3 de outubro de 2007

George Wein celebra 82.º aniversário a tocar

Barney Kessel - Ruby Braff - George Wein in Berlin 1969 © Karlheinz Klüter

George Wein, um dos mais conceituados empresários do jazz celebra hoje 82 anos.

Como Wein é também um exímio pianista decidiu celebrar o aniversário com um concerto no Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola, onde toca de 2 a 7 de Outubro, acompanhado pelo grupo Newport All-stars (em memória do festival que criou em 1954), composto por Randy Brecker, Lew Tabackin, Peter Washington, Kenny Washington e Howard Alden.

Importa referir que Wein foi um amigo de longa data de Villas-Boas e que ambos colaboraram activamente na produção do Cascais Jazz desde a primeira hora, concretizando em 1971 um sonho acalentado desde 1958. Foi por essa razão que Wein prefaciou o livro que recentemente editámos sobre Villas-Boas, para o qual escreveu:

Luis Villas-Boas.

I first met him in 1958, he was one of a group of jazz lovers who were responsible for American jazz to be so important to European culture. People like Charles Delaunay and Hughes Penassie in France, Alfredo Papo in Spain, Arrigo Polillo in Italy and others, never lost their feelings for this important American music that reached deeply into their hearts and minds. Luis Villas-Boas represented this group in Portugal.

I contacted him when Marshall Brown and I were organizing the International Youth Band, which consisted of an individual musician from each county in Europe. Luis arranged the auditions and was our general host while we were in Portugal.

As the years went on, Villas-Boas became our promoter in Portugal when we brought many of our artists, such as Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Duke Ellington, Sarah Vaughan, Lionel Hampton, Ornette Coleman and many others.

Villas-Boas was the pioneer. Everyone who is involved in jazz in Portugal today owes him for the work and the time he put in developing a jazz public in Portugal. Duarte Mendonça and the others who have kept jazz alive in Portugal, owe a debt to Luis.

It was a privilege to know him. Every year he would come to the NewportJazz Festival and we always had a chance to renew our friendship. When hisvisits ceased, there was a void that has yet to be filled.

We miss him.

George Wein

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