[Dixielandjazz] Fifties College Jazz was George Wein and The Newport Festivals

knittelsportland at juno.com knittelsportland at juno.com
Wed Mar 4 10:08:11 PST 2009

Dr Dubious;

I remember the 50's well. Played Dixieland at Cornell with the Ivy 5 and
in the concert band with my buddy Jim Wray who led another Dixie group
called "The Stumplifters". Many fraternity parties with hot sweaty bodies
clinging together on the dance floor. Spring weekends with lakes dyed
green, playing as many as seven 4-hour gigs on one weekend, European tour
summer of 1959 in VW bus. Playing "Der Blues my Naughty Sveety gifs to
me" with the Munich Jatz Babies in the key of ES. 

Rick Knittel

On Wed, 04 Mar 2009 12:08:47 -0500 doctordubious at verizon.net writes:
> This possible reemergence of George Wein as the Newport impresario 
> coincides
> with my recent viewing of "Jazz On A Summer's Day", the marvelous
> documentary film on the 1958 Newport Festival. This news may draw 
> many of us
> on this list back to our youth as performers or punters or partyers 
> or all
> three and I Googled "Eli's Chosen Six" which was featured in that 
> film in
> their youthful exuberance and Dixieland performing. I know that 
> several of
> that group are still active in the New York traditional jazz scene; 
> Lee
> Lorenz leads the "Creole Cooking Jazz Band" every Sunday night at 
> Arthur's
> Tavern; Dick Voigt leads the "Big Apple Jazz Band"; Steve Little is 
> still
> drumming; and, I believe, that others in the group developed musical 
> careers
> and lives beyond those halcyon days.
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eli's_Chosen_Six
> "To think, when one is no
> longer young, when one
> is not yet old, that
> one is no longer young,
> that one is not yet old, that
> is perhaps something."
> Source: Samuel Beckett 
> It's great to know that many of us not only reminisce about "the 
> Fifties",
> but still play the same "college jazz" of those days. Any comments 
> or
> remembrances . . . Steve Barbone . . . Craig Johnson . . . Any 
> others?
> Best regards,
> Tom Duncan
> Doctor Dubious and the Agnostics
> PO Box 2118      Teaneck, NJ 07666
> P   (201)836-6076     FAX   (201)833-4143
> www.doctordubious.com
> Our CD "Hot Jazz" available at venues or through CD Baby
> http://cdbaby.com/cd/ddta
> -----Original Message-----
> From: dixielandjazz-bounces at ml.islandnet.com
> [mailto:dixielandjazz-bounces at ml.islandnet.com] On Behalf Of Stephen 
> G
> Barbone
> Sent: Wednesday, March 04, 2009 10:31 AM
> To: doctordubious at verizon.net
> Cc: Dixieland Jazz Mailing List
> Subject: [Dixielandjazz] George Wein and The Newport Festivals
> o would have thought the Newport Jazz Festivals might die?  
> Especially the JVC form in New York City during the last 2 weeks of 
> June?
> (see next to last paragraph) I hope George Wein, at 83, still 
> has"it" and
> will be able to resuscitate them.
> Cheers,
> Steve Barbone
> www.myspace.com/barbonestreetjazzband
> March 4, 2009 - NY TIMES - by Ben Ratliff Wein Seeks to Regain 
> Control of
> Newport Festivals
> Amid rumors of an uncertain future for the Newport jazz and folk 
> festivals,
> the veteran jazz concert producer George Wein - who founded them in 
> the
> 1950s but ceded control over them two years ago - Tuesday gained 
> permission
> to negotiate to regain them.
> He said he intended to hold the festivals at Fort Adams State Park, 
> their
> usual site in Newport, R.I., but the names of the festivals, the 
> corporate
> name that Mr. Wein might use and a corporate sponsor are still 
> undecided.
> Mr. Wein is returning as a festival producer in altered 
> circumstances.  
> After pioneering the outdoor jazz-festival business and serving as 
> boss for
> dozens of international festivals, he has in recent years seemed 
> content to
> assume a back-seat position. In 2007 the Festival Network LLC, a 
> new
> business under the leadership of the entrepreneur Chris Shields, 
> bought the
> assets of Mr. Wein's company, including the trademarks of the 
> Newport Jazz
> and Folk Festivals, for a figure in the low millions, while giving 
> him a
> salaried producer-emeritus position within the company. Mr. Wein 
> said he had
> not been paid since Nov. 15.
> Since 2007 the Festival Network aggressively pursued the concept of
> mixed-genre destination festivals, in vacation spots like Jackson 
> Hole,
> Wyo.; Martha's Vineyard, Mass., and Whistler, British Columbia.  
> But The Providence Journal-Bulletin and The Boston Globe have 
> reported
> recently that the company lost millions of dollars last year and at 
> least
> until January was in debt to the Rhode Island Department of 
> Environmental
> Management for last year's use of Fort Adams State Park.  
> Mr. Shields was not available for comment. John Phillips, who has 
> helped
> produce the festivals for 30 years under Mr. Wein and Mr.  
> Shields, said the Festival Network had recently paid off its debts; 
> this was
> confirmed by Larry Mouradjian, the associate director of natural 
> resources
> for the department.
> However, according Mr. Mouradjian, the department declared the 
> Festival
> Network's license agreement for running the festivals in Fort Adams 
> Park
> null and void because of the late payment. This, according to Mr.
> Mouradjian, "opened the door for us to be able to look for an 
> alternative"
> producer to hold jazz and folk festivals at the park.
> Talks began with Mr. Wein, and on Tuesday, at a meeting of the Rhode 
> Island
> State Properties Committee in Providence, Mr. Wein received approval 
> to
> negotiate a new music-festival license agreement for the use of Fort 
> Adams
> State Park with the state.
> Mr. Wein said that he would like to put on his Newport festivals 
> with or
> without a sponsor, even though he knows he would lose money without 
> one.
> It remains to be seen whether the annual end-of-June jazz festival 
> in New
> York - produced for years by Mr. Wein's company and then by the 
> Festival
> Network - will be presented at all, or in reduced form.
> At the moment, Mr. Wein, 83, said, his ambitions were limited. "The 
> easiest
> thing for me would be to run away, but I got a few more years to 
> live," he
> said, adding that he's going to go back in business primarily to 
> save
> Newport. "In my mind, it's just a matter of preserving my legacy."
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