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Archive for July, 2014

TED JOANS LIVES!: A Film Documentary by Tom Knoff and Kurt Hemmer

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014


David Amram & Ted Joans: Improvised Scat Vocals

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Ted Joans Lives! is a visual and aural collage by Kurt Hemmer and Tom Knoff examining the life and works of the legendary, tri-continental poet Ted Joans, who was born in Cairo, Illinois on 4 July 1928 and went on to become one of the significant poets of his generation performing his work in the United States, Europe, and Africa. The film has the sound of jazz and the flavor of surrealism. As Ted Joans declared, “Jazz is my religion and Surrealism is my point of view.”

Official Selection of the 2013 Langston Hughes Film Festival.
Honorable Mention/The Los Angeles International Underground Film Festival.
Aurora Award/Platinum Best of Show/2011.
Berkeley Film and Video


CHARLIE HADEN (August 6, 1937 – July 11, 2014) — in memoriam

Friday, July 18th, 2014


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“Thanks to bassist-composer Charles Mingus, who brought me to New York’s Five Spot, I got to hear the legendary Ornette Coleman Quartet upclose and face-to-face in the summer of 1960. Watching and listening to Charlie Haden interpolate folk, country and hillbilly songs into his modal-sounding bass solos, I just sat grinning. The whole night shone. “Squealing like mosquitoes” was how some New Yorker ‘Talk of the Town’ commentator had waggishly described and dismissed Ornette’s raw band. Then and there, I understood. Nothing would ever be the same. After his Liberation Music Orchestra, it was Charlie Haden’s Quartet West band with saxophonist Ernie Watts that knocked me all the way out. Haden played from the bottom of his heart. He rooted for the underdog. He told and played truth as he heard, saw and lived it.”  — Al Young


(L-R) Trumpeter Don Cherry, drummer Billy Higgins, saxophonist-leader Ornette Coleman, bassist Charlie Haden in 1960

Ornette Quartet 1959 Courtesy Atlantic Records
Listen to Haden quote ‘Old Joe Clark’ on Ornette’s ‘Ramblin”


Cover of Ornette Coleman Quartet’s Change of the Century (1960)


© Rafa Rivas/Getty Images


Charlie Hayden & Daughters © Ruth Fremson/NY Times

Charlie Haden with his triplet daughters Tanya, Rachel and Petra — along with guitarist Bryan Sutton — perform the  folk and country songs of Haden’s heartland childhood at Lincoln Center’s Damrosch Park in 2008. ||| Click on photo to read Nate Chinen’s NYTimes piece, ‘He Was Country Before He Was Cool.’


Charlie Haden, Influential Jazz Bassist, Is Dead at 76 |
Nate Chinen,, July 11, 2014

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Remembering bassist Charlie Haden

Charlie Haden’s Liberation Music Orchestra
(59-minutes, ‘live’ performance, France)

 A Charlie Haden discography