[JPL] Sad News about David 'Fathead' Newman
tr at wfcr.org
Wed Jan 21 16:38:22 EST 2009
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
I'll present a memorial tribute to him on Thursday.
"Jazz à la Mode"
Monday-Friday, 8 - 11 p.m.
NPR News and Music for Western New England
131 County Circle
Amherst, MA 01003-9257
tr at wfcr.org
----- 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:
> 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
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