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Jacquet told me the story of the mouthpiece he's playing in this vid. Acording to IJ, he and Dexter were working in the Hampton band back in '42. One night they switched mouthpieces, and they both liked the other guys piece better than their own. So they traded pieces. Jacquet used Dexter's mouthpiece on the famous "Flying Home" recording in '42, and that's the one he's playing here. It's an early model Link. He played the piece until it was stolen in '92 or '93, while his horn sat onstage in Switzerland. He replaced it with another Link of similar vintage. Dexter moved on to the more modern model Link mouthpieces.
 

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Yes! Dexter's Dukoff! I totally forgot about that mouthpiece. Thanks for reminding me about that.

Interesting story about IJ's Selmer Balanced Action. The horn in the old photo with the hat is the same one he plays in the vid. When I joined him in the '90s, he was playing a mk6, but I asked him about the balanced. He said that it was 'blowed out,' and that it was 'around here someplace,' meaning in his house, where the conversation was taking place. IJ then told me how he aquired the balanced action. He said that he had been playing a Conn Conquerer, and that he put it under the airplane to go make a gig. When he got to the gig, the horn was unplayable. So he borrowed Coleman Hawkins' balanced to play his gig. He said that he ended up liking CH's balanced better than the Conn, so when he got back to NYC, he traded the Conn for the Selmer.

His last horn was a gold plated Serie II that had his name engraved in the bell. This horn was a gift from Patrick and Gerard Selmer. I don't know how to post youtubes, but there's a short vid of him playing this horn. I believe it's under the tittle 'Texas Tenor' and his sound on this horn is really beautiful, IMHO.

Thanks for posting all this history, mrP.
 

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Wow Mr. sideC, that's again a terrific story! I love these kind of stories very very much, thanks again for sharing :). Do you happen to know what the tip size of his mouthpiece was, what reeds (strength and type) he used and if his MPC was standard or refaced? I would love to know those kind of details.

I think I found the YouTube video you mentioned above (please correct me if it's not the correct one):
Indeed IJ plays again on the Tone Master, his sound is great on that Selmer Series II. I have that Video at home, but didn't remember the details anymore (getting old!).

What I do remember is that I saw Mr. Jacquet about 16 times when he visited The Netherlands. That was in various settings, from small groups to his terrefic Big Band. I once talked a few words with him and got his autograph. That was just after a concert of his Illinois Jacquet Big Band at the 'Meer Jazz Festival' in Hoofddorp in May 1998. I was standing 1 meter in front of the podium and noticed that he was looking quite often towards two small young kids with a light coloured skin, standing close to the podium with their parents. A few years later I found an interview with IJ, where he mentioned this concert in "Hoefdorp" (he ment Hoofddorp!) and the fact that he was very excited that evening because of two young boys with a coloured skin standing in front of the podium. Those young kids reminded him of his own youth, when he danced with his brother Russel (the trumpet player) on Jazz music. I still have a cassette tape of that concert, he really sounded great overthere at age 75 (on tenor AND alto).
MrP, the mouthpiece IJ got from Dexter was refaced, I'm pretty sure. He used a fairly modern metal Link on his alto. He told me that he had the alto piece refaced to match the tenor MPC, so I'm assuming that the tenor mpc was refaced also. After the Dex piece was stolen, people were sending him old tone masters to try out, but none were quite like the Dex MPC. He finally settled on one that I believe he got from Emilio up in Boston. This piece was never refaced while it was in IJ's possession, that I know of. I really don't know the tip openings but I can tell you one thing. Jacquet wasn't into equipment, he was just into results. He probably wasn't too concerned with the tip opening, just if it played for him. For example, he didn't know that his old Selmer tenor was a Balanced Action model. "It ain't no balanced action, it's a Selmer," he said when I asked him about the horn! He told me he had a guy in Paris who worked on his mouthpieces, and I guess he planned to visit him when we got to Paris, but we never made that stop while I was in the band. His reeds were Rico, I don't remember if they were orange box or blue box.

Yes, that's the vid I was referring to. Thanks for putting it up! I love the sound he gets with that setup. This horn was probably triple gold plated, I never saw a horn with that much gold plate, it looked to be an inch thick! It was beautiful.

Yeah, I played that Hoofddorp gig with Jacquet. Inside a big tent, if my memory is correct. I was sitting in the 3rd alto chair. All kinds of stuff was going on in front of the bandstand that night. Catherine, IJ's European promoter kept politely screaming at Jacquet to get off the stage, we were way overtime. IJ just kept running the band longer and finally yelled back at Catherine, " **** YOU! I'M THE KING!!!!!"...... and called yet ANOTHER tune! Needless to say, that was our last trip to Europe.
 

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Thanks for the kind words, MrP. Yes, that's my solo on the slow blues in Eb. It was called 'Kansas City Style', or something, and it was my only feature most nights. Slow, felt like 29 bpm. Man, ants moved faster than I was playing!

Jacquet rehearsed everyday on the road, so that's why we were on stage when you got there. The 'sound check' usually started at 2 or 3 in the afternoon, and ran until about 6:30 or 7:00 in the evening, everyday. He wanted things tight, so you rehearsed. Then you had to play the gig.......

Hearing IJ every night was like money in the bank. A saxophone lesson from a master. He really helped me with presentation, how to put things over, how to pull an audience, and to try to always play as cleanly as possible.

Jacquet got hoisted on his own pitard at that Laren gig you mention. We had long travel to get to Laren and IJ wanted to rehearse all day instead of resting and making the gig that night. So we went straight to the venue, Nick Vogelbrects Jazz Cafe, and started to rehearse. We rehearse right up to broadcast time. So we broadcast two long sets and everyone's beat, dog tired by the final tune, 'One O'Clock Jump'. So the rhythm section starts One O'Clock Jump in F. Just as they modulate to Db, you hear that dreadful thud of a saxophone hitting the floor. Jacquet had picked his tenor up off the stand and missed the hook with his neck strap! BLAM! the horn hits the floor! Embarassed, he picks up the horn and somehow forces out the solo in Db. We finish the tune and IJ collapses, totally exausted, into the arms of Brian Sledge, one of the trumpet players. We had to carry his *** back to his dressing room. Fortunately for Jacquet, our next stop was Hamburg, and I was familiar with a pretty good saxophone repair shop in St. Pauli, so he was able to get it running when we got there.
 

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Thanks again for the kind words, MrP. Like I said, I only got one solo a night, so I had to try to do the best I could with it.

Man, I wish I could have heard your band while we were there. I'm sure you guys were sounding good. What was your instrumentation, and what kind of stuff were you doing?

The piano player was my good friend Ed Stoute, straight out of Brooklyn. We still gig together around the NYC area. Jacquet had to keep his solo short, it was a miricle he could get sound out of that horn at all. He was lucky Nick's place had one of those old time wood floors with the planks, so it had a little give when you walked on it. Or when a saxophone hit it!

Winston Byrd played first trumpet in that band, he was just a kid back then and he had chops around the corner. He's coming in from L.A. later this month and I'll pass your complement on to him. He loves complements!

MrP, thanks for giving me a chance to talk about the good old days!
 

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Peter, IJ never spoke to me directly of his views of Arnett Cobb. As a matter of fact, these topics were a must to avoid with him. For some reason I don't think he wanted people to know that he was a disciple of Arnett when he was young. Yes, Arnett was out there before IJ, and you can hear the influence Cobb had on Jacquet, but I think Jacquet liked people to think he invented his style without outside influence.

He was not exactly a shrinking violet when it came to the subject of ego.
 

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Thanks for asking Mr. sideC :). I played at that time in an amateur band called Bob Sesion. Bob was our bandleader, a retired professional music teacher who played clarinet, alto and piano. The rest of the band was full time amateur! We mainly tried to play straight ahead jazz. The instrumentation was clarinet/alto/piano (Bob), tenor (me!), baritone, trumpet, vibraphone, guitar, bass and drums (I liked that setting very much).

I have some old recordings of that time (around 1999) on my SoundClick page. Bit reluctant to post the links in this thread full of great professional players, because the quality of the recording and the musicians is by far not up to the other postings in this thread. But anyhow, here are some links:

http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=9607310 - Walkin Shoes (studio) - my solo starts around 3:06
http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=10037993 - 7 Come 11 (live) - my solo starts around 3:02
http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=9607401 - Just A Closer Walk With Thee (live) - feature of me (inspired by Mr. Arnett Cobb)

I played at that time on a Selmer SBA of 1952 with a metal Otto Link Early Babbitt 8* mouthpiece.
Peter, I'm just listening to your tracks, my time for listening is better today than it was yesterday, so sorry for the delay.

Wow, you guys got it going on! Very good band, and some nice, tasty solos. I'm really impressed over here. There's a character to what you guys are doing with the tunes, and that's very important to me. Sounds like you're having a really good time, and that's coming out through the music.

Peter, your playing is outstanding, IMHO. You're displaying a nice organic sound, and it seems like you're not afraid to be a little whimsical about things. Ha ha ha. I was smiling listening to your 7 Come 11 solo, and your Just A Closer Walk feature. Your tenor covers lots of ground, stylisticly.

Man, you're making my day. Thanks for sharing!
 

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LiAm84, you're probably right. I do see a sba in the pictures. When I joined him in '93, he was playing a mk6 that he had picked up in a shop in Paris. It was in the 180,000 serial range and was a Paris set up horn. He said that, when he saw it at the shop, he just blew the horn out of curiosity and it blew so well that he had to have it. He played this horn on 99% of the gigs I worked with him between '93 and '99.

So I only really saw him with the mk6 and the serie ll. I never saw the early horns. Thanks for the correction, good peeping.
 

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Hi Peter, sorry for my slow responce to your question....been out of town for a week away from my computer.

Yes, this dastardly act of malfeasance occurred before I joined the band. So I admit that my information is just rumors and hearsay evidence. But these are very juicy items of hearsay and rumor.

Seems that a discruntled member of the band set out to exact revenge against IJ, and stealing his beloved mp was his way of getting even. I know that IJ was so shook up when it happened that he cancelled that night's performance. So it occurred in the time period between that day's rehearsal and that night's performance. I don't know what he did to finish the tour, but he was still trying mouthpieces when I joined the band. He played on an old Link without the hump on the back. I guess somebody lent him something, or gave him something to finish the tour on.

He finally settled on another old tone master, and the sound was simply phenomenal to me. But I never got to hear him live on the Dexter mp.
 
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