Every month

Every month I'll post a new "taste" of Art Pepper's music as a FREE DOWNLOAD. These tastes are given away because they are "unreleasable" by virtue of the recording being cut off at beginning or end or by brief audio problems that occurred in the recording process.


I'll also post occasional journal entries including updates on new releases.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

I skipped January, but February's Freebie is definitely worth waiting for

First, I know!  Most hardcore AP fans already have this whole album.
But think of all those poor souls who don't!
So here it is: (P.S. to get it, click on "buy" and, on the new page, scroll down to "Diane," click "buy" and you'll have the option to download it for free)

The Story: Not long after Art's death, when I was broke, I began writing to various record labels asking for royalties which hadn't been paid. This album, made in 1956, had never paid any royalties at all. Ever. Yet it was selling everywhere. I wrote letters, called around, threatened, pleaded, and so on with no luck. Then, in the process of researching the murky history of west coast jazz and blues labels, I found that the most recent owner of the Tampa label had filed for bankruptcy. I contacted the court and asked to purchase this album. Through them, I found out where the Tampa masters were stored, went to that warehouse, asking Ed Michel to come along.We picked up rusty, dusty ancient tapes, masters, mothers.  They wanted to sell me the whole catalog including the Charlie Parker Records catalog. But. like I said, I didn't have much money. I bought this master. Somebody came along the next day and bought all the rest of the Tampa stuff. He called me and said one title was missing (THIS album), could he buy it from me. No, says I, "I now own Tampa 20."  Over the years I've licensed it to Fantasy/Concord and others. It's one of my very favorites of Art's albums. And not because I own it. Because it's beautiful.

And I'm giving away the PRETTIEST thing, Diane. A song Art wrote for his second wife.
I'm attaching a video including this tune. The video is part of a bigger video based on Straight Life: The Story of Art Pepperwhich includes Art's voice narrating and Art's music. If you're around L.A. on March 27th, I'll be showing about a half an hour of the work in progress. Meanwhile here's just a 4 minute sample (which still needs work!)Art is living with Diane, but he's still in love with his ex wife, Patti. Diane attempts suicide..