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Heath Brothers

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ENTERTAINMENT
February 11, 1994 | By Jack Lloyd, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
When the Heath Brothers made their last public appearance in town a year ago, it was for their induction into the Philadelphia Music Alliance's Walk of Fame. When they return to their home town Saturday - for a concert at the University Museum - they can again demonstrate why they have taken on such elite status in the world of jazz. The quartet consists of saxophonist Jimmy Heath, bassist Percy Heath, drummer Albert Heath and guitarist Tony Purrone. Of this group, Jimmy and Percy probably are the best known among the jazz masses.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 17, 1996 | By Francis Davis, FOR THE INQUIRER
The Mellon PSFS Jazz Festival started Friday with an evening of brotherly bop by the Heaths - tenor saxophonist Jimmy, bassist Percy, and drummer Albert (or "Tootie," as he is better known). Augmented by guitarist Mark Elf, the Heath Brothers performed to a full house at the Clef Club, a few blocks from the South Philadelphia rowhouse where they grew up. The entertaining first set peaked early, with Jimmy seamlessly stitching together choruses on his own "Cloak and Dagger," an up-tempo romp that traversed the same harmonic territory as his old buddy John Coltrane's "Mr P.C. " (Heath quoted it twice, sounding a bit like a more cheerful Coltrane)
ENTERTAINMENT
June 19, 1987 | By Francis Davis, Special to The Inquirer
The stars come out tonight and shine for the next nine days. We're not talking astronomy; we're talking about the Mellon Jazz Festival, which begins with a concert tonight featuring trumpeter Wynton Marsalis and guitarist Stanley Jordan, and climaxes with one by pianist Herbie Hancock, singer Joe Williams and the Count Basie Orchestra on June 28. During the festival's run, singer Sarah Vaughan, pianist Chick Corea, drummer Max Roach, and tenor...
NEWS
October 17, 2006 | By Annette John-Hall INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
There is no historical marker erected at the house on 1927 Federal St., but there probably should be. Because it was there, in Percy and Arlethia Heath's South Philadelphia rowhouse, where jazz superstars mingled. Ellington. Basie. Bird. Diz. They'd all come to the Heath house after gigs at the old Earle Theatre at 11th and Market, and feast on Arlethia Heath's down-home cooking. Those visits were heaven for the Heath boys - Percy Jr.; James, or Jimmy; and Albert, nicknamed Tootie - musicians themselves.
NEWS
February 27, 2003 | By Acel Moore
This is black history month, and if you want a history lesson on jazz and rhythm and blues in this city - or in the nation, for that matter - the man to talk to is Sam Reed, South Philadelphian, saxophonist, side man, and house band leader. I and Reed grew up in the same neighborhood. I and his friends from the 'hood will always remember him as "Sammy the sax man. " As a boy I heard musicians like Reed taking lessons and practicing their scales every day. Many of them have since become legends of jazz.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 25, 1996 | By Tom Moon, INQUIRER MUSIC CRITIC
Saxophonist Grover Washington Jr. is the honoree, and fellow Philadelphia natives the Heath Brothers are among the headliners at a scaled-back Mellon PSFS Jazz Festival, to begin June 14. The schedule for the 10-day series, which was announced yesterday, includes events at venues new to the festival, among them Camden's Wiggins Park and the Avenue of the Arts' Clef Club and Arts Bank. However, a June 16 "Philly reunion" featuring Washington, Pieces of a Dream, Charles Fambrough, Trudy Pitts & Mr. C and others is the only concert at Penn's Landing, the site of two marathon showcases last year.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 7, 1987 | By JOSEPH P. BLAKE, Daily News Staff Writer
Susan Stamberg was host of National Public Radio's "All Things Considered" for 14 years before joining "Weekend Edition" in January. Stamberg says she hopes the show, a magazine radio program airing Sunday mornings from 9 to 11 on WHYY (91/FM), will become as familiar as a pot of coffee and as warm and cozy as an easy chair. "This is real different from any other broadcasting I've ever done," said Stamberg. "I do think it's breaking new ground. It's a kind of real relaxed informal thing.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 28, 1987 | By NELS NELSON, Daily News Jazz Columnist
The Heath brothers of jazz, Percy, Jimmy and Albert "Tootie" Heath, formerly of Federal Street, were back in town yesterday and the center of attention at Jewel's, the amiable jazz club on N. Broad Street. The occasion: the announcement, to the world at large, of the events and artists comprising the 1987 Mellon Jazz Festival, June 19-28. The Heaths were not casual visitors, for the 10-day jazzfest will be dedicated to them. As Mellon Bank (East) chairman Edward A. Montgomery Jr. put it: "Their peerless musicianship and the tremendous personal integrity they bring to their art make the Heath Brothers ideal examples of the best that jazz has to offer.
NEWS
April 28, 1987 | By NELS NELSON, Daily News Jazz Columnist
The Heath brothers of jazz, Percy, Jimmy and Albert "Tootie" Heath, formerly of Federal Street, were back in town yesterday and the center of attention at Jewel's, the amiable jazz club on N. Broad Street. The occasion: the announcement, to the world at large, of the events and artists comprising the 1987 Mellon Jazz Festival, June 19-28. The Heaths were not casual visitors, for the 10-day jazzfest will be dedicated to them. As Mellon Bank (East) chairman Edward A. Montgomery Jr. put it: "Their peerless musicianship and the tremendous personal integrity they bring to their art make the Heath Brothers ideal examples of the best that jazz has to offer.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 10, 1999 | By Kevin L. Carter, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Richard "Buzzy" Wilson died last year, but Webb Thomas, the guy who replaced him as booking agent for Zanzibar Blue, wants to make sure he is not forgotten. So he is producing this weekend's first Jazz Jam Explosion at Zanzibar Blue. Thomas, a drummer who leads the Webb T's Fleet group, said he put together more than 50 top local jazz artists to pay homage to Wilson. "All 50 will be under one roof, and we will have one spectacular time," Thomas said. He said all proceeds of the concert, officially a benefit for the Richard "Buzzy" Wilson Foundation, will go to the Philadelphia Clef Club's education programs.
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ENTERTAINMENT
January 30, 2014 | By A.D. Amorosi, For The Inquirer
At 78, Albert "Tootie" Heath, youngest of Philly's jazz family the Heath Brothers, has a long career as a drummer that includes stints for John Coltrane, Red Garland, Nina Simone, and Herbie Hancock (all in 1957, Tootie's first year of label sessions!), to say nothing of work with Wes Montgomery, Anthony Braxton, the Modern Jazz Quartet, his saxophonist brother Jimmy, and double-bassist Percy Heath. The mighty yet sublime hard-bop acolyte might preen over his glorious albums as a bandleader, albums such as the African diaspora-inspired Kawaida of 1969 and 1973's Kwanza . He could point with pride to more recent work, such as his somber, solo drum workout, The Offering (1998)
NEWS
February 5, 2013 | By Kathy Boccella, Inquirer Staff Writer
As 16-year-old Alex Wood plays the jazz standard "Misty" on the piano, bassist Buster Williams hangs on every note. But it is the absence of sound he is listening for. "Allow the space and the air in the music to be part of the improvisation," says Williams - brow furrowed, bass resting on his shoulder - in the auditorium of Abington Friends School. Williams, 70, is a living legend of jazz, a sideman who has jammed with the likes of Miles Davis, Count Basie, Herbie Hancock, Sarah Vaughan, and Nancy Wilson.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 29, 2011 | By Shaun Brady, For The Inquirer
It's a common lament among American jazz musicians that they find far more adulation and acceptance overseas than at home. Bassist Gerald Veasley encountered an extreme version of that while playing Paris' New Morning club in the early 1990s with the late keyboard great Joe Zawinul. "This guy stumbled in like Kramer from Seinfeld ," Veasley recalls, laughing. "He announced that he was from the Church of Zawinul in Russia, and they thought because of Joe's music that he was a god. "It's fascinating to me how much this music means to people around the world.
NEWS
June 18, 2010
KEVIN EUBANKS never reached that fork in the road where most of us paused to ponder which path our lives would take. "I never thought of doing anything else," he said yesterday. "The day never came when I said to myself, 'What will I do to make a living?' "I was playing parties and gigs when I was 13 or 14. We'd get $25 a gig. It was a blast. It was just enough to buy some new guitar strings or a pedal that I wanted. "Everything went back into my music. It was like investing in a business.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 4, 2009 | By SHAUN BRADY For the Daily News
"THAT'S MY home, man. " Asked what returning to Philadelphia means to him, Jimmy Heath is terse and direct. But it's clear from the finality with which he asserts those words that Heath sees the concept of home as universal and needing little elaboration. The implications of returning to the place that formed you are too numerous to list in a brief conversation, and so deep that his tone of voice is enough to make the experience understood. The same can be said for family, and when the legendary saxophonist returns to perform at Rutgers this week, at his back, as he has been so often throughout their lives, will be brother Albert "Tootie" Heath, manning the drums.
NEWS
October 17, 2006 | By Annette John-Hall INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
There is no historical marker erected at the house on 1927 Federal St., but there probably should be. Because it was there, in Percy and Arlethia Heath's South Philadelphia rowhouse, where jazz superstars mingled. Ellington. Basie. Bird. Diz. They'd all come to the Heath house after gigs at the old Earle Theatre at 11th and Market, and feast on Arlethia Heath's down-home cooking. Those visits were heaven for the Heath boys - Percy Jr.; James, or Jimmy; and Albert, nicknamed Tootie - musicians themselves.
NEWS
February 11, 2005 | By Gayle Ronan Sims INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Jimmy Oliver, 80, jazz tenor saxophone great who emerged from the music mosaic of North Philadelphia and played along with city icons including Mickey Roker, Bootsie Barnes, the Heath Brothers and Philly Joe Jones, died of heart failure last Friday at home. Born James Henry Oliver in Columbia, S.C., he was a baby when his family moved to North Philadelphia. Except for a brief stint in New York, that is where he stayed. When Mr. Oliver was 15, he took up the sax and dropped out of Northeast High School after the 11th grade.
NEWS
February 4, 2004 | By Annette John-Hall INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
On a blustery night that would have forced most 77-year-olds into hibernation, Jimmy Heath basked in the frigid air like a cool polar bear. The Philadelphia jazzman started the evening in Harlem at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, where he was feted with other African American elders featured in A Wealth of Wisdom, an anthology of oral histories collected by Camille O. Cosby and Renee Poussaint. A panel discussion was followed by a reception, but Heath couldn't stay.
NEWS
February 27, 2003 | By Acel Moore
This is black history month, and if you want a history lesson on jazz and rhythm and blues in this city - or in the nation, for that matter - the man to talk to is Sam Reed, South Philadelphian, saxophonist, side man, and house band leader. I and Reed grew up in the same neighborhood. I and his friends from the 'hood will always remember him as "Sammy the sax man. " As a boy I heard musicians like Reed taking lessons and practicing their scales every day. Many of them have since become legends of jazz.
NEWS
July 18, 2002 | By Acel Moore
Philadelphia has long been recognized as one of the pivotal centers of jazz, particularly of bebop and modern jazz. The city has produced some of the genre's greatest musicians, including John Coltrane, the Heath Brothers, McCoy Tyner, and drummer Philly Joe Jones. The music's early evolution took place in Philly venues such as Pep's Bar, the Show Boat, and the Blue Note. But I can't think of a better setting for the music on a not-too-warm summer afternoon than a backyard filled with flowers and herb and vegetable gardens.
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