Volume CII, No. 11November, 2002
Richard Amend – Piano
Vincent Benevento – Guitar
Michael Bookspan – Drums
Harry Boris – Drums
Moe Dalio (Dallolio) – Saxophone
Rafael Druian – Violin
Harvey Estrin – Saxophone/Flute
Charles Frazier – Saxophone
Earl Frazier – Piano
Jack Goldman – Piano
Albert Hague – Piano
Allen Jeter – Saxophone
Arthur Kruger – Oboe/Saxophone
Ray Kulz – Trumpet
Peter La Rotonda – Piano
Ellis Larkins – Piano
Kasimierz Lydzinski – Cello
Jacques Margolies – Violin
Charles E. McGee – Trumpet
Joseph Silverman – Saxophone
Mauricio Smith – Flute
Robbie Starr – Vocals
Paul Williams – Saxophone
Jerome Woods – Saxophone
Harvey Estrin, 73, a saxophonist, flutist and 802 member since 1946, died on Sept. 21 after a six-month battle with complications from surgery.
Born in Burlington, Vt., he began his professional career at the age of 17 playing lead alto with the Boyd Raeburn band. He went on to play saxophone with many well-known groups including the Tommy Dorsey and Sauter-Finegan bands. He also played flute with the Longines Symphonette.
With the Sauter-Finegan ensemble, he was the saxophone soloist in the recording of Rolf Liebermann’s Concerto for Jazz Band and Symphony Orchestra with the Chicago Symphony.
A busy and versatile musician, Mr. Estrin played first reed in many Broadway musicals. In 1967, he joined the ABC Staff Orchestra, where he performed for many TV programs including The Dick Cavett Show. He was seen on public television on the much-acclaimed Big Band Specials. As a studio musician he worked for every major recording company and can be heard on countless commercials, recordings and films.
Mr. Estrin was founder and music director of the 92nd Street Y Studio Orchestra from 1976 to 1981, where he programmed the music of Sauter-Finegan. He played solo saxophone with all the major American ballet companies and can be heard as saxophone soloist in the New York Philharmonic recording of Alban Berg’s Der Wien, conducted by Pierre Boulez. He was named Most Valuable Player on flute the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences four times.
Mr. Estrin recorded two concertos written for him, the Concerto for Alto Saxophone and String Orchestra by Harold Farberman and the Churchill Downs Concerto by Irwin Bazelon, which he performed as a soloist with the New York Philharmonic, playing flute, piccolo, clarinet and alto saxophone. Additionally, Meyer Kupferman wrote a jazz piece for him, the Jazz Infinities Trio, which required him to improvise.
He is survived by his wife Trudy Kane, brother Morton, sons Glen and Mitchell (both Local 802 members), daughter Nancy and grandson William.
Jack Goldman, 85, a pianist and an 802 member since 1946, died on Aug. 29.
Mr. Goldman was born in Atlantic City, N.J., and attended the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia. He later attended the Southern California School of Music in Los Angeles.
He taught piano, composition, arranging and harmony.
As a soldier during World War II, Mr. Goldman helped found the Entertainment Section of the U.S. Army’s Special Services. Maurice Evans, Carl Reiner and Kenneth Reid all worked in the same section, which toured the South Pacific and entertained troops. Mr. Goldman was also a survivor of the 1941 Pearl Harbor attack.
His survivors have established an annual Jack Goldman Memorial Scholarship at Los Angeles Valley College to assist students who intend to pursue a career in the study or performance of piano. His survivors include his wife Joan and daughter Annie.
Ellis Larkins, 79, a pianist and an 802 member since 1942, died on Sept. 30.
Mr. Larkins was born in West Baltimore. Both of his parents were musicians; his father played violin in the City Colored Orchestra and his mother played piano. All of his siblings were musical.
By his teens, he was hailed in Baltimore as a prodigy. He performed Moszkowski’s Waltz in E-Major for Eleanor Roosevelt in 1935 at the age of 12.
He studied classical music early on, but was attracted to jazz. He received a scholarship to the Juilliard School where he honed his skills as a session player and accompanist. At the same time, he played in the cabaret scene, at the Café Society Uptown, the Blue Angel, Bon Soir and the Carnegie Tavern. Mr. Larkins broke the color barrier at a time when most of these clubs were only hiring white musicians.
He backed singers Mildred Bailey, Anita Ellis, Sylvia Syms and Helen Humes. He recorded a set of Gershwin tunes with Ella Fitzgerald that is now considered a classic.
Mr. Larkins slowly edged out of the performance realm, but did play a concert in 1999 at Baltimore’s Union Baptist Church.
He is survived by his wife Crystal, sister Clara, a niece and nephew.
Charles E. McGee
Charles E. McGee, a trumpeter and an 802 member since 1969, died on Sept. 7.
Born in Laurel, Miss., Mr. McGee earned a B.A. in music from Jackson State University before moving to New York. In the 1960s and 70s, he toured with Archie Shepp’s Big Band and the Sam Wooding Orchestra. He also led his own group and appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show and Like It Is.
Mr. McGee was also an educator, leading various clinics and teaching private lessons. He received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and Meet the Composer, and he received the very first Louis Armstrong Scholarship Award.
As a side musician, he recorded on several Atlantic and Impulse albums. As a leader, he self-produced an album of his compositions, called Charles McGee, Finally.
Mr. McGee performed with Max Roach, Lionel Hampton, Lou Rawls, Pearl Bailey, Frank Foster, Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Eubie Blake and Charles Mingus. He performed at Carnegie Hall, Madison Square Garden, the Apollo Theatre, Sweet Basil, the Village Gate, the Village Vanguard, Parlor Entertainment, Chez Josephine and St. Peter’s Church.
He is survived by his wife Dona, daughters Sonya, Arlinda and Meredith, stepson Dahoud, sisters Earlene, Daisy Lee, Rosa Lee and Carrie, brothers George, Bob, Farris, Vernon and Richard, and nephews Bradley, Tracey, Pierre and John.
Paul Williams, 87, a saxophonist and an 802 member since 1960, died on Sept. 14.
Mr. Williams was born in Lewisburg, Tenn., but began his career in Detroit. It was there that he picked up the baritone saxophone and, at the urging of producer Teddy Reig, created a driving, honking timbre that became his signature style.
In 1949, he recorded “The Hucklebuck” for Savoy. The tune was number one on the rhythm-and-blues charts for 14 weeks. Rhythm-and-blues was slowly evolving into rock-and-roll, and “The Hucklebuck” was part of the music’s evolution. From then, Mr. Williams was billed as Paul Hucklebuck Williams.
He was also part of what some music historians call the first rock concert: the Moondog Coronation Ball at the Cleveland Arena on March 21, 1952. Like the Woodstock festival 17 years later, the Coronation Ball saw crazed fans crash through ticket gates. The show was cancelled, but not before Mr. Williams had a chance to perform.
After “The Hucklebuck,” he recorded some more hits for Savoy before slowly easing out of the live performance scene. In the 1960s, he was music director for James Brown and Lloyd Price. At the same time, he started doing phono dates for Atlantic. In 1968 he opened a talent agency.
Mr. Williams is survived by his sons Earl and Eric and daughter Erin.