Tag Archives: Irv Kratka

Jazz Education

I have never been one for the traditional educational route in music and since i was very young all my learning has come on the bandstand having the priviledge of being mentored by the greats.  I finally decided to take the plunge and attempt to pass down to others what i have had the priviledge of receiving these last 50 years. I just finished 2 albums with that in mind and I am working on a third with my good friend Irv Kratka at Music Minus One. I will keep you informed as this new endeavor unfolds. Glenn

New Release “Jazz Titans”

Jazz Titans
When I left the Benny Goodman Sextet after 2 years i joined Bob Wilber who formed the Bechet Legacy and we did many tours and albums . Both those gigs allowed me to hone my skills playing in a classic jazz format that attracted me when i was very young with Louis Armstrong who was my first influence. I always wondered what it would be like to play in the format Benny had with his famous trio with Teddy Wilson and Gene Krupa. I met Mark Shane in the Bechet Legacy and he blew me away with his playing out of the Teddy Wilson style. I had played with Teddy briefly and Mark definetly did that better than anyone since Teddy plus added other flavors of later styles like Hank Jones. I wanted this music even though it had no bass to have a spectrum from classic jazz to swing and even Be-Bop. I was on tour with Peanuts Hucko and Mark Shane was in that band also. The english drummer Mark Manniat also was a booking agent and brought over several american jazz artists like Peanuts to tour. We decided this would be a nice thing to try so Mark booked us on 2 tours in England two years in a row to rave reviews. After the second tour was over in 1994 I left for LA to be bandleader on the Suzanne Somers TV show. It’s great that Irv Kratka at Classic Jazz took an interest in this music and remastered the sound and pacakaged it so beautifully to preserve it. Glenn

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Sample Tracks:

Jubilee – Trumpet

These Foolish Things – Alto

spring cleaning – vocal

Record Producers

Through the years i have worked with several record producers. It’s a very tough game and many are no longer here. Recently i hooked up with one such producer Irv Kratka who may have as many stories as me and we have become music friends as he is a true jazz lover. He is a real survivor and an icon in many ways and still enjoys creating which i admire greatly. He released an album I did in 1994 in Europe “Jazz Titans” that was dormant and I just finished 2 tenor saxophone albums for him geared toward jazz education. These new albums which will shortly be released will give you interesting insight into my history with his label and the roll it played in my musical developement. Below is an article that was recently published on his activities and record label Music Minus One. Glenn

Music Minus One, the company with the unique, unforgettable name, was begun in 1950, with a first recording devoted to Schubert’s Trout Quintet, with all five instruments omitted in five different MMO’s This release received a full page review in The New York Times As a result articles appeared in Look, Life, Time, Newsweek and hundreds of papers across the USA and Europe

In the following years we continued to release chamber music and jazz rhythm recordings utilizing the best of New York’s players at the time, many of whom are legends in music. Such names as Stan Getz, Hank Jones, Max Roach, Sam Baron, Julius Baker, Murray Panitz, Doriot Dwyer, Elaine Douvas, Donald Peck, Armando Ghitalla, Stanley Drucker and countless other first chair players in the five major American orchestras were prevailed upon to add their skills to MMO recordings.
Today, 61 years after our inception, MMO offers close to nine hundred albums, devoted to classical, chamber music, opera, lieder, popular , jazz and religious music from all times and periods, from the Baroque, thru the Romantic and Classical periods in music. MMO set the tone and style for the dozens of other publishers in music. We now offer their product as well, bringing our total offerings close to seven thousand book/record combinations. MMO was begun by a college student, in his 24th year, Irv Kratka, who remarkably enough is still at the helm of this extraordinary Westchester, New York company. He is now eighty-five and still active in the daily productions of the company which encompass recording both in the USA and in Europe where major orchestras are commissioned to perform the great concerti in music.

Irv Kratka
CEO, President