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Herb Ellis

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December 31, 1991 | DIRK SUTRO
Guitarist Herb Ellis, who turned 70 this year, moved to a retirement community in the Arkansas Ozarks four years ago. But he is far from retiring. "It's a little strange. Most of people the people here don't do anything except play golf or tennis," laughed Ellis, a 15 handicap golfer who shoots around 90 when he's home--which is not all that often.
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March 31, 2010 | By Keith Thursby
Herb Ellis, a jazz guitarist perhaps best known for his work with the influential Oscar Peterson Trio, has died. He was 88. Ellis, who had Alzheimer's disease, died Sunday morning at his home in Los Angeles, said his son, Mitch. During his long and varied career, Ellis played with Jimmy Dorsey and Ella Fitzgerald. He also worked as a studio musician and played in the bands of several television shows, including Steve Allen's and Merv Griffin's. "There have been changes in jazz and new styles come along.
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ENTERTAINMENT
January 8, 1993 | BILL KOHLHAASE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
In his new book, "Jazz Lives: 100 Portraits in Jazz," critic Gene Lees paints guitarist Herb Ellis as a dedicated practical joker. He tells the story of how Ellis and his then-partner in pianist Oscar Peterson's trio, bassist Ray Brown, once traded hair colors--Ellis dying his black, Brown dying his red--to irritate their boss. "Oscar would play jokes on us, and we would play jokes on him," Ellis related in a recent phone conversation from his home in Fairfield, Ark.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 6, 2000 | DON HECKMAN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
There was a celebratory feeling in the air Monday night at Rocco's in Bel-Air. John Pisano's guitar nights always seem to draw a full house, but the advance word that Herb Ellis was appearing, and that he would be offering a kind of farewell performance, brought out an overflow crowd. The evening actually began with a two-guitar set featuring Barry Zweig and Ron Anthony accompanied by bassist Chuck Berghofer.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 11, 1989 | Claudia Puig, Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press
In exchange for a cartoon drawing featuring his trademark animals, "Far Side" cartoonist Gary Larson was given guitar lessons by jazz great Herb Ellis. Larson's drawing now graces Ellis' album, "Doggin' Around." The album has a cover showing the inside of a nightclub called "The Stuffed Cat." Inside the club, upright-standing dogs, frequent characters in Larson's weekly comic strip, are being served drinks by poodle waitresses and listening to two guitar-playing dogs on stage. On the tables, a sign reads: "Please keep table barking to a minimum."
ENTERTAINMENT
August 6, 1989 | RACHEL ALTMAN
The Gary Larson/Herb Ellis connection isn't as far out as it seems. A few years ago, a friendship developed following a performance that Ellis gave at the Jazz Alley in Seattle. Larson, a Seattle resident and Ellis aficionado, is the cartoonist whose Far Side strip appears in more than 900 newspapers. He is also a guitarist who took one of Ellis' albums to the club for an autograph. Larson is known as the creator of an absurdist, sometimes sinister world where animals do the unnatural, i.e.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 29, 1991 | LEONARD FEATHER
* * * Herb Ellis, "Roll Call," Justice. Ellis' guitar, backed by Mel Rhyne on organ and Jake Hanna on drums, evokes memories of groups with this instrumentation that proliferated in jazz lounges of the 1950s and '60s. It's a pleasant blend. The blues predominate--along with two Ellis originals, including his now-standard "Detour Ahead." Jazz violinist John Frigo, who co-wrote that song, guests.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 13, 1987 | LEONARD FEATHER
Triple Treat, the name of the group that opened Thursday and closes Sunday at the Loa, on Pico Boulevard near Centinela Avenue, sounds like a somewhat boastful title. However, it takes only a brief sampling of this trio's work to establish that, if anything, it may be an understatement. The personnel in itself is a virtual guarantee of quality. For several years the guitarist Herb Ellis and the bassist Ray Brown were two-thirds of the Oscar Peterson Trio.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 10, 1986 | LEONARD FEATHER
At Donte's, which is due to celebrate its 20th anniversary Oct. 24 (it's the second oldest jazz room in town, after Memory Lane), the perennial verities still hold good, as was demonstrated Wednesday by the appearance of the Herb Ellis Quartet. Ross Tompkins, the pianist in this ad hoc group, is known in local circles as "The Phantom," though the name could better be applied to Ellis, who plays only in his home town when he isn't in Europe or busy on some long cross country tour.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 16, 1999 | DON HECKMAN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Mondays are usually off nights for jazz clubs--opportunities to try out new talent or showcase (usually poorly paid) big bands. Major-name jazz artists usually don't arrive until Tuesday or later. But this week's Monday night was a rare and pleasant exception, a chance to hear one of the patriarchs of jazz guitar--Herb Ellis--performing at Rocco Ristorante in Bel-Air in an infrequent nightclub appearance.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 8, 1999 | DON HECKMAN, Don Heckman is The Times' jazz writer
What happens when two world-class jazz artists--dramatically similar in some respects, strikingly different in others--get together in the studio for a series of free and easy recording sessions? The answer is some extraordinary music, when the artists are vibraphonist Lionel Hampton and pianist Oscar Peterson. And Verve has chronicled a remarkable series of encounters between the two in a beautifully conceived and packaged 4-CD boxed set, "The Complete Lionel Hampton Quartets and Quintets With Oscar Peterson on Verve" (. . )
ENTERTAINMENT
July 16, 1999 | DON HECKMAN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Mondays are usually off nights for jazz clubs--opportunities to try out new talent or showcase (usually poorly paid) big bands. Major-name jazz artists usually don't arrive until Tuesday or later. But this week's Monday night was a rare and pleasant exception, a chance to hear one of the patriarchs of jazz guitar--Herb Ellis--performing at Rocco Ristorante in Bel-Air in an infrequent nightclub appearance.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 11, 1993 | ZAN STEWART, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
There was no drummer on the bandstand Friday night at Maxwell's by the Sea, but you might have thought there was. Guitarist Herb Ellis and his sole partner, bassist Andy Simpkins, made their selections pulsate with that rhythmic flow that jazz musicians and their followers call "swing."
ENTERTAINMENT
January 8, 1993 | BILL KOHLHAASE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
In his new book, "Jazz Lives: 100 Portraits in Jazz," critic Gene Lees paints guitarist Herb Ellis as a dedicated practical joker. He tells the story of how Ellis and his then-partner in pianist Oscar Peterson's trio, bassist Ray Brown, once traded hair colors--Ellis dying his black, Brown dying his red--to irritate their boss. "Oscar would play jokes on us, and we would play jokes on him," Ellis related in a recent phone conversation from his home in Fairfield, Ark.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 31, 1991 | DIRK SUTRO
Guitarist Herb Ellis, who turned 70 this year, moved to a retirement community in the Arkansas Ozarks four years ago. But he is far from retiring. "It's a little strange. Most of people the people here don't do anything except play golf or tennis," laughed Ellis, a 15 handicap golfer who shoots around 90 when he's home--which is not all that often.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 29, 1991 | LEONARD FEATHER
* * * Herb Ellis, "Roll Call," Justice. Ellis' guitar, backed by Mel Rhyne on organ and Jake Hanna on drums, evokes memories of groups with this instrumentation that proliferated in jazz lounges of the 1950s and '60s. It's a pleasant blend. The blues predominate--along with two Ellis originals, including his now-standard "Detour Ahead." Jazz violinist John Frigo, who co-wrote that song, guests.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 6, 2000 | DON HECKMAN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
There was a celebratory feeling in the air Monday night at Rocco's in Bel-Air. John Pisano's guitar nights always seem to draw a full house, but the advance word that Herb Ellis was appearing, and that he would be offering a kind of farewell performance, brought out an overflow crowd. The evening actually began with a two-guitar set featuring Barry Zweig and Ron Anthony accompanied by bassist Chuck Berghofer.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 8, 1999 | DON HECKMAN, Don Heckman is The Times' jazz writer
What happens when two world-class jazz artists--dramatically similar in some respects, strikingly different in others--get together in the studio for a series of free and easy recording sessions? The answer is some extraordinary music, when the artists are vibraphonist Lionel Hampton and pianist Oscar Peterson. And Verve has chronicled a remarkable series of encounters between the two in a beautifully conceived and packaged 4-CD boxed set, "The Complete Lionel Hampton Quartets and Quintets With Oscar Peterson on Verve" (. . )
ENTERTAINMENT
August 6, 1989 | RACHEL ALTMAN
The Gary Larson/Herb Ellis connection isn't as far out as it seems. A few years ago, a friendship developed following a performance that Ellis gave at the Jazz Alley in Seattle. Larson, a Seattle resident and Ellis aficionado, is the cartoonist whose Far Side strip appears in more than 900 newspapers. He is also a guitarist who took one of Ellis' albums to the club for an autograph. Larson is known as the creator of an absurdist, sometimes sinister world where animals do the unnatural, i.e.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 11, 1989 | Claudia Puig, Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press
In exchange for a cartoon drawing featuring his trademark animals, "Far Side" cartoonist Gary Larson was given guitar lessons by jazz great Herb Ellis. Larson's drawing now graces Ellis' album, "Doggin' Around." The album has a cover showing the inside of a nightclub called "The Stuffed Cat." Inside the club, upright-standing dogs, frequent characters in Larson's weekly comic strip, are being served drinks by poodle waitresses and listening to two guitar-playing dogs on stage. On the tables, a sign reads: "Please keep table barking to a minimum."
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