• In his 1993 book Upside Your Head! Rhythm and Blues on Central Avenue, the jazz and blues musician and impresario Johnny Otis writes primarily about the music scene in Los Angeles during the 40’s and 50’s.

  • In 1961 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer had purchased Verve Records from Norman Granz. Creed Taylor became the new executive director, and made a number of crucial policy decisions, including the sacking of the majority of Verve’s contract artists. One of a handful to survive was

  • On the evenings of April 21 and 22, 1961, Miles Davis and his quintet recorded at San Francisco’s The Black Hawk nightclub, a longtime Tenderloin neighborhood establishment described by Bay area music writer Ralph J. Gleason as

  • A story about “a man of the cloth…deputized by a higher power to save jazzmen’s souls from the lures and wiles and temptations of bad taste.”

  • Johnny Otis writes about racism
  • Great Encounters: In the studio with Bill Evans and Stan Getz
  • Liner Notes -- Miles Davis in Person At The Blackhawk
  • "Father Kniest, Jazz Priest" -- a short story by Con Chapman
milesdec1 Uncategorized

“Scaled for Miles” — an interactive Miles Davis discography

The information-visualization firm Fathom, who, according to their website, “helps clients understand and express complex data through information graphics, interactive tools, and software for installations, the web, and mobile devices,” has created “Scaled for Miles,” an interactive Miles Davis discography that provides users an unusual, outer space-like visual perspective about who played with the iconic trumpeter during his entire career. This “interactive visualization lets users explore and […] Continue reading »

viennese Art » Art Exhibits » Cover Story with Paul Morris

Cover Stories with Paul Morris, Vol. 10

Paul Morris is an avid Portland, Oregon record album collector who, in his words, will “share his enthusiasm for the artists who created album covers in the ‘40?s and ‘50?s.” In addition to being a collector of the art, he is a scholar of it. This edition features a selection of covers by Curt John Witt, the prolific illustrator for mid-century budget record labels. […] Continue reading »

herring1 Literature » Short Fiction

“In a Blue Moon, Once” — a short story by Richard Herring

“Night of the living dead,” a voice screamed in Tom’s head. A softer voice pointed out it was still late afternoon. It sure wasn’t life as he wanted to know it. In reality, it was just another long Thursday afternoon of monthly staff meetings, with new mandates and standards flowing downhill from the top. All the nodding mannequins around the conference room would take it all in, shoot a few inane, brown nose comments back at the presenter, then go back to do their jobs tomorrow the same as always.

Sylvia’s attention was on the crochet hoop in her lap. Jack’s eyes had been closed for the better part of 45 minutes. Tom’s life support system came through the cord fed neatly up beneath the lapel, to the headphones partially obscured by thick sideburns and abundant head of hair. A collection of earpieces was present among these old codgers, but his was connected to the brand new cassette player in his suit coat pocket.

The tape Mikki turned him on to seemed to emanate from a place beyond his routine, tired existence. It was as if the music offered a […] Continue reading »

bing Quiz Show » Jazz History Quiz

Jazz History Quiz #61 — The “White Christmas” vocal dub

In the 1942 film Holiday Inn, Bing Crosby sings “White Christmas” as a duet with actress Marjorie Reynolds, but her voice was dubbed by this radio and film singer who also did film voice over work for actresses such as Loretta Young, Hedy Lamarr, Eva Gabor, Rita Hayworth and Lucille Ball.
Who is she?

Jo Stafford

Connie Boswell

Martha Mears

Lee Wiley

Maxine Sullivan

Click Here for the answer! […] Continue reading »

melody Uncategorized

“Melody” — a poem by Erren Kelly

Even as I braced myself for it
It came without warning
But who adheres to
Love’s rules?
It’s like bargaining with the
Devil
Only this devil’s a redhead
And played piano as if
She could connect all the moments
Of the day and turn them into
[…] Continue reading »