Yet another season is nearly behind us. As summer winds down and we find ourselves firmly planted in the 2nd half of the year, I find myself wanting to gather up and go out to every type of event to live up these blanket warm days before Fall is upon us.
One thing sorely lacking is a great Jazz Festival that beckons my heart to spend a whole weekend stylishly taking in the melodies and meandering of America’s purest heritage art form. Sure there’s still Jazz clubs, and there’s KCSM’s Jazz on the hill, but are ever the participants as stylish as yesteryear?
I found myself reminiscing about Newport Jazz ’58, and the concert film Jazz On A Summer Day that captures the zeitgeist of that scene. Once a cornucopia of different threads of music that influenced and ran away from accepting Rock & Roll, it brought together straightforward Jazz vocalists, Blues, R&B and Gospel legends, Big Band and Bop Jazz to one lovely weekend in Rhode Island. It’s where all the hip cats would be nearly 60 years ago before these legendary festivals gave over to pop festivals that oft weren’t as openminded and diverse about who participated.
This playlist plays to the diversity of those that would have appeared at Newport Jazz in the late 50’s through the early 60’s either actually or if they had the opportunity. By luck this playlist goes live as the 2017 Newport Jazz Festival gets underway with a new set of stylists keeping the diversity of the art form alive. Although not a re-creation of the event, I hope wherever you are this August, you can carry a little “birth of cool” with you as you play these 28 tunes for nearly 90 minutes of flashback.
1) Ernestine Anderson – A Kiss To Build A Dream On
2) Jon Hendricks – Yeh Yeh
3) Louis Prima – All Night Long
4) Lorez Alexandria – Satin Doll
5) Sam Lazar – Dig A Little Deeper
6) Dinah Washington – Sometimes I’m Happy
7) Annie Ross – Twisted
8) Etta Jones – When I Fall In Love
9) Gene Stridel – After You’ve Gone
10) Sarah Vaughan – What Do You See In Her?
11) Little Jimmy Scott – If I Ever Lost You
12) Nancy Wilson & Cannonball Adderley – Never, Never Will I Marry
13) Carmen McRae – If You Never Fall In Love With Me (Del Sassur)
14) Billy Eckstine – Alright, Okay, You Win
15) Blossom Dearie – Everything I’ve Got
16) Irene Reid – Meditation
17) Oscar Brown Jr. – Signifying Monkey
18) Ella Fitzgerald – Heatwave
19) Hank & Carol Diamond – Exodus
20) Andy & The Bey Sisters – Willow Weep For Me
21) Ahmad Jamal Trio – Poor Butterfly
22) Jimmy Rushing – Berkeley Campus Blues
23) Teri Thornton – What’s New?
24) King Pleasure – Tomorrow Is Another Day
25) Joe Williams – Here’s To My Lady
26) Wynton Kelly Trio – Autumn Leaves
27) Paula Greer – I Want To Talk About You
28) Pat Thomas – Desafinado