Today is Feb. 26.
Tenor saxophonist Flip Phillips was born this day in 1915 in Brooklyn, N.Y. He worked in the 1940s with Benny Goodman, Woody Herman and Red Norvo, and toured for 10 years with the Jazz at the Philharmonic, where he was an intensely rhythmic and crowd-pleasing player. He died Aug. 17, 2001, in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Trumpeter Roy Eldridge died this day in 1989 at age 78 in Valley Stream, N.Y.
This was the day, in 1917, when the first released jazz record was recorded. Cornetist Nick LaRocca's Original Dixieland Jass Band went into the Victor studios in New York and recorded two exuberant tunes, "Livery Stable Blues" and "Dixieland Jass Band One-Step."
The 78-RPM recording was a runaway hit that sold more than 1 million copies. Within five years, when many black bands were being recorded, the ODJB was considered more of a dated band, and fell out of favor. There was a reunion tour and recording in 1936.
On this day in 1945, Woody Herman first recorded his big band's boppish arrangement of the Louis Jordan hit "Caldonia."
Looking at today's hip happenings...
On the New York jazz scene... the Joe Lovano quartet is at the Village Vanguard through Sunday. Maynard Ferguson and His Big Bop Nouveau Band are at The Blue Note. Drummer Jeff "Tain" Watts' quintet is at Iridium this week. The Terri Lyne Carrington group is at The Jazz Standard through Thursday. The Steve Kirby quintet is at the Zinc Bar tonight. Pianist Deanna Witkowski holds a CD release party at Makor tonight for her new recording, "Wide Open Window."
In and around Boston... there's a Guitar Summit at Scullers jazz club with Bucky Pizzarelli, Howard Alden and John Wheatley tonight and Thursday. The Eric T. Johnson quartet is at The Regattabar in Cambridge with special guest George Garzone.
Marsalis Jams, the first educational initiative of the new Marsalis Music label, holds its inaugural event at Smith College in Northampton, Mass., today with a concert/jam session featuring the sextet of saxophonist David Sanchez and student musicians from Smith and neighboring universities. The concert at Sweeney Concert Hall and the related workshops launch a program designed to form stronger links among college-age musicians, student audiences and the best of today's active jazz ensembles. It is free to members of the participating campuses.
In Philadelphia... "Ambassador Satch: The Story of Louis Armstrong" starring Andre De Shields and featuring a five-piece jazz ensemble is at the Prince Music Theater tonight through March 9. Walter Bell is at The Kimmel Center his evening. The Joann Pascale duo with Tom Lawton is at the Philadelphia Museum of Art's Café Degas tonight. Jimmy Bruno is at Chris's Jazz Cafe.
In Chicago... Henry Johnson's Organ Express with Chris Forman is at Andy's. Jazz Vertigo is at Bistro America in Batavia. Mike Finnerty and the Jazz Hippies are at Cafe Ennui. The Bill Porter Orchestra with Rich Fudoli is at Green Dolphin Street. Kurt Elling's quartet is at the Green Mill. The Brass Tracks Big Band is at Hackney's. Ken Saydak is at Joe's BeBop Café and Jazz Emporium.
Airborne is at Michael's Jazz Bistro in Glen Ellyn tonight. The Ron Perrillo trio is at Pete Miller's Steakhouse in Evanston on Wednesdays. Jackie Allen and Judy Roberts are at Philander's in Oak Park. The Dave Specter organ trio is at Pops for Champagne. The Dave Flippo duo is at Pops of Highwood.
In New Orleans... the 7e Jazz Trio is at the Blue Nile. Earl Brown is at Cafe Sbisa. Leigh "Little Queenie" Harris is at Dos Jefes. The Soul Rebels Brass Band is at El Matador. Rebecca Barry's "Bust" is at the Funky Butt. Kermit Ruffins and the Barbecue Swingers are at Le Bon Temps Roule on Wednesday nights. The Royal Rounders are at Lounge Lizards. The Johnny Vidacovich trio is at the Maple Leaf. The Jerry Embree Swing Band is at Mid-City Lanes Rock 'n' Bowl. John Brunious leads tonight's band at Preservation Hall. Davell Crawford is at Snug Harbor. 3 Now 4 is at d.b.a.
On the California jazz scene... pianist Benny Green and guitarist Russell Malone bring their duo project to the Jazz Bakery in Los Angeles through Sunday. The Jack Sheldon California Quartet is at Charlie O's in Valley Glen. The Pico Rivera big band is at Steamers Jazz Cafe in Fullerton. The Bill Cunliffe trio is at Spazio in Sherman Oaks tonight. Ray Drummond is at the Kuumbwa Jazz Center in Santa Cruz tonight.
Spyro Gyra is at Dimitriou's Jazz Alley in Seattle through Sunday.
On the recording front...
Alto saxophonist Kenny Garrett has released his eighth album as a leader for Warner Bros. It is called "Standard of Language." The one-time Miles Davis, Art Blakey and Sting sideman was recorded in studio but strove for an on-stage energy, which for Garrett is quite energetic. His quartet includes drummer Chris Dave, bassist Charnette Moffett, and pianist Vernell Brown. He includes a 6/8 groove tune called "Kurita Sensei" that was inspired by Wayne Shorter's classic jazz composition "Footprints."
Guitarist Jeff Friedman's CD "Slo & Lo" is out on Accurate Records. His recording sums up a 25-year career as a professional musician and blends elements of jazz, rock and urban blues. His bandmates are pianist Joe Mulholland, bassist Farquharson, drummer Andy Plaisted and singer Eric Mingus.
The Manchester Craftsmen's Guild in Pittsburgh has released "Spirit of the Horn," the first recording in more than 20 years by Slide Hampton's World of Trombones big band. The unit includes 12 trombonists plus a rhythm section.
Pianist David Zoffer and guitarist Adam Larrabee are out with their debut recording, "Courage in Closeness: Live in Boston." The Boston-based improvisers recorded their duets at two New England Conservatory concert halls. They have performed as a duo for 10 years.