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Something for the Jazz Fans on the Board


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So many wonderful things! I would love to see this stuff.


Charlie Parker sax headlines historic jazz auction


Fri Feb 18, 2:57 AM ET

NEW YORK (AFP) - An alto saxophone, specially modified to suit the virtuosity of its legendary owner Charlie Parker, is just one of the highlights of an unprecedented jazz auction to be held in New York.


The 430 lots include instruments, clothing and musical scores played, worn and written by some of the greatest names in jazz music, from Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald to John Coltrane and Stan Getz.


The list of notable items is long, with three Coltrane saxophones, a Benny Goodman clarinet, a Buddy Rich drum set, and a handwritten version of Coltrane's classic song, "A Love Supreme."


Other personal items include a pair of tap shoes worn by the famed hoofer Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, a profanity-laced letter from Armstrong and a pair of Miles Davis's sunglasses.


Unusual for such a high-profile collection, the auction house organising the sale, Guernsey's, has provided no estimates, and the vast majority of lots have no reserve price attached.


"Estimates are based on precedent," explained Guernsey's president Arlan Ettinger.


"If you offer a Picasso, you can estimate its value according to the hundreds that have been sold before," Ettinger said. "But if there has never been a Coltrane sax sold before, how are you going to estimate it?"


The idea for the auction was born around 10 years ago, but the auction only began to take shape over the past year as the families of the musicians involved came on board.


"I think they realised this was as good a time as any. There is a resurgence of interest in jazz at the moment," he said.


The auction will be held on Sunday at Jazz at Lincoln Center -- a 128-million-dollar state of the art performance space designed especially for jazz music that was opened here in October.


Potential buyers will also be able to place bids online through eBay Live Auctions.


"A lot of this has never been seen before and it comes from the greatest provenance you can have ... it never left the family," Ettinger said, adding that he had been astonished at the quantity and quality of the final haul.


"If a rock musician had a guitar in 1964, the chances are that by 1965 it would have been lost, traded, smashed or sold," he said.


"But what we found on meeting the jazz families was all these treasures still in their hands 40 or 50 years later ... and they really cherished them.


"We haven't so much as taken a tissue to any of it. You could say it has Parker's DNA on it," Ettinger said. "You want some Coltrane dust?" he added, pointing to an upright piano that had graced the saxophonist's childhood home.



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I like Jazz too.. definitely good listening in certain moods.


The Bix Fest (Bix Biederbecke Memorial Jazz Festival) in the Quad Cities is an awesome Jazz fest... One of the biggest in the country I think. They close off the downtown of Davenport and its just one big drunk fest with Jazz music everywhere.. then they have the Bix 7 road race on Sunday, one of the most presitgous road races in the country.. with some Kenyan always winning.


Anyway, its a great time. Jazz is great music.

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