25/06/2007

Manny Albam, o apátrida

A maioria dos guias de jazz diz que ele nasceu em Samana, na República Dominicana. Na verdade, Manny Albam nasceu no oceano, em 1922, a bordo de um navio que levava seus pais da Rússia para os EUA. Apátrida ou não, Manny foi com a família para New York, onde costumava ouvir os discos de ópera de sua mãe. Tudo ia bem até que, aos sete anos, um vizinho lhe convidou para ouvir um álbum de Bix Beiderbecke, o trompetista branco mais respeitado do jazz. Impressionado por essa música, começa a tocar sax alto e barítono em pequenos clubes e, aos dezesseis anos, entra para a banda de Muggsy Spanier. Na década de 1940 Manny começa a produzir uma série de arranjos para Don Joseph, Bob Chester, Georgie Auld, Charlie Spivak, Boyd Raeburn, Sam Donahue, Charlie Barnet, Jerry Wald, entre outros. Nas décadas de 1950 e 1960 passa a se dedicar quase que exclusivamente aos arranjos e à composição, deixando o sax em segundo plano. Faz um relativo sucesso com seus trabalhos para pequenos grupos (Terry Gibbs, Hal McKusick, Gerry Mulligan, Dizzy Gillespie, Al Cohn, Stan Getz), orquestras (Count Basie, Woody Herman, Stan Kenton, Buddy Rich) e cantoras (Sarah Vaughan, Carmen McRae e Dakota Staton). Apesar de consagrar-se como um dos melhores arranjadors do mainstream jazz, nunca esquecendo suas raízes no swing e no blues, Manny também freqüentava o ambiente clássico, produzindo em 1951 um arranjo para jazz band da obra West Side Story, aprovado pelo próprio autor, Leonard Berenstein. Entre 1958 e 1960, Manny estudou música clássica com Tibor Serly e, a partir de 1964, ensinou música em diversas instituições. Suas composições sempre tiveram grande apelo popular, embora também tenha composto para música de câmara, sobretudo para o especialista em tuba Harvey Phillips, além de música para cinema e televisão. Como se não bastasse, fundou a BMI’s Jazz Composer Workshop. Para os amigos deixo a faixa Happiness Is A Thing Called Joe (caso queira baixá-la, clique AQUI – a senha de acesso é jazzseen), retirada do álbum Brass On Fire, gravado em 1966, com Manny Albam (bs), Ray Alonge, James Buffington, Howard Howard, Earl Chapin, Albert Richmond (frhn), Jimmy Maxwell, John Frosk, Danny Stiles, Joe Newman, Ernie Royal, Thad Jones (t), Wayne Andre, Eddie Bert (tb), Bob Brookmeyer (vtb), Tony Studd (btb), Richard Davis (b), Barry Galbraith (g), Mel Lewis (d), Teddy Sommer (bgo). Boa audição!

Manny Albam - Happ...



Sobre o álbum: Manny Albam focuses on brass while omitting reeds and piano entirely from this mid-'60s big-band LP. Albam's arrangements of the dozen standards are still fresh decades later, whether alternating between the trumpet and trombone sections, or showcasing individual soloists. "Happiness Is a Thing Called Joe" centers around the separate solos of Jim Maxwell and John Frosk on open horns, with Thad Jones and Danny Stiles utilizing mutes. Joe Newman is featured in "My Heart Stood Still," "My Old Flame," and a waltz-time treatment of "I Get a Kick Out of You," while Ernie Royal is in the spotlight during "After You've Gone." Bassist Richard Davis comes to the forefront in a loping chart of "Just One of Those Things." This long unavailable Solid State LP will be difficult to acquire.All Music Guide - During a career that spanned seven decades, composer and arranger Manny Albam collaborated with a who's who of jazz greats including Count Basie, Dizzy Gillespie, and Stan Getz. He also developed successive generations of new talent as co-founder and musical director of the BMI Jazz Composers Workshop. Albam was born June 24, 1922. His parents were en route from their native Russia to their new home in New York City, and his mother went into labor while their ship was outside of the Dominican Republic port of Samana. At the age of seven Albam discovered jazz after hearing a Bix Beiderbecke record, and soon after began playing the alto saxophone; at 16 he dropped out of school following an invitation to join Muggsy Spanier's Dixieland combo, and later played with Georgie Auld, an experience that also afforded Albam his first shot at arranging under the tutelage of bandmate Budd Johnson. Albam next gigged behind Charlie Barnet, from there signing on with Charlie Spivak. During his two years with Spivak, his arranging skills flourished, and he generated an average of two arrangements per week. After serving in the U.S. Army during World War II, Albam returned to the Barnet stable, and as his interest in writing and arranging grew, he effectively retired from performing in 1950, a decision that coincided with the last gasps of the big band era.Albam quickly emerged as a sought-after freelancer, composing and arranging material for many of the bop era's brightest talents. His tight, brisk arrangements favored subtlety over flash, while his writing exhibited a wry sense of humor. Albam eventually signed to headline his own LPs for labels including Mercury, RCA Victor, and Dot, bringing together musicians including Phil Woods, Al Cohn, and Bob Brookmeyer for acclaimed easy listening efforts including The Blues Is Everybody's Business and The Drum Suite. His 1957 jazz arrangement of Leonard Bernstein's score to West Side Story so impressed Bernstein that the maestro invited Albam to write for the New York Philharmonic. The offer prompted Albam to study classical composition under Tibor Serly, later yielding such works as the luminous "Concerto for Trombone and Strings." Albam also wrote for feature films, television, and even advertising jingles, and in 1964 signed on as musical director for Sonny Lester's fledgling Solid State label, which two years later issued his jazz suite The Soul of the City. By that time Albam was increasingly channeling his energies into teaching, however. After stints with the Eastman School of Music, Glassboro State College, and the Manhattan School of Music, in 1988 he co-founded the BMI Jazz Composers Workshop, assuming the title of musical director from Brookmeyer three years later. Albam died of cancer on October 2, 2001.



7 comentários:

augusto carlos disse...

Merecida homenagem Lester.

thiago disse...

Não conhecia o bigodudo. Bom o cara hein.

avaliador de blogs disse...

É a música de elevador invadindo o Jazzseen... Lastimável!

spiviak disse...

Charlie Parker foi ascensorista.

Rogério Coimbra disse...

Bem exposto, Mr.Lester.Manny Albam foi um dos mais densos arranjadores do jazz. Esse trabalho reflete bem a densidade de seus arranjos de uma obra que considero como uma das mais completas da história da música ocidental:West Side Story. Esses arranjos do Albam são, como diríamos, "barra pesada".

alberto lyrio disse...

Beleza de música.

Anônimo disse...

Esse não esquentava banco, era craque mesmo.Oportuna citação.Edú