David Hazeltine was born October 27, 1958 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and studied music with local pianist Will Green, He started playing gigs at age 13 but didn’t seriously consider a life in music until right before college.
Upon entering the jazz world David was encouraged by Chet Baker to move to New York City where he eventually became the house pianist for national acts at the former Jazz Gallery. His greatest influences have been Charlie Parker, Sonny Rollins, Bud Powell and Miles Davis and while he works within and across the constrains of bebop he is constantly seeking the beauty in harmony, melody, rhythm and never straying too deeply from his roots.
Hazeltine has played and recorded with the likes of Jon Hendricks, Louis Hayes, George Mraz, Joe Locke, Nat Reeves, Joe Farnsworth, Don Braden, Chris Potter, Peter Washington, Louis Hayes and One For All among numerous others.
A gifted arranger and composer, David has done an impressive amount of innovation in his arrangements of pop tunes, which appear on most of his CDs. He helped retool the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music’s jazz program, has recorded some two dozen albums as a leader and sideman and continues to be a major player on the New York and Japan jazz scene.
More Posts: piano
Ranee Lee was born October 26, 1942 and raised in Brooklyn, New York. She performed as a singer while in high school and after graduation she began her professional career as a dancer, and during the Seventies began playing drums and saxophone with various touring groups in the U.S. and Canada.
Settling in Montreal she turned to the stage starring in Lady Day as Billie Holiday, winning a Dora Mavor Moore Award and singing took over her past musical endeavors. She began recording and released her first album Deep Song in 1989 with bassist Milt Hinton and Oliver Jones followed up with her sophomore project Jazz On Broadway with Red Mitchell.
Over the years with numerous releases Ranee has become one of Canada’s most popular jazz vocalists and was named a member of the Order of Canada in 2006, the second highest order of merit. Her music appears in the animated short film, Black Soul, and has won a 2010 Juno Award for her album Ranee Lee Lives Upstairs.
An accomplished author, Lee has written children’s books, has performed on stage, television, film and jazz festivals, has sat on the faculty of the University of Laval in Quebec City for seven years and The Schulich School of Music of McGill University. She continues to record, perform and tour.
Never on Sunday is the theme song written by Manos Hadjidakis and Billy Towne for the 1960 Greek black-and-white film. The signature song became a hit and bestowed an Academy Award for Best Song on composer Hadjidakis. It stars Melina Mecouri and Jules Dassin and gently submerges the viewer into the Greek culture with music, dance and language through subtitles.
The Story: Ilya, a self-employed, free-spirited prostitute who lives in the port city of Piraeus and Homer, an American tourist from Middletown, Connecticut and a classical scholar enamored with all things Greek. Homer feels Ilya’s life style typifies the degradation of Greek classical culture and attempts to steer her onto the path of morality. It constitutes a variation of the Pygmalion story.
More Posts: vocal
A Summer Place was adapted from the Sloan Wilson novel into a 1959 film of the same name, at a time when divorce, adultery and teenage sexuality were taboo subjects and very controversial. The theme song which became a jazz standard was composed by Mack Discant and Max Steiner.
The Story: Focuses on the adult lives of two one-time teenage lovers, Ken and Sylvia, who were from different social strata. Ken was self-supporting, working as a lifeguard at a Maine island resort, while Sylvia’s family stayed as guests of the owners, one summer between years at college. After their summer love affair, they married other people, but rediscovered each other later in life. At that time, Sylvia has a son, Johnny, and Ken a daughter, Molly. While Ken and Sylvia renew their love affair, their children begin a romance.
Ray Anderson was born on October 16, 1952 in Chicago, Illinois. An independent jazz trombonist and trumpeter he began training with the Chicago Symphony trombonists then spent time studying in California. By 1973 he was in New York freelancing and four years later joined Anthony Braxton’s group, then with Barry Altschul.
By the late ‘70s his influence was growing, he was leading his own groups, working with George Gruntz’s Concert Jazz Band and over the next twenty years began taking an occasional good-humored vocal singing two notes at the same time.
Anderson also plays the sousaphone, is a master at multiphonics and a supportive sideman has recorded and performed with David Murray, Charlie Haden, Dr. John, Bennie Wallace, Henry Threadgill, John Scofield and Sam Rivers among others. He also received a grant from the National Endowment For The Arts for a series of solo trombone concerts.
While pushing his sound into the future, Anderson has frequently returned to his early love of New Orleans music for inspiration as he continues to perform, record and tour. Since 2003 he has taught and conducted at Stony Brook University.