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Post new topic Buddy Emmons ' Steel guitar Jazz '
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Author Topic:  Buddy Emmons ' Steel guitar Jazz '
Richard Nelson


From:
Drogheda, Louth, Ireland
Post Posted 5 Mar 2017 9:25 am     Reply with quote

Anyone got an old review of this album when it came out . Or direct me to one please .
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Joachim Kettner


From:
Germany
Post Posted 5 Mar 2017 8:56 pm     Reply with quote

There's a review on the back of the 1993 CD release (as you may already know). Try to google Billboard magazine archives, it's a site were they scanned all their issues. Good luck!
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Frank Freniere


From:
Chicago, IL
Post Posted 6 Mar 2017 5:57 am     Reply with quote

I believe "Downbeat" magazine gave it a positive review at the time.
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Fish


Post Posted 10 Mar 2017 8:29 pm     Reply with quote

I found this poor scan of the Downbeat Magazine review on the SGF many years ago:




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Jim Cohen


From:
Philadelphia, PA
Post Posted 10 Mar 2017 9:06 pm     Reply with quote

It would be very interesting to interview Charli Persip, the only living member of the group that recorded the album with Emmons. I would love to know what he and the rest of the band were thinking at the time, their impressions of Buddy, the material, the album in general, etc. Persip, now 87, apparently still teaches at the New School in NYC, and leads the band Supersound.
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Jack Stanton


From:
Somewhere in the swamps of Jersey
Post Posted 11 Mar 2017 5:52 am     Reply with quote

If Buddy wasn't an original stylist, I guess we can all check our guitars at the door....

Reminiscent of the "appreciation" and revisit NPR did of Buddy, Steel Guitar Jazz and his subsequent career as a solo artist a few years back. It was positive, but I wouldn't go as far as to say glowing.

Kind of reminds me a review in Variety for a band I was in the 70s. They mentioned my name and noted the I "ably handled the instrumental sections". At the time I was disappointed, but reading other reviews in that issue I can to realize it was positive.
What my father used to call "a back handed compliment".
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Michael Lee Allen


From:
Des Plaines Illinois just NW of ChIraq
Post Posted 11 Mar 2017 8:09 am     Reply with quote

I was the one who posted that "poor scan" many years ago on more than one thread. The original was a poor quality printing to begin with. Then it was blown up four times the original size to make it readable. So what do you expect? At least somebody on this forum actually had a copy of it and took the time to share it.
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Barry Blackwood


Post Posted 11 Mar 2017 9:16 am     Reply with quote

Quote:
If Buddy wasn't an original stylist, I guess we can all check our guitars at the door....

Maybe I'm misunderstanding, but I take it that the reviewer was speaking from a jazz musicians point of view rather than a steel guitarists point of view.. Confused
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Bill Cunningham


From:
Atlanta, Ga. USA
Post Posted 11 Mar 2017 9:46 am     Reply with quote

Jim Cohen wrote:
It would be very interesting to interview Charli Persip, the only living member of the group that recorded the album with Emmons. I would love to know what he and the rest of the band were thinking at the time, their impressions of Buddy, the material, the album in general, etc. Persip, now 87, apparently still teaches at the New School in NYC, and leads the band Supersound.


I think you are the man for the job! You practically live in the neighborhood and are capable. Make it happen, cap'n. Very Happy
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Fish


Post Posted 11 Mar 2017 10:59 am     Reply with quote

Hi Michael,
I can see how one could read what I wrote and be offended. I meant no harm and apologize for my poor choice of words (no pun intended). On the contrary, I really appreciate the fact that you posted it many moons ago - I didn't know it was you who had. Without you taking the time to post it here, few of us would have ever seen the original. In fact, it's my only copy. Thanks!!
all the best,
Steve
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Fish


Post Posted 11 Mar 2017 11:11 am     Reply with quote

Jim Cohen-

I contacted Mr. Persip in 2010 when researching Buddy's book. He was very polite but in no way wanted to be interviewed. Apparently 1963 was a very dark year for him on a personal level, and he pointedly said to me he did not want to relive the memory of those days again.

Buddy had very fond memories of his time in the studio with Charli Persip. If you get through to him and he changes his mind about an interview, go for it! Ask him if he remembers how disorganized the sessions were on the first day because there were no charts prepared due to a misunderstanding with Quincy Jones. Buddy and the band more or less jammed through the entire record, which is the way to go if you ask me.

I sure love that album!

Steve


Last edited by Fish on 11 Mar 2017 5:18 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Michael Lee Allen


From:
Des Plaines Illinois just NW of ChIraq
Post Posted 11 Mar 2017 3:28 pm     Reply with quote

"Fish"...
No offense taken and no apology needed. It's the printed word on a screen as opposed to face-to-face. That's one big problem with the internet. A friend of mine who's a huge Emmons fan saw the posting and he alerted me, having seen the original Downbeat review he knew the print quality involved. Another bit of misinformation is that the review was by Leonard Feather. The reviewer's initials are H.P. and I'd be pretty sure it's Harvey Pekar although my whole Downbeat magazine collection has been packed up and stored in California for six years now. For Downbeat I'd say its an average review of the time, personnel and tracks and a short commentary. Two paragraphs is about the norm. Only the biggest names got more space and detail. For comparison there was a tenor player who doubled flute, his name was Rufus Harley, and he did an entire LP (or two) of jazz on bagpipes. He got a similar review. Like Emmon's "SGJ" it was the first LP of that instrument in that context. No previous points of reference, no tradition. At least it got reviewed. The organ guys always bitched that they never got writeups or interviews and their reviews were always shortest and last, sometimes months after release. Simple reason was that the owners and most of the writers were white and not really into organ trios or tenor-organ combos, no matter how popular they were in the black community.
FWIW Emmon's "Black Album" got a bigger and better review, and even a picture, in an early issue of "Guitar Player".
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Michael Lee Allen


From:
Des Plaines Illinois just NW of ChIraq
Post Posted 11 Mar 2017 3:46 pm     Reply with quote

And here's the GP review of "The Black Album"...

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Jack Stanton


From:
Somewhere in the swamps of Jersey
Post Posted 11 Mar 2017 4:09 pm     Reply with quote

Barry,
Your assessment is spot on. The wtiter was no doubt coming from a perspective of a jazz reviewer in that time and place, while when look at that review it's hard to separate my reverence for Buddy and the hindsight of 55 years of all E accomplished in his career.
What continues to blow my mind was that he was only 21 when he made that album. Just amazing.
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Fish


Post Posted 11 Mar 2017 5:17 pm     Reply with quote

Michael-

Your original copy of the GP review is a first for me. Thanks for posting.

Regarding Leonard Feather: if anyone on the Forum has ever seen - or better yet has a copy of - a review of any kind by Feather of Steel Guitar Jazz, I would love to see it. I've heard rumors about it but have never been able to substantiate it's existence.

Thank you.
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Michael Lee Allen


From:
Des Plaines Illinois just NW of ChIraq
Post Posted 12 Mar 2017 8:43 am     Reply with quote

"Fish"...
You never saw the GP review? There are a few other country music magazine reviews out there too. Got them in storage, Decaying newsprint so they were clipped and notated as to origins and issue numbers and dates. Sleeved on acid-free backing boards. From one of your posts above you were working on a BE book? Over the years I've sent lots of material to a couple of people who were going to to that as well as someone who was going to go an entire online history of the Emmons Guitar company. As far as I know none of those guys ever finished up, one could have been you, screen name tells me nothing. Still have some unpublished BE photos from his gigs in Calumet City Illinois where he's playing a triple neck Stringmaster with a Herbert Hise tuning cam. And NO, I'm not posting them here to be lifted by dozens of people. Happened enough times before.

As to the supposed Leonard Feather review. I doubt there is one. I probably have more jazz books, magazines, literature and so forth than all the SGF membership combined and I never saw one. I think it's just hillbilly mythology. An "invented fact" by one of the known Nashville bullshitters who did stuff like this forever. Whatever their agenda was, probably the "tin can telephone" thing to see how far and wide their crap would spread in those pre-internet days. As to Feather himself, he was pretty much a mainstream jazz guy, Being English and a piano player he'd be considered pretty "square" by most of his contemporaries. His forte was the traditional, the big bands, dance bands, and the piano. I really doubt he ever owned or listened to "SGJ", let alone wrote a review of it. And if I'm wrong and he actually did I'd bet he didn't like it. Anyway I've never seen one and the only people who ever mention it are people in country music or BE fans who seem to think it exists, residual pass-down of the Nashville BS story. I guess my only BE story is this. At one of the St Louis shows he played he was next to me in one of the hotel bars and overheard the group conversation. We were talking about jazz and he mentioned the Downbeat review and that he had lost or misplaced his copy years ago. I asked him if he wanted another and a copy of the GP one as well which he did not have. When I got home I found copies and mailed them to him. It was a short conversation and I know for a fact he did not mention any other reviews or magazines or Leonard Feather. I've already played detective on this one.
MLA
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Jim Cohen


From:
Philadelphia, PA
Post Posted 12 Mar 2017 9:25 am     Reply with quote

Michael Lee Allen wrote:
For comparison there was a tenor player who doubled flute, his name was Rufus Harley, and he did an entire LP (or two) of jazz on bagpipes.

Hah! Never thought I'd read Rufus' name on the SGF! He played at my wedding! Smile
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Damir Besic


From:
Nashville,TN.
Post Posted 12 Mar 2017 9:45 am     Reply with quote

Quote:
Music critics are second only to DJs in terms of being deluded and pretentious about their worthless occupation.



Quote:
If most music critics were as enlightened as their writing implies, they would have to be living with unicorns and elven fairies on some Shangri-La-esque plane of existence where their every thought is worshipped in song because it is a bright golden light of pure magical beauty. But no, the reality is most critics are bitter, jaded assholes with a drug or alcohol problem and a father complex, sitting in some shitty studio apartment cluttered with old T. Rex vinyl and empty Starbucks cups.

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Craig Stock


From:
Westfield, NJ USA
Post Posted 12 Mar 2017 9:49 am     Reply with quote

Jim, did Rufus play bagpipes at your wedding? And if so, I didn't know you were Irish Winking O'Cohen?
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Michael Lee Allen


From:
Des Plaines Illinois just NW of ChIraq
Post Posted 12 Mar 2017 10:35 am     Reply with quote




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Michael Lee Allen


From:
Des Plaines Illinois just NW of ChIraq
Post Posted 12 Mar 2017 10:43 am     Reply with quote





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Michael Lee Allen


From:
Des Plaines Illinois just NW of ChIraq
Post Posted 12 Mar 2017 11:42 am     Reply with quote





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Richard Nelson


From:
Drogheda, Louth, Ireland
Post Posted 12 Mar 2017 11:49 am     Reply with quote

Fantastic set of photos and reviews . . Thank you all so much for your help .
Fish , this book you mentioned ? Is it available ? Or have you a draft I could read . I'm doing a masters in Jazz performance and my dissertation is on THE RIGHTFUL PLACE OF PEDAL STEEL GUITAR IN JAZZ or words to that effect .
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Michael Lee Allen


From:
Des Plaines Illinois just NW of ChIraq
Post Posted 12 Mar 2017 11:58 am     Reply with quote

Mr Nelson...
Have you checked out the jazz steel LPs that were released by the Case Brothers on Priority which feature Tom Morrell or Maurice Anderson, or the two together on "Sextet Sessions" which is still available on this forum? Canadian steel guitarist Jack Mooney also did an LP early on. And there is even earlier the non-pedal "Jazz Steel Guitar" LP by Eddie Alike on the 10 string EHARP that he put out on his own label.
MLA
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Jim Cohen


From:
Philadelphia, PA
Post Posted 12 Mar 2017 6:24 pm     Reply with quote

Craig Stock wrote:
Jim, did Rufus play bagpipes at your wedding? And if so, I didn't know you were Irish Winking O'Cohen?

Yes, he did play bagpipes, but just to lead the procession out of the church. He cut quite a figure, as an African-American bagpiper in a kilt! And you think my background is mixed up...? Wink


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