My new book, Anatomy of a Song: The Oral History of 45 Iconic Hits That Changed Rock, R&B and Pop, continues to be a strong seller, holding the #2 positions in several music categories at Amazon. This past week, I taped One-on-One with Steve Adubato for NJTV and was interviewed by 15 radio stations around the country. An mp3 of my MPR (Minnesota Public Radio) interview with Kerri Miller on Dec. 6 can be downloaded here (search for my name) while my Wisconsin Public Radio interview with Kathleen Dunn can be heard here.
The book is a perfect holiday gift and there's still plenty of time to buy one or more copies. To purchase, go here in the U.S., here in the U.K. or here in Canada. Thank you one and all for your support.
Want to listen to all the songs in Anatomy of a Song while you're reading the book's chapters? You can! I've put together all 45 songs in a free Spotify jukebox (go here).
In the Wall Street Journal this week, my "House Call" interview with The Daily Show's Trevor Noah (go here) on growing up in apartheid South Africa and why he says he was "born a crime" and had to avoid his parents in public.
Also in the WSJ, my "Playlist" chat with novelist T.C. Boyle on the Blues Project’s Who Do You Love? T.C. was actually at New York's Cafe au Go Go in November 1965 when the band's album, Live at the Cafe Au Go Go, was recorded (go here).
David Bowie. Remember the print of David Bowie I held up several weeks ago in Toronto as famed rock photographer John Rowlands held up my book? Well, John's iconic image of The Archer just went up on the front of the Port Authority Terminal in New York on 8th Ave. and 42nd St. as part of new Twitter Billboard campaign (above). The image is 100 times larger than the print and captures Bowie onstage at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto during his 1976 Station to Station tour. The Twitter campaign highlights the most "talked about" people of 2016. For more on John, go here and here.
Sonny Rollins. Following my post on a new Sonny Rollins Trio/Horace Silver Quintet CD recorded in Zurich in 1959 last week, Terri Hinte, Sonny's publicist, informed me that the album was a bootleg. I asked if she could elaborate. [Photo above of Sonny Rollins by John Abbott]
Here's Terri and Sonny's reply:
"Sonny remembers that he was on tour with his group and Horace's group in 1959 but says the following: As far as a recording goes I am not aware that we were being recorded for anything. We were performing for broadcast. Often there were radio broadcasts of performances that were promotion for the concerts, but as far as a release of a recording almost 60 years later, I know nothing. I have no agreement with anyone for release of this music, and I haven't been remunerated in connection with this release nor has anyone even contacted me about this release. As far as I'm concerned, it's illegal."
Bud Powell x 2. Director Raymond De Felitta sent along a link to this stunning Bud Powell clip...
I'll sweeten the Powell post with this one from 1960 with bassist Charles Mingus, Eric Dolphy on alto sax, Ted Curson on trumpet, Booker Ervin on tenor sax, Bud Powell on piano and Dannie Richmond on drums...
Bobby Scott fans should know that his early piano trio recordings for Bethlehem, Savoy and ABC-Paramount are available on Bobby Scott Trio: Early Sessions1954-55 (Fresh Sound) here.
The Edsel Show that aired on CBS in October 1957 featured Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Louis Armstrong and Rosemary Clooney. This clip comes courtesy of Margy Bloom. While a tad stiff around the edges, largely a result of the year and the sponsor, there's loads of Pops, solid Clooney and fresh Frank...
Nutty Squirrels. Brett Gold sent along this clip of the Nutty Squirrels (Don Elliott's vocal and technological wizardry) in the late 1950s singing Salt Peanuts. The YouTube page features a solid history of the concept and execution...
Nina Simone. Jim Eigo of Jazz Promotion Services sent along a link to a site with color images by David Hollander of singer Nina Simone during her studio recording of Nina Simone Sings the Blues, released in 1967. Go here.
Jan Lundgren has been named artistic director of the famed Jazzhus Montmartre club in Copenhagen. For more on the appointment of the famed Swedish jazz pianist, check out Jan's fan site hosted by Guy Jones here. Jazz musicians looking for club bookings can reach out to Jan at email@example.com.
Leslie Pintchik. Pianist Leslie Pintchik appeared at Kitano in New York last week and received a lovely review by Allen Morrison for Down Beat's website. To read, go here.
Mono to stereo. A new site, monotoSTEREO.info, provides a collection of resources for people interested in up-mixing older mono source material to stereo through audio spectral editing, sound source separation, and related processes. Obviously, the site isn't for the average JazzWax reader, but I know that a good number of you are rather sophisticated when it comes to audio and particular about your fidelity. Go here.
What the heck. Here's Redbone in 1974 on Midnight Special singing their #5 Billboard pop hit Come and Get Your Love...
Oddball album cover of the week.
Dr. Benjamin Spock's The Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care was first published in 1946. In 1958, at the tail end of Rosemary Clooney's contract with Columbia, she recorded a 7-inch EP for the label produced by Gerber Baby Food. Clooney read a poem on the first side and sang go-to-sleep music on the flip. Despite the odd cover—you don't expect to see Clooney's name on a vinyl child-owner's manual—the record was actually quite wonderful...