2009-03-10

Joe Turner on French TV (60s)

Stride pianist Joe Turner first visited Europe accompanying singer Adelaide Hall (1935-1936), and he stayed in the Continent until the beginning of World War II. During this period, he cut some records in Paris (among them one cannot forget his "specialty" arrangement of "Liza" for the French Ultraphone label, coupled with "Cheek To Cheek"), Bern or Prague. Reportedly, a private recording of Coleman Hawkins (on tenor sax, piano and vocals!) and Joe Turner does exist (Zurich, April 1936).

When Turner returned home, he joined Sy Oliver's service band at Camp Kilmer in New Jersey, then playing as a soloist in New York (1939-1943) or as part of Rex Stewart's orchestra.

By 1948, he came back to Europe for good, variously headquartered in Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Switzerland, London and Paris, where he was featured regularly from 1962 on at "La Calvados", a bar off the Champs Elysées. Here's where, according to Siegfried H. Mohr, on March 3, 1990, Ralph Sutton, François Rilhac and Louis Mazetier joined him in a truly memorable kind of Stride Piano Summit.

Here you have a few Dailymotion Joe Turner gems, from a rare French TV program from the Sixties, Jazz Session. The other featured musician on this program was Champion Jack Dupree.








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