Audio & Video Featuring West Texas Jazz Party Musicians

A final musical gift for 2016 from the West Texas Jazz Society and West Texas Public Radio.

A few of the recordings in this program feature Buddy Tate, and all include Buck Clayton, both of whom many years later visited the Odessa Jazz Parties. These recordings have just come to light this year from a collection recorded by Bill Savory. This music has been largely unheard for nearly 80 years. Enjoy.

Here is a West Texas Jazz Party musical gift!
Music by the Stan Kenton Legacy Orchestra

Only a couple of musicians who played with Stan Kenton also played the West Texas Jazz Parties, but we know for sure that drummer Don Lamond and saxophonist Bud Shank have both in common.

This is a program that features the Stan Kenton Legacy Orchestra, with music from the original orchestra and its offshoot, playing music in the Kenton style nearly 40 years since Stan Kenton’s death.

New! A Career retrospective of Pianist Sir Charles Thompson, who played or recorded with more than 20 musicians who came to the West Texas Parties. He died in Tokyo last week at the age of 98, and played with musicians from Benny Moten to Lester Young and Charlie Parker. He also played with nearly every great tenor saxophonist from the 1930s through the 1960s.


Jeepers Creepers Introduces 1995 Odessa Jazz Party, and co-founder Ernie Schur introduces the band

At least one picture of everybody who attended the 29th Odessa Jazz Party is shown in the video. The song features Randy Sandke, Harry Allen (the youngest in this group at 29 or so), John Allred, Ray Sherman, Jack Lesberg and Jake Hanna. John, Randy and Harry are back this year for the 50th West Texas Jazz Party Collaboration May 20 – 22 in Odessa. The men from the past shown who are not always identified are Dr. O.A. “Jimmie” Fulcher, Dr. John Sheets, Ernie M. Schur and Will H. Faris. This was the final year that Ernie Schur would emcee; the next year Dr. Sheets did the announcements, and in following years they were handled by a few people, including
Keith Yarbrough.

Bunch-1995-Midland-webJohn Bunch attended the West Texas Jazz Parties in both Odessa and Midland a handful of times, and was one of the most elegant and graceful pianists playing jazz. The set below, from the final day of a Midland Party held in September 1995, is a great example of his artistry. This set represents a portion of more than 15 hours of jazz recorded in Midland in 1995.


Snapshots from early years of the West Texas Jazz Parties



An overview of the musicians scheduled to attend the 50th party


 

 

Johnny Varro – Tea For Two

Jazz Party 1967 – Side A

Jazz Party 1967 – Side B

Daryl Sherman – Radio Interview

Woody Herman Early Years – with Flip Phillips, Tenor Sax and Terry Gibbs, Vibraphone

1939 in Jazz – with recordings by Jazz Party attendees Bud Freeman, Teddy Wilson, Bob Haggart, Yank Lawson, Eddie Miller and Billy Butterfield.

1994-94 Odessa Jazz Party recordings – with Randy Sandke, Harry Allen, Jack Lesberg, Bucky Pizzarelli, John Allred, Jake Hanna and Joe Ascione.

A Career retrospective of Pianist Sir Charles Thompson, who played or recorded with more than 20 musicians who came to the West Texas Parties. He died in Tokyo last week at the age of 98, and played with musicians from Benny Moten to Lester Young and Charlie Parker. He also played with nearly every great tenor saxophonist from the 1930s through the 1960s.

West Texas Jazz Party 51 – May 19-21, 2017