[JPL] Jack Brokensha

vikingjazz at aol.com vikingjazz at aol.com
Mon Nov 1 09:56:33 EDT 2010

In the past few years, Jack produced several CDs with various groups he had. They are available only
from www.Puppyjazz.com  on the Bravo label. Jack was a good friend and he will be sorely missed.

Gunnar A. Jacobsen

-----Original Message-----
From: Dick Crockett <bopndick at yahoo.com>
To: jazzproglist at jazzweek.com
Sent: Mon, Nov 1, 2010 3:24 am
Subject: [JPL] Jack Brokensha

hen I Said” was an LP recorded in 1963 on Savoy Records by the
ack Brokensha Quartet with Howard Lucas, piano, Danny Jordan, bass
nd Art Mardigan, drums. It was part of an extensive series (MG
2080) 12 “ LP of jazz recordings that are still in the then
mmense Savoy jazz library.  If it still exits.
azz classics are filed away in the dusty old archives of bygone
ecord companies. Although I'm not saying that Savoy Records is gone,
or they've been rebirthed, no doubt, still have a large cache of bop
 jazz recordings, somewhere.
hen I
aw from Mark Stryker's obit in the Detroit Free Press of Jack
rokensha's passing and vividly recalled my connection with him.
t was
965. I was a student with a mass communication, major with a
iterature / journalism minor  at Wayne State University. 
osted a two hour jazz show  on WQRS-FM, a listener supported radio
tation. It was the early days of  FM radio, when sets in use were
ery limited to any one who had a Grundig radio-when FM in car radio
ets were nil!  And the freedom to be creative, to  do live
roadcasts was a constant in those days, a rare thing in corporate
edia, nowadays.
e had
 collection of Jack Brokensha LP's from his days with the Australian
azz Quintet, a band of Australian and American jazz musicians, Jack
rokensha, vibes, Bryce Rohde, piano Dick Healy and or  Erroll
uddle, reeds, Frank Capp, drums and Jim Garrison, bass. 
ecall playing this one particular LP, “And Then I Said” that was
n the library because Jack used to host a show on the station.
ack Brokensha opened a restaurant on Lothrup,  two blocks away from
he GM building and the Fisher building in the New Center Area of
ecided to do a two hour nightly remote broadcast. I hosted the first
our, spinning records on the main floor. We switched then to the
econd hour, where Jack Brokensha would perform with his quartet,
ess Boniar,. Piano, Danny Jordan, bass and Jerry McKensie, drums and
ccasionally Ursula Walker as vocalist. 
>From my
iew, it was one of those moments, that seem to happen every night in
 venue where musicians would appear in town and prominent Detroit
ymphony orchestra musicians would sit in with the band. 
ecall J.C. Heard and Frank Isola would try their taste.  It was a
egular thing in those days, that now is more memorable, for the
usic has changed so much. 
rokensha was very much a part of the Detroit scene in those days.
hether it was a performance with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra,  or
 Motown session at the Universal Studios on Second Avenue, or a
ingle session for Jam Handy, where Jerry Bruckheimer sewed his oats,
r a Campbell Ewald Chevy ad for General Motors, Jack Brokensha, for
ll his 5 foot six frame, was constantly on the go, packing his van
nd running off to various gigs around the city.

emember those moments and other memories of a man so generous with
is time.
t's Detroiters, who really appreciate his contributions to the music
emember the out of print, “And Then I Said” LP on Savoy Records
nd the best version of  Randy Weston ,“Little Niles”  I ever
rokensha's vibraphone was a slow tempo, a rondo that still
everberates my soul,  today. 


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