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Hi all,

Just saw a great clip of the not so often mentioned Jimmy Forrest. See here for a recording of him playing Body And Soul with Count Basie:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Di4fgf5HX4c

Check out what he does do at 4:47, I love it! And his almost collapsing high G at 5:03. Looks like he plays a metal Berg Larsen here.

I know Jimmy from his older recordings of the 50's, where he played an Otto Link mouthpiece. See this clip with Jack McDuff to compare that with his above Berg clip:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mQa6J6nFm6M

I think he sounds great on both pieces, but still slightly prefer his Link sound.

Enjoy!
 

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hell's yeah!!!

i like the comment posted

"Young players note: This is what a tenor is supposed to sound like."
 

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Hi all,

Just saw a great clip of the not so often mentioned Jimmy Forrest. See here for a recording of him playing Body And Soul with Count Basie:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Di4fgf5HX4c

Check out what he does do at 4:47, I love it! And his almost collapsing high G at 5:03. Looks like he plays a metal Berg Larsen here.

I know Jimmy from his older recordings of the 50's, where he played an Otto Link mouthpiece. See this clip with Jack McDuff to compare that with his above Berg clip:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mQa6J6nFm6M

I think he sounds great on both pieces, but still slightly prefer his Link sound.

Enjoy!
Tha CD is called " Tough Duff" ...it has Lem Winchester on vibes. Really amazing music- still sounds so great and fresh.

WHO SOUNDS THAT HIP ON AUTUMN LEAVES???!!!!??!??? WHO? Jimmy andJack that's who.

THIS IS JAZZ.:)
 

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Indeed that CD of Jimmy with Jack McDuff is a great one Tim. I have it for years, it's always fun to put it on 'the table' again. It's still available, for those who would like to hear more:
http://www.cduniverse.com/productinfo.asp?pid=1036004

Jimmy also played for some while in a great quintet with trumpet player Harry Edison. I have two CD's of them, 'The Swinger' and 'Mr. Swing', both very tasteful and swinging mainstream albums. Jimmy had a way of playing his own changes and licks over the standards and the blues, most of it still sounds great and fresh. Here is a link to the double CD with Harry Edison:
http://www.amazon.com/Swinger-Mr-Sw...JNP3/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1302077877&sr=1-1

Talking about Jack McDuff... he was a great swinging organ player and had a 'nose' for getting the best tenor man in his bands. His recordings with the great Red Holloway (and a young George Benson on guitar) are also killing...
 

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I'm ashamed to admit I did not know this player.
That´s a good day for me :) What a sound!!!!! I´ll dig it....
What kind of Berg is he playing in the clip?
Thanks for sharing :)
 

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Very nice clip - thanks for posting!
 

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I'm ashamed to admit I did not know this player.
That´s a good day for me :) What a sound!!!!! I´ll dig it....
What kind of Berg is he playing in the clip?
Thanks for sharing :)
There is enough work of Jimmy available on YouTube and CD's to check him out further! One of my reasons to post him here was to introduce him to people who don't know him, so I'm glad you like it (that makes my day!) :).

I'm not a big specialist on Berg Larsen pieces, but my guess would be that it's Duck Bill from the 50's with a big tip (120 or 130). Can't display the video right now (being at work) to check. Here you can find some info on Berg models:
http://www.theowanne.com/mouthpieces101/BergLarsen.php

The Otto Link he used in the track with Jack McDuff is most probably a Florida no USA type from the 50's.
 

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Great sound, reminds me a lot of Coleman Hawkins.
I wonder, however, if it really makes sense to say his sound is that much dependend on the moutpiece.
What we have are 2 clips with a very similar sounding tenor on them.
The main difference I could definitely put my finger on was a brighter sound on the Autumn Leaves take (less lower frequencies).
This might just as well be the room, the recording, the mixing, the reed or anything else.
What do you think?
 

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@ mrpeebee I think I have to thank you for the answer.
Sorry....Your avatar looks like the one Tim used a time ago and I´m not really concentrated (listening some Jimmy Forrest clips on Spotify

@ ismail the Link sounds darker to me, but a little bit more resonant. I can´t really choose between the clips. I guess it´s a mood thing. He sounds so good on both mouthpieces....
 

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@ mrpeebee I think I have to thank you for the answer.
Sorry....Your avatar looks like the one Tim used a time ago and I´m not really concentrated (listening some Jimmy Forrest clips on Spotify

@ ismail the Link sounds darker to me, but a little bit more resonant. I can´t really choose between the clips. I guess it´s a mood thing. He sounds so good on both mouthpieces....
No problem!

Great sound, reminds me a lot of Coleman Hawkins.
I wonder, however, if it really makes sense to say his sound is that much dependend on the moutpiece.
What we have are 2 clips with a very similar sounding tenor on them.
The main difference I could definitely put my finger on was a brighter sound on the Autumn Leaves take (less lower frequencies).
This might just as well be the room, the recording, the mixing, the reed or anything else.
What do you think?
Coleman Hawkins played in his later years also a big tip Berg Larsen mouthpiece (when I remember well a 160 tip or so!), so that can explain the simularity in sound with Jimmy. I personally prefer Hawkins' old sound much more, when he still played an old vintage Otto Link model (with a special HS facing made for him). Check out his famous 'Body and Soul' recording of the late 30's, you can probably find it on YouTube (can't check that right now at work).

Also Sonny Rollins switched later in his career to a big tip Berg Larsen (130), coming from big tip Florida Otto Links (10 or so) as played in the 50's. Also here I prefer the Link sound, but that's just my personal taste.

I have a lot of CD's of Jimmy Forrest in my personal collection, so my opinion on the sound difference between Berg and Link MPC was not only based on the two clips posted above. When played at low level the Berg seems darker, but for me the Link has a much more complex sound, deeper and with more personallity then the Berg. It also sounds more resonant to me. These are tricky comments, everybody will hear different things I guess :).

Again, Jimmy Forrest is such a great player, he sounds great on both pieces.
 

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In the first clip, is Jimmy playing a Bundy? keywork looks silver, good shot of the bell keys and braces around 3:05.... if so, man just goes to show it ain't the gear. ;-)
 

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Jimmy's horn was a Vito. Vito gave Jimmy and the lead alto player/conductor on this vid, Bobby Plater, new horns and they played on 'em.

I remember hearing Jimmy doing this feature with the band later than the video date. My Dad and I used to go hear the band a lot back in those days. Jimmy had extended the cadenza portion quite a bit by then, the 'out' part was longer, and he finished by beating on his chest and screaming. I'm serious. JF was WAY into it!

I also worked in the band that Jimmy and Al Grey had together in the late '70s, right after they both left Basie. Milt Buckner was the piano player. We were working an afternoon date somewhere in Philly. I'm early and Jimmy walks into the dressing room carrying his suit in a bag. He hangs the suit on the rack and turns to brag to me about his new suit bag. "Man, I only paid eighty nine cents for this bad suit bag," he boasts. "The guy wanted $1.50, but I got him down to 89c." Jimmy then goes to pull the zipper to open the suit bag so he can get his suit out. The zipper wont budge. So Jimmy holds the bag at the top of the zipper and gives the zipper a mighy tug. FOOM! The whole suit bag tears away from the suit and lands in a crumpled heap on the floor. JF is standing there with only the zipper in his hand. He looks at me and says...."Well, what do ya expect for only eighty nine cents?" Ha ha ha ha. It was a funny scene.
 

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Jimmy's horn was a Vito. Vito gave Jimmy and the lead alto player/conductor on this vid, Bobby Plater, new horns and they played on 'em.

I remember hearing Jimmy doing this feature with the band later than the video date. My Dad and I used to go hear the band a lot back in those days. Jimmy had extended the cadenza portion quite a bit by then, the 'out' part was longer, and he finished by beating on his chest and screaming. I'm serious. JF was WAY into it!

I also worked in the band that Jimmy and Al Grey had together in the late '70s, right after they both left Basie. Milt Buckner was the piano player. We were working an afternoon date somewhere in Philly. I'm early and Jimmy walks into the dressing room carrying his suit in a bag. He hangs the suit on the rack and turns to brag to me about his new suit bag. "Man, I only paid eighty nine cents for this bad suit bag," he boasts. "The guy wanted $1.50, but I got him down to 89c." Jimmy then goes to pull the zipper to open the suit bag so he can get his suit out. The zipper wont budge. So Jimmy holds the bag at the top of the zipper and gives the zipper a mighy tug. FOOM! The whole suit bag tears away from the suit and lands in a crumpled heap on the floor. JF is standing there with only the zipper in his hand. He looks at me and says...."Well, what do ya expect for only eighty nine cents?" Ha ha ha ha. It was a funny scene.
Thanks for sharing this background information and great story Mr. sideC, I love it :). So, since our roads cross again :bluewink:, do you have some more inside information on the mouthpieces and reeds Jimmy played? Are the assumptions above on the Berg Larsen and the Florida Link correct?

For those of you who are interested in more great stories and very interesting background information on Illinois Jacquet (another tenor giant with whom Mr. sideC has played), check this thread:
http://forum.saxontheweb.net/showth...er-Gordon-and-Illinois-Jacquet-in-Flying-Home

(CHECK IT!!!. It's a fantastic thread that also contains great things on Dexter Gordon, Budd Johnson, Arnett Cobb and Buddy Tate.)
 

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Peter, to tell you the truth, Jimmy's sound was so big and hairy, I was afraid to look at the mouthpiece!

But seriously, I think it was a Berg he played when I was with him and Al. We never discussed mouthpieces. I asked him about his horn, and he told me that "the guy who made it gave it to me," so I figured that Vito brought him the horn when they were gigging near his factory. Jimmy really liked the horn. Sorry that I have no more mouthpiece info.

I do know that the saxophone players in the Basie band liked to have work done by Frank Wells, the legendary refacer who was based in Chicago. I don't know if Jimmy's Berg had been touched by Frank, but he was popular with the Basie saxmen.

Also, younger players should take note of how far off the mike Jimmy is. His sound was truely enormous, so he projected his natural sound with just a small amount of assistance from the artificial source, the microphone.
 

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:laughing: You may have just created a monster!

Peter, to tell you the truth, Jimmy's sound was so big and hairy, I was afraid to look at the mouthpiece!
 

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Peter, to tell you the truth, Jimmy's sound was so big and hairy, I was afraid to look at the mouthpiece!

But seriously, I think it was a Berg he played when I was with him and Al. We never discussed mouthpieces. I asked him about his horn, and he told me that "the guy who made it gave it to me," so I figured that Vito brought him the horn when they were gigging near his factory. Jimmy really liked the horn. Sorry that I have no more mouthpiece info.

I do know that the saxophone players in the Basie band liked to have work done by Frank Wells, the legendary refacer who was based in Chicago. I don't know if Jimmy's Berg had been touched by Frank, but he was popular with the Basie saxmen.

Also, younger players should take note of how far off the mike Jimmy is. His sound was truely enormous, so he projected his natural sound with just a small amount of assistance from the artificial source, the microphone.
Thanks Mr. sideC. I guess we (I :bluewink:) have to except that some things of the great hero's will stay a mystery for ever, but I keep on trying to get them to the service :).

I have read about Frank Wells. He was one of the few refacers who used the risky 'hammer technic' to open up closed vintage mouthpieces to a bigger tip. Seems that not too many of the top players used 'standard' mouthpieces in the past.
 
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