tagged w/ Carmen McRae
Los Angeles Times...
Red Holloway dies at 84; Versatile L.A. jazz saxophonist
Holloway's career stretched from the bebop era to 21st-century jazz fusion. He played with an array of A-list stars, including Sonny Rollins, Lester Young, Red Rodney and Lionel Hampton.
By Don Heckman, Special to The Times
February 27, 2012
Red Holloway, a tenor and alto saxophonist who was one of Los Angeles' most highly regarded jazz artists for more than four decades, died Saturday in San Luis Obispo. He was 84.
The cause was kidney failure, complicated by several strokes, according to family spokeswoman Linda Knipe.
Holloway's career reached from the post-World War II arrival of bebop to 21st century jazz fusion. Whatever genre he played, the powerful muscularity of his sound, combined with his propulsive sense of swing, consistently made him one of the most listenable tenor saxophonists in jazz.
His creative focus was enhanced by far-reaching versatility. "Music to me is music," he told Jazz Journal International some years ago. "I really don't care what kind it is. I just try and figure out how I can make that particular type of music swing. That's what is important."
Holloway had already affirmed that viewpoint early in his career, when he played with an A-list of artists covering the full gamut of jazz — from Sonny Rollins and Lester Young to Red Rodney, Lionel Hampton and dozens of others.
His capacity to enhance his style with lyrical expressiveness also made him a favorite companion to singers such as Etta James, Joe Williams, Carmen McRae and Jackie Ryan.
James W. Holloway was born May 31, 1927, in Helena, Ark. His mother was a pianist and his father played violin. He and his mother moved to Chicago when Holloway was 5, where, at his mother's insistence, he began piano lessons, supplementing them with banjo and harmonica.
After taking up the tenor saxophone at the age of 12, Holloway played his first job as a professional musician in 1943 with bassist Eugene Wright's Dukes of Swing. At 19, he joined the U.S. Army, eventually serving as headmaster of the U.S. Fifth Army Band.
When he was discharged from the service, Holloway returned to Chicago, frequently playing with such artists as Roosevelt Sykes, Willie Dixon and B.B. King. And his intimate understanding of the subtleties of the blues always remained an essential part of his music.
In the early '60s, he began to achieve visibility with the wider jazz audience via a 21/2 -year run with organist Jack McDuff, working alongside newly arrived guitarist George Benson.
Holloway moved to Los Angeles in 1967. Two years later he played in the house band at the famed jazz club the Persian Room. He retained the position for 15 years, meeting and often performing with some of the biggest names in the jazz world.
From 1977 to 1982, Holloway was teamed with veteran bop alto saxophonist Sonny Stitt, recording a pair of albums together. In addition to more than a dozen albums under his own name, he recorded with McDuff, Clark Terry, Plas Johnson, Horace Silver, George Benson and John Mayall.
In the mid-'60s, Holloway moved to the Central California coastal town of Cambria, where he ran unsuccessfully for mayor in 2004. From the early '90s until this year , he played a prominent role in the town's Famous Jazz Artist Series. He received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Los Angeles Jazz Society in 2004.
Holloway, who was divorced, is survived by sons Michael and John; daughters Lianne Holloway, Marsha Aregullin and Denice Holloway-Rivers; six grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren. A third son, James "Binkey" Holloway, died in 1995.
Los Angeles Times Obituary...
Tom Garvin dies at 67; versatile jazz pianist, composer
Tom Garvin was a popular accompanist for vocalists Carmen McRae, Peggy Lee, Lou Rawls and Diane Schuur. He also wrote tunes for the Tonight Show Band.
PHOTO: Tom Garvin was "one of our town's better jazz pianists," The Times said in 1990.
By Valerie J. Nelson, Los Angeles Times
August 11, 2011
Tom Garvin, a jazz pianist and composer-arranger who was best known as an exceptional accompanist, died July 31 at an assisted living facility in Encino. He was 67.
The cause was cancer, which diagnosed three years ago, said Tom Mitchell, a close friend.
A fixture on the Los Angeles jazz scene, Garvin was "one of our town's better jazz pianists," The Times said in 1990.
His specialty was accompaniment, and he did it "with a flair not often engendered by other pianists," John Gilbert wrote in 2003 in the online magazine jazzreview.com.
The many artists Garvin performed with include noted jazz vocalists Carmen McRae, Peggy Lee, Lou Rawls and Diane Schuur. As recently as 2006, Garvin led a trio for Jack Jones.
"His accompaniments offered both musical support and expressive space — a secure foundation for singers to rove freely in the telling of their musical stories," said jazz critic Don Heckman. "His jazz trio work was equally engaging."
In 1972, Garvin began writing songs for the Tonight Show Band with Doc Severinsen and eventually composed dozens of tunes for the TV program.
"I'd just write them and send them in," Garvin told The Times in 1992. "I went in once and watched Doc rehearse one of my tunes, and he was excellent.… So I thought, 'Hey, I don't need to be here.' "
Such public reticence contributed to Garvin's relatively low profile outside of the jazz community, according to Mitchell.
The lack of visibility was surprising given his musicianship and "articulately crafted keyboard style," Heckman wrote in a 2001 Times review of a performance that featured such standards as "I'll Close My Eyes" and "I Fall in Love Too Easily."
Garvin was born Feb. 4, 1944, in Petersburg, Va. His parents divorced when he was young, and his mother did clerical work while they lived with his grandmother.
As a child, he received a key gift from his mother — a toy piano. From then on, Garvin wanted to be a musician, Mitchell said.
After earning a degree in music composition at Baltimore's Peabody Institute in the mid-1960s, Garvin served as a pianist-arranger in the Army Field Band.
The only album he released was "In Three Dimensions," which featured his big band on one side and his trio on the other.
Briefly married, Garvin tended to name many original tunes after the women he dated and his close friends. His oeuvre included "Mitch," "Talara," "Elaine" and "Jane."
Garvin, who was a longtime resident of North Hollywood, has no immediate survivors.Los Angeles Times Obituary...
Tom Garvin dies at 67; versatile jazz pianist,... more
Ray Bryant dies at 79; jazz pianist and composer
Ray Bryant played with such greats as Charlie Parker, Miles Davis and Sonny Rollins at the Blue Note club in Philadelphia. He had a long recording career and was known for his blues style.
By Keith Thursby, Los Angeles Times
June 9, 2011
Ray Bryant, a pianist and composer whose long career took off after he accompanied a variety of jazz greats during the 1950s at the Blue Note club in Philadelphia, has died. He was 79.
Bryant died June 2 at New York Hospital Queens, a hospital spokeswoman said. No cause was given.
As house pianist at the Blue Note, Bryant played with Charlie Parker, Miles Davis and Sonny Rollins, among others. "The Blue Note was a real jumping off point for me," he told the Morning Call of Allentown, Pa., in 1994. Bryant played with a trio that sometimes included his older brother, Tommy, a bassist who died in 1982.
Bryant became "a powerful blues player known for his versatility," Leonard Feather and Ira Gitler wrote in the Biographical Encyclopedia of Jazz.
"I grew up with the blues," Bryant told The Times in 1995. "I played with some great bluesmen, and it rubbed off on me. No matter what you play you retain some of what you have been around."
Raphael Homer Bryant was born into a musical family on Dec. 24, 1931, in Philadelphia. His mother played the piano and organ, as does his sister, Vera Eubanks.
"He was kind of the patriarch of the jazz side of our family," trombonist Robin Eubanks, Bryant's nephew, told The Times this week. "He was like the mentor, paving the way."
Eubanks' brother Kevin, a guitarist, is the former bandleader of "The Tonight Show With Jay Leno," and another brother, Duane, is a trumpeter.
After working at the Blue Note, Bryant toured with singer Carmen McRae in 1956-57, played with saxophonist Coleman Hawkins at the Newport Jazz Festival in 1957 and recorded with Dizzy Gillespie.
He moved to New York in the late 1950s and had his first hit in 1960 with his composition "Little Susie." His composition "Cubano Chant" was recorded by such jazz notables as Art Blakey and Oscar Peterson, and "Changes" was recorded by Davis.
Bryant recorded steadily through the years and toured in Europe and Japan beginning in the 1970s.
His first solo album was 1958's "Alone With the Blues," and his most recent release was 2008's "In the Back Room."
In addition to his sister, Bryant's survivors include his wife, Claude; son Raphael Jr.; daughter Gina; grandchildren; and brothers Leonard and Lynwood.Ray Bryant dies at 79; jazz pianist and composer
Ray Bryant played with such greats... more