Schlaue Jazz-Witwe bekämpft CD-Piraten

Eine Jazz-Witwe wehrt sich: Art und Laurie Pepper im Jazz Club «Dontes» in Los Angeles. Foto: http://www.StraightLife.info

Laurie Pepper, die Witwe des 1982 verstorbenen Jazz Saxophonisten Art Pepper, bekämpft auf raffinierte Weise die illegale Veröffentlichung  seiner Musik.

Sie nimmt per Email Kontakt auf mit Sammlern von Art Pepper Bootlegs. Sie fühlen sich geschmeichelt, dass die Witwe ihres Idols sich für die Aufnahmen interessiert und schicken ihr perfekte Kopien. Diese veröffentlicht Laurie Pepper dann auf ihrem Label Widow’s Taste.

Lachend meint sie: »In diesem Geschäft werden oft diejenigen zu Freunden, von denen du dachtest, dass du sie erwürgen willst». Weitere Geschichten über Witwen von Jazz-Musikern und deren Umgang mit der musikalischen Erbschaft ihrer Männer gibt es in Marc Meyers Artikel im «Wall Street Journal» (auf englisch).

Photographer And LP Cover Designer William Claxton Made West Coast Jazz Look Good

Jazz Photographer William Claxton

William Claxton (1927 – 2008) made the West Coast jazz scene of the 1950ies and early sixties look good. His photos were used for countless LP covers and he was sometimes also responsible for the cover design. Most of his pictures for LP covers are very colorful and have a California touch: sun, sea, desert and fun. Back then most jazz photography was caught in clichés – harsh flashlights, sweat, and strong contrasts were dominant. Claxton gave jazz photography a fresh perspective. Read the New York Times obituary for more information about William Claxton.

Photo-Audio Mashup (audio tribute from NPR)

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Happy Birthday Django Reinhardt!

The great guitar innovator Django Reinhardt was born on January 23, 1910 in Belgium. His playing made him famous around the world. He died at the age of 43.

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5 Pages For Classic Jazz Guitar Addicts

1. Classic Jazz Guitar

This site is probably the best classic jazz guitar archive on the web. It concentrates on jazz guitar players from the 1930’s through the 1950’s. Every listed guitarist is covered at least with a short but thorough biography. Some biographies are supplemented with links, discography, listening samples and picture galleries. A good starting point for every lover of classic jazz guitar.

Classic Jazz Guitar

2. Jazz Guitar Primer: An Introduction to Jazz Guitar Music

This extensive blog article takes you on time travel. It starts in the early 20th century with George Van Eps and continues with Charlie Christian, Johnny Smith, Wes Montgomery, Joe Pass, Pat Martino, John McLaughlin and Pat Metheny. Each guitarist is presented with a short biography, essential listening and publications. A good chance to follow the development of jazz guitar over the decades.

An Introduction To Jazz Guitar

3. Soft Flight – The Charlie Christian Web Site

Before you visit this Charlie Christian site be warned! You may spend several hours on it. It covers literally all aspects of Charlie Christian’s short life and career in detail. The discography even mentions over how many bars Charlie Christian played his solos. Speaking of solos: the site includes several transcriptions of Charlie Christian’s solos. Besides that you’ll find a chronology of his life, a detailed calendar covering the years from 1939 – 1941, a great photo gallery and much more.

Charlie Christian Web Site

4. Howard Roberts Site

Howard Roberts Site

The Howard Roberts Site is very comprehensive and a must for every one who loves the music of Howard Roberts. It tracks down all aspects of Roberts’ playing. The discography not only includes his recordings as leader and sideman but also his work for television and movies. There are also some pop credits from the time when he was working as a studio guitarist.

5. The 100 Best Jazz Guitarists

The 100 Best Jazz Guitarists

When it comes to music I don’t believe in rankings. Music is not sports. That’s why I only reluctantly mention the list of the 100 Greatest Jazz Guitarists. But it has a feature that makes it noteworthy. For 50 guitarists there’s a listening sample. This gives you a good and varied audio impression of different jazz guitar players.

Jazzy Christmas: Not “Last Christmas” Again!


Ella Fitzgerald: Sleigh Ride


Charles Brown: Merry Christmas Baby


Django Reinhardt: Christmas Swing


Sauter-Finegan Orchestra: Midnight Sleigh Ride