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Today in Music

This Date in Music – October 18, 1947 – Singer-songwriter Laura Nyro was born!

 Laura NyroBorn on this day was singer-songwriter Laura Nyro. Now many of you may not know Laura’s name but you just may have heard a song or two that she wrote because……

Between 1968 and 1970, a number of artists had hits with her songs: The 5th Dimension with “Blowing Away”, “Wedding Bell Blues”, “Stoned Soul Picnic”, “Sweet Blindness”, “Save The Country” and “Black Patch”; Blood, Sweat & Tears and Peter, Paul & Mary with “And When I Die”; Three Dog Night and Maynard Ferguson with “Eli’s Coming”; and Streisand with “Stoney End”, “Time and Love”, and “Hands off the Man (Flim Flam Man)”. Nyro’s best-selling single was her recording of Carole King and Gerry Goffin’s “Up on the Roof.

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How about some Charlie Robison “Barlight” on his birthday? (September 1, 1964) Happy Birthday, Charlie!

Charlie Robison is celebrating one of those big birthday years today, September 1st! He is turning 50 years young today!! Charlie  is one of the TexasCharlie Robison Country music artists that I discovered through the Texas Country Music list on Yahoo in the late 1990s. Among that group were Charlie’s brother Bruce, Jack Ingram and Pat Green…. Some background about Charlie from Wikipedia…..

After an injury in college ended a potential football career, Charlie Robison came to Austin, Texas in the late 1980s and had stints in the bands Chaparral, Millionaire Playboys, and Two Hoots and a Holler.[1] He went solo with his album “Bandera” in 1996. He subsequently signed with Sony and released “Life of the Party” on Sony’s subsidiary Lucky Dog Records. The album gave him three of his biggest hits including “My Hometown.” His next release was a live disc called “Unleashed Live,” which is credited to Charlie, brother Bruce, and Jack Ingram. He then signed with Columbia Records for “Step Right Up” and another live album Read More

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Yesterday in Music – May 10, 1935 – Julius Wechter leader of the Baja Marimba Band was born!!

How about a little musical analogy ——

The Rolling Stones are to The Beatles as

______________ are to Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass!

If you said The Baja Marimba Band!! You would be correct and probably old!! On this date in 1935 the leader of the Band Julius Wechter Julius Wechter was born!! To explain the analogy The Beatles we re the clean-cut good  guys and the Stones the bad boys. And Jules says this about the Baja Marimba Band’s relationship to Herb and the Brass! They were….

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Yesterday in Music -April 22, 1936 – Glen Campbell was born!!

Glen CampbellYesterday I saw that Glen Campbell, who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s three years ago, was in his best interest, moved to a Care Facility. According to the family, it Campbell’s care became too much for them. You can read about it here. Today Glen celebrates his 78th birthday! Glen was born on April 22, 1936 in Billstown, a tiny community near Delight in Pike County, Arkansas. He was the seventh son of 12 children. Way back when, in the late 60s, along with all the rock, and folk music that I was listening to, Glen Campbell’s albums found their way into my music library! He was a great singer, an equally talented guitarist and a seemingly all around good guy. Four wives and the drug and alcohol abuse tell a different story for many years of his life, but bout 25 years or so ago he was able to put that all behind him for the most part. Here is a good article about Glen from The Telegraph. For those of you who don’t know Glen, or those who need some reminding – from Wikipedia…..

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Yesteday in Music – Jan 30, 1957 Happy Birthday, Janiva Magness!!

YeJanvia Magnesssterday Janiva Magness celebrated her 57th birthday. If you do not Janiva is a blues superstar. She was named the Blues Foundation’s B.B. King Entertainer of the Year in 2009, becoming only the second woman, after Koko Taylor, to be so honored. She was also named the Contemporary Blues Female Artist of the Year in that same year! She had won that award in both 2006 and 2007. In 2012 she was nominated for that award again. All ototal since 2006, she has had 22 similar nominations! This year she won the 2013 Blues music Award: for Contemporary Artist of the Year again and her song “I won’t Cry” was song of the Year!!

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This Day in Music – January 30, 1930 – Wes’ baby brother – Buddy Montgomery was born!

Buddy MontgomeryOn this day in 1930, Charles “Buddy” Montgomery, the youngest of the Montgomery Brothers was born in Indianapolis, Indiana. Buddy was nine years younger than Monk, the oldest of the three musical brothers and seven years younger than Wes, the most famous of th brothers. Buddy played both piano and vibes, but is primarily known for playing vibes. His career started in 1948 and in 1949 he played with Big Joe Turner followed by a stint with Slide Hampton. In 1957, after serving several  years in the Army, he joined older brother Monk, Richie Crabtree (piano) and Benny Barth (drums) in the Mastersounds over the next several years they produced ten recordings.

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This Day in Music January 23, 1943 – Happy Birthday – Gary Burton!!

Gary BurtonOn this date in 1943, the great vibraphonist and one of my favorites Gary Burton was born in Anderson, Indiana. Whenever I have “One of those days” it’s usually the vibes of Burton that bring me back to a happier and more relaxed place. Some background and information on Burton from Wikipedia:

Beginning music at six years old, Burton for the most part taught himself to play marimba and vibraphone.[2] He also began studying piano at age sixteen as he finished high school in Princeton, Indiana (56–60). Burton has cited jazz pianist Bill Evans as a main inspiration for his approach toward the vibraphone.

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Today in Music – Dec 23, 1940 – Happy 73rd Birthday – Jorma Kaukonen

Jorma KaukonenSo today is the birthday of one of my favorite guitar players Jorma Kaukonen! Jorma was born on this day in 1940 in Washington, D.C., the son of Beatrice Love (née Levine) and Jorma Ludwig Kaukonen, Jorma Kaukonen had Finnish paternal grandparents and Russian Jewish ancestry on his mother’s side. I am a fan of both sides of Jorma’s music. The rock side which he of course displayed as a member of the Jefferson Airplane, and his acoustic side, which he has displayed in his solo releases. Then there is Hot Tuna, where sometimes he’s acoustic and sometimes electric. My favorite album of Jorma’s is Blue Country Heart, which was widely acclaimed by critics as one of the definitive examples of American “Depression Era ” music and features Kaukonen backed by an all-star Nashville bluegrass band. The album was nominated for a Grammy Award. Here’s some information from Wikipedia about Jorma incredible guitar playing….

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This Day in Music – Dec 14, 1920 – Happy Birthday, Clark Terry!

Clark TerryToday we celebrate the birthday of another jazz icon, Clark Terry, who born on December 14th in 1920!! Terry’s career has span almost 70 years! Wow! From Wikipedia:

Terry was born in St. Louis, Missouri. He attended Vashon High School and began his professional career in the early 1940s, playing in local clubs. He served as a bandsman in the United States Navy during World War II. Read More

and from AllMusic Guide:

Possessor of the happiest sound in jazz, flügelhornist Clark Terry always plays music that is exuberant, swinging, and fun. A brilliant (and very distinctive) soloist, C.T. gained fame for his “Mumbles” vocals (which started as a satire of the less intelligible ancient blues singers) and is also an enthusiastic educator. Read more

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Today in Music – Dec 2, 1931 – Jazz Pianist Wynton Kelly was born!

KellyWyntonOn this day in 1931 jazz pianist Wynton Kelly was born in Jamaica. According to Wikipedia Wynton is maybe best know for the years he spent working with Miles Davis from 1959 to 1962. While that may be true for many listeners it’s not for me. I remember Wynton as a sideman for Wes Montgomery. If Jimmy Smith and Wes were the Dynamic Duo. Wynton and Wes were the Dynamic Duo 2 in my eyes and ears!!

The son of Jamaican immigrants, Kelly was born in Brooklyn, New York.[1][2][3] He started his professional career in 1943, initially as a member of R&B groups.[2] Around this time he also played organ in local churches.[4] R&B bands that he played with up to 1951 included those led by Ray Abrams, Hot Lips Page, Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson, and Eddie “Lockjaw” Davis.[5] Kelly became better known after joining Dinah Washington’s band in 1951, going on to record 14 titles for Blue Note in his trio in the same year.[5] After this he played with bands led by Lester Young and Dizzy Gillespie, recording with the latter in 1952.[5] Kelly was drafted into the army in September 1952, and stayed for two years, ending that period with a music performance for an audience of 10,000 in the Chastain Memorial Park Amphitheater in Atlanta, Georgia.[6] After leaving the military, Kelly worked with Washington again (1955–1957), Charles Mingus (1956–1957), and the Dizzy Gillespie Big Band (1957), before leaving Gillespie and forming his own trio, which then recorded the second album under Kelly’s name, more than six years after the first…. Continue Reading

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