Ronnie Scott's

From the Financial Times

Published: June 27 2006 22:12 | Last updated: June 27 2006 22:12


Ronnie Scott's to release archive of jazz greats
By Bob Sherwood

Previously unheard live sessions of some of the great names of jazz are
set to be sold online as digital downloads as Ronnie Scott's, the iconic
Soho venue, joins the iPod generation.

The London jazz club - which reopened this week after a £2.5m
refurbishment - is in discussions with Universal Music Group on a
worldwide distribution deal to make its vast archive of live sessions
available online and on CD.

The club's owners are keen to capitalise on its vault of hundreds of
unheard recordings of jazz greats, such as Dizzy Gillespie, Ella
Fitzgerald, Chet Baker, Sarah Vaughan and Buddy Rich.

The club made its name by attracting the biggest jazz names to its dark,
smoke-filled stage since the 1960s, a world away from the digital media
world. But this move, orchestrated by Sally Greene, theatrical impresario,
producer and restaurateur, who bought Ronnie Scott's last year, will make
seminal jazz sessions of the 1960s, 70s and 80s available to music fans
across the world for the first time.

Leo Green, Ronnie Scott's artistic director, said no deal had been
finalised but an agreement with a large record company could be announced
next month. He said: "We have to do it very carefully and sensitively.
It's not about milking a cash cow, it's about preserving the legacy.

"It's pretty much a potted history of jazz. Jazz fans all over the world
can't come here but now we can give them some of what's been going on at
Ronnie Scott's."

The club is also initiating regular podcasts via its website, in
conjunction with iTunes, to make jazz more accessible to modern listeners.

Ronnie Scott's sessions have been released before, but the archive of
recordings, made on a number of different formats dating back to quarter-
inch tape, is far larger than the owners realised after many were
discovered by accident during the three-month renovation leading up to the
club's relaunch on Monday.

Nick Moss, spokesman for Ronnie Scott's, said: "Every time we opened up a
room for the refurbishment, we would find another cupboard full of tapes.
There were even some behind a sealed door in a ladies toilet in the
upstairs bar. We just kept finding them."

The club, which has hosted the likes of Miles Davis, Nina Simone and Count
Basie, is still not even quite sure of precisely what jazz gems it has in
its vaults: some of the tapes' labels have peeled off and the archive that
runs into thousands of tracks is yet to be catalogued. One of the problems
is simply finding old-format machines to play the tapes on.

The club hopes to turn the recordings into compilation albums, possibly
releasing one a year.

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Miles Update

From Yahoo news:


By JEFF DOUGLAS, Associated Press Writer Mon Jun 26, 4:36 PM ET
ST. LOUIS - To say 2006 is a busy year for Miles Davis and the estate of
the late jazz virtuoso would be like saying Davis was a decent trumpet
CDs, a DVD, a book, a movie, induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
and even a USC marching-band halftime performance are a few pieces that
make up something of a comeback for the King of Cool in his 80th-birthday
"One of the things that has been most surprising to me is just how iconic
the name Miles Davis is," said Darryl Porter, the General Manager of Miles
Davis Properties. "Part of our goal is to get a whole new generation of
Miles fans."
As music changed, Davis morphed his cool jazz into fusion and experimental
sounds that later gave way to jazz funk and hip-hop grooves. This year,
his estate is finding ways to reinvent Davis and let the music he composed
continue to evolve.
Remixed Davis recordings called "Evolution of the Groove," featuring
Santana and the rapper Nas, will be released in the fall.
Miles Davis Properties hired high-powered entertainment publicists Rogers
& Cowan this year to promote Davis' legacy and the many events taking
place this year.
Porter came on board to run the estate in the past year. He knew the jazz
legend and the Davis family since childhood. A lawyer and manager for
others in the music industry, Porter now coordinates business and
marketing for the estate. Requests to use Davis' music and image come from
around the world and are granted by Miles Davis Properties daily, he said.
In May, a collectors' box of the Miles Davis Quintet was released 50 years
after the recording sessions. But the momentum that Davis created during a
career that spanned decades hardly needs a push from a four-disc box set
or the force his estate has put behind him this year.
Sales of Davis' music have not slowed since his death 15 years ago.
"There's not an easier musician to market than Miles Davis. There are so
many different version of Miles Davis. People can plug into the Miles they
like," said jazz critic Gerald Early, who has edited a book on Davis. "As
far as an artistic commodity, he's very valuable."
"Kind of Blue," still sells thousands of CDs a week, according to Sony
BMG. It's Davis' most acclaimed recording with the smooth melodies of John
Coltrane and other jazz greats. Davis records that also are jazz-
collection essentials, including the trippy "Bitches Brew" and "Birth of
the Cool" have maintained similar stamina.
Sony Legacy plans to release more Davis recordings this year and his
estate is excited that

Don Cheadle has agreed to play Davis in an upcoming biopic.
"It's a great year for Miles, there's definitely been a renewed interest,"
said Chuck Haddix, a jazz historian and director of the Marr Sound
Archives in Kansas City, Mo.
In comparing Davis' estate with another jazz legend, Charlie Parker,
there's a marked difference, Haddix said. Parker's survivors had been in
turmoil for years with litigation over his estate.
"Even before Parker was in the ground his family was embroiled in
controversy over money," Haddix said. "I think Miles was a little bit
better at taking care of business."
Porter said looking at the strength of Davis' estate today, it was obvious
he knew what he wanted for his survivors and understood the value of
But Davis' survivors have not been without any public feuding.
His son Gregory Davis has written a book that tells how he and Miles Davis
Jr. were not named as beneficiaries in their dad's will when he passed on
at the age of 65 in 1991. Gregory still owns a portion of his father's
publishing rights, however.
Miles Davis' legacy and the eternal proceeds from his name and music are
now entrusted to four relatives who make up the Davis estate - his
youngest son, Erin, daughter Cheryl, and nephew Vince Wilburn Jr. and his
father (Davis' brother in law).
Gregory's book, "Dark Magus," is expected to be released this year. It
paints his father's personality as "Jekyll and Hyde," something other
Davis children disagree with.
That's not a side of Davis that's being honored this year from St. Louis,
where he spent his early years, to Hollywood.
A jazz concert was held last month in his honor here, where he was honored
the year before his death with a gold-plated star embedded in the St.
Louis Walk of Fame. Besides the Rock Hall of Fame, Davis this year was
also immortalized by Hollywood's RockWalk (having already been etched a
few years back into the Hollywood Walk of Fame). In addition, the

Smithsonian Institution in Washington had an exhibit on Davis and
Thelonious Monk in April, and a performance DVD of Davis will be released
on the 15th anniversary of his passing in September.
"He was always about improving the craft and moving forward," Erin Davis
said. "We feel like we are honoring him by continuing that tradition."

10:12 Gepost door Lexman | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |


Peter O'Toole

An, at least to me, rather unknown foto of Peter O'Toole popped up in a 1967 issue of Down Beat. Watch out for the man with the sunglasses!





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Diana Krall

The Associated Press reports...

NEW YORK (AP) -- Diana Krall and husband Elvis Costello announced Sunday
that the jazz singer is pregnant and due in December -- just in time for
their third wedding anniversary...The 41-year-old Krall will release a new
album this September.

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Hilton Ruiz

I got this update in thje mailbox :


NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The family of the late jazz pianist and composer
Hilton Ruiz has sued a Bourbon Street dance club, saying he was attacked and beaten there and the club's bouncers failed either to protect him or to help him afterward.
"We are very confident there are people out there who are aware of what  happened to Mr. Ruiz in that club in the early hours of May 19,"
attorney Scott Galante said Monday. "We are urging people and pleading
with people to come forward to my office or the New Orleans Police
Department with their information."
Ruiz, 54, of Teaneck, N.J., died June 6, about 2 1/2 weeks after he fell
in front of the Club Utopia, named as the defendant in the negligence
lawsuit filed by his daughter, Aida Ruiz. He excelled in a wide variety
of styles from Afro-Cuban rhythms to the blues, and had come to New
Orleans to make a video to go with a benefit recording for Hurricane
Katrina victims.
After he had been in the Utopia for several hours, the lawsuit alleges,
Ruiz was attacked by several people. The club's security workers "failed
to intervene in any meaningful fashion," or to call an ambulance for
Ruiz, but instead threw or escorted him out and "abandoned" him even
though he was clearly unable to make his way to safety, the suit alleges.
Fred Woodruff, manager of the Utopia, said that, as far as he knows,
that never happened.
"We have no knowledge of that whatsoever," said Woodruff. He had not
heard about the lawsuit, which was filed last week in Civil District 
Woodruff said he has not reviewed the club's security tapes, and police
have not asked to see them.
Galante said, "Obviously, it's something we're seeking," but wouldn't
comment when asked whether he had asked the club for its tapes.
Ten days before Ruiz was hospitalized, an altercation involving five
people inside the Utopia led to a murder just outside, police have said.
In that case, a man argued with three women who refused to accept drinks from him, hitting one with a bottle and punching another, and then shot and killed the man who escorted the women outside to wait for an
ambulance, police said.
Police have said they first investigated the injuries to Ruiz's face and
head as an attack, but witnesses and other evidence all indicated that
they were the result of a fall early May 19.
He never regained consciousness.
Police spokeswoman Bambi Hall said the department is cooperating with
the family's lawyers, but stands by its investigators' original
conclusion. "We can't speak to what Utopia did or did not do," she said.
Mary Howell, the first attorney retained by Ruiz's daughter and ex-wife,
also named Aida, said while Ruiz was still alive that his family was
convinced that Ruiz had accidentally tripped or fallen.
But the younger Aida Ruiz then retained Galante.

09:39 Gepost door Lexman | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |


The Village Vanguard

The NYT edition of today has some interesting article on NY's famous club The Village Vanguard. Enjoy the read!



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Roland Alexander RIP

I received some sad news a few days ago :

Tenor Saxophonist, Composer, Arranger, and Teacher Roland Alexander made his transition on June 14th, at 7:45PM while still hospitalized at Maimonides Hospital in Brooklyn, NY.

18:07 Gepost door Lexman | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |