Friday, December 21, 2012

WAMA - How about Jazzing Up Your Hall Of Fame

Edward 'Butch' Warren belongs in
the Hall of Fame of Washington DC Music
I have in the past blogged about Washington, DC area musicians that have been long overdue for being honored by the Washington Area Music Association in their Hall of Fame, In the past I have noted the Bobby Parker, DC's Blues Legend and major influence on many artists including Chuck Brown; Haywood 'Little Sonny' Warner, one of the greatest blues vocalists from the area; and Mr. Personality himself, Lloyd Price, who was based in Washington for several years and who made musical history here. Their continued omission in WAMA's Hall of Fame reflects poorly on those in WAMA who make the selections for the Hall of Fame.

I do have a couple of names from the world of jazz that also deserve to be recognized.

Edward 'Butch' Warren is a Washington native that in the sixties was one of the leading hard bop bassist and part of Blue Note's House Rhythm Section (Sonny Clark on piano and Billy Higgins on drums) for many sessions such as Clark's Leapin' and Lopin'Dexter Gordon's Go and A Swinging Affair; Don Wilerson's Preach Brother! and Jackie McLean's Vertigo. He also recorded with Herbie Hancock, Takin' Off (with the original recording of Watermelon Man); Kenny Dorham's Una Mas; and Thelonious Monk's It's Monk Time. Warren, in fact, was part of Monk's Band for 1963 and 1964.   He has had hard times but his return to music in recent years has been very heartwarming and in 2011 he produced his first album as a leader, French 5Tet, that the website selected as among the five best new DC jazz recordings of 2011. Few have produced such a body of recordings as he participated on. Here he is seen playing Kenny Dorham's Blue Bossa in France. He played on Dorham's original recording.

Carter Jefferson was one of the fine tenor saxophonists who emerged in the seventies and was taken too soon from us in 1993. He played in the backing bands of The Temptations, The Supremes and Little Richard before playing with Art Blakey and Mongo Santamaria. Between 1977-1980 he was a member of Woody Shaw's Band, arguably the leading hard bop ensemble of that time. After his time with Shaw, he spent time with Elvin Jones, Roy Haynes, Cedar Walton, Jerry Gonzalez, Malachi Thompson, and Jack Walrath.  He only recorded one album as a leader, but left an impressive body of work on the recordings by Shaw and others. Here is carter Jefferson as part of Woody Shaw's great band.

There are others that are also worthy including the marvelous drummer, composer, educator and leader, Nasar Abadey; or the legendary pianist and composer, Freddie Redd, who recorded for Blue Note as well as composed music from the legendary play, The Connection. I am sure Michael West from the Washington City Paper and other publications, or Luke Stewart and Giovanni Russonello from could make additional suggestions. 

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