LIKE I say, I get around. Sometimes, though, I even surprise myself.
If you want to learn about the long history of the US civil rights movement you could read about it in, for example, Taylor Branch's Parting The Waters' or Henry Hampton and Steve Feyer's Voices Of Freedom, both fine and inspiring narratives.
There was truly a time, a long era indeed, when the nucleus of British jazz was in London’s West End when such venues as Soho’s Ronnie Scott’s, Oxford Street’s 100 Club and the Flamingo lit up the London groove and jazz musicians from the east of the city all travelled west to perform.
With these extraordinary musicians, what a syncretism is here. What an amalgam of traditions and heritages.
"Today isn't about the black struggle any more. It's about the class struggle. The poor urgently need to form an alliance against the greedy rich."
The names and lives in music of Duke Ellington and Paul Gonsalves will always be unified, and not only because Gonsalves played tenor saxophone in the Duke's orchestra for more than two decades between 1951 and 1973.
"Who's that playing the alto sax?" I asked my friend Bill some 55 years ago during one of our teenage grooves on the carpet of his parent's front room.
If you're used to hearing - as I have through most of my listening years - the gypsy brilliance of Django Reinhardt's guitar in the midst of a small group setting, plucking fire with the Quintette du Hot Club de France along with violinist Stephane Grappelli, his brother Joseph on rhythm guitar, another guitar and Louis Vola's bass, then this double CD will give you an experience of the sheer unexpected.
Humphrey Lyttelton was always a jazz innovator and understood well how the music needed to relate to the real lives of its players and its listeners.
I first heard his crystalline, jigging horn as I wandered into the South Bank lobby of Elizabeth Hall.
The percussive glory and horn virtuosity of these two long-unavailable 1973-4 Impulse! albums, led by the Georgia-born saxophonist Marion Brown, evoke a time of powerful and audacious new directions in jazz when the commercial world enveloping them seemed determined to abandon and shut them down.