Jazz Stories

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Adventures of the Red Arrow (Red Rodney)

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Jazz Stories

beatniks

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Charles Lloyd

Preview   I’m a wild yogi, insists Charles Lloyd. I checked out all the excesses. The saxophonist, who reached the peak of fame and fortune in the late 60s with his million-selling album, Forest Flower: Live at Monterey, and appearances before ecstatic youth around the world, is explaining what made him the man he is […]

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Walking on Water — A Meditation on Older Brothers

“Think about it,” Charles Lloyd was telling me. “We showed up in Stockholm and there were these big blonde girls all over us then you go down to the Fillmore the same kind of stuff going on . then you get a few gold coins the money men dangle stuff in front of you . […]

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Silt

I used to live in a lion’s skin. I was never afraid. With a heavy tool box and hands with bruises and scabs, I worked as a carpenter then, battering 2x4s and plywood, breathing cigarettes and sawdust.I floated high over mud and cement in my lion’s skin, gliding up rafters, nails flying, up the ladder […]

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Rouse at Rest — Charlie Rouse in Oregon

When Charlie Rouse talked about Monk, you could hear both pain and admiration in his voice.”People don’t realize what a genius that man was, how strong, how dominant,” he’d say. “How dominant.” With Rouse, it always came back to Monk. Only eleven years with him, but they were the touchstone, the experience his life led […]

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Phil Woods Phil Among the Giants

It always comes back to the band bus . The crucible, the sacred clubhouse where young Phil Woods joined the tribe. That’s how he always saw it, he says — a tribe. “I always equate the bus with the teepee . On the bus, the young guys and the old guys would be together that’s […]

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Brother Ray

“This is Brother Ray,” he says, his voice so close like being inside a song. Even better than I hoped, after waiting almost two years to talk to Ray Charles on the telephone. I’ve played some of his records so often I can sing all the parts.   So I ask him, “Of all the […]

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The Adventures of the Red Arrow — Red Rodney

I thought I was walking into history that rainy night, walking into Red’s history and the heroic age of bebop, into the books I’d read, into the recordings, walking into the story I had imagined for myself. I was also walking into the story of jazz in Portland, I thought, into the red brick and […]

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