Singer Sarah Vaughan was recently released from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, where she was treated for a reoccuring synovial carcinoma on the hand. The renowned vocalist had received treatment for a similar condition last fall. According to her manager, Harold Levy, Vaughan is resting comfortably at her home in Hidden Hills.
After a lengthy period of inactivity, Vaughan, 65, plans to resume work on April 2, when she will go into the studios to record an album which will be produced by Quincy Jones for Quincy Jones Productions. Keyboardist George Duke will serve as co-producer.
Benny Powell, the former New York trombonist who lived in Los Angeles from 1970-80, is currently in University Presbyterian Hospital in Pittsburgh, Pa. The ex-Count Basie, Bill Berry and Thad Jones-Mel Lewis brassman is recuperating from an operation on March 12 for the removal of a kidney that was transplanted on Dec. 27 and ultimately rejected by his immune system. That initial operation replaced Powell's one good kidney, which failed last year.
Despite his physical woes, Powell, 60, who was born with one malfunctioning kidney and has suffered from hypertension throughout his life, remains in good spirits. "I feel pretty good, and I'm hanging in there," Powell said from his bedside. "I'm just having the kind of complications that are associated with getting a new organ. It makes everything a new ball game. When you have a fever after a transplant, they don't just give you an aspirin. They do all kinds of tests to see what's causing it."
Powell's replacement kidney came from an unknown organ donor involved in an accidental death. He didn't seek out a relative donor because "there's no guarantee these operations will succeed," he said. The hospital is currently searching for a new kidney for Powell; in the meantime, he undergoes dialysis treatments three times a week.
The trombonist has been thrilled to receive phone calls from many of his musical associates. "Joe Williams just called," he exuded, "and Milt Jackson called yesterday. I've received fantastic calls from all over the globe. We have a helluva world jazz community."
Plans are under way for a benefit for Powell, to be held May 6 at the Proud Bird Restaurant near LAX. O.C. Smith, Teddy Edwards, John Carter and Jerry Rusch are among those who have committed to appear.
Guitarist Joe Pass, the one-time Angeleno who now lives in Europe, appears in a rare local concert Sunday in the Arcadia Ballroom of the Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel in Santa Monica. The show, which also features pianist Daniel May, bassist Benjamin May, guitarist Ron Eshete and drummer Frank DeVito, costs $20 and begins at 7 p.m. Daniel May, the hotel's musical director who plays six nights a week in its lobby lounge, said Pass's appearance is the first in a series of monthly concerts that will bring name jazz artists to the Westside. Information: (213) 458-6700.
A videotape of an early '70s Duke Ellington sacred concert, recorded by Swedish television in Barcelona, Spain, is just one of the highlights of the next meeting of the Duke Ellington Society, to be held Friday, 8 p.m., at the Culver City Veterans Memorial Center, corner of Culver Boulevard and Overland Avenue, Culver City. Also on the program are previously unshown slides of a rehearsal for another sacred concert, which took place at St. Paul the Apostle Church in West Los Angeles on Feb. 20, 1973. "There's something a little inside and backstage about the rehearsal that has some appeal," says Ralph Jungheim, who produced that concert and will be on hand to describe the program as it was presented.