Los Angeles Jazz Institute - JazzWax

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July 22, 2011


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Bruno Leicht

Ah yes, Popo, Over The Rainbow, At Last ... great sounds of a long gone era.

It's wonderful that the Los Angeles Jazz Institute tries to keep it alive. "West Coast Jazz" could be sounding pretty "East Coast" by the boppin' way:


I've posted one track from the initial performance of the original Lighthouse stars Shorty Rogers & Art Pepper: Body And Soul, featuring mainly Art Pepper's softly tuned alto sax.

It's on Popo, a Xanadu LP (148), and it features - beside Pepper & Rogers - Frank Patchen on piano, and Howard Rumsey (who organized many of the concerts, and jam sessions at the Lighthouse) on bass.

The sound maybe a bit muffled, but the music is splendid. And it's really pure bebop, and has actually not much to do with the commercial labels "cool" or "west coast".

The album itself can be found frequently on eBay, and other places on the web.

We - that's Brew Lite's Lighthouse All-Stars - remembered our favorite music at a small Greek restaurant in Cologne, one week ago.

Feel free to visit my blog, and check it out.

One of my own tunes, composed in the tradition of the happiest jazz this side of heaven ;) is featured there too: Solo For Hope.

Rab Hines

Man, Marc, you hit the nail right on the head. I spent several months some years ago in San Clemente and Laguna Beach, and I think that the stuff you mentioned was all I listened to the entire time - with the exception of some Reggae, which fit the mood fairly often.

Thanks for the cool breeze on this hot day. Maybe I'll go listen to Shelly Manne and Joe Gordon.


LAJI events are worth noting for their resurrections of large group jazz traditions. They regularly stage authentic reunion/re-creations of those units featuring alumni as well as performances of original charts.

Ed Leimbacher

Some stubborn fans out here have a mantra they love to chant:

East is least;
West is best.

Me, I think about Kansas City and Chicago, New Orleans and Detroit, and say instead:

Where's it writ?
No such split.
Skip the razz;
It's all Jazz.

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  • Marc Myers writes regularly for The Wall Street Journal and is author of "Anatomy of a Song" (Grove) and "Why Jazz Happened." Founded in 2007, JazzWax is a two-time winner of the Jazz Journalists Association's best blog award.

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