By Roger Crane What is left to say about the lovely and iconic “Over the Rainbow?” Well, some basics. The music is by Harold Arlen and the lyric by E. Y. “Yip” Harburg. As many of you know, it was written for and featured in the 1939 Judy Garland movie The Wizard of Oz. The… Read More Keeping the GAS (Great American Songbook) Flame Burning: “Over the Rainbow”
By Don Heckman Bel Air, CA. Vibrato Grill Jazz…etc. became a very special place when Herb Alpert took it over a few years ago, transforming a small venue in a mini-mall at the top of Beverly Glen into a fine food connoisseur’s delight and a world class showcase for jazz. And it becomes even more… Read More Live Music: Herb Alpert and Lani Hall at Vibrato Grill Jazz…etc.
By Brian Arsenault “Aujord hui, maman est morte.” Actually not today or even yesterday. Rather in late spring when the weather begins to warm in the far northeast. Mom was 92 so her passing was not a surprise, but my last real contact with that generation was lost. As an only offspring it fell to… Read More Brian Arsenault Takes On: Glenn Miller and his Orchestra
Summer at the Ocean and a Box of Chocolates By Brian Arsenault The Michael Treni Big Band Pop-Culture Blues My favorite piece on Pop-Culture Blues is “Summer Blues.” Maybe because it’s still summer, the very heart of it. The tune begins on a languorous afternoon with a beverage — perhaps several — looking at the… Read More Record Rack: The Michael Treni Big Band, Hadiza Dockeray
By Don Heckman The performance by Gordon Goodwin’s Big Phat Band at Vitello’s Friday night was a hearty reminder of the decades when big bands were the stars of popular music. Some of those bands – Count Basie, Duke Ellington – were firmly rooted in jazz. Others – Sammy Kaye, Guy Lombardo – played music… Read More Live Jazz: Gordon Goodwin’s Big Phat Band at Vitello’s
By Devon Wendell This has indeed been a sad week in the world of music with the loss of two giants in the world of r&b, blues, jazz, gospel, and rock ‘n’ roll. The first, Johnny Otis, r & b pioneer, bandleader, talent scout, drummer, and composer, whose imagination would help transform hit-sculpted r&b into… Read More An Appreciation: Etta James and Johnny Otis