Joe Albany

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Joseph "Joe" Albany (* 24. January 1924 in Atlantic City as Joseph Albani , New Jersey ; † 11. January 1988 in New York City ) was an American jazz pianist of Bebop . He played with Charlie Parker and Lester Young .

Live and act

The Italian-American Joe Albany learned to play the piano as a child, first played the harmonica, moved to Los Angeles and played with Leo Watson in 1941, in Benny Carter's orchestra in 1943 and briefly with Georgie Auld and Boyd Raeburn . Albany came to New York in 1944, worked there with Max Kaminsky , but went back to the West Coast , where he played with Charlie Parker ( Yardbird in Lotusland , Spotlite), Howard McGhee , Miles Davis in 1946 . In 1945 recordings with Lester Young were made for the Aladdin label in 1945. Afterwards Albany worked as a freelance musician, mostly in the vicinity of Los Angeles; In 1957 he recorded an album for Riverside with Warne Marsh ( The Right Combination ).

Drug problems kept him away from the jazz scene in the 1950s and 1960s. He lived mostly withdrawn in Europe. In the mid-1960s he played briefly with Charles Mingus (1963). It was not until the 1970s that he returned and recorded some records, including a. with Ralph Peña , Joe Venuti , Art Pepper ( The Garden State Jam Sessions , 1975) and then several under his own name. He has also appeared as a soloist in the West End Cafe and in trios with Art Davis , Bob Whitlock , Frank Butler and Roy Haynes ; His last album, Portrait of an Artist , was created in 1980 .

His daughter Amy Jo Albany wrote the memory book Low Down: Junk, Jazz, and Other Fairy Tales from Childhood (Bloomsbury, 2003) about him . The director Jeff Preiss shot the biography Joe Albany - My father, the jazz legend (Low Down) based on Amy Albany's 2010 book ; the role of Joe Albany was played by John Hawkes .

Carole Langer shot the documentary Joe Albany ... a Jazz Life about him in 1980 , in which he relentlessly reported on his drug addiction and his failed marriages.

Selection discography

  • The Right Combination (OJC, 1955) with Warne Marsh
  • Birdtown Birds - Live at Jazzhus Montmartre 1973 (Steeplechase)
  • Two's A Company (Steeplechase, 1974) with Niels-Hennig Oersted Pedersen
  • Live In Paris (Fresh Sound Records, 1977) with Alby Cullaz and Aldo Romano
  • Bird Lives (Storyville, 1979) with Art Davis , Roy Haynes


Web links

Evidence / Notes

  1. Information on Hal McKusick and Joe Albany at Jazzwax (2010)
  2. They were reissued by Blue Note ( The Complete Aladdin Sessions )
  3. The recordings were a practice session for a live performance that came out in 2004 on VSOP as Live from Dana Point 1957
  4. Jazz pianist biopic 'Low Down' can't find its rhythm , New York Post, October 22, 2014, accessed January 8, 2015