• Club Havana was known for hosting decent Afro-Cuban jazz bands. There was dancing Thursdays through Sundays, and Sunday afternoons, the management handed out free cigars. Hector became close to the house band, whose rhythm section inspired him.

  • 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

  • This edition features a selection of “glamour girl” covers !

  • "A Man's Hands En Clave" -- a short story by Arya Jenkins
  • Great Encounters: In the studio with Bill Evans and Stan Getz
  • Liner Notes -- Miles Davis in Person At The Blackhawk
  • Cover Stories with Paul Morris, Vol. 11
cocker1 Features » In Memoriam

“Cry Me a River” — Joe Cocker’s remake of a 1950’s torch song

Joe Cocker, the flamboyant British rocker who died yesterday at the age of 70, was best known for his gravelly voice and charismatic onstage personality, but his career was especially noteworthy due to his successful model of interpreting popular songs of the day. The most obvious example -– the Beatles’ “With a Little Help From My Friends” performed before hundreds of thousands at Woodstock in 1969 -– was his signature career achievement, a performance Paul McCartney yesterday called “mind-blowing,” one that he was “forever grateful for him for having done that.” One could make the case that Cocker’s appearance at Woodstock and his filmed performance of that tune was indeed a defining moment of the rock era.

Cocker also successfully remade Arthur Hamilton’s “Cry Me a River,” a 1953 torch song originally composed for Ella Fitzgerald to sing in Pete Kelly’s Blues, the Jack Webb film in which Peggy Lee portrayed an […] Continue reading »

voice1 Uncategorized

Young students who “got (more) rhythm” are academically impressive

Yet more evidence of the importance music education plays in the lives of our children’s future was reported on in the December 19 edition of the New York Times. Elizabeth Harris writes that students at Voice Charter School in Queens “learn to read music, execute complicated harmonies and play a little piano in the music classes they attend at least once a day, and where, far more than in other general education schools, they learn to sing, sing, sing.” The song they were learning to sing? George and Ira Gershwin’s “I’ve Got Rhythm.” The school’s principal, Franklin Headley, says that students “learn how to be really good at something. We believe that then translates into everything else.”

The result of this strategy is impressive. Students have dramatically outperformed their peers academically. Harris writes, “Academically, students at Voice did significantly […] Continue reading »

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 »