Sonny Rollins at CUNY - JazzWax

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March 28, 2008


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Alan Kaplinsky


Thanks for the report on SR's interview. Will the interview appear in some written, audio or video form?

If I had attended and been able to ask questions, I would have wanted to know the following:

1. Why won't Sonny at least release the original Carnegie Hall Concert from 50 years ago? The quality of that recording didn't suddenly change after the September, 2007 concert.

2. While I'm sure that there will be other CDs from Sonny, will they include icons like Roy Haynes and/or youg lions like Christian McBride or will they continue to feature his same regular group? Will there ever be another opportunity for the three of them to perform live together?

3. Did the ticketing gaffe by Carnegie Hall have any effect on his decision not to release the CD?

4. He used to perform and record more frequently with musicians other than his regular group. Why doesn't he do that any more?

5. We have heard on many other occasions that Sonny does not like listening to his recordings, even the ones that are considered classics. That being the case, maybe he isn't a very good judge of how he performed. I have talked to many people who were at Carnegie Hall that evening and every one of them felt that Sonny was on top of his game. The jazz critics uniformly praised his performance and the only negative comment I heard was to the effect that the first half of the concert was infinitely better than the second half.


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  • Marc Myers writes on music and the arts for The Wall Street Journal. He is author of "Why Jazz Happened" (Univ. of Calif. Press). Founded in 2007, JazzWax was named the 2015 "Blog of the Year" by the Jazz Journalists Association.
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