Transcript:

Speaker Ask yourselves. They're they're ready to roll. This is a good story. Do you want to try it off or. You know, I'll try just to name a few.

Speaker If you want it back, just say I just gesture just like this hour away from the right and stick. It just took it inside your state of anxiety in season one.

Speaker And you just let us know and we'll start to put it back on.

Speaker OK. All right.

Speaker Just when you were saying before my time now.

Speaker Yeah, well, I was just thinking just, you know, like I came in so many years. When did you leave?

Speaker Oh, let's see. Thirty eight. I joined right after the Carnegie Hall concert. Thirty eight. Thirty eight. Oh my God. And then you came in. Oh I didn't come in until 1942.

Speaker Oh.

Speaker August as I was playing out here. In a club with Lee and Lester Young. Yeah. And the waitress told me there was somebody there. Want to talk to me and it was Freddy Goodman, Freddy and he wanted me to take. He offered me this job. He said, Benny wants me. Said that Ben Webster had talked to Jimmy Maxwell and Jimmy Maxwell told Benny, and so Benny sat Freddie out. And so I told him I wouldn't take the job until. He heard me play. Yeah, because I didn't want to, you know, just take a job and find out that I couldn't cut it or something.

Speaker No, sir, not even. Not usually you're talking to each other if you can sort of look at me.

Speaker OK. So anyway, I went out and played for him and he said, OK. So then we went into the. Hotel, New Yorker. And.

Speaker I looked at the floorshow. I couldn't read very well at all. And I'd also gone to sleep at the wheel coming home, and I almost lost my eye. The fluid just I'd lost all just had enough left, you know. But I didn't have my glasses. So that was a good excuse. And it turned out that the floorshow was all there were no piano solos. So I just learned it by ear.

Speaker And he didn't really care too much about that. But he was asked. He was al on those rehearsals. I remember that. You remember that. Oh, yeah.

Speaker And then never, ever.

Speaker Yeah. And then I remember little McGarity talking about, you know, when I first went to work, the first one nighter in in San Diego or some on the way back east. He said, has the ray been around to visit you yet? And I said, What's the ray? I didn't know, but I found out later. I saw him use it so much.

Speaker I wonder who invented that ray business. I don't know. It wasn't me. Was it?

Speaker Good have been love. I don't think you would take too much from him. You'd probably end up saying, you know, just like I finally did it. The New York.

Speaker I had enough and.

Speaker I straighten that out and I beat him to the punch. I got a job with Woody. You know, he was hit right while he was talking to you. Come back. Remember?

Speaker Oh, yeah, sure.

Speaker Was that point forty, forty and forty two important to you? Yeah, you do, I guess. Yeah. The New Yorker Hotel here with that flower show. The Ice Show. Yes. There was nothing to play. You would just sit there and pretend like he was lying to you.

Speaker I enjoyed it. You said you got a few raised your time. Describe to me what the ray was.

Speaker Well, I noticed when we were at The New Yorker. He'd start looking at some guy like he'd look over and be playing along and he'd be looking at this guy. And then when he wasn't playing, he'd be just looking at him all the time. And the guy gets so nervous and, you know. And by then I'd heard of it, but I'd never seen it in action. I even heard that he had said Catlett holding the sticks out, you know, crying, please send me home.

Speaker Stuff like cattle and sell cattle is a great big bowl of a guy.

Speaker And so when he started car, he finally got to rights, saw the top of players, he'd say move over trade places. And finally, when they got to the end, it was no place was gone. You know, that kind of stuff. And when he started on me, I knew that I was booked and he started out. Oh, really? He used what we broadcast, you know, like a feature of the tree on the air. Just one tune. And I suddenly discovered that he was staring at me like this while he was playing, you know, and we played some like body and soul is something he'd be looking at me like. Don't do that. You know, I don't like what you're doing. And I'm thinking, oh, anyway, that was.

Speaker That was when I started to. Stalk and round, you know, I know. They were looking for a piano player and what he heard was bad side.

Speaker I split.

Speaker That was a good, bad joint, wouldn't hurt. Well, it did. Yeah, it was a good, bad girl.

Speaker Well, you know, then it was an odd character, wasn't to say the least.

Speaker To say the least. Yeah. I never did get to get acquainted with them. Did you? No, not really. I don't think Campbell got acquainted with anybody, you know.

Speaker He was such a loner. He used to call people up when he called me up in New York. Years later, like when I saw you and I was working at Bradley.

Speaker Yes. He had called me up. He came in there one night with his manager.

Speaker And how was that playing with us, playing with a bass player, Sam Jones. And we went over the table to say hello to him, you know. And he'd look at Sam Jones and he said, You know me, don't you?

Speaker And it's absolute. Yeah. He says, What do I know you? And that Sam says, I guess I don't know. But finally, he said, Did you ever work with me? And Sam said, nope. And then he told me later that that many I called him about four times and he never took the job.

Speaker But that kind of stuff is funny. He's a. Very funny.

Speaker Would you ever want to go through that again? No, no.

Speaker I'll bet some other guys play them. You you knew Red Pretty will tell about what it was like with red and and how.

Speaker Well, I didn't work with him when Rab was there. I was with Woody when I came out of the army.

Speaker I went back with Woody and what can was there. That's where I got a chance to really get to know Red.

Speaker Did you guys ever compare notes about me? Oh, I.

Speaker Benny's name had come up and usually there was an anecdote because there's hundreds of thousands of anecdotes. It's really too bad. I think that somebody didn't write a book about Benny. What all the first guys like you. All of them, including guys like Babe Ruth's and all the guys that worked with him, could contribute stories, you know, like, uh.

Speaker Very funny.

Speaker Well, I don't know when we went down to Mecca, recorded the director, but it would be Bresson's part out and play it himself.

Speaker Yeah, we could cut it up after he'd been planted all these years.

Speaker He took the tax cut. He'd just get a little thing in his mind. Sort of take a sudden dislike or something, I guess.

Speaker Well, he just wanted to hold it all in. Well, I don't know. Maybe I'm wrong, but he could sure swing.

Speaker Yes, he could really get it going. Yes, he could. A how a classic.

Speaker Let me get that again.

Speaker I was just thinking, you know, how much he could swing. He can really swing us.

Speaker He didn't go in for a lot of fancy court work with his solos, like Artie Shaw with his passing toms and stuff.

Speaker But he could swing. Nobody ever surpassed him. Not for that. I don't think he could really go.

Speaker I've heard a lot of moves. I never know what I became. Close.

Speaker Hang on, Anderson. Let me get justice for that. You look. You look, you can look at you. You just say say say that again. No one ever surpassed.

Speaker Well, one labor surpassed him. No, no. I don't think you know that. Huh. Yeah. It really could go. Yeah, I think so.

Speaker You know, like married away or dropped in an arrangement when I was playing with him out here. We were doing. Victor Borca radioshow.

Speaker And the band was there and we played on the show and we had a rehearsal and there was an arrangement by Mario Williams and I had all kinds of flatted fifth in his solo Haltered cards, and he threw it out. Do you want those simple, minor diminished Mesnier? You know, on an eight swing? A lot of them.

Speaker But that's how I wanted man. Can't they never do do do what they did with live seats around those fancy hotel?

Speaker I remember rehearsing Body and Soul and I was playing some changes and he said, wait a minute, Jimi. He says there's only three chords in this song.

Speaker You know, he liked it like that. Simple. But he could swing, you know, usually you'd.

Speaker Sound was pretty to repeat. No one ever came close.

Speaker No. And you sounded awful good. I remember all those records. You know, I used to I started by Benny Goodman Records after I listened to Teddy Wilson and I switched and started buying records. And I used to like the way you do. You had the just the right place to put one here. Beautiful little thing, you know, little tasty, beautiful stuff. I really had loved that. You were one of my favorites.

Speaker Well, thank you very much. The real news is it's a little hard. It is the truth.

Speaker You honored me by naming spacy. That was an honor. I kind of thought you'd like to do that. It was in the paper. That's not named after that pilot bird. The Benny Goodman scandal.

Speaker I was I to get her down here some time. Yes, I wish you would. I will. I will. I'm show you pictures. I told you that in the paper. Both of you. Yeah.

Speaker I just remember just something that I forgot, just that we talked about the other room that I forgot when before before we said in if we could go back and talk about Otis Ferguson again, sitting on his piano listening to you, do you play your solos? Tell me about that.

Speaker Well, there was this guy who started from, you know, suddenly you look here was this writer saying how he died. To that. Yes.

Speaker Well, he liked them. He liked him. We don't know who he is. Oh. Does Ferguson like local artists starting or just Ferguson like me personally?

Speaker You know, we hung out together and he'd come up to my apartment up in New York to Tutor City.

Speaker And we had a big picture of a baby sitting up there and we throw darts at it. We were the dart. There was a big hit.

Speaker And then you also were were drinking buddies. Yeah. The rehearsal was kind of under the piano. No, not that well.

Speaker He'd sit on the piano lesson. He was for write a book, you know, he was quiet.

Speaker Let's start again. You got to tell me. Oh.

Speaker Yeah. Oh, does. Ferguson, Mo. Stephanie like Otis Ferguson. Like the way I played in the band. He wrote a piece called Piano in a Band. And he was also scheduled to write a book about Benny Goodman. But Benny got disgusted with him literally sitting under the piano. So it doesn't ever happen.

Speaker What what was he doing under there? Just listening. I change tapes.

Speaker He could do the same thing you told Ross.

Speaker Well, everybody in the trumpet section was a first man. They keep switching the parts because, you know, that book was so heavy when the high notes and all that one man could you couldn't handle it all by himself. So we subparts, you know.

Speaker There they were, all first bill, and he's.

Speaker Any stories particular about anybody else in the band sticking your mind about Harry James or.

Speaker People who were your particular friends in that were not that great band and, you know, 37.

Speaker Well, the.

Speaker Harry James is a very good friend of mine.

Speaker He he used me on his record dates, Texas chatter, and so there was a pretty good day.

Speaker Let's let's jump to Carnegie Hall. Famous Carnegie Hall concert.

Speaker Tell, tell the story about. I mean, start anywhere you want. You want to. But I've heard that before it began. You were in the conductor's room and you started fooling around on the piano when you entered a chance. That was little jam session got started.

Speaker OK. So. So the world. Right. Right. OK.

Speaker Well, you know, chill it up. Oh, I'm not paying SingSing saying I think Beneš like what I was playing behind him or on his solo and he liked it so. Well, if he didn't. He pointed to me and said, you take it, you know. So that's how that's how that came about.

Speaker Look at it again. Let's start from the beginning. And where this is going to be. The only story we're going to get is the story that you're to tell us if someone else who was there is going to tell us. So tell us from the beginning of that night at Carnegie Hall for the whole concert began backstage in the conductor's room. I've heard that you started to on the piano and it was a little jam session before you actually went onstage.

Speaker Well, I don't remember that well, but I know that we'd locked up the audience and the little people and the place was packed.

Speaker Harry James says, I feel like a hornchurch.

Speaker And then you get the first good solo of the night and I want to climb. Jump?

Speaker Yes. I remember that. Well, it was a hard job I took off.

Speaker I of course.

Speaker And then sing, sing, sing, describe. Sense did seem to me that that night there was something special going on. I mean, I played that record a million times, probably more than a lot of records I've got of you and Jean, both just. Sort of nudging on the other guys in the band. Yeah. You know, she would give a little extra money by you.

Speaker You'd give a little. In Europe, you're playing with so modulated to give a little extra punch on the piano when they need to be described, in your own words, what it was like playing playing that night and playing that night in Carnegie Hall was it was the tops for me.

Speaker I had a wonderful piano to play on my mass one concert grand and everything was going lovely in it. What makes matters? That people were up on the stage. It was really they were so close with chairs that I can hardly move my hands. You know, I'd hit people in the ribs.

Speaker And then what happened was Benny started the downbeat saying things that, you know, when he started his soul. Let's take it from there.

Speaker Yeah, well, Benny started his soul.

Speaker And I think Benny.

Speaker Certainly Benny started full on things. Benny started his solo on SingSing saying, just look. Look at me here. I see videos. He started his course on stage. So you're saying and I think that Benny, like when I was playing behind him and he decided to give me a course, and after all, he was kind of mad at Terry Wilson. They were all even to form their own bands, you know. So he let me go.

Speaker And I remember him coming over with the microphone and saying, yeah, yes, yes.

Speaker How do you. Describe what I mean when you started in your soul. I remember that was I was I was just playing in the lot look at around or anything.

Speaker I was just trying to play it here. He says take says take it, Jess. No, that was on the show.

Speaker Well, what happened? You remember the story one group finally in Philadelphia had enough for the day things started to get bad. You go from bad to worse, Benny and Gene. Yeah, I think about that now when he finally quit.

Speaker Yeah. They were right on the stage. You were cursing at each other all over again.

Speaker Mike wouldn't be the same man. Gene where Earl Patter Philadelphia. And I gonna say it if Earl Theatre in Philadelphia.

Speaker He was bad because James leaving the band. So they started cursing at each other. I don't understand you and you can hear it. Nottage said you're a lousy guy, state. You stink. They almost had a fistfight on the stage. Let's cut and just so you have a chance to he was not sure that guy plays piano better good than you.

Speaker Just tell me about it. You got a few musicians to join any good. And including my friend. Tell me a little bit about that.

Speaker Yeah, well, I, uh. I got Bennetta her. David, Tom. But even so, he did. But nothing ever worked out good.

Speaker You know, Benny would be taken horse in bed by the baby fooling with the saxophone, just like two little kids in school, you know? That would be Kliment would get up to take its course. Benny would whistle. So, you know, just like kids, you know.

Speaker And then baby talk, you said straight back he would go up today and say, yeah.

Speaker We were playing a theater in Cleveland, Ohio.

Speaker The second shot looking relaxed, just look at me. Her eyes shut.

Speaker Yeah, well, we were playing a theater in Cleveland, and then he came by.

Speaker He was fresh. He took a plane and we took a bus. And we all beat bags under our bags.

Speaker And then he says, Now, Dave, I want you to send me this time. Send me.

Speaker And Dave says, For God's sake, since I'm a directional center where you want to be sent.

Speaker That didn't work out. You did.

Speaker Chris Griffin, Trump told us this on you were traveling with your son for a while with the man.

Speaker Yes. Tell them I took him along on one nighters. I took my son along with me on all the other things. Start again. I took my son along with me when I was doing another one nighters. He got a kick out of it.

Speaker He was how he was about. I think he was around around seven.

Speaker The beginning of the whole thing started to tell the whole story again.

Speaker I took my son along with us and he was about his name. Yeah. So any detail? Remember any things he did. I took my now. Oh. All right. Starting.

Speaker I took my son along with me on the one nighters. He was seven years old and he got a kick out of it, you know.

Speaker And Tom, tell me about Ferguson.

Speaker Oh, this Ferguson was a pal of mine. We just hung out together and we had to go up to my apartment and to tour the city. And I had a picture of a baby up there that we threw darts at. We weren't known as the dart throwers.

Speaker You've been been quoted describing he was a harsh taskmaster and that he had certain rehearsal techniques and it was like being rehearsal.

Speaker Well, been at rehearsal with Benny Goodman. It seemed like he wanted to lock everything up. We'd go over and over and over the tune till we're so damn disgusted with it. We did. Then we'll play it anymore. Well, after the Carnegie Hall concert, people were leaving, Teddy Wilson was leaving the part of his own band. Lionel Hampton's leaving, Cooper will. It was leaving the band who seemed to go down from then on in. It debited to regain the real popularity that they had at first.

Speaker You were talking before about when you got out. Later when you got out to San Francisco, Benny was really struggling and that's when you decided, you know what, where we got to San Francisco.

Speaker Billy was struggling. He wanted. Did he do that pressure? Henderson built his bad band Lives from the start. So, Fletcher, he wanted to hire Fletcher in the band. I said, well, Betty, it's time for me to go. Now you take Fletcher in and goodbye. I'm leaving. So I left to join the Bob Crosby Band.

Speaker Well, Howard, how did it compare working with another boss after you've been with Ben?

Speaker Well.

Speaker I used to work at the building, I used to strike at a on the Pattakos, Betty was really hell of intonation and everything had to be perfectly in tune. So I kept pounding A's and A's. So when I joined at the Bob Crosby Band, I was in a routine I kept. He sounded AIDS. So Bob says, if you don't stop that, I'm going to give you your five years notice.

Speaker It now under way and again, as the dinosaurs show you what is at risk in funny shorts.

Speaker I never known about it. I never noticed that. You tell that story.

Speaker Well, when I when I played the Dinah Shore show with Billy out here, I think he got ten thousand dollars and I got scale, which was nothing. But Dinah Shore wanted to sing with our little roup trail. And he would later say. So she cried and went to her dressing room. It really broke up all about it cause she wants to sing with the trio so badly.

Speaker But then you walked into Betty's dressing room.

Speaker Yes. Then I walked into Benny's dressing room and he had his clothes off. And he was it was the garb that he had to hold his back up.

Speaker There was a kind of fighting it on.

Speaker You describe it in Ross's book because it looked like those things in horses.

Speaker Yes. Yes. The road again.

Speaker Well, when he took office shirt, you looked like your parents that they put on horses, you know? Debray sum up, you know, he would if you took those braces off, he'd pull up. He'd pull up, you know.

Speaker Did you know before that that he had on his back?

Speaker I did know. I. All the time. I really did know it before.

Speaker I didn't know it was that bad. And I started to feel sorry for him. Almost cried.

Speaker Get.

Speaker So suddenly becomes a remark about the sunset compared to thirty fifth entirely met in Chicago. You said you can take a top at all out of his case. It had bull by itself. Well, down the stretch of the plantation was King Oliver in the border. The music was all over that street. He says, you can take it, pick it out, Basma. Pick the top it out of the case of that bull by himself.

Speaker You said you basically lived in the sunset. I did, yes. Don't tell us.

Speaker I really was working on the south side of the dancehall and I'd stop by 30 Fairfield County about every night. Would we finished pay? I practically lived in the Sunset Cafe with Tasch Smarter. And a Spaniard.

Speaker We'd all go together and just picture. You describe that you played in the Midway Gardens with the band, the Peshmerga. And those guys were in many came and sang with that band. Tell me about that.

Speaker Well, nobody did come to sit in with that band go on ages, but it's already, too, because they came to listen to this from the beginning. Tell me you were playing in the band. Let's play. Did the band and the Beltway guard question.

Speaker And like. So it started.

Speaker This band, I playing with it at the Sunset Cafe. We had Testamentary, who was a hell of a wonderful top clarinet player, so very good.

Speaker Let's start again. Well, a little. Give me a minute. Well, I put this Band-Aid.

Speaker I played with at the Midway Gardens. They had this wonderful clarinet player named Frank Peshmarga.

Speaker I just got to look up in my eye looking down. Oh. Oh.

Speaker When I was part of this band into the Chicago Midway Gardens, we had this wonderful trumpet player, clarinet. I mean, to say name of Frank Tasch Water. So I guess Benny Goodman had heard about it because he's playing the South War. We've been pollit. So I guess he'd he'd heard about Frank Freshwater's. So he came out to listen to him, but he stood behind the post to listen to French.

Speaker He did want Frank to save this. Okay. I still don't know.

Speaker Well, when we made recording dates, Benny would always take me down ahead of the time for the band. And he wanted to know the chord changes on the tunes. So I said, this is a D seven. This goes in C flat. And he says, I don't want a sunset. Break them up. Break them up. So I'd break them up on the piano, you know, note for note. And he'd remember more. He had a hell of a memory. Wonderful memory.

Speaker Were there any of those records instead of your mind?

Speaker Oh, Josh, we made so many of Victor.

Speaker Wrapping it up at the Fletcher Henderson thing, Cheryl.

Speaker Like a lot of it has been written about how many tried to have a second career as a classical musician. Yes. And people have also mentioned about your surely about the famous Carnegie Hall solo on Sing saying that there was a classical influence in your playing. Were you did you have any ever talk about classical music or you. Were you aware that Solo was a debut see or fail?

Speaker Well, first stuff. I used to go to Betty's house and play the company big time over the W.C. Rebell stuff. Not very good at my Aunt Betty did a lot, but that's how I got acquainted with it, you know.

Speaker Was that before? Thirty eight or one of before? Thirty eight. You know, the your whole buncha.

Speaker OK. I don't think we left anything out. Let's cut.

Speaker And he had a stool there. Sit in the front of the band.

Speaker Oh, tell me your yourselves. Are you ready to roll? This is a good story. You want to try it off or. You know, I'll try just to name a few.

Speaker If you want it back, just say I gesture just like this. I wasted on the ride stick. It just took it inside.

Speaker You stick it in society and in season one, you just let us know and we'll stop. You put it back on.

Speaker OK. All right.

Speaker Just when you were saying four times now.

Speaker Yeah, well, I was just thinking, Jess, you know, like I came in so many years. When did you leave?

Speaker Oh, I see. Thirty eight. I joined right after the Carnegie Hall concert. Thirty eight. Thirty eight. Oh, my God. And then you came in. Oh, I didn't come in till 1942.

Speaker Oh, August as I was playing out here. In a club with Lee and Lester Young. Yeah. And the waitress told me there was somebody there. Want to talk to me and it was Freddy Goodman, Freddy and he wanted me to take. He offered me this job. He said, Benny wants me. Said that Ben Webster had talked to Jimmy Maxwell. And Jimmy Maxwell told Benny, and so Benny sat Freddie out. And so I told him I wouldn't take the job until he heard me play. Yeah, because I didn't want to, you know, just take a job and find out that I couldn't cut it or something. I'm sorry.

Speaker Not even not usually you're talking to each other if you can sort of look at me.

Speaker OK. So anyway, I went out and played for him and he said, OK. So then we went into the. Now, Hotel, New Yorker. And.

Speaker I looked at the floorshow. I couldn't read very well at all. And I'd also gone to sleep at the wheel coming home, and I almost lost my eye. The fluid just had lost all. Just had enough left, you know. But I didn't have my glasses. So that was a good excuse. And it turned out that the floorshow was all there were no piano solo, so I just learned it by airplane.

Speaker And he didn't really care too much about that. But he was. And he was al on those rehearsals. I remember that. You remember that. Oh, yeah.

Speaker Yeah.

Speaker And then I remember Lou McGarity talking about, you know, when I first went to work, the first one nighter in in San Diego as I'm on the way back east. He said, has the ray been around to visit you yet? And I said, What's the ray? I didn't know, but I found out later. I saw him use it so much.

Speaker I wonder who invented that ray business. I don't know. It wasn't me, was it?

Speaker Would have been good enough. I don't think he would take too much from him. You'd probably end up saying, you know, just like I finally did it in New York.

Speaker I had enough and.

Speaker I straighten that out and I beat him to the punch. I got a job with Woody, you know, he was yet right. While he was talking to you. Come back here. Oh, yeah, sure.

Speaker What was that point?

Speaker Forty forty at the end of forty two. It reported to you. Yeah. You do it. Yeah. The New Yorker who dealt with that last year on the show. Yes. There was nothing to play. He would just sit there and pretend like he was.

Speaker I enjoyed it. You said you got a few raised in your time. Describe to me what the writing was.

Speaker Well, I noticed that when we were at The New Yorker. He'd start looking at some guy like he'd look over and be playing along and he'd be looking at this guy. And then when he wasn't playing, he'd be just looking at him all the time. And the guy gets so nervous and, you know. And by then I'd heard of it, but I'd never seen it in action.

Speaker I even heard that he had said Catlett holding the sticks out, you know, crying, please send me home stuff like cattle and said cattle is a great big bowl of a guy.

Speaker And so when he started crying, he finally got to rights are the type of players he'd say move over trade places. And finally, when they got to the end, it was no place was gone. You know, that kind of stuff. And when he started on me, I knew that I was booked and he started. Oh. He used what we broadcast, you know, like a feature of the tree on here. Just one tune and. I suddenly discovered that he was staring at me like this while he was playing. You know, we played some like body and soul is I need be looking at me like. Don't do that. You know, I don't like what you're doing. And I'm thinking, oh.

Speaker Anyway, that was. That was when I started to. And round, you know. They were looking for a piano player and what he heard was bad side.

Speaker I split.

Speaker That was a good, bad joint, wouldn't hurt. Well, it did. Yeah, it was a good, bad girl.

Speaker Well, you know, then it was an odd character, wasn't to say the least.

Speaker To say the least. Yeah. I never did get to get acquainted with them. Did you? No, not really. I don't think Campbell got acquainted with anybody, you know.

Speaker He was a loner. He used to call people up when he called me up in New York. Years later, like when I saw you and I was working at Bradley.

Speaker Yes. He had called me up. He came in there one night with his manager.

Speaker And how is that playing with us, playing with a bass player, Sam Jones. And we went over the table to say hello to him, you know. And he'd look at Sam Jones and he said, You know me, don't you?

Speaker And it's absolute. Yeah. He says, What do I know you? And that Sam says, I guess I don't know. But finally, he said, Did you ever work with me? And Sam said, nope. And then he told me later that that many I called him about four times and he never took the job.

Speaker But that kind of stuff is funny. He's a. Very funny.

Speaker Would you ever want to go through that again? No, no.

Speaker I'll bet some other guys play them to you. You knew Red pretty well. Tell about what it was like with Red and man and how.

Speaker Well, I didn't work with him when Rob was there. I was with Woody when I came out of the army.

Speaker I went back with Woody and what can was there? That's that's where I got a chance to really get to know red hair.

Speaker Did you guys ever compare notes about me?

Speaker Oh, I Benny's name it come up. And usually there was an anecdote because there's hundreds of thousands of anecdotes. It's really too bad. I think that somebody didn't write a book about Benny. What all the first guys like you. All of them, including guys like Babe Ruth's and all the guys that worked with him, could contribute stories, you know.

Speaker You know, the. Very funny.

Speaker I know, you know, when we went down to Mecca, recorded the directed Way Bill, it would be Bresson's part out and play it himself.

Speaker Yeah, we could cut it up. Yeah. After he'd been playing it all these years.

Speaker He took the tax cut. He'd just get a little thing in his mind. Sort of take a sudden dislike or something, I guess.

Speaker Well, he just wanted to hold you dollars. Well, I don't know. Maybe I was wrong, but he could sure swing.

Speaker Yes, he could really get it going. Yes, he could do a psych show of how a classic.

Speaker Let me get that again.

Speaker I was you're thinking, you know, how much he could swing, you can really swing. Yes.

Speaker He didn't go in for a lot of fancy court work with his solos, like Artie Shaw with his passing toms and stuff.

Speaker But he could swing. Nobody ever surpassed him. Not for that. I don't think he could really go.

Speaker I've heard a lot of mood. I never know what I became. Close.

Speaker Hang on. Anderson, let me get justice for that. You would if you look you can look at you, you just say say, say that again. No one ever surpassed him.

Speaker No one labor surpassed him. No. No, I don't think you know that. Yeah. He really could go. Yeah, I think so.

Speaker You know, like married away and dropped in an arrangement when I was playing with him out here, we were doing. Victor Barkha Radioshow.

Speaker And the band was there and we played on the show and we had a rehearsal and there was an arrangement by Mary Lou Williams and I had all kinds of flatted fifth in his solo Haltered cards, and he threw it out. Do you want those simple, minor diminished Mesnier? You know, he'd swing the hell out of them, but that's how I man.

Speaker Can't they never do do do what they did with the seats around those fancy hotel?

Speaker I remember rehearsing Body and Soul and I was playing some changes and he said, wait a minute, Jimi. He says there's only three chords in this song.

Speaker You know, he liked it like that. Simple. But he could swing, you know, usually.

Speaker Sound was pretty to repeat. No one ever came close.

Speaker No. And you sounded awful good. I remember all those records. You know, I used to. I started by and Benny Goodman records after I listened to Teddy Wilson and I switched and started buying records. And I used to like the way you do you. And they're just the right place to put one here. Beautiful little thing, you know, little tasty, beautiful stuff. I really love that. You were one of my favorites.

Speaker Well, thank you very much. US real new is the truth.

Speaker And you honored me by naming spacy role. That was an honor. I kind of thought you'd like it. I do. It was in the paper. Not even after that pair, that bird, the Benny Goodman scandal.

Speaker I was I had to get her down here some time. Yes, I wish you would. I will. I will show you pictures. I told you that in the paper. Both of you. Yeah.

Speaker I just remember just something that I forgot, just that we talked about the other room. I forgot when before before we said it, we could go back and talk about Otis Ferguson again, sitting on his piano listening to you. Do you play your solos? Tell me about that.

Speaker Well, was this guy started from, you know, suddenly you look here was this writer saying how he died to that? Yes.

Speaker Well, he liked that. He liked him. We don't know who he is. Oh. Does Ferguson like local artists starting. Otis Ferguson. Like me personally.

Speaker You know, we hung out together and he'd come up to my apartment up in New York to the city, and we had a big picture of a baby sitting up there and we throw darts at it. We were the dart, the worst hit.

Speaker And then you also were were drinking buddies. Yeah. Rehearsal was kind of like down at the piano. Well, he'd sit on the piano and listen.

Speaker He was gonna write a book. You know, he was quiet.

Speaker Let's start again. And you got to tell me, Otis.

Speaker So you know Otis Ferguson. Stephanie, my question. Otis Ferguson. I like the way I played in the band. He wrote a piece called Piano in the Band. And he was also scheduled to write a book about Benny Goodman. But Benny got disgusted with him literally sitting under the piano. So it doesn't ever happen.

Speaker What what was he doing under there? Just listening. We had to change tapes.

Jess Stacy and Jimmy Rowles
Interview Date:
1993-01-28
Runtime:
0:43:03
Keywords:
American Archive of Public Broadcasting GUID:
cpb-aacip-504-pv6b27qh3b, cpb-aacip-504-n29p26qs3d
MLA CITATIONS:
"Jess Stacy and Jimmy Rowles, Benny Goodman: Adventures in the Kingdom of Swing." American Masters Digital Archive (WNET). 28 Jan. 1993, https://www.pbs.org/wnet/americanmasters/archive/interviews/426
APA CITATIONS:
(1993, January 28). Jess Stacy and Jimmy Rowles, Benny Goodman: Adventures in the Kingdom of Swing. [Video]. American Masters Digital Archive (WNET). https://www.pbs.org/wnet/americanmasters/archive/interviews/426
CHICAGO CITATIONS:
"Jess Stacy and Jimmy Rowles, Benny Goodman: Adventures in the Kingdom of Swing." American Masters Digital Archive (WNET). January 28, 1993. Accessed January 29, 2022 https://www.pbs.org/wnet/americanmasters/archive/interviews/426

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