[Dixielandjazz] Shaw & Goodman
sbrager at socal.rr.com
Sun Jan 2 20:46:16 PST 2005
While stories about Tommy Dorsey being as Bob Romans said "a real jerk"
abound, I was impressed by him when I first met him. Here's the story.
When I was 18, I told Charlotte a girl I wanted to date that I'd introduce
her to Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey. Tommy and Jimmy were back together again and
playing at a home show in Los Angeles. Of course, I barely knew what they
looked like. Anyway, she said yes and we went. It was late when we got to
the show and the band had just broken up for the night. I saw Jimmy and
brazenly walked up to him as if I'd known him all my life and introduced
Charlotte my date. He gave her an autograph and I asked about Tommy. "He's
already left to be on Peter Potter's radio show," said Jimmy. Charlotte
wasn't disappointed, she had gotten to meet Jimmy.
Six months later, I was in the Army in Massachusetts and heard that Tommy
Dorsey was playing in a nearby dance hall. I went. During the intermission,
I walked up to Tommy and told him the story about my date with Charlotte and
asked him if he'd write a note to her acknowledging a proxy introduction to
her. To my surprise, he wrote a wonderful note saying that he was
disappointed that he didn't get to meet her in Los Angeles.
When I later gave Tommy's note to Charlotte, she was quite surprised and
consented to several more dates until I shipped out to Germany. I never saw
Needless to say, I take stories about Tommy being a jerk with a grain of
----- Original Message -----
From: "Bob Romans" <cellblk7 at comcast.net>
To: "Richard Broadie" <rbroadie at dc.rr.com>; "Steve barbone"
<barbonestreet at earthlink.net>; "DJML" <dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
Sent: Saturday, January 01, 2005 7:06 PM
Subject: Re: [Dixielandjazz] Shaw & Goodman
> Jimmy Dorsey...spent the last set sitting in a booth with my girlfriend
> I at the Rainbow Ballroom in Denver, 1950. His band played the last set
> without him, he sat there asking us questions about out lives, our music,
> and gave us both a hug before we left. His brother, Tommy, was a real jerk
> to me earlier that year when I asked him for an autograph. Shorty Sherock
> was on trumpet/cornet, I remember!
> Warm regards,
> Bob Romans
> Cell Block 7 Jazz Band
> 1617 Lakeshore Dr.
> Lodi, Ca. 95242
> Cell 209-747-1148
> Because I play trumpet, I envy no man!
> "Most people hate the taste of
> beer---to begin with. It is, however.
> a prejudice many people have been
> able to overcome".
> Winston. Churchill!
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Richard Broadie" <rbroadie at dc.rr.com>
> To: "Steve barbone" <barbonestreet at earthlink.net>; "DJML"
> <dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
> Sent: Saturday, January 01, 2005 3:23 PM
> Subject: Re: [Dixielandjazz] Shaw & Goodman
> > In personal conversations with Shaw, Artie said his focus was on the
> > gestalt - the whole being greater than the some of the parts. His focus,
> > in other words, was on the final sound of the orchestra. Shaw
> > that Goodman's focus was far more on the clarinet and the music he could
> > produce on it. To Shaw, BG's band was incidental as if to be the means
> > that allowed BG to display his talents on clarinet.
> > Ellington always claimed that his instrument was his orchestra and
> > described himself as "the piano player" in a self-effacing manner.
> > Shaw's comments were similar to Ellington, I would never describe Artie
> > being "self-effacing."
> > As to who was or wasn't a jerk, I would never wish either Shaw or
> > to have been my best friend. Same with Buddy Rich, Tommy Dorsey or
> > Miller. There were a lot of great band leaders who were not necessarily
> > the nicest of people. Perhaps, if they were nicer people, their bands
> > wouldn't have been as successful.
> > Anyone want to discuss who the good and bad guys were from that era?
> > Might make an interesting thread. Then again, what do I know. Woody
> > Herman used to be my financial advisor.
> > Dick Broadie
> > ----- Original Message -----
> > From: "Steve barbone" <barbonestreet at earthlink.net>
> > To: "DJML" <dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
> > Sent: Friday, December 31, 2004 1:57 PM
> > Subject: [Dixielandjazz] Shaw & Goodman
> >>I think perhaps some folks on the DJML quite misunderstand what Shaw was
> >> talking about when he said Goodman played Clarinet and he (Shaw) played
> >> music. No point getting hung up on the semantics of the word "play". No
> >> point in assuming that Shaw's comments were a cheap shot at Goodman's
> >> expense, when they were not. Shaw was merely pointing out how he and
> >> Goodman
> >> viewed the clarinet. Perhaps the quote, a short one out of a broader
> >> context, was an error on my part. The entire two chapters on Shaw
> >> be
> >> read for a fuller understanding of the man, his music and his psyche.
> >> should Shaw's autobiography be read.
> >> Simply stated, some folks view the axe primarily as a communication
> >> device.
> >> E.G. Shaw or Pee Wee Russell. Their musical work speaks with all the
> >> emotion
> >> of a expert communicator.
> >> Other folks do not view the axe as a communication device, but rather
> >> an
> >> instrument to be conquered or mastered. Their primary goal is to play
> >> perfectly. E.G. Goodman, or Eddie Daniels. They play beautifully, but
> >> not, to my ears at least, seem to have that emotion of a great
> >> communicator.
> >> When listening to Shaw, and then Goodman the differences are apparent.
> >> Same
> >> if one listens to Daniels and then DeFranco. DeFranco communicates
> >> and
> >> Daniels masters, the instrument.
> >> Pee Wee Russell? A great communicator. Just ask Kenny Davern who is
> >> one
> >> of the great communicators on the axe as well as one who has pretty
> >> mastered it.
> >> There are listeners who respond to one or the other approach for
> >> reasons. You pay your money and you take your choice. Or you appreciate
> >> both
> >> for what they do.
> >> Further examination of Sudhalter's Book will give the reader more
> >> on
> >> these approaches to musicianship. Especially Davern's take on Pee Wee
> >> Russell in the chapter on Pee Wee, and more reading of the two chapters
> >> on
> >> Artie Shaw. (I cite the book so much only because I think many list
> >> have it)
> >> Bottom line? I plead with list mates not to draw large inferences from
> >> short
> >> quotes (Shaw) that were obtained by an interviewer (Sudhalter), but
> >> rather
> >> to seek out the entire context.
> >> Cheers,
> >> Steve Barbone
> >> _______________________________________________
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