Littleton NOW Soul Sauce Logo

THE DUKE OF GROOVE: HAPPY BIRTHDAY GEORGE DUKE


© hansspeekenbrink.nl All rights reserved

© hansspeekenbrink.nl
All rights reserved

posted by Robert J. Carmack              #blues2jazzguy

George Duke was a musical innovator, creator, and mentor to so many. His legacy as a recording artist is vast, from Cannonball Adderly to Jean-Luc Ponty, Frank Zappa to Michael Jackson, to over 40 recordings as a solo artist. Simply put, George forever changed the landscape of jazz, r&b, funk, pop and classical music.

George Duke (January 12, 1946 – August 5, 2013)


posted by Robert J. Carmack      blues2jazzguy

Nick Caldwell Whispers NOW 2

Nick Caldwell songwriter/composer

One of the Original members of the R&B group,The Whispers has passed at the age of 71. The cause of death are not totally clear as Caldwell was facing  several life threatening  challenges as recently as part of  last year , when he went on the record and wrote an open letter to his public and fans about his bout with Congestive Heart Failure and was optimistic about some alternative medical procedures that would elongate his life.

Some fans were treated toward the last of 2015 with actually seeing Nick as he was called by friends and fans alike perform with the group, The Whispers. In speaking to a close friend today, who had just spoke to Nick as recently as New Years eve, said, “We talked for a longtime on the phone and he gave me the impression he was feeling good and was looking forward to more shows in the near future. No indication that there was  new setbacks. Four days later, Nicholas Caldwell, 71, passes on to the great jam session with Natalie Cole and the rest in the sky.

Always the one all the ladies would whisper about in the audiences , Nick’s outgoing personality  and suave and sophisticated moves on stage set the group apart from their contemporaries, which Nicholas was charged with that responsibilty to keep the group moving and grooving. In addition to choreography, Caldwell also wrote a lot of the Whispers classic songs, centered around love and romance. This writer who saw them from the very beginning of their recording career in 1964 with Dore records as a Teenager. The Whispers were a favorite at the Hunter Hancock (local DJ) Record Hops. Hancock was one of most popular R&B soul DJ in Los Angeles at Radio station KGFJ.

NICK CALDWELL Whispers

Nick from 70s/80s

NIcholas Caldwell was born and bred in Los Angeles, when Walter & Scotty (Twins) met him. They were competing against each other at teen record hops in Watts (now called South Central Los Angeles) and at Jordan High school which he attended with other members , Marcus Huston, The Two twins and the other original member Gordy Harmon was much older, but lived in Watts close to Jordan Downs projects gymnasium.  It served as the early “gig spot” for the budding group The Whispers. Formed in L.A. in the early 1960s, the Whispers certainly took a “slow and steady” career course in which they have quietly become one of the most successful modern soul groups. Consisting of twin brothers Walter and Wallace (Scotty) Scott, Nicholas Caldwell, Marcus Hutson and Leaveil Degree (who replaced departing member Gordy Harmon in 1973), the Whispers first recorded for local LA label Dore Records, hitting the pop and R&B charts with “Seems Like I Gotta Do Wrong” in 1970.

Nick with Whispers 3 NOWThey continued to be a mid level charting act throughout the 70s on the Don Cornelius/Dick Griffey “Soul Train” label but gained momentum toward the end of the decade when Griffey, who was their manager, created his own SOLAR label and worked with the group on their SOLAR debut album Headlights, which scored a moderate with “Olivia.”

 

 

 

 

 

R&B SOUL GROUP THE WHISPERS NICHOLAS CALDWELL DEAD AT 71

MULTI-AWARD WINNING SINGER NATALIE COLE SUCCUMBS AT 65


posted by blues2jazzguy   Natalie Cole 2007

Singer-songwriter Natalie Cole, daughter of world renown crooner, Nat King Cole. She’s best known for her Grammy Award-winning album Inseparable. Natalie Cole was born in Los Angeles,California on February 6, 1950, to singers Nat “King” Cole and Maria Cole. After battling life’s trials/tribulations and poor health in latter years, Natalie Maria Cole,65 has passed due to Congestive Heart Failure.

Natalie Now striped dress colored

 

“REST IN LOVING PEACE SWEET NATALIE,  WE LOVED EVERY MINUTE WE HAD WITH YOU”  

ROBERT “HIPSTER” CARMACK 

 

Nat and young Natalie  circa late 1950s

Nat and young Natalie circa late 1950s

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Cole Family

The Cole Family

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Natalie Cole  Black and White

photo by Earnest Gregory