Lee Konitz

21 Dec 2009 - 12:00pm

1966

The first time I played with Lee Konitz was in 1966 and the existence of a tape of one of those performances is listed in the Lee Konitz Discography. When the discography was published the entry read:

3-19-66 Lee Konitz Quartet: Lee Konitz (as), Derek Bailey (g), Tony Oxley (dr), unknown (b): Club 43, Manchester, England

01. Carvin' The Bird (Charles Parker) 02. I Remember You 03. Out Of Nowhere Private Tape

It was republished some years later when the intervention of Conrad Cork, who knew that I had been the bass player since the trio accompanying Lee was effectively the Joseph Holbrooke Trio, led to this correction:

3-19-66 Lee Konitz Quartet: Lee Konitz (as), Derek Bailey (g), Gavin Bryars (b), Tony Oxley (dr): Club 43, Manchester, England

01. Carvin' The Bird (Charles Parker) 02. I Remember You 03. Out Of Nowhere Private Tape

1982

When I was working on Medea in New York in February 1982 I had the idea that in one scene of the opera, the opening scene of Act 3 where Medea persuades Aegeus to provide her with a safe haven in Athens after her planned murders, would have a jazz inflection. The original planned production (which did not happen) had the black soprano Wilhelmina Wiggins Fernandez as Medea and Bob Wilson had cast Aegeus as a black baritone. I talked with Lee Konitz about playing saxophone in the production and he was very interested. We spent a little time together - I heard his Nonet at the Village Vanguard, which had the same line-up as the Miles Davis 1949 "Birth of the Cool" group and where it played original arrangements from that band.

1987

On page 118-119 of the book (view on google books) there is a short piece by Conrad Cork... It tells of the occasion in 1987 when I played (again) with Lee Konitz in 1987.