The Network XXVI

Spring/Summer 2002

Anthony (Tony) J. Agostinelli, Editor
Prologue Had Stanley Newcomb Kenton Still Been Alive, 2001 Would Have Been His 60th Year As A Band Leader and Music Educator – This issue is being dubbed…
The 60th Anniversary Issue of the Stan Kenton Orchestra
That being written…Because there were so many stalwart Kenton alumni, who passed on recently, this Editor decided that those alumni should appear herein because of their importance to the Kenton legacy…this is their “anniversary,” also. The one-liners interspersed throughout are expressions by various Kentonians!

Prologue—For Cybernetters: NETWORK XXVI is being made available to the list of Kentonians on the Kenton e-mail list. How to subscribe to the Kenton e-mail list…. If you want this newsletter in cyber-fashion, you may write me at my e-mail address, and I will send it to you. You will also note that all of the URL sites throughout (http://) are in bold, and if your ISP supports this, you can click right on the website and be linked to it. Also, NETWORK is posted at these web sites:

A Personal Fund-Raising Note from the Editor: NETWORK is now being published once annually. The number of NETWORKERS has now leveled off at 1,965. I continue to rely very heavily on your contributions to help out with NETWORK operations and I make up the difference in costs. Many of you have been so very generous. Publishing and mailing costs will have to be re-cooped from your contributions! (As the correspondence, responding to questions, mailing of tape dubs for personal use, printing costs, mailing costs and the like, continues to grow, your contributions are so much more important.... that nut is now up to around $3,000! This issue alone will top $2,000! I hope that you would consider a making a contribution to NETWORK operations, especially, if you have never done so before. This time around, even with some NETWORKERS agreeing not to receive a hard copy, the savings of first-class postage is minimal – some 30 of you for a savings of $10.20. For those of you who have contributed—no matter what amount—THANKS! If you do make a contribution, a NETWORK Premium will be sent to you. This Premium is listing of Kenton on CD & Video—CDs & videos which have been issued—updated as new issues are known; it has been compiled by the noted Kenton discographer, Michael Sparke, with this Editor’s help. Do you realize that just $1.50 from each of you, will net The Network $2,940! Wow! With the posting of this issue of NETWORK to the Internet, I am hoping that you will all send a contribution for the last mailing of the “hard copy” to alert all NETWORKERS of this change. Won’t you consider sending a contribution to The-Network?

So, What Have I Decided? After much consideration, and advice and counsel from those in and out of the business of mailed newsletters, I have decided to eliminate the hard-copy/mailed issues of the NETWORK, and post the future issues only on the Internet. For those of you have computers, all’s you need do is to go to the web sites, and download your own copy. For those of you who do not have computers you may: (1) visit your local library with the location of the web site, and download and print it there; (2) go to a “Computer Café,” where they do have computers…you may rent time and download your personal issue; (3) go to your children, grandchildren or local school, and download the issue there; and/or, finally, (4) write me, send me a $5.00 check or money order (more if you would like to contribute), and I will mail the complete issue to you in hard-copy. As a fund-raising “gimmick,” I have extra LPs donated by several NETWORKERS and each are available for $15. each (includes postage)(overseas mailing add $6.00 — $21 American total); call/write or e-mail to see if I have what you may want.

I am so sorry that I’ve had to resort to this. However, I am now retired, and my walking-around money is limited, and I can no longer produce a $3,000 per issue newsletter. As you will note, this issue has taken some time to get out…I am still some $2,000 short!
Various Kenton Alumni Have Passed On…
Manny Albam, Dee Barton, Conte Candoli, Hank Levy, Jay Migliori. May they rest in peace!

ABOUT 1952….
By Fred Augerman in Toronto
The ticket stub says Section 3, Row 4, Seat 3. The date is November 15, 1952! As a 12-year-old “kid” who had not been out of my hometown of St. Catharines, Ontario this was to be a momentous evening! A month prior to this night, “Little Mac” as he was called and was truly a Stan Kenton aficionado had phoned my parents & asked them if he could take me to see the Stan Kenton Orchestra. At first they were nervous about it, not because of “Mac” but that parental instinct of not knowing how I would handle being “away” from home for a whole evening! “Little Mac” by the way ran Cavers Brothers record department, the most popular music store in the city. If you said to Mac what’s Capitol C-294, he would instantly tell you “Theme to the West”! Mac really knew his Kenton Capitol 78’s, which of course was all we had in those days! Anyway it was finally decided that I could go, so for the next 3 weeks the sleep patterns were very disrupted because I knew that soon I would see my “idol” & his Orchestra that had affected me from the age of eight. Finally, the big day came, it was 10 degrees out & the weather forecast was for snow & lots of it! This was when we really used to get serious winters & sure enough around 4 o’clock it really started to come down. Mac called at 5:00 to say he was on his way & my parents were now in a huge debate (fight?) about letting me go in a storm like this! Finally my mother (who was as big a Kenton fan as me) won the day & I was to go! To say the drive to Buffalo, New York, was a tough one would be kind, this storm was very severe & we were driving through some very heavy duty white-outs but in those days the traffic volumes were nowhere near the grid lock of today & 2 hours later we were finally in the parking lot of the Buffalo Memorial Auditorium. One of the other little “goodies” involved in this was because of a sold out situation for this show I had to sit by myself as only single tickets were left at the time of purchase. For some reason I was more nervous of this fact, just because I knew strangers would surround me! It is now 8:30 PM on Saturday, November 15, 1952 & Fred Augerman is absolutely overwhelmed by his surroundings! I had never been in the presence of this many people in my life, there were 5,000 in the auditorium that night & the buzz and anticipation was almost too much to bear! Besides the Stan Kenton Orchestra we were going to be entertained by Nat “King” Cole, Sarah Vaughn, & a comedian & a dancer who’s names I have forgotten, because this was “The Big Show Of 1952”. All of a sudden the lights went out, and all I could see were the red glow of Exit signs! A shimmering of cymbals began to cascade over us & a voice in the dark said,”Ladies & Gentlemen Modern America’s Man Of Music & Capitol Recording star Stan Kenton” at which point a cannon of brass exploded around us & the familiar strains of “Artistry In Rhythm began to fill the hall! I had never heard 5,000 people applaud as one before & this was as exciting to me as Stan Levey’s cymbals, which were now just roaring along with all that brass! Bounding down the runway came the Man I had dreamed about for 4 years & he was a bundle of energy & personality to behold! As the light “troopers” exploded across the stage, the sound of a foot beating out the tempo to “Taboo” cut through all the wonderful “noise” that was happening and there they all were, Levey, Rosolino, Konitz, Roberts, Ferguson, Candoli, Bagley, and a leader that you just could not take your eyes off of! For the next 2 and half-hours I thought my heart was going to burst, I had never seen anything like this & I kept pinching myself to make sure this was really happening and not just a dream! When the concert was over, it didn’t matter what the temperature was outside; I just couldn’t get the sound of that brass section out of my head! The storm was over, the moon was shining & people couldn’t understand why I walked around with a big grin on my face for weeks after. It would be 2 more years before I met Stan Kenton in person but that’s a whole other story.

One Liner: “Hearing recordings of the Kenton band when I was a high school senior was a major turning point in my life. Writing for the Mike Vax Kenton Alumni band was another turning point. It will always be a regret of mine that I did not meet Stanley and tell him how much his music meant to me.” — Jeff Sultanof in Patterson, NJ

Don’t Get Sick on the Road
By Milt Bernhart

During the good old “road days”, getting sick was out of the question. And chances of getting sick were in the high 90’s. We traveled in a rickety bus, boiling in summer, drafty in winter. We ate at diners that defied description. Some would have included salmonella on the menu, had they been able to spell it. Nobody I knew ever had a physical exam ... we never stayed in a place long enough to even think about it ... same goes for dentistry. Getting sick was not a subject for discussion ... Stan lived in dread of the very idea. Imagine having to check somebody into a hospital, get in the bus and chug off and leave him or her there. It actually never happened ... in the six or seven years of steady travel for me (mostly with Kenton) nobody ever said “I don’t feel so well” no matter what the truth. We practiced a non-religious form of Christian Science, you might say.

It’s true. We were young. I almost forgot. That must be why Stan often asked Bob Gioga (who was close to 50, then) “Gioga, are you feeling o.k?” “Just great, Stan.” I think Stan wanted to get rid of him, and needed a reason. But Gioga was indestructible (he died of Alzheimer’s. No physical problems whatsoever.) Me ... I always had a cold, and a string of fever blisters on the lips. I got so I couldn’t play without them. Eventually the big band era ended ... and today studio musicians live at home and eat home cooking and have physical exams, etc. What a bore!

One Liner: “I'm not old enough to remember Stan's music live, but it has forever changed my standards in jazz.” - Justin Miller in Ellwood City, PA

Celebrating 60 Years of Stan Kenton Music
By Jack Hartley in Manchester, NJ

Stan Kenton was born in Wichita, Kansas on December 15, 1911. For personal reasons, he always referred to his birth date as February 19, 1912. After his family moved to Colorado, then to California, by age 9, he was taking piano lessons. At age 14, he was already earning money for his performances, and by age 16, he had formed his own quartet while in high school. On weekends, he was working at small clubs in the Los Angeles area, and sold his first orchestration at age 17.

Stanley Newcomb Kenton was no “Johnny-Come-Lately.” He earned his status in the music world by a slow, methodical climb, being featured in small combos (“The Flacks”), then on to Nick Pontrelli’s 14-piece band at Ocean Park, California. A side trip with the Francis Gilbert 6-piece group took him from Phoenix, Arizona to Las Vegas, Nevada for a little over a year.

More moves were made via the Frank Whitney band along the West Coast until he joined Everett Hoaglund, in August of 1933, at the Rendezvous Ballroom in Balboa Beach, California. That band included Vido Musso and Gil Evans. At the time he met Bob Gioga, and they formed a long-standing friendship that saw Gioga in all Kenton bands until the 1950s. Rather than travel, Stanley stayed on at the Rendezvous, joining Russ Plummer. He also worked for a short time with the Hal Grayson band. The “big” move came when Stanley joined the famous Gus Arnheim group from April 1936 through February 1937

When Arnheim went into semi-retirement, Stanley moved to the Jerry Wald band for the summer of 1937 as they worked some of the better New Jersey clubs. Then, it was back to California for serious studies with Charles Dalmores for theory and harmony, and with Joseph Riccardi for arranging.

Thus, despite the writings of some critics that Stanley was not much more than a mediocre barroom pianist who hit it big, we find that he was well schooled in the basics, and moved up the musical ladder, one step at a time. A brief stint was with the Vido Musso band before Vido moved onto work with Benny Goodman. Kenton moved on over to Johnny “Scat” Davis in 1938 before becoming pianist and arranger for the Earl Carroll Theatre/Restaurant in Hollywood.

By August of 1940, the itch for a band playing his own style became strong enough to induce many with similar liking to join him in a rehearsal band. They cut a few acetates that Stanley used to let bookers hear what his band sounded like. The band made its first public appearances in January of 1941, first at The Pavilion in Huntington Beach, than at the Diana Ballroom in Los Angeles. Then on May 2, 1941, the Stan Kenton Orchestra was officially on its way when they “opened” at the Rendezvous Ballroom in Balboa Beach, California. After a brief contract with Decca Records, a Capitol Records contract with signed; the Stan Kenton Orchestra recorded for Capitol Records from 1943 to 1969 (26 years), when he established his own Creative World Records in 1970.

By early 1942, Stan’s California success demanded a national tour. It was my distinct pleasure to meet Stan on April 17, 1942 at Frank Dailey’s Meadowbrook in Cedar Grove, New Jersey. Friendship somehow knit at the first meeting and almost nightly visits to the club followed for the rest of the two-week stay. From that date until his death in 1979, we remained close friends. Stan introduced me to each individual sideman that first night, including Audree Coke, who was travelling with the band with her husband Jimmy Lyons at the time. Lyons was the announcer at the Rendezvous for those late night band remotes that hooked me onto the Kenton sounds. Audree and I have remained friends even since Stan’s death in 1979.

Somehow, in those early years and beyond, some critics wrote that the band could not “swing.” It only proves that they haven’t heard some great performances across the years. Recently, a close friend, and in truth, not a real Kenton follower, was surprised when he heard “Stompin’ at the Savoy,” not knowing the band even played that kind of material. Always restless, always trying new things…. One must keep alert when listening for new Kenton material. Stan was the first band to play Europe (in exchange with Ted Heath) after a many decades Union band. While Tommy Dorsey, Harry James, Artie Shaw and some few others used strings; Kenton was the first to have original material written for a full string ensemble within a big band, rather than for merely background effect. This was the Innovations in Modern Music Orchestra! He also devised a middle horn instrument, the Mellophonium, which he incorporated into his orchestra in the early 1960s. He was the first jazz band to record a country and western LP with Tex Ritter.

If a composer or arranger offered him material, Stan never discarded it but insisted at least one run-through at a rehearsal. Think of those whose careers were enhanced and enlarged because of the opportunity to write for the Kenton band: Pete Rugolo, Bill Russo, Lennie Niehaus, Johnny Richards, Bill Holman, Gerry Mulligan, Shorty Rogers, Gene Roland, Ken Hanna, Marty Paich…and so many others. If you had talent, you got a chance with Stan. June Christy had never traveled more than 50 miles from home, and could not read music. Yet Stan heard something in her voice, and was with the band on and off from 1945 to the early 1970s. She went on her own in the 1950s, and the rest is history. Anita O’Day sang with the Kenton band in the mid-forties. Chris Connor owes her career to Stan. The entire “West Coast Jazz” movement began with a nucleus of Kenton sidemen – Shorty Rogers, Bob Cooper, Shelly Manne, Bud Shank, and so many others while working between band “vacations” and road tours.

[Editor’s Note: Many books have been written about Stan…books by: Lillian Arganian, Carol Easton, Ed “Gabe” Gale, Steven D. Harris, Chris Pirie, Bill Lee (“authorized”), and Michael Sparke, Pete Venudor and Jack Hartley].

The Innovations in Modern Music still sounds fresh and “21st Century” when listened to 50 years after its recordings and tours. An actual count shows more material released on CD after his death, than earlier. The “beat goes on,” as someone wrote.

My memories of “Uncle Stan” will always be cherished. Those visits to our house when the band hit New Jersey…those visits to his house when we got a chance to travel to California…those fast meals before a show while the band was “on tour” and our paths crossed…those various invited “sit-ins” at recording sessions…his willingness to hit local radio stations where a friends had a jazz show…these were great memories! The first Kenton discography was actually started back stage via the cooperation of Stan and a few sidemen like Gioga and Cooper. Who could ever forget his open friendliness when he got off a band bus, running into me at some God forsaken one-nighter location? Yes, these memories will remain.

Sixty years since I heard a remote from the Rendezvous and got hooked? It seems only yesterday.

One Liner: “Stan was my idol when I was a teenager, he was my mentor when I was on the band, and he was my inspiration to become a big band leader to hopefully, keep his vision alive.” Mike Vax in the San Francisco Bay Area Kenton and Stereo By Michael Sparke in London (April, 2001)

For a leader with such a froward-looking reputation, Stan Kenton seems to have suffered a blind spot when stereo was coming in. As late as August 1959, downbeat reported Stan as saying: “Stereo recording is only a gimmick, with no sound musical validity, which will ultimately wind up a fiasco.”

However, while advocating mono recording, Stan did advise the listener to employ several speakers: “Add another speaker or two to those you already have, and enjoy good music as it is meant to be heard.” It would thus seem Stan’s principal objection was to the gimmicky, pin-pong effects of early stereo, rather than to enveloping the listener in sound.

While stereo became the established norm, controversy continues into the new century. When Capitol reissued “Adventures in Blues” on CD, the stereo separation apparent on LP had been largely eliminated to obtain a more “natural” sound, to the extent that many fans thought they were hearing a mono version. Opinions were divided, with some preferring the new transfers, but more desiring the stereo effects with which they were familiar.

The earliest Kenton recordings in stereo occurred seemingly and almost by chance in February of 1956, when an experimental stereo machine was left running while “Kenton in Hi-Fi” was taped. Recording engineer John Palladino recalled the balance was set exclusively for the monaural mix, and the mono LP was issued in May 1956. It wasn’t until three years later, in February of 1959, with the growing popularity of all things stereo, that Capitol released the stereo LP, despite the fact that Don Bagley’s bass is all but inaudible. Whether Kenton was consulted first is not known! There were differences between the mono and the stereo versions, the most important by far being that the stereo “Hi-Fi” used a completely alternate take of “Minor Riff.” When Ted Daryll produced the CD version, he refused to entertain the inferior stereo recordings, though he did include both versions of “Minor Riff” for the sake of completeness.

All the indications are that the May 1956 “Cuban Fire” was recorded in stereo. In these early years of the new medium, different crews were employed for the two systems, and stereo engineer was New York specialist, Irving Joel, who recalls the producer as Dave Cavanaugh. What happened to the stereo tapes remains a mystery – all that is certain are that they are lost. According to Dick Shearer, they disappeared in transit between New York and Hollywood. But, Jim Amlotte told me recently: “Stan often talk on the bus about the fact that “Cuban Fire” was recorded in stereo, along with the mono track that was being run, and Stan would have given anything to have gotten the masters for the stereo. But they were nowhere to be found, and the possibility was that Dave Cavanaugh had them when he left Capitol.” But Capitol vaults are vast, and items often get mislaid, so there is always the hope that these missing treasures may some day surface.

With Kenton’s permission, the late recording engineer Wally Heider frequently taped the band on location to a professional standard, and he switched to stereo mid-way through a ten-day engagement at San Francisco’s Macumba Club in December 1956. Heider was back again to record in depth during Stan’s ill-fated return to the Rendezvous ballroom in Balboa Beach, California (December, 1958), seemingly having none of the problems that beset Capitol’s engineers at the venue. “Rendezvous With Kenton” came out with a dead “boxy” sound, and Capitol considered the stereo tapes of “Back To Balboa” so poor, they declined to issue them at all. Only the mono version was available until Clinton Roemer released the stereo recordings on Creative World in 1971.

An interesting feature is that some of the early Capitol LP albums issued in both mono and stereo format differs in slight degree from each other. Minor editing takes place on several ”Ballad Style Of Stan Kenton” titles, but the most obvious difference is the use of alternate takes of “We’ll Be Together Again.” The stereo version contains a muted trumpet solo by Don Fagerquist completely absent on the mono. On “The Kenton Touch” LP, “Opus In Chartreuse” has been edited (or mixed) differently. Immediately preceding Almeida’s guitar solo, the mono plays the theme on piano and guitar; in stereo, there is no piano, and it is replaced by a sectional trombone passage.

Stan’s anti-stereo statement in 1959 was made at the very time Capitol was pushing the stereo bandwagon hard, with particular emphasis on Stan’s “Stage Door Swings.” Lennie Niehaus recalled, “I wrote those arrangement in the days when stereo first came out, and I didn’t really set out thinking, ‘This is going to come out of the right side, and this is going to come out of the left,’ but our A&R man Lee Gillette was very enthusiastic that it worked out so well, and told me, ‘You really wrote that great for stereo,’ But it wasn’t planned, it was just a lucky thing!”

Perhaps mindful of his earlier faux pas, and determined not to make the same mistake again, Kenton was a forerunner in 1971, when it seemed briefly that the “surround-sound” four-speaker Quadraphonic system was the up-coming sensation. “Brigham Young,” “Butler” and “National Anthems” were all recorded by Bill Putnam in quadraphonic and issued as such with considerable fanfare by Creative World. Since quad turned out to be a non-starter, and hardly anyone was equipped to play the system anyway, it’s as well that the LPs were stereo-compatible!

Stan Kenton was an honest man, renowned for speaking (and sometimes changing) his mind. Always highly involved in the technical recording of his orchestra, he of course came to embrace stereo as a real advance in recording techniques. In retrospect, the shame is that the system wasn’t developed ten years earlier. Just think of how the Innovations Orchestra might have sounded in full-blown, hi-fi splendor!

One Liner: “Stan Kenton taught me to pull out all the stops and "Do what you love!", as long as you can. — Don Marler in Wichita,KS

Conte Candoli

(An appreciation of his life and music, and review of his memorial service)
By Steven D. Harris in Pasadena (Dec 22, 2001)

For anyone familiar with Conte Candoli’s magical sound on the trumpet, you knew you were listening to a jazz legend. It was a rich and pure sound, full of emotion and intense feeling, whether it is a ballad or a swinging bebop number. During his professional career, which dated back to 1944 (that’s 57 incredible years), he never ran out of musical ideas. He was equally at ease in a trio setting or a full concert orchestra, and played any role to the best of his ability. For anyone who knew the man personally, I’m sure they would say their life was enriched from knowing Conte. I was one of these fortunate people.

Conte left us on December 14, 2001 from cancer at the age of 74. I have been asked to report on his memorial service, which took place on Friday at 2PM, Dec. 21 at the Church On The Way in Woodland Hills, CA. This was the most organized and beautiful service that I have ever attended. It started on time with an audience of some 200, including family, friends and musical associates. Every speaker has their thoughts together and, with the exception of older brother Pete, kept their time at the microphone down to five minutes. The music selections, too, was appropriate and brief, averaging 4-5 minutes each (the final selection at under two minutes). A list of the speakers (in order) follows:

In the pastor’s opening remarks, he included the 33rd Psalm and stated that “Conte was instrumental in bringing blessings to so many lives...” Next was L.A.’s most treasured DJ, Chuck Niles, who was sort of the House Speaker, introducing everyone to follow. Niles said, “The loss of Conte Candoli is major. With all the positive vibes he projected...he can never be replaced.” Chuck’s remarks were among the most heart felt. At the close of his own recollections, the audience burst into an emotional applause.

The first musical number followed: Over the Rainbow performed by the Pete Jolly Trio with Chuck Berghofer on bass and Joe LaBarbera on drums. Howard Rumsey was then invited to reminisce. There should be a national day of mourning,” he expressed. Then he realized that in a sense, this would be a “international day of mourning instead.” Howard also spoke of the times he played golf with Conte.

The Pete Christlieb Quartet followed with a soulful rendition of “The Very Thought Of You” with the same rhythm section as the first number. Then he spoke of “The Tonight Show Years” when Pete and Conte played in Doc Severinson’s NBC Orchestra for Johnny Carson. (This period lasted from about 1972-92.) Christlieb talked of playing solos with the band and quipped, “Whether who played first or not, Conte always played the chorus I wish I had played.”

Tommy Newsom, another famous (and comical) Tonight Show band member, admitted that as a total musician, everyone in the band favored Conte over Doc. Newsom remembered seeing Conte as a teenager with Woody’s great First Herd in 1945. He said, “When you heard Conte play at that time, you knew he had it.” Tommy also told of when the late producer Freddy DeCordova would do the audience warm-up. It was the same routine every day for three decades. Freddy would ask the band members to state their name. They always mumbled something inaudible, until one day when Conte yelled out “Peckerbreath!” Newsom laughed, “You should have seen the expression on DeCordova’s face. It was like a deer caught in headlights.”

Trumpeter Chuck Findley who spoke next was also an off and on member of the Tonight Show band. He called Conte his hero and remembered “Conte never played the same solo twice.” While most of the band would play simple riffs to warm-up their chops during rehearsal, “Conte’s warm-up would be something incredible like [Coltrane’s] ‘Giant Steps.”

Drummer Frank Capp was next to pay homage to the musician he had worked with since 1952, when they were both on the Kenton band. Capp was the last person to see Conte alive and played on numerous sessions with him, including the Mercury LP “The Brothers Candoli” in the ‘60s. “When Conte played,” Capp said, “there was no mistaking him. There are not enough superlatives for Conte.” The Ross Tompkins Quartet performed next on “Someone to Watch over me”, abetted by Findley, Berghofer and LaBarbera.

Then came the anxiously awaited moment for Pete Candoli, four years senior to Conte. (Pete spoke for about 15 minutes.) The memorial program titled this “The Final Years Eulogy,” but Pete really focused on some of the earliest memories he had of his kid brother. Pete remembered, “We played the peckhorn in parades when he was about four and I was about eight... Nothing has ever happened since then in Mishiwaka [Indiana]. Our father liked to hunt rabbit and we had a hunting dog. When the terrier died, Conte buried him in the backyard. I was making a cross when I noticed Conte in his room upstairs. He opened the window and was playing ‘Taps” and I started to bow my head.” This was the most touching story of the ceremony. Pete recalled that during Conte’s formative years, he was on a “Roy Eldridge kick. Even at age 16, he had all the facilities [to become a great jazz musician.]” When he was with Kenton in 1953, my parents saw the band in South Bend, [Indiana]. Our father said to our mother “I think Maynard [Ferguson] plays higher than Pete. Our mother said, “BULLSHIT!!!” Pete’s stories were of great insight and a proper conclusion the proceedings, before closing with a final number with Findley and the trio playing a brief rendition of “I’ll be seeing you.”

Howard Rumsey closed the service with: “I am saying good-bye to Connate now and will ask him to save me a seat.”

One Liner: “Some say I married my wife Emily for her Stan Kenton Collection.” — Dave Umemoto in Hillksborough, California

Conte Candoli


Conte Candoli a highly regarded jazz trumpeter who was a fixture in “The Tonight Show” band in the years Johnny Carson originated the show from Burbank, has died. He was 74. Candoli died Friday of cancer at Monterey Palms Convalescent Home in Palm Desert.

Along with his older brother, Pete, also a first-rate jazz trumpeter, Candoli was a favorite at Southern California clubs and concert halls for decades. When they weren’t working in “The Tonight Show” band, they made a good living in the anonymity of studio work, supporting artists like Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald and Nat King Cole. Candoli was born Secondo Candoli in Mishawaka, Ind. His father worked in a factory and played trumpet as a hobby. He wanted his sons to follow in his footsteps, not in the factory but in music. The Candoli brothers grew up in a house full of instruments, including the trombone and saxophone. Over the years, Candoli developed a style based on Dizzy Gillespie’s bebop playing, adding Miles Davis and Clifford Brown as influences later on. He also was well regarded as an improviser.

“When I was getting into my teens,” Candoli told a reporter some years ago, “I loved [Harry] James . . . Then I got with Roy Eldridge. They were each spectacular players in their own way. Then at around 18 I started to move into Dizzy. I didn’t appreciate [Louis] Armstrong until I got older. The same with Duke Ellington. When I was a kid, I thought they were a bunch of old men.”

During the war years, Candoli, a mere 16, got his first big-time professional work, playing with Woody Herman’s orchestra during his high school summer vacations. “My brother, Pete, played lead with Woody and recommended me,” Candoli once told a reporter. “I told Woody I could barely read [music] and he said, ‘I know that, kid, but I could care less. I want you with the band and you’ll learn how to read in a few weeks.’ Boy, was he right.” Herman, however, told Candoli to finish his high school courses. When he graduated, Candoli again joined Herman’s band. He later played with Stan Kenton’s band and several other lesser-known groups before coming to Los Angeles in the 1950s to play with bassist Howard Rumsey’s Lighthouse All-Stars, then the hot ticket in Southern California.

After leaving the All-Stars in 1960, Candoli worked extensively with drummer Shelly Manne and, in 1968, began playing with “The Tonight Show” band—then based in New York—on its West Coast visits. When Carson moved the show to Burbank in 1972, Candoli joined the band for what was to be a 20-year run. He left when Carson retired in 1992.

“Usually you’d never think you’d do a steady gig for 20 years . . .. I was able to raise a family and stay in one place.” “ ‘The Tonight Show’ enhanced my career,” he told jazz writer Zan Stewart. “It made me comfortable, so when I go out and play jazz, I’m in a good frame of mind. It gives me a sense of security, and that feels good. It certainly never dampened my desire to play.” His brother survives Candoli.


One Liner (Well, more than one): “Stan Kenton was my musical epiphany. Prior to hearing the Kenton band live for the first time, I always regarded big band music primarily as nostalgia, although I loved it. However, Kenton showed me that big band music could be refreshingly contemporary, and from him I went on to discover Maynard Ferguson, Woody Herman, Don Ellis, and Buddy Rich. I actually anticipated hearing "Eager Beaver" and "Collaboration" at that first concert, but instead my ears were opened up to the latest compositions of Ken Hanna ("Lonely Windrose") and Hank Levy ("Indra", "A Step Beyond"), although Stan did acknowledge his past with "Intermission Riff" and "Peanut Vendor". I was also able to return to the music of Ted Heath, with which I had been familiar since childhood, and re-examine it in an entirely new light, from the perspective of the arrangements. My exposure to Kenton provided me with a general appreciation for the artistry of the arranger.” — Robert J. Robbins in Broomall, PA

By Peter C. Newman in Vancouver

As a young boy, when I escaped to Canada from war-torn Europe in the 1940s, I knew nothing of the New World or its culture. Every evening, I listened to American network news documentaries, then a popular radio feature, and late at night, long after my parents thought I was asleep, lying there with the radio tuned right down (its dial light removed so there would be no telltale glow), I tuned into other, more exciting worlds.
The midnight airwaves were filled with pickups from ballrooms across North America where the big bands were swinging high, and it was their music that first opened the way for me into the music of the continent to which I had so lately and luckily come. When I finally fell asleep after three or four hours of the documentaries and the music, I would dream about Franklin Roosevelt, Glenn Miller, Harry Truman, Tommy Dorsey, Edward R. Murrow and Charlie Barnet.

Then one night, I picked up a remote broadcast from the Rendezvous Ballroom in Balboa Beach, California, and heard Stan Kenton for the first time. The music came pouring out of my little radio like a syncopated hailstorm. The sound engulfed me with its azure beauty, the soloists cutting into the static of my radio in dissonant outbursts, like voices shouting into the wind.

Right then and there began my obsession with Kenton’s music. I have listened to it, studied it and played it ever since. As far as I was concerned, Kenton first moved big bands away from their “Polka dots and moonbeams” phase into a meaningful rapport with the real world.

That was a long time ago, but Stan’s music has always transcended the generations, as an enduring interpretation of our times. It projects—then and now—an undeniable truth: that this is not just a big band, not just jazz, but eternal music with the inner authority of a great work of art.

One Liner: “Stan brought the trombone to life which is why i play it.” — Phil Spina in Locust Valley, NY

Manny Albam, Jazz Composer and Player, Dies at 79

(Appeared October 6, 2001 in the New York Times)
By Peter Keepnews

Manny Albam, a musician, composer and arranger in the jazz world of the 1950’s and 60’s who also played a major role in the growth of jazz education, died on Tuesday at his home in Croton, N.Y. He was 79. The cause was cancer, his family said.

Although he was far from a household name even at the height of his career, Mr. Albam did much to shape the sound of jazz between the end of World War II and the rock onslaught of the 60’s. As a composer and arranger, he worked with the big bands of Count Basie, Woody Herman, Stan Kenton and Buddy Rich, as well as with Dizzy Gillespie, Stan Getz, Gerry Mulligan, Coleman Hawkins and others. He wrote arrangements for prominent singers, including Sarah Vaughan, Carmen McRae and Dakota Staton.

He also wrote music for television shows and commercials and recorded several critically praised albums under his own name. In recent years, the Carnegie Hall Jazz Band commissioned several works from him.

Although education was his primary focus over the last three decades, Mr. Albam was active as an arranger into the 90’s. In 1997 he provided most of the arrangements for the saxophonist Joe Lovano’s album “Celebrating Sinatra” and the jazz pianist Hank Jones’s collaboration with the Meridian String Quartet. In 1999 he worked with the singer Nancy Marano and the 60-piece Netherlands Metropole Orchestra on the album “If you could see us now.”

Born in the Dominican Republic on June 24, 1922, Emmanuel Albam was reared in New York City, where he took up the saxophone while he was a student at Stuyvesant High School. He began his professional career in 1940 and over the next few years played alto and baritone saxophone with a number of bands. After getting out of the Army in 1946, while playing with the big bands of Charlie Barnet, Jerry Wald and others, he began to write music. By the early 50’s he had given up playing to become a full-time composer and arranger.

Mr. Albam never led a regular working band. But from 1955 to 1966 he recorded several albums as the leader of studio ensembles for labels like RCA Victor, Coral and Solid State. Those albums included some of his most ambitious compositions, among them “The Blues Is Everybody’s Business” and the suite “Soul of the City.”

In 1964 Mr. Albam became involved in the still young field of jazz education, establishing a summer arranging workshop at the Eastman School of Music. He later taught at Glassboro State College in New Jersey and the Manhattan School of Music. In 1988 he became the associate musical director of the Jazz Composers Workshop, which the music licensing organization BMI established to guide aspiring composers and arrangers in the creation of new works for big bands. He succeeded Bob Brookmeyer as musical director and held the position until his death.

Mr. Albam is survived by his wife, Betty Hindes; a son, Evan, of Nyack, N.Y.; two daughters, Amy Albam of Nyack and Kate Crain of El Sobrante, Calif.; two stepsons, Paul Hindes of New York and Andrew Hindes of Eagle Rock, Calif.; three grandchildren; and four step-grandchildren. Burt Korall, the director of the BMI Jazz Composers Workshop and a friend of Mr. Albam’s, said that after Mr. Albam’s jazz version of the “West Side Story” score (which was nominated for a Grammy Award) was released in 1958, the composer, Leonard Bernstein, called Mr. Albam. “He was very impressed by Manny’s writing,” Mr. Korall recalled. “He said, ‘Anytime you want to write something for the Philharmonic, let me know.’ And that frightened Manny so much that he started studying.”

Mr. Albam studied with the composer Tibor Serly from 1958 to 1960, and although he never did write anything for the Philharmonic, he went on to compose a number of chamber and orchestral works.

One Liner: “In 1954, when I was 13, a neighbor gave me a windup victrola with a stack of 78s, one of which was Stan Kenton and June Christy, “Willow Weep for Me.” The flip side was “Bongo Riff.” I was hooked on the Doctor!” – Bob Seibel in Newburyport, Massachusetts

Manny Albam
By Steve Voce in London
(Steve Voce writing for the INDEPENDENT)

Emmanuel ‘Manny’ Albam, saxophonist and composer: born at sea 24 June 1922; died New York, October 2, 2001. ‘I have what might be called a traditional approach to the idea of swinging. ‘ Manny Albam’s comment did not reflect the fact that he was at the forefront of jazz orchestration in the Fifties and Sixties. His rise paralleled that of Gil Evans, although the work of the two men was vastly different. They were amongst the most influential orchestrators of their times. ‘I never forget,’ Albam said, ‘that the soloists are at least as important as the writing, if not more important.’ Whilst the charts written by Evans put pressure on the soloists to respond in a certain way, Albam’s writing was more strictly disciplined and smart, leaving spaces for the soloists to fill as they wished. Both men drew out the best of the top jazz musicians in New York. In his earlier days Albam had a fierce black moustache that his upper lip completely. ‘It was a moustache of world-class splendour,’ said George Avakian. ‘His secret: “never cut.”’ Albam was a small man and it seemed as though the moustache was dragging him around. In later years it mellowed, whitened and grew bushy. The record books say that Albam was born in Samaná, on one of the Caicos Islands in the Dominican Republic. This is not correct. In 1922 his parents sailed from their native Russia to Florida. The ship was not allowed to dock and the captain set sail instead to Samaná. Manny Albam was born en route at sea. The family eventually was allowed into the United States, and Albam was brought up in New York. ‘I remember winding up the Victrola and playing the opera records my mother had bought. I’d hear them singing along with them while she was busy doing other things in the kitchen. ‘I was only six or seven when I went into a friend’s house and heard a record his older brother was playing. It was by Bix Beiderbecke, and it really hooked me. It let me know there was other music in the world. In high school I finally got a clarinet in my hand and learned how to use it.’

Graduating when he was 16, Albam decided not to continue his studies and went on the road with the Dixieland trumpeter Muggsy Spanier. After touring army camps with Spanier’s band he joined that of Bob Chester, where he met future jazz stars such as Bill Harris, Nick Travis and John La Porta. He next helped the saxophonist George Auld to put a band together. ‘I didn’t do much writing for that band, but I sure learned how to write by playing in it.’ Another saxophone player, Budd Johnson, was writing for the band, and Albam grilled him each time he brought an arrangement in. ‘Why did you do this? Aren’t those two notes going to clash/’ Johnson spent hours explaining, and thus Albam learned how to write music. He also spent a lot of time with trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie who had recorded with the Auld band. ‘He could also stay at the piano for hours showing me what Thelonious Monk had done the night before. Everybody was trying to teach you something at that time.’

Albam admired the playing of Duke Ellington’s baritone sax player Harry Carney and he took up the instrument himself. He next moved to Charlie Barnet’s band where he was hired as much as a writer as a saxophone player. When Barnet’s band broke up Albam joined the more commercial orchestra led by trumpeter Charlie Spivak. ‘For a few years I wrote two arrangements a week for the band. It was the best learning period I had.’ In 1943 he joined the avant garde band led by Boyd Raeburn until he went into the Army in 1945. On his discharge he worked and wrote for similar bands until in 1951 when the demand for his writing was so great, he was able to give up playing to concentrate on writing. During the next two decades he recorded many albums with studio bands made up from the top jazz stars and had his arrangements recorded by Gerry Mulligan, Woody Herman, Stan Kenton, Buddy Rich, Stan Getz and many others. He also wrote for singers like Sarah Vaughan, Carmen McRae and Dakota Staton.

‘In about 1957 I wrote the jazz version of “West Side Story”. Leonard Bernstein heard it and liked it and said “Anytime you want to write something for my orchestra, send me the score.” He was the conductor of the New York Philharmonic at the time and, well that scared the hell out of me! So much so that I went to Tibor Serly and studied composition with him for a couple of years.
‘He taught me quite a bit about form. He had me take Mozart piano sonatas and arrange them for string quartets and make them bigger and bigger by adding instruments. So, without him knowing it, Bernstein was the guy who put the fear into me and made me go out and learn more.
In 1957 Albam made what many consider to be his best album. It was a single piece called ‘The Blues Is Everybody’s Business’. Parts of it were with strings and parts with a big band. It featured the jazz soloists Bob Brookmeyer on valve trombone, altoist Phil Woods and tenorist Al Cohn. At the time it was largely dismissed as obscure, but it now seems that it may have been one of the major works of jazz orchestration.
Between 1955 and 1962 he recorded albums for RCA, Coral, Dot, United Artists and Impulse. Although Albam made an album of film themes in 1962 he wrote for only three short films, one of which featured the Charlie Barnet Band, ‘Record Hop’ (1959). Orson Welles narrated and Albam wrote the music for ‘Around The World of Mike Todd’ (1968) and Albam also wrote the score for ‘Four Unknowns’ (1969), a collection of films by comedians including Laurel and Hardy and Buster Keaton.

‘Watching a movie without music is like eating with a bad cold: you miss the flavour,’ he said. ‘A good score provides the seasoning for the impact of the script.’ ‘I did some commercials for a while,’ he recalled, ‘and the people you deal with speak a completely foreign language. I’ve felt at times I might as well be in Poland, because I didn’t know what they were talking about.’ In 1964 Albam switched his focus to jazz education and, after students at the Eastman School, New York’s eminent music college, had used Albam’s ‘The Blues Is Everybody’s Business’ as a study piece, Albam was invited to teach there. He worked also in workshops with Bob Brookmeyer, another distinguished educator, and he continued to write. Two of the world’s finest alto saxophonists, Phil Woods and Bud Shank, each recorded versions of Albam ‘s ‘Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Jazz Orchestra’, Shank’s version being recorded in concert in London in 1985 with the Royal Philharmonic.
Albam continued to write and one of his later albums ‘Celebrating Sinatra ‘, written for the ubiquitous saxophone player Joe Lovano and using voice and a multitude of harps to back the saxophone, remains controversial.

His hobby was fishing. ‘You get a lot of thinking done staring at that thin line disappearing into the water. I’m glad I’m in music. It’s a good community. There’s always a hand that reaches out to you.’

Balboa Revisited
By Lillian Arganian in East Lansing

For some of us the forties have never died, whether or not we were alive at the time. The cute drawing of the waitress bearing the tray of soda, steaming coffee and burger on the menus at Ruby’s on Redondo Beach may seem retro, but she’s there, red-and-white striped shortie outfit, high heels, and big ribbon atop her bobbed hair. Somehow it seems right.

So it was not at all surprising, though it was certainly pleasant, to be sitting in colorful, red-and-white Ruby’s at 9:40 in the morning on Friday, May 25th, 2001, listening to, of all things, “Painted Rhythm” on the background music, followed by a swinging “Begin the Beguine.” This couldn’t have been more perfect. It was almost exactly sixty years ago that Stanley Newcomb Kenton set the world on its ear at the Rendezvous Ballroom on Balboa Beach, California, and just about 40 minutes south of here in California-speak.
Overall the weekend had been cloudy, dismal, a precursor of the June Gloom they talk about here, but today it was noticeably brighter, perhaps encouraged by the music. This weekend was set aside for a 4-day celebration called “Groovin’ High,” honoring the creation of bebop. But Southern California has seen many commemorations of Stan Kenton, too, starting with the comprehensive (and thrilling!) Back to Balboa of 1991. There was the marvelous 4-day gig The Kenton Era of 1997. This year alone there are two separate celebrations of the man out here, brought about by popular demand. Kenton tributes abound worldwide, in fact—the several Rendezvous in Britain fetes in the United Kingdom, the several-years-running annual tributes by Ray Eubanks and the Columbus Jazz Orchestra, in Ohio, the big band tours of Mike Vax and his Kenton alumni stalwarts, and the August sounds of every drum corps, enthusiastically showing off their own versions of the Wall of Sound, to name just a few. [Editor’s Note: The Southern Californian reunions and events together Kenton alumni cannot be overlooked].

Stanley Newcomb Kenton had big ideas, progressive ideas, innovative ideas, all those years ago. Uncannily, they sound just right for today—still. Jazz education—another of his ideas—is as common in most schools and colleges as math and science. Integrity and musicianship, two of his hallmarks, can be found everywhere that charts are played.

Musicians who were with him have never forgotten the experience, and love to tell stories from that period with amazingly remembered detail. Many people do radio tributes to him at any given time. Some who grew with the music have never stopped loving it. Some young people, hearing it for the first time, sum up their experience in a single word: “Man!”

It all started on a sandy beach by the Pacific Ocean, one day unlike any other, just about sixty years ago, on a peninsula known as Balboa…

Dee Barton
By Steve Voce in London
(This article was posted by Voce to the Jazz-Westcoast news group)

Mary Ann Mobley was Dee Barton’s girl friend at school when they were 15. She went on to win the ‘Miss America’ title. ‘ Dee is one of the most talented and nicest people you’d want to meet,’ she said. ‘He has such an enviable reputation in the music business, but it’s a behind the scenes kind of reputation.’

That was a good summary of one of the most versatile and dedicated jazz musicians. In his time Barton composed and arranged music for jazz and symphony orchestras led a big band, played trombone, piano, drums and bass and taught several generations of young musicians. Clint Eastwood commissioned him to write the scores for four of his films, and Barton wrote the music for TV series such as ‘Batman’, ‘The Rockford Files’, ‘Ironside’ and many more.

‘My dad brought home an old E flat mellophone and at the age of three I figured out the fingerings on it.’ From then on his life was devoted to music. As soon as his arms were long enough to manipulate the slide, Barton took up the trombone. Schools in Mississippi were thorough in musical education and most of them had one or more big bands.

Barton’s family had moved from Texas to Mississippi in 1941, and his father became the band director at Starkville High School. Barton, who practised in the band room for ten hours a day, progressed so well in music that when his father was ill, he was able to take over his work and teach all of his classes for two years to keep the job.

Early in his youth Barton had an ambition to join the progressive band led by Stan Kenton. He met the pianist first backstage at a concert in 1953 when Barton was 15. ‘Stan was very strange in one sense,’ said Barton. ‘He never forgot the name of anybody I ever saw him meet. I didn’t see him until two years later when I’d grown some. So I was surprised when he called me by name.’

Determined then to get away from Mississippi, Barton went on the road in 1956 with the big band led by Ralph Marterie. There was not much depth to the music. ‘He was not a kind man, and it was a most unpleasant experience that almost turned me against the road altogether.’ He left the band when it reached New York three weeks later, and for a few delirious nights replaced an absent trombonist in the Maynard Ferguson Dream Band. But it was back to drudgery in the Charlie Spivak band soon afterwards. ‘I hadn’t seen so much crap in all my life and I didn’t like any of it.’

In 1957 Barton already had a high reputation amongst musicians. He wanted to study composition at North Texas State University but had no money for fees. Dr Eugene Hall, head of a department of music there was so impressed that he arranged a full scholarship and told Barton ‘I’ll pay for everything.’
Stan Kenton came to teach at a music clinic at the university in August 1959. He was already familiar with Barton’s writing abilities and already knew two scores, ‘Waltz of the Prophets’ and ‘Turtle Talk’ both of which Barton later recorded with him. Barton thus was already a mature and exciting composer when in 1961, at the age of 23; he joined Kenton’s band. His mastery of timing and the interweaving of musical lines in his compositions made him ideal for Kenton. By the end of the year the two charts were recorded as part of Kenton’s remarkable Grammy Award-winning ‘Adventures In Jazz’ album.

Kenton and Barton had a good relationship and indeed Barton was popular throughout the band, particularly since he was a good cook. ‘When we were on the road the guys would pitch in by going to the market for me, and I’d spend the whole day cooking spaghetti, garlic bread and salad. I did this about 30 times for the band.’

Barton had substituted for Kenton’s erratic drummer on occasion and in June 1962 he gave up the trombone job and became the band’s regular drummer. It was an inspired move, although his trombone solos, with their unique combination of dexterity and feeling, were missed. However, the drum role was much more important and in it Barton was able to influence the whole band. At the time it was without stars, and much of its character came from his drumming and writing.

The band made a tour of Europe in 1963 when each concert, in a memorable and unusual gesture, opened with a slow ballad version of ‘I’m Glad There Is You’ instead of the more normal flag waver used to begin a performance. ‘One of the highlights was visiting the town of Barton where my ancestors are from,’ said Barton. He continued enigmatically. ‘It was Welsh country between England and Scotland. We stopped for about 20 minutes and everybody was running around with blue eyes and blond hair. I felt like I was home.’
He left the band to pursue a wider career, although he returned for short tours and in 1968 he worked with the band on the Capitol album ‘Stan Kenton Conducts The Jazz Compositions of Dee Barton’. Barton moved to Los Angeles and eventually wrote the scores for more than 50 Hollywood films.

In his spare time he ran a big band that played regularly at Donte’s, a Hollywood nightclub. It was here that Clint Eastwood heard him first, and commissioned him to write the scores for his films “Play Misty For staged by Steven D. Harris, Ed “Gabe” Gabel, Don Armstrong, Ken Allan, Alan Yankee, Ken Poston bringing Me” (1971), “High Plains Drifter” (1972), “Thunderbolt And Lightfoot” (1974) and “Every Which Way But Loose” (1978). He also had a hand in the writing for another five of Eastwood’s films, including Dirty Harry (1971) and Magnum Force (1973).

Over these years he worked as a music consultant for Frank Sinatra, the Rolling Stones, Peggy Lee, Tony Bennett, John Lennon and others. He helped Jim Webb with the composition of “MacArthur Park”. Barton later wrote an arrangement of the tune for Kenton and it became one of the most memorable recordings of Kenton’s last decades.
In 1973 Barton moved to Memphis to become musical director of Media And Jingle Company. He worked with the company in commercial music until 1988 when he left to teach seminars at universities across America. He continued to teach and work with young people and in 1996 an album ‘The Dallas Jazz Orchestra Plays Dee Barton’ was nominated for a Grammy. He continued working in films, but by now mostly in Europe. He was particularly pleased to work in this capacity with the London Symphony Orchestra.

Moving to Brandon, Mississippi in 1998 he became composer in residence at Jackson State University. ‘I teach orchestration, composition and advanced theory. Working with kids is what I really enjoy. They’re hungry for somebody that has done it, rather than somebody that has gone to school all their life.’

Dee Barton, composer, orchestrator, educator, bandleader, trombonist, drummer: born Houston, Texas, 18 September 1937; twice married, one son, one daughter; died Brandon, Mississippi 3 December 2001.

Hank Levy
By Jeff Sultanof in Patterson, NJ

I met Hank Levy at an IAJE conference, more specifically when some of the attendees met in Tony Agostinelli’s room to hang out (This was also when I first met the great Mike Vax, Terry Vosbein and Bob Florence). I was able to tell Hank how much his music meant to me, and how important I considered his contributions to American music. He was visibly moved and thanked me. During the course of the evening, I saw firsthand the warmth of this great man.

For me, anyway, when I admire a composer/arranger, he/she becomes my friend even if I don’t meet him/her; I have been blessed to actually become friends with many of my heroes over the years. Even though I didn’t know him, Hank was a true friend during his writing days with Kenton, because he helped to show a new way for the jazz ensemble. I couldn’t wait to have my college band play “Chiapas” when I received the parts in the mail from Creative World. Naturally they cursed and let me know in no uncertain terms that they did not want to work so hard to play a piece. But when they did play it finally in front of an audience, and the audience went crazy, the smiles on their faces made the work worthwhile. When you mastered something of Hank’s, you learned something and you became a better musician.

Of course the greatest tribute to Hank is to play his music and to remember him. But an even greater tribute, as far as I’m concerned, is to remember and re-discover what his contribution was. He helped liberate the jazz ensemble in writing pieces in ‘odd’ time signatures that were musical and challenging to play. Ensembles simply don’t play this kind of music anymore, and for many, Hank’s music has been put aside and forgotten. But even further, no one seems to have taken the gauntlet and continued the explorations of music in 5, 7, 11, and 13. Wouldn’t it be nice if, for every ten arrangements we write, at least one new one should be something other than 4/4, ¾ and 6/8?

To me, that would be the greatest honor for Hank: to continue the path he helped to bust open with another gifted man, Don Ellis, whose music is also rarely if ever played anymore. And so, during this time of the high holidays when Jewish people remember the dead, I am going to sharpen my pencil and follow my own suggestion.

And think of Hank.

Hank Levy
By Kenny Mathieson

Baritone saxophone, composer, arranger
Born: September 27, 1927 in Baltimore, Maryland Died: September 18, 2001 in Baltimore, Maryland
Innovative Arranger for Kenton and Others

Hank Levy was best known for his work as jazz composer and arranger, notably with bands led by Don Ellis and Stan Kenton, and later for his work as a jazz educator was.

Henry J. Levy graduated from the City College in Baltimore, and studied at the College of William and Mary, the Peabody Conservatory, the Catholic University of America, and Towson University, where he received his doctorate. He attended the Navy School of Music during his military service in the late 1940s.
He joined the Stan Kenton Orchestra as a baritone saxophonist in 1953. Although the job lasted only six months, he remained on friendly terms with Kenton, and became an arranger for the band in 1969. He had arranged for Sal Salvador and Don Ellis in the 1960s.

He was interested in giving jazz what he called “a kick in the rear end” by using odd meters like 5/4, 7/4, 9/4 and 13/8, and by employing unusual harmonies and voicings. His music was considered difficult to master but rewarding to play by the various bands with which he was associated, including his own groups.
He wrote a number of large-scale compositions, including his Opus for Overextended Jazz Ensemble, which was premiered by the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in 1971.

He joined his family’s gourmet food and wine shop in Baltimore after leaving Kenton in 1963, and was an expert in fine wines. In 1968, he gave up his role in the business to take up a full-time appointment teaching jazz at Towson University, where he is credited with establishing the jazz program and college band as among the best in the country. He retired in 1989 after 21 years as head of the department.

A video documentary on his life and work, “Ahead of Time: Ahead of Time” was completed in 2000, made by Audio Visual Artist’s Productions. The owner of the company, Dick Slade, became an admirer when he heard Levy’s arrangements on a Kenton album in 1972.

He died of congestive heart failure. His wife, Gloria, predeceased him in 1996.

[Editor’s Note: A bit of Kentonia for us all: Hank Levy first worked for a short time in the Kenton band as a replacement for Bob Gioga in the early 1950s. Leaving his family’s meatpacking business, and then returning to it.... As he grew in stature, and he shaped the Towson jazz program, he began also writing in that odd-meter for which he became famous. When Stanley first heard those charts being played by the Towson orchestra and then the Don Ellis orchestra, and asked about them, he queried: “Is that the same Hank Levy that played in my band?” When it was acknowledged that it was the same Levy, his reaction was: “He never wrote like that when he was with me!” Stanley commissioned some charts from Hank.... And in the early 1970s, called Hank to rehearse his band with those commissioned charts...word was that they wanted to throw Hank off of the roof of a Boston hotel, because of their has been reported that Willie Maiden required that his charts be written in 4/4, with the accents at the places where the odd-meters showed themselves. Hank wrote about these charts in his book “The Time Revolution.” Kenton produced many of those early charts played by the Towson State band on Creative World.... A double LP was issued. On a personal note, Hank and this Editor were early risers. When we attended events we were usually among the first for coffee an’. We would have a coffee “clatch” which grew as it got later in the morning. Learned a lot about Hank’s humanity during those chats. I’ll miss him.]

PERFORMANCE at Oak Crest Village
Recorded in concert for Hank at his home care facility in March of 2001
Available from Ray Disney, Sonority, 7701 Gervis Street, Springfield VA 22151
Phone: 703-354-1557. $16.50

Hank Levy
By Mike Vax in Oakland, CA

The true story from someone who was there...Stan really liked Don Ellis’ band and kept talking about the time charts and this guy who wrote for Don who used to write for the band. Well, those of us who were big fans of Don’s band knew of Hank Levy very well. The guys, who didn’t know much about Hank, didn’t have any idea what they were getting into. Willie Maiden, being the wonderful curmudgeon that he was, just grumbled a bunch and said something about “not swinging....” Hank met us at the Bradford Hotel in Boston, where we rehearsed in this old meeting room that was really an attic on the top of the hotel. The first tune we tried was “Chiapas,” and we sounded like a junior high school band. About the only one who felt comfortable with it at all was John Von Ohlen, and he was “weird enough” to have made a trip to India, so he felt right at home with it. I can remember Stanley with his head leaning on the piano, then looking up and just shaking his head in frustration. His look was like “What have I started here?” Willie was over on the Bari chair still talking about “not swinging,” and “Dickus” was saying something like “OK, lets try again, I know we can do this.” But the tone in his voice was more like a question than a statement. We were such neophytes that at one point I played a figure completely backwards and the whole band followed me! I’m not sure if that means that I was a really strong and forceful lead player, or everyone was just too mixed up and was playing by ear.

BUT - Hank was a great teacher and got us clapping rhythmic figures and we actually performed “Chiapas” that night. If memory serves me correctly, it was at Lennie’s on the Turnpike. Hank’s charts never got easier, but we did get more used to playing them, and I for one really enjoyed the challenge of “Time” music. Willie just kept grumbling and rewriting his charts in 4/4, but he too sounded great on them. Hank was always a complete gentleman and always upbeat about everything. It was a joy to have him ride the bus with us when he came out to be with the band.

An abbreviated 40-year look at the Kenton Band at 60
By Ed Bride in Lenox, MA

It was a hot Sunday afternoon in September, and I was driving around the Berkshires, unable to decide whether to listen to the Red Sox lose or the Patriots lose. My AM radio was scanning towards the right side of the dial, when the most familiar strains of “Peanut Vendor” grabbed my attention and turned a sour mood into joy.

This was “the” version of Peanut Vendor, from “Kenton in Hi-Fi,” either the first or second Kenton tune I had ever heard. Talk about a rush! Right there amongst the static, and commercials, and just before a Barbara Streisand classic from the 1960s, came Kenton, in the mainstream.

What amazed me about this moment was the fact that someone was programming Stan Kenton music during “normal” hours. Not a special; not nostalgia; and not (as was the case the last time this happened, on Memorial Day) a bunch of 1940s dance tunes. This was vintage Kenton. And on AM radio, no less. Not “AM” as in morning; AM as in the opposite of FM!

The pleasant surprise caused some reflection, which is appropriate during this year when we observe the 60th anniversary of Kenton’s debut as a leader. Actually, I cheated, because some of this reflection was done in advance of my own Memorial Day tribute on Northeast Public Radio (Albany and environs). Rather than playing a “favorites” list which could have been dominated by one era or type of music, or which would just be a retread of hits-over-the-years, it was my objective to fairly sample each decade of the Kenton band’s existence, selecting music that exemplified a range of dynamics and styles.

I’m not sure whether the numbers I selected would make it to my own “favorites” CD, which is rather like asking someone to name their favorite child. But I do believe that arranged in chronological order, these do provide that fair sampling, and could comprise a useful 45 minutes to expose a student or young fan to the spectrum of styles, emotions, and musical flavors that became engraved in the minds of so many of us.

Of course, you start with a fresh palate: Artistry in Rhythm, choose any version recorded in the 1940s. Progress with Harlem Folk Dance (1943), which is not something we often hear. Despite Kenton’s early concentration on dance music, this number certainly presaged the driving rhythm, the saxophone chorus, the trombones and the brass wall that characterized Kenton’s entire career.

One of the 1940s favorites that is representative of Kenton’s inventiveness is Opus in Pastels (1946), played with just saxophones and rhythm. The ensemble/unison playing vibrates through the body in a way that is hard to describe. One simply must listen. What an introduction this number makes for the uninitiated.

As we travel the cusp between the 40s and 50s, we find the Innovations orchestra. Of all the pieces that afford majesty and surprise, I chose the impressionistic Rugolo’s “Mirage”. Play this for a classical music aficionado and watch them squirm. And then raise their eyebrows. And then perhaps mop the brow…great writing, absolutely thrilling!

When I was in eighth grade, I asked the local record store proprietor about this album (you could do that in those days), and he cautioned me that I wouldn’t be interested, I shouldn’t buy it. At that time, he might have been right, of course. But can you imagine the owner of a small shop, where such unconventional music was in the bins, advising a customer that the music was too …er… progressive for someone of his age? Right or wrong, I’m captivated by the memory, which the playing of Mirage (as I’m writing this) conjures. More volume, please. Written in late 1940s, recorded in 1950.

And a rhetorical question: Why can’t we get music like this played today? The 1950s were, to my mind, the most creatively prolific period of Kenton’s musical life. For evidence, I started with “Egdon Heath” (Russo’s self-described foray into minimalism). This was a deep and complicated example of symphonic music that enchanted Stan, on and off, for the better part of a human generation.

Moving ahead to Contemporary Concepts, you can’t have a representative anthology without including one of the finest saxophone solos ever recorded (certainly in the ballad style), Bill Perkins on “Yesterdays.” This number is so haunting that I purchased the score, to read along with Perk. Of course, it turns out that that’s impossible, because there is almost no sax part, save the opening few bars. It’s interesting to see the parts for orchestra, nonetheless, and the whole experience is all the more impressive because of Perk’s improvisation over the Holman arrangement.

“Recuerdos,” was appropriate for the Memorial Day show, because its title translates to “reminiscences.” This Cuban Fire piece features the wonderful jazz solos Lennie Neihaus, Sam Noto, Carl Fontana, and Kenton himself, playing in the Latin style that was so evident in Peanut Vendor.

In the 1960s came the all-too-brief mellophonium era, and my survey concentrated not on the best-selling or award-winning albums like West Side Story or Adventures in Time, but on “Adventures in Blues.” I was fascinated by both “Dragonwyck” and “Blue Ghost,” and defy anybody to hear those numbers without some deep, visceral reaction. And for a real barnburner, “The Blues Story” really gets the blood moving.

Then came what many people think of as Kenton’s last hurrah, the Los Angeles Neophonic Orchestra. Not strictly a “Kenton sound,” this orchestra performed music composed by people whom Stan had invited to create material that might not be played elsewhere. It is a fine example of jazz-classical fusion, played by an augmented jazz band without the usually mandatory strings (save me).

The sad thing about the Neophonic is that so few of these pieces have survived to be played by anyone else today. Perhaps it’s another rhetorical question, but is this because nobody has the chops, or because the material would not draw an audience? [Editor’s Note: Two of the Neophonic Concerts have been issued. They are “ephemeral” recordings. To find out more, write: Robert (Bob) Munn, Depth-O-Sound, 303 East 44th Street, New York, NY 19917.]

Then, there was the attempt to popularize the band in its final decade, the 1970s. I chose Pegasus because of a particularly interesting story from 2001, which occurred when Mike Vax and the “Kenton alumni” went on tour. At a stop in Pennsylvania, one of the guest bands in a high school festival asked the Mike Vax band to play Pegasus, the Hank Levy composition characterized by odd time signatures. As related by Big Bands International secretary Robert Robbins, the chart was not in Vax’s library for this tour, and it had not been rehearsed. But one of the bands had it, proffered the chart to Mike, and the band played it flawlessly. That’s a tribute to the quality of musicians around today, as well as to the timelessness of the music itself.

Incidentally, the 1970s recording featured drummer Gary Hobbs and trumpeter Steve Campos, both of who were on the 2001 tour with Vax. If this brief mind excursion hasn’t interested a youngster by now, add the 1970s rock-jazz fusion number, “Live and Let Die,” the Paul McCartney song from the James Bond movie. Something tells me that this particular music wasn’t the band’s (nor Stan’s) favorite, but it helped engage a younger audience, capturing their attention before the other (some might say more substantial) material was played.

Upon reflection, it still provides the kind of visceral thrills that 1950s youngsters experienced when they first came across Intermission Riff. Stan Kenton often said he disapproved of, or at least didn’t have time for, nostalgia. So in keeping with that thinking, the above is presented as a minor tour-de-force, my own collection of Kentonia that might hopefully serve to educate the next generation of listeners.

Back to Balboa for the 60th Anniversary
By Don (DW) Armstrong in Pasadena

The Balboa Pavilion, on the Peninsula, Newport Beach, California, just a block or two from the famous rendezvous Ballroom was the sight of the 60th Anniversary Celebration of the Stan Kenton Orchestra. The August 23, 2001, program featured the music of the ‘50’s. As producer Ken Poston stated “When you think of the Stan Kenton Orchestra of the 1950’s two names come to mind - Bill Holman and Bill Russo. It was about the swingingest, most jazz oriented period in the band’s history...”
With the words swingingest, most jazz oriented, coupled with the names Holman and Russo was enough to move 300 Kenton fans to return to Balboa where it all began. Sixty years later, it was truly.... Back To Balboa.
The “house orchestra” was the Bill Holman Big Band, every chair filled with some of the best in the West. Guest conductors were William Russo, who looked like his recovery was very successful and Bill Holman. Well, what can one say, the “warriors” have kept their orchestras in fine tune, Russo’s in Chicago and Holman’s in Los Angeles.
Kenton alumni in the Holman aggregation included Carl Saunders (tp), Morris Repass (tb) Kenny Shroyer (btb), Bill Perkins (ts), and of course the special guests, Chris Connor, Carl Fontana and Charlie Mariano. There were Kenton people in the audience as well, Mrs. Jo Ann Kenton, Howard Rumsey (b), Glen Roberts (b), Graham Ellis (t) and Mrs. Bob (Dorothy) Gioga. The band members not mentioned above: tp Frank Szabo, Ron Stout, and Bob Sommers. In the trombone section: Jack Redman, Enevolson, and Torres. The sax chairs filled by: Lanny Morgan, Christlieb, Efford, and Herman. The rhythm section was composed of: Chris Clark (b), Jeff Hamilton (d), MacDonald (g), and Christian Jacobs (p).

Russo opened the main program with Frank Speaking, followed by Blues Before and After, Autumn in New York, the fast moving Road Runner, Portrait of a Count, Resist (part of his Neophonic composition), and Calypso.

It was a pleasure to have Chris Connor back in southern California, although it was just for the night. Backed by the rhythm section, she started her set with Lonesome Road, followed with “her song” All About Ronnie, and ended with Lover. After the intermission, Holman conducted several of his own arrangements starting with, “Any Dude Will Do,” “Bemsha Swing,” and “Ruby My Dear.” Then it was time to showcase his arrangements he did for the Stan Kenton Orchestra. He launched right into one of his great hits, “Stompin At The Savoy.” Then came “Fearless ‘Fosdick’ Finlay.” The next treat featured one of the greatest trombone players, Carl Fontana, who played a blues chart backed by the rhythm section and a few band members at various times. Pete Christlieb followed on the beautiful Yesterdays.

Then it was time for Charlie Mariano to step to center stage playing with the band on “What’s New” and “Kingfish.” Mariano than took the lead on the arrangement that Holman wrote for him on “Stella by Starlight.” Mariano spends most of his time on the Europe side of the Atlantic, so it was special for many of us who have not seen him for years. Please come back soon, Charlie.

The closer for the night was Holman’s composition “Zambonie” where many of the players had a chance to solo. Pleased, jazzed, and on cloud nine, the crowd left and were placed on hold until the next super program featuring the music of Stan Kenton.

One Liner: “Stan Kenton gave me the direction I was searching for after my classical piano training - and gave me my profession.” — Joanna Rubin in Belmont Hills, PA

Stan Kenton: Another View
By Noel Wedder in Grand Rapids

Stan was everything and nothing like they imagined him to be. He was the antithesis of his stage persona: brilliant, but tortured; unfathomably complex. Standing before an audience Stan had a magisterial presence, a patriarchal sense of power and authority.

There was no doubt he had more than his share of charisma, but how much of it was real, and how much of it was a figment of someone’s imagination we’ll never know. People he had only a passing acquaintance with (his phenomenal gift for remembering names more often than not was a burden, rather than a helpmate) led them to believe he was genuinely interested in catching-up with everything that had been happening in their lives.

Nothing was further from the truth. Small talk bored him. He was not, as many close to him were aware, an articulate conversationalist since he hardly ever opened a newspaper or read a book. He was interested in only three things; his music, the Band and gossip. He thrived so much on hearing juicy tidbits about people in and out of show business we nicknamed the ‘Rona Barrett’ of the bus.
No one had to tell Stan how the Orchestra sounded. He, more than anyone, knew what it took to keep the Band sounding like a well-oiled, disciplined machine capable of creating a breathtaking range of dazzling emotions, which was one of the reasons he kept the arrangers busy expanding the library.

It was not unusual for us to leave Los Angeles with a book of 200 scores and return with 350. Many of which were played only once, then relegated to the bottom of the folios never to be played again. Other’s like Dee Barton’s brooding, poignant arrangement of ‘Here’s That Rainy Day’ were used as the set piece that opened a concert or dance engagement and was sometimes played twice in a night depending upon Stan’s mood.
Eventually the day would come when he gradually began slipping the bonds of lethargy and came to grips with his all demons before they completely consumed him. Once this happened he would be the first one on the bus effusively greeting everyone by name as they climbed on board, reaching out and patting them on shoulder as they struggled with their gear down the aisle. Even those who had awakened in a foul mood found they couldn’t resist his radiant smile as he made small talk with those in the front compartment.

Moments after the bus was locked down and Eric began moving it into traffic Stan would take his command position in the well to the right of Eric, letting everyone know that once again he was off and running, anxious to pull the Band back together again.

We continually marveled at how his temperament could change from a borderline zombie, who had been fumbling his way from one job to the next, to the highly-energized, bigger-than-life Road Warrior we all loved and admired. Today he might well have been diagnosed as a clinical manic-depressive who forced himself to face the world, relying on some inner strength to carry him forward until the black cloud of depression that had enveloped him passed.
Every group, especially one as large as the Kenton Orchestra, requires a captain with a steady hand to keep them sailing through uncharted waters. In our case the long, unpredictable Road. And no one was more acutely aware of this than Stan, who knew when and how to bring the Band back from the edge of darkness. Usually his ill humor never lasted more than a day or two. Three at most. One incident, however, that lasted not quite a week took all of us to the breaking point.
(Slow fade to black. *grin)
One Liner: “Hearing to Kenton recordings and live performances taught me to listen. I now listen more analytically - AABA vs. AABB, ABAC, AABC, etc. There's more to hear than just the melody. There's color notes in chords. There are counterpoint lines. There can be dissonance, and that's OK. But most of all, I now hear the bass.” — Doug Hughes in Arnold, MD

Jay Migliori, 70; Key Member of Supersax
The Los Angeles Times; Los Angeles, Calif.; September 7, 2001; DENNIS McLELLAN
[Editor’s Note: This article was edited to fit time and space.]

Abstract: [Jay Migliori], who attended the St. Louis Institute of Music and played in the 571st Air Force Band during the Korean War, met [Charlie Parker] at an afternoon jam session in 1954 while Migliori was attending the Berklee School of Music in Boston and Parker was appearing at the Hi- Hat Club.] Parker invited Migliori to join in on several of his tunes at the Hi-Hat the next evening, a performance that was broadcast by disc jockey “Symphony Sid” Torin and that is preserved on “Bird in Boston: Live at the Hi-Hat, Vol. 2.” Migliori later included Parker’s music in his own performances. He enjoyed the challenge of trying to play the complex chord structure and unique melody of Parker’s “Confirmation,” for example.
Full Text:
(Copyright, The Times Mirror Company; Los Angeles Times 2001 Allrights reserved)

Jay Migliori, a charter member of the Grammy-winning group Supersax who played with everyone from Woody Herman to Frank Zappa in a career that spanned more than five decades, has died. He was 70. Migliori, a Mission Viejo resident, died Sunday of colon cancer.

Migliori, a saxophonist who described his style of playing as “modern acoustic jazz with roots in bebop,” was a working musician who seldom lacked for work. Over the years, he performed with more than two dozen bands, including those led by Miles Davis, Stan Kenton (record date March 9, 1960), Terry Gibbs, Louie Bellson, Si Zentner and Maynard Ferguson.

As a studio musician, he played on about 4,000 commercial recordings, including singles and albums by Frank Sinatra, the Beach Boys, Glen Campbell, the Four Seasons, Dean Martin, the Righteous Brothers, the Ronettes, Ray Charles and Celine Dion. But jazz was his passion. Born in Erie, Pa., Migliori received an alto sax for his 12th birthday and fell in love with jazz as a teenager.

“You have to compose at the same time you’re playing,” he told The Times in 1997. “The music goes by and it’s like you’re watching it, but you can’t stop it. You have to fill in as much as possible. That still fascinates me.” A major influence was jazz alto sax legend Charlie Parker.

Migliori, who attended the St. Louis Institute of Music and played in the 571st Air Force Band during the Korean War, met Parker at an afternoon jam session in 1954 while Migliori was attending the Berklee School of Music in Boston and Parker was appearing at the Hi- Hat Club. Parker invited Migliori to join in on several of his tunes at the Hi-Hat the next evening, a performance that was broadcast by disc jockey “Symphony Sid” Torin and that is preserved on “Bird in Boston: Live at the Hi-Hat, Vol. 2.” Migliori later included Parker’s music in his own performances. He enjoyed the challenge of trying to play the complex chord structure and unique melody of Parker’s “Confirmation,” for example. “It’s like running the rapids,” he said.

In 1971, Migliori joined Supersax; an ensemble built around a five- saxophone section that specializes in orchestrated Parker solos. “It’s the most difficult concerted saxophone music that there is,” said leader Med Flory. “We played not just Charlie Parker’s lines but his choruses in harmony and we looked for the hardest choruses that we could find. It was a group effort and [Jay] was terrific.” Migliori recorded four albums of his own, including “Jazz in Transition” and “Smile.”

Although he underwent surgery for cancer six years ago, Migliori continued working clubs and casuals a minimum of five nights a week until six weeks ago. His wife, Patti; four children, Fable, Jay Jay, Francesca and John-Michael; and two grandchildren survive Migliori. A funeral service that is being called a celebration of Migliori’s life—with live music provided by his friends—was held at Pacific View Memorial Park, Newport Beach, California.

ED BRIDE AND TONY AGOSTINELLI...Produced and presented their Sixth Annual Stan Kenton tribute on Public Radio in February 2002 — the program emanated from WAMC-FM, Northeast Public Radio – one hour per night, for five nights. As in the past, listeners could hear the program in a five-state region around Albany, New York (portions of New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont and New Jersey; also in Quebec, Canada. It was also heard on RealAudio on the Internet.

One Liner (well, more than one): “I would have to say that my true Godfather was Stan…that’s how my boyfriend now explains to people who and what I am. Stan taught me to listen to music and appreciate all kinds of music. He gave me a legacy and a love for music that can sometimes be hard to live up to. I’m also with my “big brother” Mike Vax on the point of keeping his dream alive. It’s what Stan would have wanted me to do, make sure the next generation can “listen” as we did to all kinds of music and to understand how important music is to a their education!” – Mary Fluck in PA

Kenton in Australia, Redux…
By Anthony J. Agostinelli, Editor

This Editor was recently reminded of his piece about Stan’s tour of Australia (see THE NETWORK XX pps. 3-4). A brief exchange on the Kentonia e-mail list turned up some additional input. The first from Bruce Morley: “My name is Bruce Morley. I play drums, lived and worked in Australia from 1964 to 1973, and am familiar with the names of the Australians who toured with Stan Kenton (and met and worked with some of them in the 1960s, albeit in a minor way, in the “commercial” arena). Of the Australians who toured with Kenton, I worked later on, in the 60s, with Billy Weston, John Bamford, Jock McKenna and Johnny Green (and possibly Dave Rutledge and Ron Falson, but I can’t quite recall) – in non-jazz, occasional commercial situations, I should add – and they were all extremely good musicians, very confident, and great guys. For a while I was in one of Billy Weston’s rehearsal bands too. Joe Martin would definitely have been the compere; he was one of Sydney’s most prominent compere-comedians in the 60s, and I did many gigs where he was in that role.

There are many references to the Kenton tour in the Australian jazz books “Black Roots White Flowers”, by Andrew Bisset, and “The Oxford Companion to Australian Jazz”, by Bruce Johnson (not our Bruce Johnstone, of course). The “Oxford Companion” entry on Bamford claims that Kenton offered him a permanent chair in the band (trust me, he was good enough), and also contains a photo of Bamford with Stan Kenton in 1957. The entry on Weston doesn’t mention the tour, which is strange, because it also claims that he lead a Kenton-inspired big band from 1948 to 1953 – which I can believe as, by the time I met him, Billy was primarily an arranger/conductor. He was one of my favourite musicians in Sydney, a darling man.

“Black Roots”, however, has some more detailed info re Billy Weston and the Kenton tour, and some very interesting observations about the Australians’ dynamics and tone versus those of the Americans. And I personally find it very interesting that Kenton brought Flores (one of my favourite drummers) and presumably a lead for each section in Noto, Niehaus, Perkins and Larsen, but was able to fill the trumpet and trombone sections with Aussies, when (for me anyway) the emphasis in the band was always on the brass.”

Also, Bruce Talbot on Kentonia, the Kenton Internet “chat” list, reported: “A friend in New Zealand knew someone who caught the band in Sydney. He told me: ‘The only person I know that saw the Kenton band in Oz was Alan Perry . He was over in Sydney for his firm at the time and it was he who sent me my copy of the Kenton Era which was released in Oz at the same time as the band’s visit. The letter he wrote me at the time suggested he found the band’s performance a bit routine. Of course though he had very high standards and as Wellington’s number one Kenton fan of the period who had not only traveled to Dublin on the special Kenton excursion that the Melody Maker organized in those US bands embargoed days but had met Kenton and had his copy of the Kenton Era autographed by Kenton his opinion had to be given weight. (He told me that searching for something to ask Kenton the only thing he could come up with was,’Why did you record “The Creep”?’

“I don’t think Kenton had a very clear answer.”

In the meantime, since the first appearance of the Australian tour story, I have had a lively correspondence with several Australians, most especially with Rick and Dawn (she calls herself “Alba”) Farbach in Queensland. He recently wrote: “We had five trumpets, five trombones and four saxes + four rhythm (including Kenton himself). I still have that money clip.” [Editor’s Note: Including what they were paid, Stan gave each Australian musician a money clip.]

Bill Lichtenauer at Tantara has a few more Kenton CDs:
Stan Kenton: Revelations (New!) (T4CD 1116-1,-2,-3,-4) USA $59.95 + $4.00 S&H Stan Kenton: Tunes and Topics (Tantara T2CD 1114 & T2CD 1115)
October of 1970 at the Golden Lion in Dayton, Ohio; each double CD also includes a 1972 Stan Kenton interview Cost: $18 plus $2.00 S & H for each double CD

Stan Kenton: Artistry in Symphonic Jazz (1977) TCD 1111 ($15 + $2.00 S & H)
Stan Kenton: A Time for Love (1978) TCD 1112 ($15 + $2.00 S & H)
All are available from Tantara Productions, Inc., 3533 Lake Shore Drive, Joliet, Illinois 60431, 815-436-8280—Write or call for the complete listing of recordings available on Tantara!

By Michael Sparke & Pete Venudor with Jack Hartley

This fascinating, brand new discography is a very significant expansion on—and re-working of Kenton on Capitol and Creative World.

Studio Sessions adds nearly 70 pages of new material in its coverage of Kenton’s recording career—which spanned almost 40 years—from Gus Arnheim’s Orchestra in 1937, through the MacGregor transcriptions, his towering career with Capitol Records and then his own Creative World Records label. Decades of research has resulted in a discography which provides extraordinary detailed information about every official Kenton recording session: session numbers, dates, places, time, producers, personnel, tunes, lengths, alternate takes, matrix numbers, unreleased titles and takes, composers/arrangers, soloists, vocalists and the number of every record on which every tune was release. Also a tune index. Thousands of facts, including things new to even the most ardent Kenton fan! Also included are examples of original documentation. Sparke has also taken great pains to include comments and opinions from as many of the musicians as possible. To view a couple of sample pages, visit the publisher’s web site at: Jazz Fans, big band buffs, musicians, researchers, writers, jazz disk jockeys and music librarians will find this book an invaluable, inexhaustible resource! Michael Sparke has been following, researching and writing about Stan Kenton’s music and career for some 50 years! He has written liner notes for several Kenton CDs, among them the superb booklet included with Mosaic’s 7-CD release of the 1943-1947 Capitol masters. This 8 ½ X 11 240 page book is priced at $32.95 plus $4 priority shipping (US destinations) and is available from: Balboa Books, PO Box 493, Lake Geneva, WI 53147. Visa/MasterCard orders call 1-800-420-0579, M-F, 9 PM to 5 PM, CST. Online charge card orders may also be placed at:

DICK MEYER’S COLLAGES of the Kenton orchestras…are still available for purchase; write/call Dick at 6507 Kentucky View Dr., Cincinnati, OH 45230, 513-232-3750. Send SASE.
The LARGEST SINGLE CONTRIBUTOR BY 30 days after mailing/posting of Network XXVI, GETS ONE FREE!

One Liner: “My wife always said that Kenton ruined ‘more good songs’ for her, because once she heard him do them, the originals never sounded right.” Gerry Dexter, Balboa Books in Geneva Lake, Wisconsin

By Jack Hartley and Jurgen Wolfer
Here’s the first complete study of one of the music world’s most fascinating arrangers-musicians. In addition to his own orchestra, Richards not only wrote and arranged for Stan Kenton, (including such famous albums as Cuban Fire!, Adventures in Time & West Side Story), he also penned for Boyd Raeburn, Charlie Barnet, Bing Crosby, Harry James, Dizzy Gillespie and many others—plus scores for such movies as The Light That Failed, and 16 Hopalong Cassidy westerns! This new discography has details about every recording session. There is also a tune index covering some 600 titles! This is, without doubt, the definitive work about one of the most talented musicians of the second half of the 20th century.

Toll-free charge card orders to: 1-800- 420-0579, 9 AM—PM EST, M-F – (8 ½ X 11 trade paper 120 pages) $19.95 plus $4.50 shipping/handling—Balboa Books, PO Box 493, Lake Geneva, WI 53147, Online orders: and click on Balboa Books

KENTON ON CD: In past issues of The Network, a “recently released” list of CDs by Stan Kenton has been included here. To save space, that short list has been eliminated. You can receive an up-dated listing of CDs and videos when you contribute to the operations of the NETWORK—send a contribution made out to: The Network, Anthony J. Agostinelli, Editor, 62 Valley Lane, Woodland Valley, Portsmouth, RI 02871-2731. For those who have access to the World Wide Web, you may visit four web sites which list Stan Kenton CDs in stock, often with sound samples: & & & Search for “Stan Kenton.” Some of the CDs listed are “ephemeral” recordings; the producers do not pay the usual artist fees. My continuing observation is that we all want to hear Stanley’s music—on Capitol, Creative World and Decca—Stan approved these releases. When we purchase an ephemeral (“bootleg”) recording, we are contributing to someone who is trading on the Stan Kenton name, image and body of work. Although the quality of many of these recordings run from pretty awful, to excellent, we do get to listen to Stan Kenton’s recorded music at many venues. Because these recordings exist, you all should know about them, and because they are not “authorized” by Kenton or the Kenton Estate, you might consider making a contribution a Stan Kenton Scholarship Fund every time you purchase one of the latter CDs. One is: Stan Kenton Scholarship Fund, International Association of Jazz Educators (IAJE), Box 724, Manhattan, KS 66502-0724, USA. So—contribute!

Stan Kenton—The Early Years by Edward F. Gabel. $17.95 + $2. S/h from: Ed Gabel, Dept NTWK, Balboa Books, P.O. Box 493, Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, 53147-0493. Visa/MasterCard orders: 1-800-420-0459. Monday to Friday, 8 AM to 6 PM CST.

One liner: “Must have been around 4 AM drinking with Stan at the Bar in the Tropicana after his last set. How I remember his booming voice, pontificating about some cause that had his attention at that time. One foot on the bar foot-rail, leaning over with his elbows resting on the edge of the bar.” — Dave Umemoto in Hillsborough, California


Jazz archivist Steven D. Harris has completed his book, “The Kenton Kronicles.” ...Over 100 interviews including 50 Kenton alumni...entire road itinerary...over 250 historic & rare photographs...30 interviews with Stan himself, his older sister Beulah, first daughter Leslie, and his last wife Jo Ann Kenton...list of films and videos…. Forward by Pete Rugolo. Price is $65.00 plus $6.95 S&H or 45 Pounds Sterling plus 5 Pounds for S&H in UK & Abroad. Make checks payable to: Steven D. Harris, 148 N. Catalina Ave., #4, Pasadena, CA 91106, USA. You may contact Steven at: 148 N. Catalina, Apt 4, Pasadena, CA 91106.

Audio Visual Artists’ Productions of Silver Springs Maryland has produced a video tribute to Hank Levy. A Head of Time. Ahead of Time. A video tribute to Hank Levy. Contact Richard Slade of AVA Productions, 1412 Northcrest Dr., Silver Spring, MD 20904-1453 phone 301-384-9595 or FAX 301-284-2525. Price, including shipping is: $29.95

The Upper Register –
By Joe Urso—Foreword by Bobby Shew

This Limited Edition is devoted to over 200 trumpet players from the 1930s to the 1990s with many discographies on Lead Trumpets, Hi-Note Trumpeter plus the Extreme Upper Register Trumpet Men and strong trumpet sections. Stories about: Conrad “Goz” Gozzo, Bud Brisbois, Bill Chase, Maynard Ferguson, Arturo Sandoval, Jon Faddis, Al Porcino, Cat Anderson, Dave Stahl, Doc Severinsen, Dizzy Gillespie, Lew Soloff, Walt Johnson, Alan Wise, Allan Vizzutti, Bobby Shew, Roger Ingram, Chuck Findley, Jim Manely and many others. Over 100 photographs never before published. Trumpet men from every major big band—Stan Kenton, Woody Herman, Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Charlie Barnet, and Maynard Ferguson. Send check or money order in the USA for $23; International Money Order from England/Europe, etc., No credit cards! TO: Joe Urso, 8115 Embassy Boulevard, Port Richey, FL 34668 USA

One Liner: “He vosz mine vorst vocal pupil.” Dr. Ezekial Lipschitz in Somevere Outdere, Wyoming

STAN KENTON LIST ON THE INTERNET: for great interchange and discussion about Kentonia, it does take place on the Kenton Internet list. If you want to subscribe to the Kenton-List, send an e-mail message to:
STAN KENTON ON THE WORLD-WIDE WEB (INTERNET) This Editor has listed but a few of the some 3,000 plus references to Stan Kenton on the Internet; it would take the whole issue to list them all. Please, take no offense if I have left your website from this list. Also, many websites “come and go” in the dead of night—some may longer be in force.

Some duplications...but here’s some few more additional websites:

Noel Wedder maintains this site:

A June Christy site:

John R. Killoch maintains these sites: — Review site

Robert J. Robbins reports that Big Bands International maintains this site:

Mike Vax maintains these sites:

Kim Richmond and the summer big band camps:

Dr. Bob Crispen maintains this site:

Maynard Ferguson’s website

Mt. San Antonio College features Steven Harris’ “Kenton Kalendar” at this site:

Gerry Dexter of Tiare Publications has a current CD list at this site:

Terry Vosbein’s Stan Kenton photographs:

Ray Avery’s photographs of Stan Kenton can be found at:

Lenny King in Chicago plays in tribute to Stan Kenton:

William H. Alburty writes about Kenton at:

Southern Music Company also resells Kenton charts published by Sierra Music Publications:

Goal Productions sells video of the 1991 Back to Balboa and 1997 AJI panels talking about Kenton:

Midi files of Stan Kenton’s music—copyrights cleared with BMI and ASCAP by Al Levy:

BJ Bromley’s tribute to the Capitol Release “A Stan Kenton Retrospective.” other Capitol and other releases:

Silicon Valley Music also resells Kenton charts published by Sierra Music Publications:

A comprehensive tribute to Stan Kenton:

Phil Van Auken’s website about Kenton features photographs and music:

Dave Powell’s tribute to Stan Kenton:

The “Ultimate” Stan Kenton website with links to others:

Michael Boyd’s bio of Stan Kenton:

The perennial Eddie Bert has a website

[Please notify this Editor if any of these sites are incorrect!]

THE STAN KENTON COLLECTION AT University of North Texas: Stan Kenton bequeathed most of his orchestra library to the University of North Texas, Denton, Texas; Leon Breeden, who for years headed up the jazz band program at UNT catalogued the collection. The collection comprises some 2,000 plus manuscripts representing the work of Kenton’s famous arrangers. The Stan Kenton Collection is supplemented by a gift from Noel Wedder, Kenton’s publicist, of over six hundred photographs of Kenton and his orchestras. An Index to the Scores, a Gallery of Images from the Stan Kenton Collection, and Links to other Kenton resources on the Internet, can be accessed on the World Wide Web at: UNT has issued a 4 CD set of recordings celebrating the 50th anniversary of their jazz degree program. The CDs feature their Number One Lab Band, along with some guest soloists. You may recognize some Kenton alumni along the way. The CDs may be ordered for $50, and all proceeds will benefit the UNT jazz program. Write them for the CD and send your check: North Texas jazz, PO Box 305040, Denton, TX 76203, phone 940-565-3743, or order at their website:

Shelly Manne: Sounds of the Different Drummer. by Jack Brand and Bill Korst. Percussion Express. P.O. Box 1731. Rockford, Illinois 61110. 190pp. $60.00 —A bio-discography of Shelly Manne.

ROSS BARBOUR has written one splendid book about the times of the Four Freshmen, entitled: Now You Know: The Story of the Four Freshmen; I have read it and it is engaging, lively, very inclusive, and as dynamic as Ross is’ve got to read it.... Published by Gerry Dexter, Balboa Books, a division of Tiare Publications, PO Box 493, Lake Geneva, WI 53147-0493.

Compositions and arrangements by STAN KENTON, PETE RUGOLO, BILL HOLMAN, DEE BARTON, HANK LEVY, WILLIE MAIDEN BOB CURNOW, HUGO MONTENEGRO, GENE ROLAND, KEN HANNA, MAYNARD FERGUSON, GERRY MULLIGAN, DON SEBESKY, and others. Bob Curnow, long-associated with Stanley and Creative World Publications is offering these great Kenton orchestral charts from his: SIERRA MUSIC. You may also want to purchase Bob’s L.A. BIG BAND CD. The Music of Pat Metheny & Lyle Mays. MAMA Foundation MMF 1009. Available from Sierra: PO Box 928, Port Townsend, WA 98368-0928, phone: 800-255-6551; International: 360-379-9774; FAX: 360-379-9782. E-Mail: ... $15 which includes shipping and handling. Featured are: Bobby Shew, Bob Sheppard, Buddy Childers, Bill Cunliffe, Steve Houghton and more.

STAN KENTON: ARTISTRY IN RHYTHM: By Dr. William Lee, Executive Director of IAJE, has announced a newly re-issued Stan Kenton: Artistry in Rhythm. It has been published in soft-cover with editing by Audree Coke and foreword by Mort Sahl. It is available again. So if you have been looking for a copy, send check or money order in the amount of $19.95 plus $3.00 plus postage and handling to: IAJE, PO Box 724, Manhattan, KS 66502-0724.

Arranged for stage bands, is available. 12 arrangements from Private Library, Inc. publications, owned by Johnny and Eddie Safranski are now available in their original formats for schools (4 trumpets, 4 trombones, 4 rhythm, and sometimes a conductor’s score). The set of 12 includes: La Suerte de los Tontos, Dimples, Three Cornered Cat, To a Sleeping Beauty, Run Wild, Walk Softly, Recuerdos, the Moon Stood Still, El Congo Valiente, Sunday’s Child, Burrito Borracho, and Stage Twelve. Richards and Safranski had intended these for use by colleges, universities and high schools. They are being made available now. For your set, please send a check or money order in the amount of $90 made out to: Private Library, Inc., Anthony J. Agostinelli, 62 Valley Lane, Woodland Valley, Portsmouth, RI 02871-2731. The $90 covers cost of shipping and handling, and the remainder goes for the operations of THE NETWORK. [With permission of Erica Tonner (Safranski), Eddie’s daughter, acting on behalf of her father’s estate who has ownership of the printed copies of Private Library, Inc.]

MONOGRAPHS WRITTEN by Anthony J. Agostinelli. Send your request for: Stan Kenton: The Many Musical Moods of His Orchestras, to: Tony Agostinelli, 62 Valley Lane, Woodland Valley, Portsmouth, RI 02871-2731, USA. Cost has been set at $16.00 for handling and first class postage in the USA. . For the UK, Europe and other international locations an International Postal Money Order in the amount of £10 sterling will cover the costs (postage included); allow 2-3 weeks for delivery. For other parts of the world, use the USA rate as the basis for your computation. International postal money orders are easiest to change into USA currency. Also available are Agostinelli’s—Some Composer/Arrangers I Have Known and Eddie Safranski: A Retrospective—cost has been set at $16.00 for handling and first class postage in the USA. Same International rates as above. Contact Agostinelli at:

Epilogue: Thanks also are due to members of my family et al for their help in putting out THE NETWORK over the years: Barbara, Fiona, Maria, Denis, Kate, Frank, Francesca, Cecilia, Zoey, Mark, Debra, Mason, and Matt, and friend Dr. Ezekial Lipschitz. EPILOGUE: [Network XXVI put to bed: May 8, 2002 — Summer!] [Typographical errors and misspellings are all the