A nice surprise!
Of course I was at the gig with Ken's band playing Buck Clayton, Buddy Tate and even a Dickie Wells arrangement. Jock's alto saxophone playing amazed me, and I mentioned the gig as part of an apology for not having been able to attend Ken's concert the following year. I had a good excuse for not being at Ken's gig -- I would have preferred to be there, but I reviewed a concert by some very young Scottish musicians instead.
I think I said about everything I could then remember of the 2002 gig, at which Danny Moss played as guest soloist with Ken's band. The one thing I didn't mention was that when Jock was beginning a solo (and he played exclusively alto) he had a way of digging in with a low note on the alto, so that if I wasn't looking it wasn't clear whether it was Jock's alto or Danny's tenor. Of course Jock just started with the dig in note and then proceeded to play with a bigger sound than I have heard from anybody born on this side of the Atlantic. I did hear Johnny Hodges when I was a schoolboy!
Ken was of course very enthusiastic about Jock, and quite apart from how well he played there was also the matter of needing only to put the sheet music in front of him and out came the performance. I can't remember the other members of the band, apart from Colin Steele on trumpet.
You have obviously brought me good luck, since just as your mail came in I found the diskette to which I had cut and pasted some draft material for an article that has been postponed a long time. I should have copied and pasted but to my dismay the original seemed to have (seemed -- it bleedin well HAD) disappeared from the hard disc.
I'm starting to get a yen to take up saxophone again myself, if I can work out an embouchure -- the last horn went when the latest repair to something a nasty person did with a spanner skewed my front teeth. And I was very broke at the time. Never sounded like Jock though, a most memorable musician!
All the very best,
Previous | Home | Next
Richard Valentine -1996 - 2006 © - All rights reserved