The Orchestra will be on tour during the period; this month, their itinerary brings them into the midwest. A new compact disc, "Cab100," featuring Brooks and the Orchestra with guest artists, is to be released later this year, and three important books are also to be made available, namely The Jumpin' Jive of Cab Calloway, Brooks' memoir about his grandfather; Hi-De-Ho Man: The Life of Cab Calloway, a scholarly biography by Alyn Shipton; and a new edition of Cab's own autobiography, first published in 1976, Of Minnie the Moocher and Me.
Also possible are programs, exhibits, lectures, workshops, and other educational activities taking place throughout the country, articles in the press, and there's even a proposal for a commemorative postage stamp.
For more information, view the website cab100.com.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU
Al Hendrickson, guitarist (Shaw '40-'41; Goodman '47; J. Gray '49-'52; "The Gramercy Six" '59),
b.May 10, 1920
Buddy Catlett, bassist (Basie '62-'64), b.May 13, 1933
Eddie Bert, trombonist (Norvo '41-'42; Herman '43 / '50; Kenton '47; McKinley '52; Les Elgart '54;
Lawrence '55-'59), b.May 16, 1922
Gene DiNovi, pianist (Shaw '49; Goodman '48 / '59), b.May 26, 1928
Lorrie Peters, vocalist (McKinley-Miller '57-'59?), b.May 20, 1932
Dave McKenna, pianist (Ventura '49 / '54; Herman '50-'51; Krupa '56-'57; Morrow '57; Hackett '59),
b.May 30, 1930
Gene Norman, 89, record producer (GNP Crescendo) d.May 10, 2007
Buddy Childers, 81, trumpeter (Kenton '42-'50 / '51-'54; Barnet '54 incl. RCA Victor LPM-1091
"Redskin Romp"), d.May 24, 2007
George Greeley, 89, pianist (Variety reported that Greeley's hands were shown for actor Tyrone Power
in the movie "The Eddy Duchin Story") - composer, d.May 26, 2007, emphysema
IN-PRINT AND / OR ONLINE
Apfelberg, Al. "Benny Goodman's 40th Anniversary Concert," IAJRC Journal, Vol. 40
No.2 / May 2007, pp.27-28.
Bradley, Mary O. "Hershey Park ballroom glided away in 1970s," [ Harrisburg, PA ]
Patriot-News / pennlive.com, May 6, 2007.
Eaton, Tony. "What's New?: Glenn Miller Films On UK DVD (at last!)," Moonlight Serenader,
Number 312 / 2nd Edition 2007, pp.7-8. [ "Sun Valley Serenade" is available in the UK but not yet in the US ]
Fessier, Bruce. "Former Sinatra, Harry James Pianist Is Still Swinging," [ Palm Springs,
CA ] Desert Sun / thedesertsun.com, May 21, 2007. [ Al Lerner, now age 88, and author of a new 148-pg.
memoir, Vamp 'Til Ready: Harry James, Dick Haymes, and Stories of Entertainment Legends (Albany, GA: BearManor Media, 2007) ]
Friedwald, Will. "Jazz: Here's Looking at Chu," New York Sun / nysun.com, May 22, 2007.
[ review of the Chu Berry set recently issued by Mosaic ]
Green, Peter. "UK CD Reviews: 4 Brothers 7 - Frank Tiberi," Big Bands International,
May 2007, p.13. [ Tiberi (Herman '69-'87; Herman Orch. '87- ) ]
Kelsey, Chris. "Overdue Ovation: Frank Foster: Jumpin' At 78," DownBeat, May 2007,
pp.46-47. [ Foster (Basie '53-'64; Basie Orch. '86-'95) no longer plays, but still writes music ]
Lebo, Jack. "Big Band Report," Joslin's Jazz Journal, May 2007, pp.13-.14.
"LeMel and Sharell Feature Keely Smith at 2nd Annual Concert for the Society of Singers
June 22nd at the El Rey Theatre," pr-inside.com, May 3, 2007. [ Smith (Prima '49-'61) ]
Massarik, Jack. "Blow By Blow Recall," [ London, England ] Evening Standard /
thisislondon.co.uk, May 14, 2007. [ review of Dizzy Gillespie All-Star Big Band at Cadogan Hall,
Sloane Terrace on 5/11/07 ]
McClennan, Scott. "Basie Orchestra blisters in Worcester," Worcester [ MA ] Telegram &
Gazette / telegram.com, May 5, 2007. [ review of 5/3 performance ]
Portteus, Danielle. "Glenn Miller Orchestra to put listeners 'In the Mood,'" monroenews.com
[ Monroe County, MI ], May 2, 2007.
Reny, Bob. "The Artie Shaw Orchestra: A Modern Band in Shaw's Clothing," IAJRC Journal,
Vol.40 No.2 / May 2007, p.43. [ review of band's 3/19/07 performance at Blues Alley, Washington, DC ]
Roberts, Frank. "Gene Krupa Orchestra swings at The Cavalier show," [ Virginia Beach,
VA ] Pilot, May 29, 2007. [ positive review of the band's May 27th appearance ]
---. "A legend's legacy plays Big Bands at the Cavalier Hotel," [ Virginia Beach, VA ] Pilot,
May 24, 2007. [ Michael Berkowitz recalls Gene Krupa's influence on himself and other drummers ]
Scott. "The Trouble with Cinderella," powerlineblog.com, May 22, 2007. [ recalling Artie Shaw
the day before what would have been his 97th birthday ]
Silsbee, Kirk. "R.I.P. Big Bands?: Not in L.A., Where Large Groups Survive in Spite of
Tough Economics," DownBeat, May 2007, pp.44-47. [ includes discussion of the big band of Gerald Wilson
(Lunceford '39-'42) ]
Taylor, Roland. "The New 1930s Leader," Moonlight Serenader, Number 312 / 2nd Edition
2007, pp.8-10. [ chronicling Glenn Miller's early days as a bandleader ]
Theodore, Alan. "The fabulous Jimmie Lunceford Band," Joslin's Jazz Journal, May 2007,
Tumpak, John. "Frank Comstock: Les Brown's Man of Renown," Joslin's Jazz Journal,
May 2007, pp.6-7.
BIG BANDS ON THE ROAD
Count Basie Orchestra directed by Bill Hughes: May 3, Mechanics Hall, Worcester, MA
Les Brown's Band of Renown directed by Les Brown, Jr.: May 1-3 / 5 / 7-10 / 12 / 14-17 / 19 / 21-24 /
26 / 28-31, Mickey Gilley Theatre, Branson, MO
Cab Calloway Orchestra directed by C. Calloway Brooks: May 2, Newark, OH; May 5, York, PA
Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra directed by Bill Tole: May 15, Muskegon, MI; May 19, Denver, CO
Jan Garber Orchestra directed by Howard Schneider: May 3, Pekin Community High School, Pekin, IL;
May 30, Romer's Catering, St. Henry, OH; May 31, Bear Creek Farms, Bryant, IN
Dizzy Gillespie All-Star Big Band directed by Slide Hampton: portion of May, three-week tour of
Russia, the Netherlands, and Scandanavia; May 22-24?, Blue Note, New York, NY
Gene Krupa Orchestra directed by Michael Berkowitz: May 27, Cavalier Hotel Beach Club, Virginia
Beach, VA; May 28, Palace Theatre, Cape Charles, VA [ both with guest vocalist Lynn Roberts (Dorsey Bros. '53-'56;
J. Dorsey '56-'57; Goodman '61 / '67 / '69 / '72; James '78-'82?) ]
Guy Lombardo's Royal Canadians with Al Pierson: May 3, Bryant, IN
Glenn Miller Orchestra directed by Larry O'Brien: May 2, Alberta Kimball Auditorium, Oshkosh, WI; May 3,
Stoughton Opera House, Stoughton WI; May 5, River Raisin Centre for the Arts, Monroe, MI; May 6, Paramount
Theatre, Aurora, IL; May 8, Carnegie Hall, Lewisburg, WV; May 9, Trinity High School, Washington, PA; May 11-13,
Devos Performing Hall, Grand Center with the Grand Rapids Symphony, Grand Rapids, MI; May 17, Bayshore
Community Centre, Owen Sound, Ontario, Canada; May 19, State Theatre Center for the Arts, Uniontown, PA;
May 20, Palace Theatre, Marion, OH; May 21, LaComedia Dinner Theatre, Springboro, OH; May 23, Palace Theatre,
Cleveland, OH; May 24, Best Western Genetti Inn & Suites, Hazleton, PA 7:30; May 26, Willett Hall, Portsmouth, VA;
May 27, Sellersville1894 Theatre, Sellersville, PA; May 30, Media Theatre, Media, PA
Russ Morgan Orchestra directed by Jack Morgan: May 10, John Knox Village, Lees Summit, MO;
May 12, private party, The Bittersweet, East Dubuque, IL; May 18, Lafayette Hotel, Marietta, OH; May 23, Col
Ballroom, Davenport, IL; May 25, Circa 21 Dinner Theater, Rock Island, IL; May 26-27, Clarion Hotel, Davenport, IA
The 34th annual "Bunny Berigan Jazz Jubilee" will be held May 18-20 in Fox Lake, Wisconsin. Nine different small jazz bands are scheduled to perform, including the "Bunny Berigan Memorial Band" with Bob Schulz, Bob Hirsch and Rev. Al Townsend.
The kick-off event takes place at Mullin’s Drive-In, and sponsor Gerald "Moose" Mullin comments, "I am doing it because I believe in the Jazz Festival here in Fox Lake. This is where Bunny grew up and I am thrilled that this event takes place in Fox Lake. My Dad played with Bunny in the Fox Lake Juvenile Band conducted by Bunny’s Grandfather and I just hope that my Dad would be proud of this event. I also want the general public to get a taste of this wonderful music. This is a FREE concert and I’d just like to see everyone come….bring a chair and come enjoy.”
Collectibles for sale this year include a t-shirt with Berigan's portrait and many CD covers on it, a pin, beret, and umbrella.
For more details, view the website bunnyberiganjazzjubilee.com. Best wishes to "Jazz Jubilee" Chairperson Julie Flemming and her associates!
IT HAPPENS EVERY SPRING
The Los Angeles Jazz Institute presents "Swing Into Spring: A Cavalcade of Big Band Jazz," as its annual festival, May 24-27 at Four Points, Sheraton LAX.
In promotional material, Institute Director Ken Poston observes, "The name 'Swing into Spring' inspired us to design this year's brochure with a baseball motif which besides creating a fun sub-theme actually makes a lot of sense. Both Jazz and Baseball are American inventions and represent two of the most significant landmarks in American History."
Festival performers include Carl Saunders (Kenton '61-'62 / James '66 / Barnet '67), Bob Florence (Zentner '59-'65), and Gerald Wilson (Lunceford '39-'42).
For more information, phone 562-985-7065.
MEMORIES OF YOU
Big band and jazz historian - journalist John Tumpak will give a lecture, "A Tribute to Benny Goodman," May 19th at Glendale Public Library in Glendale, California. Tumpak will include audio excerpts of various Goodman recordings, as well as select clips of B.G.'s movie and TV appearances. "Goodman's enigmatic personality traits will be discussed," it was promised on a Library flyer. "There will be time for questions!"
STILL THINKING OF GENE
Michael Berkowitz, director of The Gene Krupa Orchestra, was quite enthusiastic about the band's performance at Charley O's in Valley Glen, California last month, where he used a set of 1938 Radio Kings drums.
"Charley O's was a gas," he told me. "Lots of people and drummers like Frank Capp, studio percussionist Peter Limonick, Neil Diamond's pianist Tom Hensley, and host of Popeye Theater in LA for many years, Tom Hatten, were all in attendance. We'll be going back in there again."
The Krupa Orchestra's new CD, "Thinking of Gene," should officially be released this month - titled "Thinking of Gene," on the Sea Breeze label, catalog no. SBJ 2143. (See my special preview in the November 2006 "Big Band News.")
"Liner notes were written by an old pal of Gene's who lives in Chicago, Joe Vetrano," Berkowitz reported.