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M. Ullman, Barry Kernfeld, Gary Kennedy, and Steve Smith

[Patterson, Gary]

Member of Ali family

(b Philadelphia, May 4, 1956). American electric bass guitarist, son of Rashied Ali. He began to play drums at the age of seven and changed to electric bass guitar when he was 12. After briefly attending the Granoff School of Music in Philadelphia (1969–70) he received informal tuition from an uncle, Tyrone Hill. In 1974 he formed a funk band, Down to Earth, and in 1978 he moved to New York. There he met James “Blood” Ulmer, under whose leadership he worked from 1980 to 1997 in various ensembles, notably the Black Rock Revival Band and the Music Revelation Ensemble; they also played together in the cooperative group Phalanx. In addition Ali performed alongside the Belgian guitarist and saxophonist Marc Bogaerts in his father’s trio in Brussels (1986) and was a founding member of Doran, Studer, Minton, Bates & Ali Play the Music of Jimi Hendrix, in which he worked with Christy Doran, Fredy Studer, Phil Minton, and Django Bates; Bates was replaced after a short time by Tom Cora (...

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Barry Kernfeld

[Lehrhaupt, William Anthony]

(b New York, March 28, 1930; d Las Vegas, Sept 13, 1961). American double bass player. His vital records are documented in the New York Birth Index, a Nevada death certificate, and a family tree. Anthony was raised in Long Branch and Asbury Park, New Jersey. He worked with Georgie Auld (1951), Jimmy Dorsey (1953), Gerry Mulligan (1954), and Claude Thornhill (1956) and performed and recorded with Buddy DeFranco (1950–51), Charlie Spivak (1952), and Stan Getz (1954–5). He also recorded with Bob Brookmeyer (1954), John Williams (ii) (1954–5), Tony Fruscella (1955), and Zoot Sims (1956). In 1958 he began working in Las Vegas. His creative rhythm playing is well represented by We’ll be together again, on Stan Getz at the Shrine Auditorium (1954, Norg. 2000...

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Eric Thacker

revised by Barry Kernfeld

(b Prague, April 13, 1934; d New York, May 13, 2017). Czech double bass player. He first studied violin and trombone (1945–52), then double bass and theory (1957), in the interim earning a degree in mechanical engineering at České vysoké učení technické v Prazehe (Czech Technical University in Prague). In the early to mid-1960s he recorded many albums in Prague with Zdenek Bartak’s big band, Karel Vlach (1962–3), Karel Velebný’s quartet and quintet (1962–5), Jan Konopasek (1963), and the pianist Milan Dvořák (1964). In 1965 he toured with the Reduta Quintet and as director of the Czechoslovak National Jazz Orchestra, and played with Leo Wright and Booker Ervin in West Germany and France. Arnet smuggled his wife, hidden in a bass drum, and his daughter, in a suitcase, through Checkpoint Charlie in Berlin; their story is the subject of the television documentary ...

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Adriano Mazzoletti

(b Genoa, Italy, May 15, 1902; d Sanremo, Italy, 1994). Italian violinist, pianist, bandleader, arranger, and composer. In Genoa he studied violin and composition and played banjo for a brief period in an orchestra. He was the leader and an arranger for the group Blue Star (to 1931...

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Lawrence Koch

[Robert]

Member of Bates family

(b Pocatello, ID, Sept 1, 1923; d San Francisco, Sept 13, 1981). American double bass player. He played tuba and other brass instruments during his school years before receiving classical training on double bass in New York and San Francisco (1944–8). Later he taught his brothers Norman and Jim Bates. His early commercial work included recordings in 1946 with Sonny Dunham. He began playing with Dave Brubeck’s quartet in 1953 and first recorded with the group the following year; good examples of his playing are the walking bass solos on Why do I love you and Stompin’ for Mili and the ensemble passages on A Fine Romance and Brother can you spare a dime, all on the album Brubeck Time (1954, Col. CL622). Bates recorded with Paul Desmond in 1954 and Dave Pell in 1956, then ceased to be active as a jazz musician. (...

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Lawrence Koch

[James Bernard]

Member of Bates family

(b Boise, ID, Nov 16, 1930). American double bass player. He was taught by his brothers Bob and Norman Bates. He worked with jazz and commercial bands in San Francisco and Los Angeles and recorded with the vibraphone player Julius Wechter in 1957 (...

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Lawrence Koch

(Louis)

Member of Bates family

(b Boise, ID, Aug 26, 1927, d January 29, 2004). American double bass player. He was taught by his brother Bob Bates. After playing in the big bands of Jimmy Dorsey (1945–6) and Raymond Scott he worked in Dave Brubeck’s early trio (1948) and then in Paul Desmond’s group. In 1950 he recorded with Jack Sheedy’s Dixieland Jazz Band, with which he also occasionally played piano. He spent four years in the air force, then performed and recorded with Wally Rose’s Dixieland Band (1955) before succeeding his brother Bob in Brubeck’s quartet. Some fine examples of his playing are his solos on Bru’s Blues and St. Louis Blues and his walking bass lines on One Moment Worth Years, all on the album Jazz Goes to Junior College (1957, Col. CL1034). While with Brubeck he also recorded with his fellow sideman Desmond (...

Article

Norman Mongan

[William Frederick]

(b Philadelphia, Dec 26, 1933; d Philadelphia, Feb 6, 2012). American electric guitarist. He grew up in a musical family, and gained early experience playing with a minor group in and around Philadelphia. He worked with Charlie Ventura in 1956, then in 1958 moved to the West Coast and performed and recorded in Los Angeles with many leading groups, including those of Buddy Collette, Buddy DeFranco, Paul Horn, and Bud Shank. Two albums that he made as a leader with John Pisano in 1958 provide examples of his inventive improvisations and fluent virtuoso style; in contrast to the cool approach of Pisano, Bean showed a virile attack that revealed the influence of Tal Farlow. In 1961 he recorded an album with Walter Norris and the double bass player Harold Gaylor, but soon afterwards returned to Philadelphia and ceased to be active as a professional musician.

Article

Laurence Libin

(b Bronx, NY, Oct 22, 1946). American luthier, notable for handmade archtop jazz guitars. In childhood he learned woodworking from his father, a skilled cabinetmaker, and music from an uncle, a violinist; his grandfather had worked for Steinway & Sons. A visit to the Gretsch guitar factory in Brooklyn fueled his interest in the instrument; he played a Chet Atkins model 6120 guitar from 1960 to 1968. Upon discharge from the US Air Force in 1968 he started to make his first guitar and began repairing Gibson, D’Angelico, and New York Epiphone instruments. At the time he was the youngest and least experienced archtop maker of a group that included William Barker, Carl Barney, Roger Borys, James D’Aquisto, Sam Koontz, and Philip Petillo. In the 1970s jazz guitarists such as Bucky Pizzarelli, Chuck Wayne, and Martin Taylor began to use and endorse Benedetto’s instruments. He incorporated his business as Benedetto Guitars, Inc., but in ...

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John Voigt

(Ramon)

(b Des Moines, IA, May 24, 1928; d San Clemente, CA, Sept 14, 2018). American bass player and composer. In his teens he took up trombone and then guitar. He played double bass with Herbie Fields (1949), Georgie Auld, Terry Gibbs, and Charlie Ventura (all 1951), served in the US Army (September 1951 – September 1953), and worked with Stan Kenton (1954–5). After settling in Los Angeles, in 1957 he accompanied Ella Fitzgerald, with whom he toured as part of the Jazz at the Philharmonic series the following year; he also recorded with Conte Candoli, Stan Levey, Charlie Mariano (all 1954), Frank Rosolino (1955), Jack Montrose (1956), Lou Levy (1956–63), and Mel Tormé and Bob Cooper (both 1957). He then played in Terry Gibbs’s big band, and made several recordings with the group (1959) which were released to great acclaim years later. From ...

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Barry Kernfeld

(b Hochfeld, Manitoba, Canada, Nov 29, 1932; d Toronto, Feb 28, 2019). Canadian guitarist. He was raised in Vernon, British Columbia. His parents performed in a country dance band, which he joined after taking up guitar at the age of eight. While working in Toronto as a radio engineer (1952–5) and then as a studio musician he played with Ron Collier (1954–66), Moe Koffman (from c1956), Phil Nimmons (1957–70), and Rob McConnell’s Boss Brass (from 1968). He performed in a duo with Don Thompson, as the leader of a trio consisting of Thompson and Terry Clarke, and in small groups with these sidemen and others; in the 1970s and early 1980s they accompanied visiting American musicians at Bourbon Street in Toronto. The most significant of these affiliations was with Paul Desmond, with whom Bickert then performed and recorded in Canada and the USA (...

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John Voigt

revised by Barry Kernfeld

[James Edward, Jr.]

(b Philadelphia, Jan 27, 1933; d Los Angeles, April 26, 2012). American double bass player and composer. He studied double bass and tuba and took private lessons in composition and orchestration. From 1950 to 1955 he attended the Juilliard School while living and working in Philadelphia, where, as the resident double bass player at the Blue Note club, he played with Thelonious Monk and Charlie Parker. After graduating from Juilliard he worked with Chet Baker (July 1955 – September 1956), Ella Fitzgerald (October 1956 – January 1957), Sonny Rollins and Buddy DeFranco (both 1957), Don Shirley (1957–8), and Carmen McRae (1958); he also recorded in a group led by Larance Marable and James Clay (1956). He toured with George Shearing from 1958 to 1959, then settled in Los Angeles. While in residence at the Renaissance club (1959–63) he played with Ben Webster, Art Pepper, Jim Hall, and Jimmy Giuffre and performed and recorded with Paul Horn’s quintet (...

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Barry Kernfeld

(b Sydney, Aug 3, 1928; d Yonkers, NY, March 28, 2020). Australian double bass player. His father, a saxophonist, served as mayor of Christchurch, New Zealand, and president of New Zealand’s musicians’ union; his mother was a concert pianist, and his brothers were also musicians. Christie studied at St. Andrews College in Christchurch and Canterbury College in Waterford before graduating in medicine from the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand, in 1957. Later, while practicing professionally in Sydney (from 1961), he led his own groups and recorded with Errol Buddle (1963) and Judy Bailey (1964). After moving from Australia to New York in 1965 he became chief resident at Yonkers General Hospital. From 1967 he was the house bassist at the Village Gate. He studied with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra double bass player Homer Mensch (1968–9) and played in symphony orchestras, though he also worked with Mike Mainieri (recording with him in ...

Article

Lawrence Koch

revised by Barry Kernfeld

[Walter, Jr.]

(b Kenosha, WI, July 10, 1929; d probably Los Angeles, June 8, 1999). American double bass player and arranger. He first learned piano and trombone, but changed to double bass in high school and later studied at the Chicago Musical College (1948–9). After working with Bud Freeman and Bill Russo he toured with Tex Beneke (1950–54), Bob Brookmeyer and Kenny Drew (both 1954), and Les Brown (1955–6), then settled in Los Angeles, where he played with Peggy Lee and Red Norvo (both 1956), Dave Pell (1957), and Med Flory (1958), appeared in Chico Hamilton’s quintet in the film The Sweet Smell of Success (1957), and recorded with Norvo, Mel Lewis, Marty Paich (all 1957), and Bill Holman (1958). Clark toured Europe as a member of Jimmy Giuffre’s trio, recording in Rome in ...

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Barry Kernfeld

[Robert]

(b Cleveland, Dec 28, 1934; d New York, April 1, 2017). American double bass player and composer. He commenced classical piano studies at the age of seven and changed to double bass when he was 12. After working professionally in Cleveland from the age of 17 he moved to New York in 1960. The following year he performed and recorded with Dizzy Gillespie’s quintet and big band, touring South America and the Middle East and performing and recording at the Monterey Jazz Festival; later he appeared in the episode Dizzy Gillespie Quintet in the television series “Jazz Casual” (1964). During the 1960s he recorded with Bill Hardman and Eric Dolphy (both 1961), Makanda Ken McIntyre (1963), Walt Dickerson (c1965), Frank Foster (1965–6), and Junior Mance and Freddie Hubbard (both 1966); his playing may be heard to advantage on ...

Article

Leroy Ostransky

revised by Barry Kernfeld

[Francisco Estaban, Jr.]

(b El Paso, TX, Dec 26, 1933; d Washougal, WA, July 5, 2019). Double bass player. De la Rosa served in the army during the Korean War (1953–5). Following his discharge, he took up double bass at the age of 23, studied at the Conservatory of Music and Fine Arts in Los Angeles from 1956 to 1958, then lived in Las Vegas, where he performed with local bands. After returning to Los Angeles (1965) he played with Don Ellis (1966–8); among his recordings with Ellis is the album “Live” at Monterey (1966, PJ 20112). In 1968–9 he worked with Harry Edison, and from 1969 to 1972 he toured internationally with Ella Fitzgerald; his recordings with the latter include the album Sunshine of your Love (1969, MPS 15250). Thereafter he played with Don Menza (1972–5) and Sarah Vaughan (1974–5) and recorded with Jay Migliori (...

Article

M. Rusty Jones

[Al Laurence Dimeola ]

(b Jersey City, NJ, July 22, 1954). American jazz fusion guitarist and composer. He is known especially for his technical virtuosity and for combining Latin, world, and jazz styles. His guitar influences include Larry Coryell, Tal(madge Holt) Farlow, and Kenny Burrell. He was also inspired by the tangos of Ástor Piazzolla, with whom he developed a close friendship. He enrolled in the Berklee College of Music in Boston in 1971, where he remained until 1974 when he was invited to join the fusion group Return to Forever with Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke, and Lenny White. The group released three recordings with Di Meola, including the Grammy award-winning No Mystery (1975), before disbanding in 1976. The group reunited for a tour in 2008. Di Meola’s career as a leader began with the production of Land of the Midnight Sun (1976). Recordings on which he is recognized as leader now number over 20 albums. He has collaborated with luminaries such as Jaco Pastorius, Jan Hammer, and Chick Corea. One of his most successful collaborations was his trio with guitarists John McLaughlin and Paco de Lucia. Their ...

Article

Barry Kernfeld

[Edward Lozano]

(b San Francisco, Sept 6, 1925; d Sonoma, CA, Nov 22, 2019). American guitarist and leader. He learned piano, then guitar from the age of eight, and first played professionally when he was 15. At the time of his draft registration in September 1943 he was working at Chez Paree in San Francisco. He subsequently served in the navy. In 1948, with his brothers, the pianist Manny (Manuel) Duran and the double bass player Carlos Duran, he formed a trio modeled after that of Nat “King” Cole; it disbanded in 1952. From the early 1950s he performed in San Francisco with Charlie Parker and Chet Baker (both c1953), Flip Phillips, Red Norvo (in whose group he deputized for two weeks for Jimmy Raney), George Shearing (touring nationally through 1954), and other bop and swing musicians; he spent two weeks with Stan Getz’s group in Vancouver in ...