Bobby Shew on Buddy Rich (Part 3) - JazzWax

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February 26, 2010


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Doug Zielke

Buddy Rich (and the Dunes) are gone, but luckily we still have Bobby! I enjoyed hearing him at several editions of the Port Townsend Jazz Festival. Indeed, a wonderful player and person.

Jeff Helgesen

Always interested in your end-of-segment picks...I've got both the Shew w/Harrell and the Shew w/Fontana CDs.

What fascinated me about the former recording when it came out was how harmonically forward-thinking it was compared to alot of Shew's other work. I don't think that alot of trumpet players really put him in the same "sorting box" as Tom Harrell from a harmonic perspective. And he really goes toe-to-toe with Harrell throughout the album, without resorting to high-note one-upsmanship. That recording opened my eyes to an aspect of Shew's playing that really surprised me.

Of course, the CD w/Fontana is marvelous, too. And, like the bossa nova album you link to at the end, it's tastefully restrained and holds up for a wider range of listeners while still having depth.

I had the pleasure of playing a little with Bobby once, and got to take a lesson with him and grab a bite to eat afterwards. He really is a nice fellow, and he's got so many stories...


I wish someone would have any information about Violetta Villas, a singer that was a star of Dunes "Casino de Paris" z 1967/8.

Adrian Parsons

I was lucky enough to see him many times at Jazz Port Townsend, both in the big band and also in small groups. He is a very nice man,as well as being an incredible trumpeter. He played "The Cellar" in Vancouver a few years ago and he was quite happy to chat at the bar about what he was currently doing and about Bud Shank and JPT. Lets hope he come by again.

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  • Marc Myers writes regularly for The Wall Street Journal and is author of "Anatomy of 55 More Songs," "Anatomy of a Song," "Rock Concert: An Oral History" and "Why Jazz Happened." Founded in 2007, JazzWax has won three Jazz Journalists Association awards.
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