I’ve Got Mail: Jazz In The Woods

recent crow The Bill Crow photo I posted previously was a tad dated, so Bill sent me this one taken by Judy Kirtley (wife of pianist Bill Mays) a little over a year ago. He wrote of the first photo:

That’s an old picture of me, back when I had more hair. It was taken at Struggles in Edgewater, NJ, on the last gig that Al and Zoot played together before Zoot passed. (That’s Zoot’s shoulder sharing the photo with me.)

Bill also told me that he is going on vacation, and taking his tuba with him:

It’s nice to practice on the deck of our cabin in the wood…the tuba sounds lovely ringing out across the treetops and distant hills. No complaints from the neighbors or the deer so far.

That’s a scene I can clearly envision, not because I have such a great imagination, but because I have seen a similar sight. Here is the first paragraph of the liner notes I wrote for Jim Hall’s 1997 CD, Textures.

The screened-in porch of the Hall country retreat is in the middle of the woods. The birds chirp and the chipmunks splash through the fallen leaves getting ready for winter. The cacophony of the city is far away and here we sit, my father and I, talking about Textures, his latest recording. From my perspective this project reveals a startling and wonderful new persona.

Coincidentally, this CD includes three pieces written for a brass ensemble. I know that the tuba has a long history in jazz, but outside of marching bands, it’s not heard all that often these days. My favorite tune from this recording is Circus Dance, a lumbering waltz for two trumpets, trombone, tuba, guitar and drums. [I’ve posted a pdf of the liner notes here]