Henry Alonzo Grimes
November 3, 1935-April 15, 2020
Henry played bass, violin and was also a poet, literally and musically. He recorded and played with Gerry Mulligan, Sonny Rollins, Monk, Mingus, Anita O'Day, Benny Goodman and countless others.
October 13, 1927-April 15, 2020
Lee was the last surviving player from the Miles Davis Birth of the Cool album released in 1957. We'd be shocked if that was not on the best-in-jazz list of any reader of Seacoast Jazz Notes. Lee also had a long career punctuated by superior playing as a leader on 154 albums and a sideman on 62 others. When Charlie Parker was blazing his trail, Lee Konitz and a few others detoured through more melodic and rhythmic paths. If you listen to Lee followed by Paul Desmond and then Art Pepper, it all makes perfect sense.
Michael Josef Longo
March 19, 1937-March 22, 2020
Mike was best known as a pianist for Dizzy Gillespie. If you got to hear Dizzy at The Music Hall in the ’80s, you heard Mike too. Other than the Dizzy decades, Mike swung close to the soul cats. Somewhat influenced by Cannonball Adderley, he shows up in a variety of places. If you see a used black CD with a red devil's head on it entitled, Return of Killer Jazz Funk, spend the dollar (or less) and get it. Mike's on it and it's a great house party CD to play for jazz newbies.
Ellis Louis Marsalis, Jr.
November 14, 1934-April 1, 2020
If you're reading this, you know Ellis Marsalis. Losing the patriarch of our jazz royal family to pneumonia resulting from Covid-19 is this jazz lover’s deepest cut. Ellis and Wynton's Joe Cool's Blues; Ellis and Branford's, Loved Ones: If you haven't heard them, they're worth the effort. Ellis's solo album, Duke in Blue, produced by Delfeayo, will make you feel as good about the blues as you can.
May 3, 1926-April 10, 2020
Jymie, a bassist, was a member of The Jazz Messengers from 1958 to 1964. He also worked as a sideman for B.B. King, Chet Baker, Max Roach, Dizzy Gillespie and others. Jymie was also a pioneer of the electric bass.
John Paul "Bucky" Pizzarelli
January 9, 1926-April 1, 2020
Bucky's guitar work is legendary. His list of collaborators includes Les Paul, Stephane Grappelli and Antonio Carlos Jobim. He is the father of John, a jazz guitarist and vocalist; Mary, a classical guitarist; and Martin, a bassist. While Googling around, I visited John's website and found this quote: "A week to the day after my father, Bucky, passed at 94, my mother, Ruth, passed away. I am certain Bucky called for her. She was the best Mommy and held down the fort of four headstrong kids and a man with a passion for the guitar that was unending."
May 25, 1960-March 31, 2020
Wallace was 59 and had a career that many 90-year old musicians can only dream of. He was a Berklee graduate that played on 22 albums as a leader and many others as a sideman. He had an elite crew of teachers that included Clark Terry, Dizzy and Miles.