Norman Granz' Jazz at the Philharmonic First British Tour 1958 008
Pages 12 and 13 of of the programme for Norman Granz's Jazz at the Philharmonic tour of Great Britain. A profile of Sonny Stitt is on page 12. A picture of the Oscar Peterson Trio and an advert for Melody Maker feature on page 13.
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THOUGH Bird has passed on, the spirit of the man and the sound of his music are alive today more than ever before. And the most outstanding exponent in Birdâs tradition is unquestionably Sonny Stitt. To quote arranger-composer, Quincy Jones: â He is one of the very few who is justified in playing with a parallel technique, feeling and conception. There are only a few ways of making the alto sound good. Bird and Sonny discovered the way.â
Edward â Sonny â Stitt was 34-years-old on February 2, 1958. Bom in Boston, Mass, his first gigs were on alto in the Detroit area and later in Newark, New Jersey. These were often with rhythm-and-blues bands, like that of Tiny Bradshaw. By early 1946, he began to be accepted by the New York hoppers and worked for the first time with Dizzy Gillespie. In 1947, he won Esquire magazinesâ New Star Award on alto.
About this time, the mental and social frustrations which went with the kind of jazz he believed in, played havoc with his health and Sonny was off the scene till 1949. On his return, Sonny switched from alto to tenor. The larger horn seemed to suit him even better. And stylistically he became the instigator of an important new, though Bird-based, approach to the tenor. Among todayâs outstanding new tenor men who have been influenced considerably by Stitt: Sonny Rollins, John Coltrane, Frank Foster and Jimmy Heath.
From â49ââ51, Sonny joined forces with Gene Ammons. Their empathetic tenor â battles â were some of the most stimulating and productive â duels â ever heard in jazz. Since then, he has toured the States with various-sized groups of his own. Lately, heâs been working as a singleâon alto, tenor and baritoneâwith the resident rhythm sections at the more important jazz rooms. This is his second J.A.T.P. tour and his first visit to Europe.
Unfortunately, only a few of his recent recordings are available here. I suggest you buy â For Musicians Only â (Columbia 33CX 10095), an emotional and technical tour-de-force by Stitt, Dizzy and Getz.
Here is a fantastic, dedicated jazzman who really knows his instrument. Who has tremendous chord knowledge who plays with warmth and soul and honesty and drive and immense emotion. Who has the power to lift you out of your seat and yourself with the irresistible force of his- incessantly swinging, soaring solos.
THE OSCAR PETERSON TRIO
was first introduced to Britain by the MELODY MAKER, in co-operation with Harold Fielding and Norman Granz, five years ago.
This is just another case to prove that the MELODY MAKER-The Worldâs Greatest Music Newspaperâ is itself an essential part of the jazz worldâyour world.
The MELODY MAKER is the newspaper of jazz. Make it your newspaper, too!
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