Day: July 1, 2007

Features and Commentary

Cuban Musicians Vanish from U.S. Venues

What’s happened? Where are they? Since the doors began to open in 1996, U.S. listeners have grown accustomed to seeing Cubans perform regularly, especially in Portland, where many of the best Cuban musicians have appeared before enthusiastic audiences. For a while, after the Buena Vista Social Club album and film, it seemed that a cultural […]

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Features and Commentary

Profile: Dave Storrs and Louie Records October, 1999

When I was learning to play music while growing up in Corvallis in the 60s, the closest I could get to jazz was my music teacher, Harvey Brooks, who led a dance band at the Elks Club. He’d take my clarinet to demonstrate a passage, and when he handed it back, the mouthpiece would taste […]

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Features and Commentary

Eddie Wied and Cleve Williams

Musicians played when friends and family laid Cleve Williams to rest June 1, 2007, at the Riverview Cemetery. It was a jazz funeral. Now, with the death of pianist Eddie Wied just 10 days later, another key figure from the heyday of modern jazz in Portland is gone. Both Williams, a trombonist and singer, and […]

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Features and Commentary

Profile: Dave Frishberg – August 2, 2000

Dave Frishberg never intended to be a singer. In fact, the singer/songwriter/pianist a four-time Grammy nominee for such clever vocal vignettes as Peel Me a Grape, My Attorney Bernie, I Can’t Take You Nowhere and Blizzard of Lies — earned a degree in journalism before he moved to New York in 1957 to become house […]

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Features and Commentary

Profile: Glen Moore – October, 2006

He arrives at his studio off Grand Avenue on a bicycle, carrying only a small bag. Glen Moore’s bass, made in 1715 and topped by a carved griffin’s head that towers seven feet above the floor, is waiting for him in Milan, Italy, where he’ll soon perform with the chamber jazz group, Oregon, which he […]

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Features and Commentary

Jazz de Opus Closes — September 2003

When callers phoned the Jazz de Opus in early August, they got a message saying the club was closed. Mixers Café had opened in its place. It appeared to be a sudden and unceremonious end for Portland’s oldest jazz club and the last remaining jazz venue in Old Town. Opened in 1972, it once hosted […]

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Features and Commentary

Jazz in times of peril

Jazz can teach us how to better cope and perhaps even triumph November 18, 2001   In the wake of terrorist attacks, Anthrax, and periodic warnings from government officials to prepare for more, Americans report continuing feelings of anxiety, uncertainty and fear. The economy is slowing and our sense of personal and national security has […]

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Features and Commentary

Lynn Darroch’s “Afterword” to Jumptown The Golden Years of Portland Jazz (1942-1957) by Robert Dietsche (Oregon State University Press, 2006)

Of course the story goes on. After the dust from the bulldozers had settled along Williams Avenue, after the clubs that sustained Portland’s golden age were replaced by freeway ramps and Emmanuel Hospital, the story of jazz went on. After the mid-60s, when the African-American community was fragmented by physical and social change, the story […]

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Features and Commentary

Profile: Lawson Inada September 2006

You’ve probably seen Lawson Inada’s poems, though you may not be aware of it.   Sure, I go to school Same as you, I’m an American.   Those lines, inscribed on a stone in the Japanese-American Historical Plaza in Portland’s Waterfront Park, capture the essence of Inada’s mission: to establish connections that bring us together […]

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Features and Commentary

Profile: Ron Steen to Jazz Society of Oregon Hall of Fame December, 2001

Deep in the heart of Portland’s jazz scene sits Ron Steen, behind his trap set, leading a jam session. A Portland native, he was brought up in the jazz tradition by supportive family and community members, in a culture that he has helped sustain. In the music he plays as well as the weekly jam […]

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