Top 50 JAzz Blog

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Jazz and Comedy, Part Two

The second in a series on my program The Duplex Mystery Jazz Hour on WZBC. The tough part about doing these shows is finding usable material for this time slot (6-7pm).  Many comedians-Richard Pryor, Redd Foxx, Moms Mabley and others-just don't have the same punch when they weren't "working blue." Still, there are laughs here and good sounds.

Red Rodney “Rhythm in a Riff”  (Fresh Sounds 1955)
Lenny Bruce “Marriage, Divorce and Motels”
Stan Getz “As I Live and Bop” (Classic 1946)
Patricia Barber “Gotcha” (Classic)
Nichols and May “A Little More Gauze” (Reprise)
Kurt Elling “The Very Thought of You” This Time its Love (Blue Note 1998)
Woody Allen “Standup on Jack Paar (1962)
Jack Teagarden “St James Infirmary” (1940)
George Carlin “Modern Man” 
Dick Gregory “Standup on Merv Griffin (1965)
Bennie Green “Rhumblues” from Go Ahead and Blow (Ocium 1954)

Friday, August 16, 2013

Guitars-Recorded and Live

In my 8.15.13 edition of the Duplex Mystery Jazz Hour, the first hour was given over to playing tunes with guitar players. The second hour featured a live performance with guitarist Jeff Platz, drummer John McClellan and, for one free improv, me (Steve Provizer) on trumpet.

Here is a recording of the first hour. The playlist is below.

Oscar Pettiford “Marcel the Furrier”  Vogue 1954

Bobby Broom “D's Blues” from Upper West Side Story  2011

Sandy Prager “Dopey Ted”from Figures of Speech Fo-Pa 1996

Geoff Bradfield “Central Avenue” from Melba  2013

Tuxedo Jazz Band “Eh-La-Bas” Verve 1954

Kenny Dorham “Hill's Edge” from Cafe Bohemia Blue Note 1956

Billie Holliday “I Got a Right to Sing the Blues” from Commodore Master Takes 1939

Matt Parker “New Bossa” from Two Worlds Get Together Bynk 2013

Count Basie “Fiesta in Blue” from classic collection Going for a Song 1942


Here is the second hour, featuring the live in-studio performance.

You can check out upcoming gigs for Jeff and John at and

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Bethlehem Records Program

When I did this show, I didn't know that a large re-issue program of the Bethlehem Records catalogue was planned, but there you go with your synchronicity. 

Have a listen.

Here's the playlist:

Chris Connor-Blue Silhouette
Conte Condoli-Tune For Tex
Howard McGhee-Tweedles
Joe Derise My Romance
Ruby Braff-Easy Living
Stu Williamson-Slugger
Francis Faye-They Can’t Take That Away From Me
Milt Hinton-Pic and Pat
Carmen McCrae- Easy To Love
Urbie Green-Mutation
Don Eliot-Summer Setting
Bobby Troup-Jamboree Jones
Red Mitchell-Kelly Green
Oscar Pettiford-Stardust           

Charlie Shavers-Ill Wind

Broadcast on the Duplex Mystery Jazz Hour, Thursday, August 1, 2013, on WZBC 90.3 FM; stream:

Friday, August 9, 2013

Boston Connections Radio Show

Here's the playlist from yesterday's Duplex Mystery Jazz Hour. You can hear the music here, along with occasional DJ riffing by me. Note: on next week's show, you will hear live music, with guitar player Jeff Platz, John McClellan on drums and myself sitting in on trumpet. You can catch their show at the Outpost 186 today, Friday, August 9. 

And don't forget to download the JazzBird app-gives you many choices for jazz programming 24 hours a day.

Sonny Stitt “Wee”
from Newport Tribute to Bird (Bluebird 1964)

TIger Okoshi “Yesterdays”
from 2 SIdes (JVC 1994)

Bobby Hackett “Everybody Loves My Baby”
from Jazz Ultimate (Capital 1957)

Joe Lovano “EMperor Jones”
from Symphonica (WDR 2008)

Herb Pomeroy “Porta Desks and Tuxedos”
from and His Stablemates (Freshsounds 1955)

Terri Lynn Carrington “Mosaic Triad”
from Mosaic (Concord 2011)

Serge Chaloff “Everything Happens To Me”
from BOston 1950 (Uptown 1950)

Orange then Blue “Orange was the color of her dress”
from Live (GM 1987)

Ruby Braff “They Can't Take That Away”
from Plays Gershwin (Concord 1974)

Chick COrea & Gary Burton “Can't We Be Friends”
from Hot House (Concord 2012)

Friday, August 2, 2013

Jazz Musicians Anonymous

The first step is to recognize you have a problem. Yes, you. Now, harken unto Herman's story below and it may not be too late.

Welcome to Jazz Musicians Anonymous. Please introduce yourself.

My name is Herman and I play the trumpet.

Good morning, Herman. Let's hear a little about the music of your childhood.

Well, most of the records my parents had were the usual thing-Broadway soundtracks, Mitch Miller, Mickey Katz. But there were others, too.

Such as?

Well, there was one by Lena Horne and one by Della Reese. 

What we call "gateway" records. 

Listening to them didn't seem that risky.

That's what they all say. What else?

There was also a-a-Miles Davis record.

Which one, Herman? It wasn't Kind of Blue, was it?

No. Live at the Blackhawk-Friday night.

The hard stuff. This is worse than I thought.

There was something about the whole mythology that was so seductive-not just the music, but the cover photo, the erudite liner notes. The whole thing gave me an incredible rush of freedom. I used to lie under the dining room table and listen to it over and over...

Alright Herman. No need to go down that gory road.
Have you ever tried to put down the horn? 

Yes. And my family and my neighbors were ecstatic. But after a few days, I said to myself "maybe if I just use a mute, and play for a few minutes when no one is home..." 

How'd that work out for you? 

My wife found bottles of valve oil hidden all over the house. There was an intervention and here I am.

Not a moment too soon. Next question: Have you ever tried to substitute another instrument and switch to another kind of music in hopes it would free you from your enslavement?

Yes. I dug a dusty harmonica out of my desk drawer and tried learning Shaky Horton licks. It didn't take. A week later, I gave it to a friend with a soul patch. Then, I couldn't stop myself, I picked up the horn again. I tried watering down the music; you know, practiced using the Idiot's Guide to Clifford Brown; tried sticking to the Arban book and practicing nothing but appoggiaturas and triple tonguing-but I still couldn't keep my mind off you-know-what. 

Pitiful. And then?

In three days I started sneaking peeks at my Berigan Modern Trumpet Studies. Then, I started copping Chet Baker solos...

All right, I get the sordid picture. Next question: What radio stations do you listen to?


The truth, please.

Alright! There are some days-Mondays suck, but Tuesday's just as bad-I can't get out of bed without 95.3.

Next question: Do you ping pong between jealousy and disdain when you listen to other trumpet players.

No, no, I can take 'em as they come.


Alright, you sadist. I admit it. My girlfriend won't go with me to concerts, anymore. She says she doesn't know whether it's worse to leave with someone smiling smugly or gnashing his teeth in fury.

I pity her. Do you ever have blackouts?

Unfortunately. There was a bleak period when I came under the sway of screamers like Maynard Ferguson, Cat Anderson and Bill Chase. I blew so hard the air in my lungs became compressed to the density of a medium-sized black hole. The back pressure made the veins in my forehead sprout like kudzu on a dead oak tree. More than once I woke up not even knowing if I'd finished my solo.

Thank you, Herman, for your honesty. We can imagine the rest: Increasing isolation from family and friends; radical mood shifts; explosive responses to muzak; paying nightclubs to play; long nights arguing with fellow addicts about Lee Morgan versus Freddie Hubbard. The whole sordid downward spiral. 

I realize now how far I fell. 
What happens now?

You'll need a sponsor-someone you can call in case it looks like the urge will get the better of you. Stan here will take over that job. Stan plays accordion...

But, Art Van Damme...

...In a polka band.


I want you to take home this little booklet and study it carefully. It contains all the stupid, misogynist things that Miles ever said. It should help break down your conditioning. 

FInally, you have to wear this electronic collar. It's been programmed to deliver an electronic shock every time it detects a II-V lick being played.

Seems a bit draconian.

Or would you rather we let the loan sharks get you for what you owe on mouthpieces?

No! I'll do it.

And remember, we'll be tracking your movements online. Any attempts to download Kenny Dorham transcriptions will be dealt with severely. Now, take this recording of "12 Steps to Heaven" and go in peace.

Cool. I love Horace SIlver's composition...

Forget it, pal. Your case is hopeless. Stan drop the net on him.