[Dixielandjazz] Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown is 80-- JSOP Info

TCASHWIGG at aol.com TCASHWIGG at aol.com
Mon Nov 29 11:16:29 PST 2004

In a message dated 11/29/04 5:45:24 AM Pacific Standard Time, 
nvickers1 at cox.net writes:

> Listmates:  Here's an article about Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown and a note I
> sent to our local jazz enthusiasts.
> By strict definition, his music wouldn't qualify as OKOM, but I hope this
> will be of interest to some of you on this list. He's a talent not to be
> ignored!
> Thanks, Norman

Happy Birthday Clarence:

Yes, Norm Clarence Gatemouth Brown is not to be ignored by anyone serious 
about American music.  And I would disagree with you a bit about his not being 
OKOM, a great deal of his music is exactly OAKUM, but for many years many folks 
in the Jazz societies and blues societies, and all other sorts of 
organizations have basically ignored this slightly eccentric but vastly talent and 
wonderful man.

I have had the pleasure of working and performing at Festivals with him in 
the past seven years and he is indeed a master musician with a dynamic show to 
please even a hard core Dixieland crowd if they would but take the time to sit 
down and listen.

I am only saddened that it took me so long to discover this gentle giant of 
music who indeed has never let anyone put him in a box but always marched to 
the beat of a different drummer and kept expanding his music for better than 
sixty years.

Now he is 80 and sick and starting to get some long overdue recognition, and 
he can slide from Bob Wills & The Texas Playboys to Lionel Hampton, to Chet 
Atkins, Barney Kessel, Wes Montgomery, or Duke Ellington or Count Basie style 
with the flick of a wrist or the drag off his trademark pipe which no doubt has 
caused his current medical problems.  He smokes it between solos with all the 
other members of the band and takes a drag when he switches back and forth 
between Fiddle and Guitar without ever missing a cue or coming in late.

While I doubt he will beat the cancer I certainly hope he does and keeps 
playing as long as he can, which I am certain he will He is the epitome of a 
Professional Musician, in his own words "It is his Life."

Thanks Norm, for bringing the article to the list, you don't see his name 
much in the USA but he is a Giant well loved entertainer and musician all over 
the world, When will America ever wake up and discover our legends before they 
die off?  Just like Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, and so many 
others Clarence Gatemouth Brown is truly a great jazz man, an Ambassador of 
American Culture.  Which is still OUR ONLY contribution to World Culture.


Tom Wiggins

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