This is the big band that thrilled a sold-out house this past October at Dizzy Gillespie's birthday celebration and was voted "Band of the Year" in the 2004 Arnaldo DeSouteiro's Brazilian Jazz Poll published on Rio daily newspaper Tribuna da Imprensa. Actually, I've been a big fan of Mike since his early days with Dizzy Gillespie, and I treasure his lovely performance of "Con Alma" on Gillespie's LaserDisc "An All-Star Tribute to the Jazz Master", filmed live on June 6, 1987, at Wolf Trap, the National Park for the Performing Arts, just outside of Washington, D.C. and since then we became friends.
Mike Longo has performed with a list of jazz legends that include saxophone great Cannonball Adderley, Henry Red Allen, Coleman Hawkins, George Wettling, Gene Krupa, Nancy Wilson, Gloria Lynn, Jimmy Witherspoon, Joe Williams, Jimmy Rushing, James Moody and many others. It was in the mid-60s when Longo’s trio was playing at the Embers West, that Roy Eldridge told Dizzy Gillespie about this new pianist he had heard. Dizzy came to hear him play and soon asked him to become his pianist. This started a life-long musical relationship and friendship. From 1966 through 1975, Longo worked exclusively as Dizzy’s pianist and musical director. Mike left the Gillespie group officially in 1975 to venture out on his own, but continued to work for Gillespie on a part-time basis until his death in 1993. Since that time Mike has recorded numerous albums and CDs on various labels with some 45 recordings with artists such as Gillespie, James Moody, etc. At present he has over 20 solo albums to his credit. He is sought after as a music instructor and is in demand for jazz clinics and concerts at universities and music schools throughout the world, and has appeared regularly at the Lincoln Center’s new jazz room “Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola.” Longo is founder and President of Consolidated Artists Productions (CAP), an independent recording label, dedicated to allowing artists to pursue the types of projects that are in line with their career objectives. All of the artists represented by CAP (over 70) are extraordinarily talented, both as composers and performers. Longo’s latest venture, Jazz Tuesdays, is dedicated to allowing artists to retain creative control of their work and providing students and the general public with an opportunity to hear “world class jazz at affordable prices.”
Admission is 15.00, 10.00 for students.
Tickets will be sold at the door, or call 212-222-5159 for reservations and information.
in the John Birks Gillespie Auditorium
The New York Baha'i Center
53 East 11th Street (between University Place & Broadway)
Two shows: 8:00 and 9:30 p.m.