|Multi-reedist Herb Steward blowing tenor for a studio shot probably taken in the mid-'40s, around the time he was playing for Artie Shaw. His big break came in 1947 with Woody Herman. Photo from "Black Beauty, White Heat"|
Never let it be said that we here at Gems are not an eclectic bunch. Everything from the AACM to ... well, to this offering, can be found here. And since I'm in a sentimental mood and thinking about jazz radio, I thought I'd post this LP of "beautiful music" by Herb Steward.
|Platter mavens searching the boxes at one of WJFF's|
music sales. At 50 cents apiece, a collector could buy a
cartonful and still have enough left to buy donuts and
coffee at the snack table. WJFF photo
So, I thought I'd pay tribute to my former radio station by offering a rare item purchased at one of WJFF's legendary music sales. It's music that was meant to be pretty, just as the album's title proclaims, and while it was probably heard in some of the better highrise elevators and dentist offices of the 1960s, it mirrors my sentiments about my departure. Bittersweet, in a word.
|A few of the sides picked up by Gems at the |
most most recent WJFF music sale. Someone
dumped a lot of vintage Kenton ...
Herb Steward recorded a number of nice singles on his own for Roost in the 78 era. Some of those are available on various tenor sax compendiums, but this recording is his sole LP effort in the modern era. It's pretty tepid stuff jazz-wise, but the arrangements (by one Dick Hazard and a mysterious string section with rhythm) are competent and pleasant enough, and you can hum along with the melodies. And, if you're in a reflective mood, it's ... so pretty.
This gem required only a minor cleaning up of the sound. The file comes, as always, from the original vinyl. Thanks, WJFF!
Herb Steward, ts, cl, bar; unknown string orchestra and rhythm section; Dick Hazard, arr.
Los Angeles, CA; March, June 5, 1962
Ava/Choreo Records A-9
1. Indian Summer
2. Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans?
4. With All My Love
5. Memphis in June
6. I'm Coming Virginia
7. When Day Is Done
8. Lovely Melody
9. Among My Sounvenirs
10. So Pretty (Hazard)
Find it here: https://www.mediafire.com/?6cirjunk9gcm204
Yours truly at the mic in WJFF's
Master Control a few years back,
producing my long-running jazz
Photo by Myra Winner