This excellent documentary film, Earl ‘Fatha’ Hines, was made by Charlie Nairn for the British ATV network (now-defunct). It features a good deal of footage of Earl Hines, both speaking and playing, filmed at Blues Alley in Washington, DC in the spring of 1975. Hines appeared from March 31 to April 12, 1975. The film starts off mentioning that the coming Sunday (perhaps following the original television broadcast?) would be Hines’s seventieth birthday – he asserted that he was born on December 28, 1905, but there is evidence that he was actually born in 1903. Much of the filming was done on afternoons without an audience, but there is a bit of live performance (“Boogie Woogie on St. Louis Blues”) at the end. The bassist is Harley White, Jr., and the drummer is Eddie Graham. Blues Alley’s then-owner Gene Hart is seen briefly, but featured much more prominently is “clean up man” Frank Hart – a brother?Continue Reading
Max Roach at Blues Alley, 1981
This installment in the four-part Jazz in America series was filmed at Blues Alley in Washington, DC on March 2, 1981. It’s a nice hour-long set, without any introduction, historical context, or commentary. The band is Roach’s quartet with Cecil Bridgewater (t), Odean Pope (ts), and Calvin Hill (b), all of whom are in top form.
The other shows in the Jazz in America series, which aired on PBS in September 1983 (filmed in February-March 1981) are: Dizzy’s Dream Band at Lincoln Center in New York City, Gerry Mulligan at Eric’s in Chicago, and Dizzy Gillespie at Concerts by the Sea in Redondo Beach.Continue Reading
Unicorn Times, 1973-1985
While not exclusively a jazz publication, Unicorn Times published some very informative articles on Washington, DC jazz. It also contains advertisements for clubs, concerts, and artists. The publication has been digitized (PDF) by the DC Public Library.Continue Reading
WPFW/Pacifica Paper, 1977-1985
WPFW-FM is an important part of the Washington, DC jazz ecosystem. It is part of the Pacifica network of stations.
A collection of the station’s program guides have been digitized by the Internet Archive.
WPFW/Pacifica Paper, 1977-1985Continue Reading
Jazz For Moderns – 1956 tour program
Bill Harris: I am the Blues, 1988
This brief promotional film features footage of guitarist and vocalist Bill Harris as a member of The Clovers; giving a solo performing at his DC club Pigfoot; as well as a feature on a mid-1970s installment of the WTTG-TV show Panorama, introduced by host Maury Povich. There is also earlier (1960s?) footage that I have not been able to trace as yet. Harris died within a year of this film’s production, but he is seen performing with the D.C. Youth Orchestra in Cramton Audtorium at a concert from January 24, 1988.Continue Reading