Tag Archives: Art Blakey


posted by Robert J. Carmack   #@blues2jazzguy

jazz saxophonist  Mel Martin and Herbie Hancock
Saxophonist Mel Martin and Herbie Hancock photo by Mel Martin Jazz Archives

Its the birthday of the very man who once thought he would never reach the the greatness of an Oscar Peterson or a Thelonius Monk. Now 75,looking 40ish is the jazz icon who has accomplished every possible music, presidential and international recognition & Lifetime Achievement Award there is.

For me, It began in 1964, I was 14 and studying saxophone in junior high and played in a youth Jazz big band sponsored by the late great Gerald Wilson in Los Angeles. MY DAD WAS STILL MY MAIN SOURCE FOR JAZZ ALBUMS. He brought home a Blue Note album that was all blue,it had a weird name on it” Empyrean Isles” by Herbie Hancock featuring a song I could not stop playing over and over, and over again.

Cantaloupe Island  was quite dominant on radio, I heard it everywhere, in the barber shops,cafe’s on Jukeboxes and car radios and jazz stations . It had an infectious beat and groove to it that swung with a new hipness , just enough commercial to attract AM radio and FM radio stations,But enough of the old school bop playing around that groove that spoke volumes of this new artist’s approach to composition and  improvisation.

I’d been a fan of H.H. since that first album bought by my dad, but,then I was beginning to purchase my own some 9 months later.That one album turned me on to all the fellow side-men and their careers too. Herbie+Hancock-inthe1970s I am most proud that a man of his standing is the Ambassador at Large for Jazz . On the International stage, its much needed, as we in the jazz community know, its not getting its due on the american front. we’re bickering over what is Jazz, what to call it, Europeans are claiming they really started jazz and deserve to proclaim its roots.(Lol)  Herbie also has recently come on-board as professor of music at UCLA , in addition, both he and long-time collaborator,Wayne Shorter are active board members of the Thelonius Monk Institute located on campus at University of Los Angeles. I look forward to whatever comes next for Herbie Hancock, even if its just a candle blowing event. Born April 12 1940 , in Chicago ,Illinois.  HAPPY BORN-DAY HERBIE!!


posted by #@blues2jazzguy       #jazzappreciationmonth

If You live in L.A. or, have lived in Los angeles for any length of time like myself, You would have seen, heard or experienced one of these guys or maybe all of them. One thing for sure,

Bobby DashikiI know all of them and they all are groove masters on their instruments.

Derf Reklaw, JMD(Darryl Moore),Don Littleton,Mr Taste (Thomas White) 

At Hipster Sanctuary.Com , part of our mission is to preserve the legacy and, acknowledge the “unsung musicians” who play this music with all their heart, soul and passion.

Let’s ALL Join Me and Hipster Sanctuary.Com in saluting and recognizing these “gentlemen of swing”. R.J.Carmack – Publisher/Editor in Chief                                                          Preserving the Legacy by “Any Medium Necessary”

Percussionist Derf Reklaw
Darryl Moore  JMD- Drums/ Recording Engineer/Educator
Darryl Moore JMD- Drums/ Recording Engineer/Educator
Don Littleton  Drummer/Percussionist
Don Littleton Drummer/Percussionist & bandleader with
MR. Taste!   Thomas White  Drums  celebrating 20 years with the Dale Fielder Quartet
MR. Taste! Thomas White Drums celebrating 20 years with the Dale Fielder Quartet
Mr Taste- congratulations on 20 years with DFQ
Mr Taste- congratulations on 20 years with DFQ


posted by Robert J. Carmack #@blues2jazzguy jazzapprmonthlogo_vertical

african drummer w tiger outfit
Photo by Robert J. Carmack Drumming Circle- Leimert Park Village , LA Calif.

Hipster Sanctuary.Com is promising some excellent coverage of Jazz in April and International Jazz Day

Coming April 1st !


All month we will be celebrating Jazz and The people that keep it going, especially The Drummers!  Stay Tuned! Follow us Today

SPECIAL EVENT by Hipster Sanctuary.Com

Celebrating 17 years  of covering and extending the Legacy.

DFQ is Celebrating 20 years as a Jazz Group

SATURDAY APRIL 18  7-9 pm   $15 admission at door



Jazz and spoken word performances

SATURDAY APRIL 18 2015 7pm to 9pm
$15 admission (at door only) Limited Seating

bobby w shades and black undershirt
Robert J. Carmack journalist,producer,writer, actor, poet, music archivist


Dale fielder  sax orange shirt
Dale Fielder, Band leader, musician, ethnomusicologist,producer and educator


EDITORIAL by Eric WATTREE  #wattreechronicles  #blues2jazzguy

dexter gordon Black white

As most people in Los Angeles know, the powers that be are in the process of gentrifying Leimert Park much like they’re doing in Harlem, New York. But what many in the community fail to realize is when they pave over communities, they pave over Black history as well. That’s why we have to have a “Black History Month” to recall the contributions that Black people have made to this nation. That shouldn’t be necessary. Black history should be alive all around us seven days a week and throughout the year. Our children should be drenched in it on a daily basis just like White kids.

Washington, D.C. is called Washington, and nearly every street, town, city, and state in this country are named as they are so we’ll be completely immersed in White history. And the fact that those names don’t reflect who we are as Black people is one of the reasons that Black history is so obscure and many of our Black children lack self-esteem. We’ve got to change that. For that reason, I suggest that we mount a campaign to change the name of “Leimert Park” to “Dexter Gordon Park.”

DexterGordonvery large pix
Leimert Park is renown all over the world for being Los Angeles’ principle center of Black art, so before this gentrification takes place, it should be renamed to reflect that reality, and no artist is more deserving, or more perfectly suited for the honor of having Leimert renamed after him than Saxophonist, Dexter Gordon. Dexter, along with drummer Billy Higgins (who played with Dexter), are two of the greatest artists that Los Angeles has ever produced – in fact, two of the greatest artists who’s ever lived. They disseminated Jazz (America’s greatest Art form) all over the world, and they’ve brought our city great notority and recognition as a mecca for genius, beauty, and excellence all around the globe. But due to the tradition of racism inherent to American society, these two great men are recognized virtually everywhere in the world EXCEPT right here in the United States. Elvis has been memorialized, so why not Dexter, and why not Billy? Thus, we shouldn’t just sit quietly back and allow the contributions to humanity of these two artistic giants to be paved over by American history – especially here in Los Angeles.
If we have to fight, so be it. We’ve failed to do that in the past. That’s why the average Black person doesn’t know that the only reason the world can read this message over their computer is because of the brilliance of Dr. Mark Dean, a Black man, who was one of the principle inventors of the personal computer, or Henry T. Sampson, who invented the gamma-electric cell, making cell phones possible. These two Black men have had a pronounced impact on the lives of every person in the civilized world. Our children should know that, because that is a part of their legacy, and they should know about Dexter Gordon and Billy Higgins as well.

billy-higgins color pix -thumb
I was in Leimert Park the other night, and it made my eyes moist just witnessing the beauty of our people at their best, and at their most artistic. It’s a wonderful thing to see Black people coming together in celebration of who we are, and we should protect that, so we should make Billy Higgins’ “World Stage” a historic landmark, and place statues of both Dexter and Billy in the park itself in recognition of who they WERE, and who we ARE. And we shouldn’t stop there. We should continue on to rename the streets in and around Leimert Park after major contributors to our culture. For example, Vernon Ave., between Alameda and Crenshaw, should be renamed “Dubois Ave,” and Degnan, between the park and 43rd Street, renamed “Eric Dolphy Dr.” Because we are what we think, and that will help our young people, and posterity, to understand our legacy, and our significance as a people.
We always complain about White supremacy, but we never do those things that are necessary to dismantle it, and in order to begin to dismantle it, we MUST do things like this in recognition of the excellence within our community and to bring a sense of pride to our young people. We must leave no stone unturned to make it impossible for us to be depicted as a frivolous people without a past. We’ve got to wake up and get on top of these sort of things – if not for ourselves, for the love of our children, because they too will become what they think.
Neither scholar nor the head of state,
The most common of men seems to be my fate;
A life blistered with struggle and constant need,
As my legacy to man I bequeath my seed.
More fertile, more sturdy these ones than I,
This withered old vine left fallow and dry;
The nectar of their roots lie dormant still,
But through their fruit, I’ll be revealed.
So let us take a moment to think beyond the moment, and think of the dignity and self-esteem of Black children who are yet unborn, just as Dex, and many others, thought about you.

follow Eric Wattree on this Blog for Editorials, & “Beneath the Spin ” Jazz series

Eric Wattree


posted by Robert J. Carmack  #blues2jazzguy Howard McGhee (born: March 6, 1918 in Tulsa, Oklahoma –  Died:July 17, 1987 in New York City) was one of the first bebop jazz trumpeters, together with Dizzy Gillespie, Fats Navarro and Idrees Sulieman. He was known for his fast fingers and very high notes. What is generally not known is the influence that he had on younger hard bop trumpeters, together with Fats Navarro.

howard-mcghee-and-miles-Davis 1947
Howard McGhee playing at the Hi-Dee-Ho Club in Los Angeles 1947, Miles Davis looking on

Howard McGhee was raised in Detroit, Michigan. During his career, he played in bands led by Lionel Hampton, Andy Kirk, Count Basie and Charlie Barnet. He was in a club listening to the radio when he first heard Parker and was one of the early adopters of the new style, a fact that was disapproved by older musicians like Kid Ory. (Thelonious Monk and Howard McGhee, Minton’s Playhouse, ca. September 1947) In 1946–47, some record sessions for the new label Dial were organized at Hollywood with Charlie Parker and the Howard McGhee combo. The first was held on July 29, 1946. The musicians were Charlie Parker (as), Howard McGhee (tp), Jimmy Bunn (p), Bob Kesterson (b), and Roy Porter (d). The titles played were “Max is Making Wax”, “Lover Man”, “The Gypsy” and “Be-bop”. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6EhnFlWAFg


posted by Robert J. Carmack  #blues2jazzguy

Happy Birthday Bobby Hutcherson!
Jazz vibraphone and marimba player, Maestro    Born: January 27, 1941 (age 74), Los Angeles, CA ♡

Bobby Hutcherson in suit  color pix

Bobby hutcherson 2 color in vest


Bobby Hutcherson  B:w

Bobby Hutcherson in sweater


Trombonist ADAMS  RIP

CLIFFORD ADAMS (62)  has died from liver cancer. The Trenton, New Jersey-native was perhaps most widely appreciated as a longstanding member of Kool & The Gang Band (playing the now classic solo on their 1983 crossover hit, “Joanna”). Adams was also a seasoned jazz player who began his recording career with organist Charles Earland and later played with giants that include Max Roach, Lou Donaldson, Art Blakey, Sonny Rollins, Sonny Stitt, Richard “Groove” Holmes, Roy Haynes and Clark Terry, among others. as we salute  and say good bye to him we also offer our prayers to his family



Free For All: Blakey’s Hardest Hard Bop – By Carl Glatzel

This isn’t just jazz, it’s war. On February 10, 1964 Art Blakey enlisted the aid of a special ops unit for this trailblazing mission. This edition of the Jazz Messengers was the quintessential hard bop lineup and the perfect team for the job. The frontline was a heavily-armed triple threat consisting of Freddie Hubbard on trumpet, Wayne Shorter on tenor sax and Curtis Fuller on trombone. Cedar Walton on piano, Reggie Workman on bass and Art Blakey on drums brought up the rear and had the near impossible task of grounding this tour de force.

Blakey was a well-known beast on the skins – infamously destroying drum kits on stage – and was relentless on the Shorter-penned title track, which opens the album. There’s no slow build here, it’s an all-out assault from the word go. Blakey pounds away with everything at his disposal while the frontline crashes through the gate as if charging a bunker amid heavy shelling. With Blakey’s detonations blasting all around, each horn takes an extended solo while weaving through their fearless leader’s tumult. After a glorious 11-minute show of bravado from all parties the finale ends with a classic example of Blakey’s pure adrenal rush on the kit – a thunderous roar followed by a single hit on the hi-hat and then peaceful silence. An outright classic and well worth the price of admission.
By this outing, Shorter was at the very top of his creative game and shortly after he would be on his way to joining the fabled Miles Davis Quintet as its principal composer. On this album we have two great works by Shorter – displaying his versatile style in all its glory. The second track, “Hammer Head”,  another Shorter original, is cooler than the bombastic opener and moves with a well-defined swagger. This is classic Blakey material where his famous press rolls and shouts introduce soloists who take the floor with commanding flair.
The third track, “The Core”, is a Hubbard original and another cooker. This piece is a great example of Hubbard’s writing ability and another great showcase for the raw power behind this seamless unit. I’ve always been of mind that Hubbard played to his full creative potential as a sideman at Blue Note rather than session leader. His outings on both the Atlantic and CTI labels in the late 60s and early 70s have always been go-to listening to these ears.
The last track, a Clare Fischer composition, will throw you for a loop. Suddenly, and most dramatically, a truce is called and “Pensativa” is the white flag. This laid-back bossa tune would be right at home on a Hank Mobley album of the same period. It clocks in at just under 8 and a half minutes and is a sheer joy to listen to. We finally hear the bright, clarion call of Hubbard’s pristine trumpet and Blakey’s effortless timekeeping. “Pensativa” balances out this amazing album to create a truly unique recording – one which rewards fans with new insights upon repeated listening.
Big John Patton’s “Understanding” Misunderstood
By Carl Glatzel
I’ll usually reference Allmusic.com as a litmus test for unfamiliar recordings. I’m glad I went with my gut when I found a 1995 Blue Note re-issue of Big John Patton’s “Understanding” at a local used book store. If I had gone with the All Music critic’s opinion I would have avoided it like the plague and tossed it aside. For the uninitiated, Patton is an organist who came to prominence on the Blue Note label in the early 60s. He was known for his economical, modern approach and inspired, bluesy solos. One of the few organists of the era to dodge the Jimmy Smith comparison.
After outputting a handful of releases with label regulars, Grant Green and Lou Donaldson, he ventured off into some uncharted territory. The 1968 release “Understanding” is not truly a dramatic departure but it does house some free playing by saxophonist Harold Alexander and that is what Allmusic took issue with. It’s stated to somehow interrupt the groove and comes across as disjointed and out of place. Perhaps to the untrained ear or to a listener not familiar with or accustomed to the unorthodox sounds of Pharaoh Sanders or the other artists from the Impulse! New Thing stable. Alexander’s playing is by no means that of Peter Brotzman or a young Gato Barbieri. To these ears it comes off as more to do with exuberance, where the spirit of the session takes the helm. “Understanding” still defaults to a soul jazz category and it’s easy to dismiss free (or freer) playing in this arena, but one listen to this vibrant interplay and you’ll fall into the groove and won’t want to leave. Patton is at the top of his game and his bandmates push him to his swinging limit. The trio is rounded off by Hugh Walker on drums who gives his all – keeping a steady, turbulent backbeat under the soulful wailing laid down by Patton and Alexander. This is music to drive to, you’ll want to be moving and moving quickly at that.
Right from the opener “Ding Dong” you know exactly where you stand – this is some heavy-duty soul and these players aren’t about to let up. Each player builds on one another, throughout the album, adding more fuel to the fire and keeping things interesting. Patton proves he’s not afraid to go out on a limb with a loose cannon like Alexander, whose raw sound on sax churns an already boiling pot. The addition of Walker on drums is a great move – adding a stout backbone to help ground the saxophonist’s free-range musings. Patton is spot on, as usual, with economic solos and signature basslines. And it’s Patton’s near-hypnotic bottom end that adds the sense of forward motion to each track, undulating deep down under Walker’s rock-steady drumming, and showcasing the album’s true groove. 
This album certainly isn’t the soul jazz of previous years – dare I say – in some ways it’s even better. It’s now time to go out and find this holy grail of groove. And when you do, you’ll want to turn up your
hi-fi and tune out the naysayers.       
Carl Glatzel is a Jazz Blogger, Creative Arts Director – creative direction, art direction, design and advertising, copy-writing for print and interactive media including advertising campaigns, corporate branding, identity, web sites, marketing collateral, exhibits, packaging and direct mail. 

Jazz Friends


posted by   Robert J. Carmack      #@blues2jazzguy

leemorgan Gigolo
Lee Morgan  Musician,Composer and Bandleader
b. July 10, 1938 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
d. February 19, 1972 in New York City, New York Jazz trumpeter, mainly associated with hard bop, known for his work with Dizzy Gillespie, John Coltrane, and Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers, as well as his 1963 album The Sidewinder. He was fatally shot in 1972.
Whenever this date of July 10 rolls around , I get a very special feeling and need to go hear some powerful trumpet playing to personally commemorate the legacy of Lee Morgan. Unfortunately, I’m unable to hear anyone that comes near or even a reasonable facsimile.
For the last 40 years since his death, IMHO, its been almost as if trumpet players  danced around the proverbial “first chair” left vacant and caused by a jealous woman’s bullet at a jazz club in New York .
My first introduction to Lee Morgan was the Sidewinder in 1964 as a budding musician listening to my Dad’s records trying to emulate what I heard on the 33 1 /3  LP records we played on the home stereo record player. I can hear that funky bass line intro even now, as  I’m writing this piece. The title track “Sidewinder” came last on the recording session, as witnessed  and told by bassist Bob Cranshaw  on a filmed interview about Blue Note Records. He went on to say they were at a  stand-still in the recording session, Lee went to the bathroom, and while he was gone, he came up with the finished part of the untitled cut. They went ahead with the final recording ,capturing all of the tenacity, swag, artistry and the ancestors blessings on what later became the biggest Jazz hit of all times.  Even being placed in a “Buick” automobile commercial in the 1964 World Series. Lee was on the “Jazz Map” and Blue Note was ready to step in and take full advantage by bringing him in on a bevy of  recording sessions between 1964 and 1972 up to his death .
1964’s Search for the New Land another of my favorites by Lee Morgan. It signaled a change  in directions musically to a modal approach and away from the bebop changes with heavy chords that bound the soloists. He appeared to be moving into  a style of some of the young lions of the late 60s and early 70s  the likes of Saxophonist, Billy Harper,  his writing set-off a new  “Inside/out ” sound with Croquet Ballet, Capra Black and multi-reed man Benny Maupin’s  Neophilia, bringing back into the jazz idiom, the Bass Clarinet as a solo instrument.  Spawned from Morgan’s last two albums recorded before his  demise in 1972.   Lee Morgan – a double album released in 1972 ,just prior to his death and another double album project recorded live at the famous LA Jazz spot, The Lighthouse. Released in 1971 after recording in Summer 1970.  Both  are stellar recordings with quite different personnel.
Philly Swagg  Lee Morgan
Philly Swagg Lee Morgan
I hope if you have not listened to Lee Morgan before , you give it a try.. You will become a fan for life. There is a lifetime of Lee Morgan music and stories to boot!  visit the Blue Note catalog or google his name for his many sideman recordings also.especially the Jazz Messengers with Art Blakey.
I also recommend reading the story about the death of Lee Morgan in book form..