Four Berklee Faculty Vibists Honor Four Jazz Vibraphone Pioneers: Lionel Hampton, Red Norvo, Milt Jackson, and Cal Tjader
BOSTON -- Used almost exclusively as a jazz instrument, the vibraphone is unique in that all of its best known, established players have made their reputations in the jazz world. On Friday, April 4, 2003, four of those legends will be honored, as four gifted faculty vibists at Berklee College of Music perform a tribute concert honoring four great pioneers of the instrument. The event is part of the college's weeklong Percussion Week '03. Four by Four: A Tribute to Lionel Hampton, Red Norvo, Milt Jackson, and Cal Tjader" will begin at 8:15 p.m in the wheelchair-accessible Berklee Performance Center, 136 Mass. Ave., Boston. Tickets are $10, $4 for seniors, and are available at the Performance Center box office, 617-747-2261.
An internationally known author and vibraphonist who has recorded both as a leader and as a sideman with many of the top players in the music industry, Berklee Professor Ed Saindon will perform the music of Lionel Hampton. Recreating Hampton's years with clarinetist Benny Goodman, Saindon will perform with special guest Concord Jazz recording artist Dick Johnson on clarinet, alumnus Marshall Wood on bass, and Boston Pops drummer Jim Gwin.
Who better to perform the music of Red Norvo, whose style embraced both the jazz and classical worlds, than five-time GRAMMY Award winning vibist and Berklee Executive Vice President Gary Burton? He will perform with student musicians, including Matt Stevens on guitar, Ruslan Sirota on piano, Toshiyuki Tanahashi on bass, and James Williams on drums.
Performing the music of Milt Jackson's Modern Jazz Quartet will be one of today's finest Latin jazz artists, internationally renowned vibraphonist, composer, and Berklee Professor Victor Mendoza, along with students Kendrick Scott on drums and Milton Fletcher on piano, and faculty bassist Ron Mahdi.
2003 GRAMMY Award winner Associate Professor Dave Samuels, whose Caribbean Jazz Project's The Gathering won Best Latin Jazz Album, will play the music of Cal Tjader, including his 1965 hit Soul Sauce." Performing with vibist Samuels will be Alain Mallet (faculty) on piano, Francisco Mela (faculty) on drums, Robert Rosario (student) on congas, and Lionel Girardeau (alumnus) on bass.
Lionel Hampton (1909-2002) was not the first jazz musician to specialize on the vibraphone (Red Norvo preceded him by just a few years), but he was the man who established it as a serious jazz instrument, elevating what had been an obscure and very occasional part of the drummer