[JPL] Sad News about David 'Fathead' Newman

Tom Reney tr at wfcr.org
Wed Jan 21 16:38:22 EST 2009


Larry,

Thanks for the link to the Before & After with Fathead.  In reading what he 
says here about playing with Zoot, Frank Wess, Budd Johnson ("being in their 
company was like heaven for me"), I'm reminded of how Fathead warmed to my 
question about his appearance with Ray Charles at the 1958 Newport Jazz 
Festival.  That was the concert that included Max Roach's "Blues Waltz" and 
Ray singing, "Right here in Newport!" on "I Got a Woman." Anyway, what 
Fathead wanted to talk about was Lester Young, who was also playing the 
festival.  It was the only time he ever saw Pres, and he recalled it as if 
it took place yesterday.

The last time I saw David was at a daytime "jazz festival" that a bar deep 
in the 'hood in Springfield, Mass. hosted a couple of years ago.  It was one 
of the hottest days in recent memory,  like 100+ degrees, and while the bar 
itself was air-conditioned, the stage and all the barbecue stations were set 
up outside in the parking lot in anticipation of a big turnout.  The crowd 
never materialized, but Fathead played like it was Newport.  A real 
gentleman, and a man who seemed at peace with himself.  It was a shame that 
the film "Ray" depicted him primarily as the man who turned Ray Charles on 
to junk.

I'll present a memorial tribute to him on Thursday.

Tom Reney
"Jazz à la Mode"
Monday-Friday, 8 - 11 p.m.

WFCR
NPR News and Music for Western New England
Hampshire House
131 County Circle
Amherst, MA 01003-9257

tr at wfcr.org
www.wfcr.org

413-545-3220 office
413-545-2546 fax
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Larry Appelbaum" <jumpmonk at hotmail.com>
To: <jazzproglist at jazzweek.com>
Sent: Wednesday, January 21, 2009 2:29 PM
Subject: RE: [JPL] Sad News about David 'Fathead' Newman


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I'm sorry to hear this. He was a very nice man who really knew how to tell a 
story with his horn. I'm glad that HighNote documented his later work.

David graciously agreed to do a Before & After with me in 2003:
http://jazztimes.com/columns_and_features/before_and_after/index.cfm?artist=11&action=about_the_artist.

Larry

> It is with great sadness that I let you all know that David Newman 
> succumbed to pancreatic cancer yesterday.
>
> A kind and gentle man, and a heck of a sax player, he will be missed by 
> many.  More information will follow.
>
> Ray Osnato
> HighNote Records
> 106 West 71st Street
> New York, NY 10023
> tel: 212.873.2020
> www.jazzdepot.com
> --
>
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