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Tag: Von Freeman

Tuesday, January 22nd

voices I miss

Von Freeman (1923-2012), tenor saxophonist, MCOTD Hall of Fame

“Oleo” (S. Rollins) with Clifford Jordan (tenor saxophone), Willie Pickens (piano), Dan Shapera (bass), Robert Shy (drums), Chicago (Chicago Jazz Festival), 1988

 

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With John Young (1922-2008, piano), et al., live (radio broadcast), late 1970s

 

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“A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square” (E. Maschwitz & M. Sherwin) with Jodie Christian (piano), Rufus Reid (bass), Jack DeJohnette (drums), live, Harrisburg, Penn., 1994

 

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“I Can’t Get Started” (V. Duke, I. Gershwin), live, Belgium, 1992

 

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“Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered” (R. Rodgers, L. Hart) with Mike Allemena (guitar), Matt Ferguson (bass), Michael Raynor (drums), live, Chicago (Mandel Hall, University of Chicago), 2011

 

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lagniappe

my back pages

On this night forty-two years ago, at a church thirty miles north of Chicago, my wife, Suzanne, and I were married. Outside the church it was cold and snowy. Inside Von Freeman was playing, along with pianist John Young. All of what they played that night, before, during, and after the ceremony, can be heard here (0:15-) (“Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” “It Never Entered My Mind,” “More” [before]; “In a Sentimental Mood” [when Suzanne walked down the aisle]; “My Favorite Things,” “Song for My Father” [after]) .

Wednesday, November 14th

voices I miss

No matter what kind of day you’re having, this will make it better.

Von Freeman (1923-2012, tenor saxophone, MCOTD Hall of Fame), with John Young (1922-2008, piano), et al., live (radio broadcast), late 1970s

 

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lagniappe

random sights

yesterday, Oak Park

Tuesday, January 23rd

more

No one plays ballads more tenderly—or tartly.

Von Freeman (MCOTD Hall of Fame, 1923-2012), “A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square” (E. Maschwitz & M. Sherwin) with Jodie Christian (piano), Rufus Reid (bass), Jack DeJohnette (drums), live, Harrisburg, Penn., 1994

 

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“I Can’t Get Started” (V. Duke, I. Gershwin), live, Belgium, 1992

 

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“Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered” (R. Rodgers, L. Hart) with Mike Allemena (guitar), Matt Ferguson (bass), Michael Raynor (drums), live, Chicago (Mandel Hall, University of Chicago), 2011

 

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lagniappe

random sights

other day, Oak Park, Ill.

Monday, January 22nd

voices I miss

Von Freeman (MCOTD Hall of Fame), tenor saxophonist, 1923-2012

“Oleo” (S. Rollins) with Clifford Jordan (tenor saxophone), Willie Pickens (piano), Dan Shapera (bass), Robert Shy (drums), Chicago (Chicago Jazz Festival), 1988

 

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“Take the ‘A’ Train” (B. Strayhorn) with Joanie Pallatto (vocals), Bettye Reynolds (vocals), Fred Anderson (tenor saxophone), Billy Brimfield (trumpet), John Young (piano), George Freeman (guitar), Larry Gray (bass), Michael Adams (drums), live, Chicago, 1999

 

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lagniappe

my back pages

On a cold, snowy night forty-one years ago, at a church thirty miles north of Chicago, Von Freeman and John Young played at our—Suzanne’s and my—wedding. All of what they played that night—”Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” “It Never Entered My Mind,” “More” (before); “In a Sentimental Mood” (as Suzanne walked down the aisle); “My Favorite Things,” “Song for My Father” (after)—can be heard here (0:15-). Years later, John told me: “When I marry ’em, they stay married.”

Sunday, January 22nd

back to church

Post-inaugural blues?

Try this.

First Church of Deliverance Choir, “Afterwhile It’ll All Be Over,” live, Chicago


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lagniappe

random sights

other day, New York (High Line)

fullsizerender-25

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my back pages

On a cold, snowy night forty years ago, at a church outside Chicago, my wife, Suzanne, and I were married. Tenor saxophonist Von Freeman (MCOTD Hall of Fame) and pianist John Young, both now gone, performed at the ceremony. All of what they played that night—”Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” “It Never Entered My Mind,” “More” (before); “In a Sentimental Mood” (unaccompanied saxophone, as the bride walked down the aisle); “My Favorite Things,” “Song for My Father” (after)—can be heard here (0:15-).

Thursday, October 13th

voices I miss

Tenor saxophonist Von Freeman (1923-2012, MCOTD Hall of Fame), “Footprints” (W. Shorter), live, Minneapolis, 1996 (Live at the Dakota);* Dead of Summer (Jean Seberg), 1970


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lagniappe

reading table

Autumn weighs upon me
but tomorrow will come
and I will miss tonight

—Yosa Buson (1716-1783), translated from Japanese by W.S. Merwin and Takako Lento

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*With Bobby Peterson, piano; Terry Burns, bass; Phil Hey, drums.

Tuesday, August 30th

MCOTD Hall of Fame

Today drummer Hamid Drake (1955-) enters the MCOTD Hall of Fame, joining saxophonists Von Freeman and Henry Threadgill; trumpeter Lester Bowie; gospel singer Dorothy Love Coates; composer Morton Feldman; poets John Berryman, William Bronk, and Wislawa Szymborska; and photographer Helen Levitt. Whatever the situation, he adds oxygen.

DKV Trio (HD, drums; Kent Kessler, bass; Ken Vandermark, baritone saxophone), live, Chicago, 2010

Friday, April 15th

voices I miss

Von Freeman (1923-2012, MCOTD Hall of Fame), “Dig” (J. McLean), live (with Mike Allemana, guitar), Chicago, 2002


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lagniappe

reading table

Von Freeman
By John Koethe (The Swimmer)

I was a rock and roll child. I saw Elvis
Truncated by Ed Sullivan, listened to Fats Domino
Sing “Blueberry Hill” and loved “Sixteen Tons,”
Which was proto-rock and roll. I still love it,
But since you can’t remain a child forever,
I cast my net wider, and thanks to my Japanese
Integrated amp, saxophones wash over me each night.
It started with Paul Desmond, who aspired to sound
“Like a dry martini,” and went on to bring to life
The celebrated and the obscure alike: Spike Robinson,
Whom I heard at the Jazz Estate a few blocks away
In 1992; Frank Morgan, who had Milwaukee ties
And whom I wanted to nominate for an honorary degree,
A scam set up for local businessmen; and Coltrane
Of course, that endless aural rope that curls upon itself
And then uncoils. And it wasn’t simply saxophones: Chet
Baker’s trumpet, plangent and permanent as he fell from
Young and beautiful to wrecked and toothless; and Bill Evans,
Still perfecting “Autumn Leaves” at Top of the Gate,
While downstairs in the streets the ’60s boiled. Von Freeman
Died last week at 88. I hadn’t heard of him until he died,
And now here he is, filling up my room with “Time after Time.”
He believed in roughness, and on leaving imperfections in
So his songs wouldn’t lose their souls, which is how I think of poems.
Philip Larkin loved jazz too—a great poet, though disagreeable—
But I don’t know if many other poets on my radar do. Perhaps they
Think it’s easy, I say to myself as I put on a record of Mal Waldron’s,
To whom Billie Holiday once whispered a song along a keyboard
In the 5 Spot and Frank O’Hara and everyone there stopped breathing.

Friday, January 22nd

only rock ‘n’ roll

More of Tenement.

Live, Madison, Wis., 1/15/16


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lagniappe

my back pages

On a cold, snowy night thirty-nine years ago, at a church outside Chicago, tenor saxophonist Von Freeman (MCOTD Hall of Fame) and pianist John Young performed at a wedding ceremony. Both are now gone. All of what they played that night – “Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” “It Never Entered My Mind,” “More” (before); “In a Sentimental Mood” (unaccompanied saxophone, as the bride walked down the aisle); “My Favorite Things,” “Song for My Father” (after) – may be heard here (0:15-).

Sunday, December 20th

 old school

Mighty Clouds of Joy, “I’m Glad About It,” live, Houston, 1967


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lagniappe

musical thoughts

Sometimes I have good nights, and sometimes I have bad nights. One never knows.

—tenor saxophonist, and MCOTD Hall of Famer, Von Freeman (1923-2012)

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