Glenn Zottola’s 57th Grammy Entry Remembering Clifford Brown “Memories Of You”

In 1956 almost 60 years ago one of the greatest jazz trumpeters in history Clifford Brown died in a tragic car accident at 25 years old that shocked the jazz world. Just prior to that fateful event Clifford recorded a historic string album that I wore out when I was a kid. I had my arranger transcribe all the original Neil Hefti arrangements and I revisited this work recording my own solos with Clifford’s spirit as he changed my musical life. I did this all with no music by memory. This album has been submitted in the jazz category for your consideration available on CD Baby and iTunes to listen further. This was a very emotional project for me. Peace.

Glenn Zottola “A Jazz Life” 57th Awards Grammy Entry.

My “Jazz Life” album is entered in the historical category for the 57th Grammy awards. This is an anthology of tracks from over 50 albums over 50 years including 20 time grammy winner Chick Corea , Peggy Lee , Steve Allen , Suzanne Somers , Zoot Sims , Milt Hinton and many more along with concerts at Carnegie Hall plus all my current tribute albums Charlie Parker, Clifford Brown and Stan Getz. My life’s work in jazz a 2CD set with a 10 page booklet by acclaimed jazz and film writer Scott Yanow author of 11 books on jazz. Available to listen on iTunes and CD Baby which I will post in October when voting starts.

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Glenn Zottola Grammy Entry “A Jazz Life”

Glenn Zottola’s  “A Jazz Life” is a 2CD set entered in the historical category for the 57th Grammy’s this year and is an anthology of his recorded and concert work and life spanning 50 years and over 50 albums with tracks with 20 Grammy winner Chick Corea , Suzanne Somers , Steve Allen , Peggy Lee , Maxine Sullivan , Zoot Sims , Milt Hinton and many more.  It comes with a 10 page book by noted writer of Jazz and Film Scott Yanow .  Available on iTunes , Amazon , CD Baby , Target , Best Buy ,  innercityjazz.com.

Glenn Zottola – Third Grammy Entry Album

Liner Notes :

Glenn Zottola: The Bossa Nova Story, Glenn Zottola, Salutes Stan Getz (2014)

By EDWARD BLANCO, Published: June 6, 2014 | 1,660 views
Glenn Zottola: The Bossa Nova Story, Glenn Zottola, Salutes Stan Getz

Trumpeter and saxophonist Glenn Zottola has been a serious part of the music business for more than four decades, recording thirty albums as a sideman and leader as well as adding Broadway and TV show musician to his resume. In 2014, Zottola decided to embark on the tribute circle recording a series of homage albums for the Classic Jazz Records label such as (Clifford Brown Remembered (Classic Jazz Records, 2014), Reflections of Charlie Parker (Classic Jazz Records, 2014) and now, The Bossa Nova Story, Glenn Zottola, Salutes Stan Getz. The album is a combine tribute to Getz’s involvement in the bossa nova, the music of Antonio Carlos Jobim, and Brazilian jazz in general. The result of course, is a warm and beautiful portrait of the bossa style from the perspective of the tenor saxophone and the everlasting influence Stan Getz left on the music.

The world first learned of the samba and bossa nova from the 1959 film Black Orpheus by French director Marcel Camus where the original sound track had a Luiz Bonfa composition “Manha de Carnival” represented on this album as simply “Black Orpheus.” The album starts off with the Orpheus song led by a gorgeous introduction from Argentinian guitarist Marcelo Berestovoy leading to Zottola’s masterful solos on the piece. There have been many interpretations of Jobim’s signature piece, “The Girl from Ipanema” but somehow, Zottola’s Getz’s impersonation, along with Tom Hartman’s string arrangements, elevates this one to elite status. On the fiftieth anniversary of this classic and the twentieth anniversary of Jobim’s passing, this seemed a perfect inclusion to The Bossa Nova Story.

The Getz/bossa homage rolls right along with delightful treatments of such classics as “Gentle Rain,” “Once I Loved” and Zottola’s superb interpretation of Jobim’s “One Note Samba” equally as enchanting as the famous Getz instrumental rendition. Other immortal Jobim classic such as “Dindi,” Meditation,” and “Triste,” are all presented with the saxophonist leading the way with tasteful accompaniment from a stellar cast of players and a delightful string section. Also Included in this tribute album are non-bossa standards like Cole Porter’s “I Concentrate on You,” and the Robert Wright/George Forrest classic “Baubles, Bangles and Beads”—both transformed into bossa songs on the Grammy—nominated Francis Albert Sinatra & Antonio Carlos Jobim (Reprise, 1967) recording.

The program ends as it began with a delicious interpretation of another Bonfa standard “Samba de Orfeu” where the saxophonist’s high flying solos are splendidly supported by guitarist Berestovoy with a little help from percussionist Emiliano Almeida capping off a memorable taste of Brazil. As tribute albums go, Glenn Zottola’s The Bossa Nova Story tells a tale of a jazz icon whose saxophone changed the music and of a musical style that changed the world. The great Stan Getz and Antonio Carlos Jobim are no doubt, smiling from heaven after hearing Zottola’s graceful treatment of their enduring music, well done!
Track Listing: Black Orpheus; The Girl From Ipanema; Gentle Rain; One Note Samba; Once I Loved; Dindi; Baubles, Bangles and Beads; Meditiation; Triste; I Concentrate On You; Samba de Orfeu.

Personnel: Glenn Zottola: tenor saxophone; Marcelo Berestovoy: guitar; Jamieson Trotter: piano; Tom Lerner: bass; Joe Dougherty: drums; Emiliano Almeida: percussion; Tom Hartman: string arrangements.

Record Label: Classic Jazz Records

Glenn Zottola – Upcoming Release – “Getting Sentimental”

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What a luxury doing all this recording with strings and orchestra in my golden years. Primarily having been known as a “hot” jazz trumpet player my whole life since I was 13 years old this is truly a joy that few jazz players experience. Charlie Parker felt his string album was his finest work and Stan Getz said his string album “Focus” was his favorite even though they both received criticism initially from the jazz world. All i am trying to do is put out “beauty” and sanity into the world through music to create calmness. You turn on the news and look around and you see a lot of the opposite. I just received the wonderful  liner notes below on my new “Getting Sentimental” album and here is song from the album and Cole Porter certainly knew how to write a lasting melody :

IN The Still Of The Night :

The Great American Songbook of timeless popular classics from Hollywood and Broadway musicals of the past, has and always will be, a source of beautiful music for future generations to enjoy and reimagine in countless ways. Getting Sentimental, is veteran industry musician Glenn Zottola’s remarkable interpretation of nine immortal standards designed with the trumpet as the lead instrumental voice of the project. “Singing through the horn” has been a common theme for Zottola, to express himself with the lyricism of a great singer who belts out a song with feeling and emotion. Whether playing a ballad or a burner, this is an approach this trumpeter, applies in every performance. Familiar songs from such icons as George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Jerome Kern and others, are delivered here with new treatments that embellish each melody making them sound almost new.
While performing various styles of music during his long distinguished career as a professional musician, Zottola’s love of the American Songbook was forged early on as a child. His mother would teach him the songs without sheet music while his father—at one time the arranger for Claude Thornhill’s big band—would rehearse the group in the living room of their home as they played the standards. The music of the ages became an integral part of Zottola’s musical education and this trumpet album, is his “tip of the hat” to the enduring classics.
The 1935 Hugh Williams song “Red Sails in the Sunset” opens the album in ballad style as the trumpeter sails through the melody against the backdrop of a string ensemble lending a soft texture to a song revived and popularized by the great Nat King Cole in 1951. For those familiar with the Humphrey Bogart classic “Casablanca,” one will never forget actor Dooley Wilson playing the piano and singing Herman Hupfeld’s “As Time Goes By.” Here, Zottola’s rendition stays true to the time-honored melody and while the piano, once again sets the stage, it’s the light touch of Zottola’s emotional horn-play that harkens memories of the character Sam swaying and singing the song where now, this trumpeter provides the voice.
Zottola is superb on “The Very Thought of You,” perhaps one of the all-time classic love songs, this Ray Noble piece has the trumpeter soaring on as few high notes, but is generally experienced as a quiet slow burn infused with gorgeous piano lines and tender strings. The trumpeter follows with a stellar version of Cole Porter’s timeless “In the Still of the Night” with a seemingly improvised beginning that turns into the challenging melody we are all familiar with. This instrumental treatment of the song, with nice accompaniment from the tenor sax and the band, may just be one of the best around.
Penned by Jimmy Van Heusen for the 1942 movie “Road to Morocco,” “Moonlight Becomes You” is short but sweet as the laid back theme of the album continues on the title track. Composed by George Bassman, a music writer for films, “I’m Getting Sentimental Over You” gets another gentle take from Zottola who does however, deliver some high-pitched spots throughout the piece, transforming one of the very firsts original performances from Tommy Dorsey back in the 30s as a trombone feature with a Fox trot/swing to, a humbling trumpet feature with a lot of soul.

Zottola provides a strong performance on Hoagy Carmichael’s signature song “Stardust,” blowing the horn high and mighty on the medium tempo idiosyncratic melody making this one, the most recorded song of the 20th century. Speaking of oft-recorded standards, who can forget the 1928 George Gershwin classic “Embraceable You,” composed for the Broadway musical “Girl Crazy,” here Zottola returns to the softer theme of the album laying down another sensuous trumpet solo perfect for the lover in as all. Sometimes referred to as one of composer Jerome Kern’s most haunting melodies, “Long Ago (and Far Away),” was written for the 1944 Technicolor film “Cover Girl.” However, there’s nothing truly that haunting on this delicate version, as Zottola plays it beautifully leading the strings with one delicious solo offering after another.
There’s nothing hard or boppish about Getting Sentimental, the music is very accessible projecting a warm and romantic mood appealing to one’s softer side. Known for playing an expressive sizzling trumpet who can draw on the power of the instrument when the swing of a tune requires it, on this album, Glenn Zottola reveals himself to be more than a hot trumpeter evidenced by his graceful embrace of gentler material delivered with a solid measure of finesse and tenderness. Zottola stays true to his approach and lays down a heart-felt performance full of feeling and emotion affirming the trumpet voice as a musical messenger of love as well as an excellent interpreter of the American Songbook.

Edward Blanco Producer and host at WDNA, 88.9FM in Miami, Florida as well as Critic with All About Jazz magazine.

Upcoming release Glenn Zottola inspired by Sinatra

New upcoming release inspired by Sinatra here is the story. In the 80s I did a television special for Mary Tyler Moore with Sinatra. My partner drummer Bobby Rosengarden and I flew from NY to LA to do the show. Bobby called Doc Severinsen as he was close friends with him from doing the tonight show in NY together and Doc loaned us the entire tonight show band for the show. It was one of the high points in my career playing for Sinatra with the tonight show band Tommy Newsome sitting next to Snooky Yound in the trumpet section and those incredible arrangements by Nelson Riddle and Quincy Jones etc that played themselves. This album is all the classic Sinatra material like this great arrangement by Quincy Jones. I finished this album 3 months ago and just got it back from mastering tonight. It is all on Alto sax my concept on both horns has alway’s been to sing through the horn and emulate the great singers.

On Meeting Count Basie

As a young man I did the opening act for Count Basie with my Quintet. As I was coming off stage and walking by his dressing room and I hear a voice “young man come in here”. I walk in and he says “you have been listening to Pops” and I said for sure. He then says “You sound great just keep doing what you are doing don’t change anything” and I walk out on cloud 9. The man was filled with love as you can see in his face.

Review Jazz Weekly “Reflections Of Charlie Parker”

Glenn Zottola: Reflections of Charlie Parker
by George W. Harris • July 21, 2014 •

Long time altomeister Glenn Zottola delivers a tribute to, but not an impersonation of, Charlie Parker on this collection of standards. Sometimes with strings,as on “Moonlight in Vermont,” other times with a gentle rhythm team as displayed on “Oh, Lady Be Good!”, Zottola is the audio picture of style, class and grace. Not emphasizing the bebop side of Bird as much as lyrical swinger-people forget that Parker was a romantic KCer at heart, and Zottola’s takes of “Embraceable You” and “Smoke Gets In Your Eyes” focuses on that obscured side of the bebop icon. Well conceived!

Classic Jazz Records

Glenn Zottola and Peggy Lee “A Jazz Life”

What a thrill doing this album with Peggy Lee one of the original Diva’s of song that I included on my recent anthology release “A Jazz Life” .  When Peggy found out I worked with Benny Goodman we had a ball telling each other Benny Goodman stories if only the walls had ears.  It’s interesting I mentioned Maxine Sullivan to Peggy and she said Maxine was a huge influence for her.  I never thought about it but after she said that I could really see the similarity in that relaxed understated easy swinging style they both have.

New Release : Glenn Zottola “A Jazz Life” with Chick Corea

New Release : GLENN ZOTTOLA – “A Jazz Life” 2 CD set plus 12 page book by  Scott Yanow  author of 11 books including Trumpet Kings, Swing, Classic Jazz, Jazz On Film and Jazz On Records 1917-76. Now  Available on iTunes , Amazon and Innercityjazz.com

One of jazz’s major multi-instrumentalists, Glenn Zottola is a master of the trumpet, tenor and alto saxophones. Only a handful of artists in jazz history have developed their own voices on both brass and reed instrumentalists, most notably Benny Carter, Ira Sullivan and more recently Scott Robinson. Also quite rare are the number of musicians who have played as wide a range of styles as Glenn, who has sounded consistently credible and creative whether performing the music of King Oliver, Sidney Bechet, Benny Goodman, Clifford Brown, 1960s hard bop or Chick Corea.

Glenn Zottola’s Jazz Catalogue Now Available in full to Audition on iTunes.

Glenn Zottola’s Jazz Catalogue now available in full to audition on iTunes covering the “Golden Age of Jazz” stylistically from  Louis Armstrong 1920s through Charlie Parker 1950 and beyond with Clifford Brown and  Bossa Nova / Stan Getz for download.  Also available  on Innercityjazz.com beautifully packaged in Hard CD format with booklet and liner notes by top jazz writers.

iTunes

Glenn Zottola – “Hotter Than That”

I wanted to post this in honor of “pops” Louis Armstrong’s birthday today.  I did an album with Bob Wilber of all Lil Hardin Armstrong  music.  Bob arranged Louie’s 1920s Scat solo note for note on this song.  This could be a whole course in jazz.  He was so advanced harmonically and rhythmically as you can hear on the ensemble in the middle of the song.  I never played this solo before the session and it blew me away.  I included this track on my recent Anthology.  Louie was my first mentor when I was a kid my dad knew him and his influence carried me through my entire career.

Jim Dejulio and Glenn Zottola “Dewey Square”

When I first arrived in LA great bass player Jim Dejulio asked me to guest on his album.  I did 2 songs , Eddie Daniels did 2 and Bill Watrous did 2.  Great band with Roy McCurdy from Cannonball Adderley’s band on drums.  No rehearsal just show up and lay it down.  Steve Allen did the liner notes and when he heard my playing requested me on his upcoming for  album for Concord.  I included this track on my Anthology “Life In Jazz”.

Dinah Washington / Glenn Zottola “I Remember Clifford”

This is the closing song on my tribute as a epilogue very emotional for me. It was 1961 and i was 13 years old doing my first major jazz gig on the bill with Dinah , Gerry Mulligan , Oscar Peterson and Art Blakey at the Atlantic City Jazz Festival. I remember clear as yesterday standing in the wings waiting to to go on mesmerized watching Dinah. Also at that time I was just getting introduced to Clifford which would change my musical life and Dinah had done some classic recordings with him with Maynard and Clark Terry. I took a 1957 track she did shortly after his tragic death and had my arranger add a chorus for me to improvise and this was the result.

Bumpers Suzanne Somers TV Show

The TV show allowed me to bring my whole life in music and all my experiences onto network television. Swing , Be Bop , Brazilian and R&B all of it 40 years of recording and performing I loved it.  Some of this style of music had not been heard on network television in decades another rewarding thing and Suzanne gave me Carte Blanche musically.

Lady Be Good :

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Bumpers From The Suzanne Somers TV Show

“Bumpers” is a term in TV for music coming in and out of commercial breaks. What I liked about being bandleader on a TV show was creating “moods”.  We had 2 shows with Naomi Judd in a row what a beautiful lady. She had a very serious Illness that made her end the famous act she had with her daughter. I would look at her face as she was telling these stories to Suzanne and make up music that would match the mood I was seeing not to break that mood for the audience going into a commercial break.

Naomi Judd Show #1032 :

Horace Silver

R.I.P. Horace thank you and your
work is done !

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Jazz is not background music. You must concentrate upon it in order to get the most of it. You must absorb most of it. The harmonies within the music can relax, soothe, relax, and uplift the mind when you concentrate upon and absorb it. Jazz music stimulates the minds and uplifts the souls of those who play it as well as of those who listen and immerse themselves in it. As the mind is stimulated and the soul uplifted, this is eventually reflected in the body.” – Horace Silver

TV Show Bumpers

Horace Silver entered some “funk” into jazz with his compositions. I remember having his early records from the 50s when I was a kid. Then people like Lee Morgan added to that with songs like “Sidewinder” etc. It actually was the basis for a lot of what you hear today in contemporary jazz but had so much soul and connection to the roots of jazz and blues in it and the great thing it was still acoustic music. On TV “bumpers” is a term used for music played to go in and out of commercial breaks to keep the audience engaged. I used all my experience on the show from Swing to Be Bop , latin , funk all of it and I have 100s of “Bumpers” like this one. I think I will go through them and put something together what a playing field I had on that show to just do anything I wanted a very wide pallet.

Amazon , Best Buy and Jazz

Amazon is promoting my recent releases all on their own.  Feel free to go to the Amazon website and write something.  All the tracks can be auditioned on my website glennzottola.com or iTunes.  They are also available and can be heard on “Best Buy” just type in my name and  feel free to review there.  The label really likes the reviews and so do I.

Thank you !

Glenn

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