THE JAZZ WORD

All that's jazz... and more

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On 29April 1960 Thelonious Monk and Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers took to the stage for a sell out show at London’s Festival Hall on the south bank of the Thames. This  was Monk’s first appearance in the UK. With top ticket prices at £1 it seems remarkably inexpensive, but the average weekly wage back then was under £19 per week.

According to The Guardian newspaper, “Monk’s appearance on the stage maintained his reputation for eccentricity, a soft cap perched on his head, a tweed suit that appeared to have travelled from New York the hard way, and brogues that had that Brand X look. At intervals he meandered slightly loopily around the stage while his bassist, John Orr, pounded away at chordal progressions on another planet”

“But all this was small beer for those who cannot take anything stronger. The fact is that once Monk had got to work at the keyboard he revealed himself as still a profound creative talent. He does not take his jazz the easy way. Each note is apparently considered, weighed, analysed and then reluctantly committed to the audience. It does not make for easy listening, but why should it?”

The Jazz Messengers at this time were, Lee Morgan (trumpet) Wayne Shorter (tenor saxophone) Bobby Timmons (piano) Jymie Merritt (bass) and of course Art Blakey (drums).

We cannot find any Monk in London from 1960 but this was on the BBC in 1965

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Now This is What You Call a Gig!

19th February, 2014
posted in: Gig Posters Image

Now This is What You Call a Gig!

It was 1966…Pharaoh Sanders and Albert Ayler were also there playing with Coltrane’s group

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telescoper March 5th at 1:35pm

Reblogged this on In the Dark and commented:
No time for a proper post today, but I couldn't resist reblogging this advertisement for what must have been an amazing concert with an amazing lineup; so amazing that Pharoah Sanders and Albert Ayler, who were also there, didn't even make it onto the poster!

Jazz at the Philharmonic, March 1953

16th February, 2014
posted in: Gig Posters Image

Jazz at the Philharmonic, March 1953

‘Ella Fitzgerald remained the local favourite but Oscar Peterson has now been accorded a niche alongside her.’ – Billboard review of the Copenhagen concert.

This was the second JATP tour of Europe and Norman Granz promoted his own shows in Germany and Switzerland, which increased the money he made, but it also meant he took the risk. JATP grossed $100,000 in thirty-one cities and fifty concerts. However the tour was not without its problems. After the Malmö concert at the end of February, bad weather forced the cancellation of the party’s flight and they had to take a bus and ferry. It was noticeable that after this experience, Scandinavian dates were set later in the year to avoid the worst of the winter weather.

Included in the thirty-one cities were Copenhagen, Oslo, Stockholm, Uppsala, Malmö, Hamburg, Amsterdam, Brussels, Zurich, Geneva, Lausanne, Frankfurt, Rome, Paris and London.

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