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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 4, 2014 | By Randy Lewis
Chorale master Paul Salamunovich once said that the greatest moment of his life was a 1988 concert at the Vatican for Pope John Paul II with the group he had led continuously since 1949, the St. Charles Borromeo Church Choir of North Hollywood. But it was his experience with choral music as a Southern California teenager that provided the underpinning for nearly everything he did over the next six-plus decades, including his role in shaping the Los Angeles Master Chorale into one of the world's finest choirs.
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ENTERTAINMENT
May 17, 1991 | ZAN STEWART, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Stan Kenton, the renowned bandleader-composer-xarranger who died in 1979 at age 67, was one of jazz's most controversial figures. His music--characteristically brash, bold and dramatic--eschewed the foot-tapping swing feeling associated with most mainstream jazz, yet it was consistently popular from the early '40s through the late '60s. It could be said that many people then thought jazz was Stan Kenton, and vice versa.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 18, 2011 | By Dennis McLellan, Los Angeles Times
Pete Rugolo , an award-winning composer and arranger who came to prominence in the world of jazz as the chief arranger for Stan Kenton's post-World War II band and later wrote the themes for TV's "The Fugitive" and "Run for Your Life," has died. He was 95. Rugolo, who also had a recording career with his own band, died Sunday of age-related causes at a nursing facility in Sherman Oaks,said his daughter, Gina Rugolo Judd. "Pete Rugolo's passing is a notable event, as he was a true and powerful original, whose music made an invaluable contribution to a very rich period in American music," composer John Williams said in a statement to The Times on Monday.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 21, 1998 | DON HECKMAN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Stan Kenton fans--unlike the followers of Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Woody Herman and others--don't have the opportunity to hear ghost band versions of their favorite music. The Kenton estate, following his wishes, has not allowed an ensemble bearing his name and performing in his inimitable style to exist. But individual Kenton events have been licensed by his widow, Audree Coke Kenton.
NEWS
June 28, 1986
Joseph Perkins Greene, a composer and lyricist whose best-known works came through his collaboration with Stan Kenton during that bandleader's glory years of the 1940s and '50s, has died in a Pasadena hospital. The writer of "Across the Alley From the Alamo," "And Her Tears Flowed Like Wine" and "Don't Let the Sun Catch You Crying," popularized by Kenton vocalists June Christy and Chris Connor, was 71 and died of kidney failure.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 17, 1999 | BILL KOHLHAASE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Even in the final years before he died in 1979, orchestra leader Stan Kenton still barnstormed the country, traveling relentlessly between concert halls and college clinics. The travel was mostly by bus, and Kenton frequently rode with his employees. In the '70s, according to one of the last musicians Kenton hired, the bandleader's entourage often included a toy gorilla named Jacob and a bat named Rathbone.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 20, 1993 | BILL KOHLHAASE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
When Pete Rugolo steps in front of the Stan Kenton Alumni Orchestra on Sunday in Irvine to conduct Kenton's well-known theme song, "Artistry in Rhythm," he'll mark an association with the band and the tune that goes back almost 50 years. Kenton's principal arranger during the band's glory years of 1945-49, Rugolo penned a number of variations of his boss's anthem. "I did several versions of 'Artistry in Rhythm,' " Rugolo, 77, said recently in a phone conversation from his home in Sherman Oaks.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 1, 1991 | LEONARD FEATHER, SPECIAL FOR THE TIMES
"Back to Balboa," a celebration dedicated to the memory and music of Stan Kenton, got under way in Newport Beach on Thursday as about 700 Kenton fans descended on the Hyatt Newporter Hotel, just minutes away from where the Kenton orchestra made its debut at the Rendezvous Ballroom in Balboa, 50 years ago this weekend.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 15, 1994 | ZAN STEWART, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Bandleader Stan Kenton was a stickler for precision. But the big band that played at producer Ken Allan's seventh annual tribute to Kenton, held Sunday at the Irvine Marriott, and also featuring the Four Freshmen, was anything but tight. In fact, it was often downright ragged. More than once, players looked at each other's music, trying to decipher where they were supposed to be. Surprisingly, despite the confusion, the music still sounded pretty good as played by this unrehearsed crew of L.A.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 23, 2011 | Dennis McLellan, Los Angeles Times
Ross Barbour, the last surviving original member of the Four Freshmen, the influential close-harmony vocal quartet that came to fame in the 1950s with hits such as "Graduation Day," has died. He was 82. Barbour, who had lung cancer, died Saturday at his home in Simi Valley , said Dina Roth, the current group's personal manager. Barbour's death came three months after that of another founding member, his cousin Bob Flanigan, the original lead singer. The two other founding members were Barbour's brother Don and Hal Kratzsch.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 1, 2009 | Dennis McLellan
Chris Connor, a smoky-voiced jazz vocalist who gained renown for her recording of "All About Ronnie" and other singles with the Stan Kenton Orchestra before going solo in 1953 and having success with songs such as "Trust in Me" and "About the Blues," has died. She was 81. Connor died of cancer Saturday at Community Medical Center in Toms River, N.J., said her longtime companion and manager, Lori Muscarelle. In a more than 50-year singing career that began in the late 1940s with the Claude Thornhill Orchestra, Connor recorded with bandleader Herbie Fields and sang with Jerry Wald's big band before joining Kenton in early 1953.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 16, 2009 | Times Staff Reports
Jack Nimitz, a jazz baritone saxophonist who played in the Woody Herman and Stan Kenton big bands and in the group "Supersax," died Wednesday of complications from emphysema at his home in Studio City. He was 79. Born in Washington, D.C., in 1930, Nimitz began playing clarinet at an early age and alto saxophone at 14. He was still a teenager when he began playing professional gigs at Howard Theatre in Washington. He soon fell in love with the baritone saxophone.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 6, 2009 | Jon Thurber
Bud Shank, the alto saxophonist who was a key figure in the West Coast jazz scene of the 1950s, has died. He was 82. Shank died Thursday night at his home in Tucson of pulmonary failure, friends said. A versatile musician with an adventurous nature, Shank also played flute and -- during a productive period of studio work -- had pivotal solos on the popular 1960s pop tunes "California Dreamin' " by the Mamas and the Papas and "Windy" by the Association.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 25, 2006 | Don Heckman, Special to The Times
There's nothing quite like the sound of a big jazz band. Ranging in size from 16 to 20 players, each of whom is fully in sync with the subtleties of jazz rhythms, phrasing and textures, it is a musical entity with seemingly infinite potential for creative expression.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 16, 1991 | ZAN STEWART, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Asked the secret behind the Four Freshmen's successful four-decade-plus career, Bob Flanigan, the founder and leader of the vocal quartet, answered quickly: Psychological coercion. "We played about 3,000 colleges in the '50s and '60s, sometimes two a day, and those fans are parents now, and a lot have brainwashed their kids into listening to us," he said with a laugh.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 3, 1992 | ZAN STEWART, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Here's an easy one: Which bandleader established the "West Coast" jazz sound, and whose big band in the 1940s was the breeding ground for such jazz stars as Shorty Rogers, Bud Shank, Art Pepper, Shelly Manne, Bob Cooper, June Christy, Bill Holman and Maynard Ferguson? It's Stan Kenton, of course, the dynamic pianist, composer and arranger who died in 1979 at age 67.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 30, 1999
Trumpeter Carl Saunders was among the jazz all-stars paying homage to the music of Stan Kenton recently in Irvine. Tonight in Fullerton, he'll put some of his own compositions into the spotlight while fronting a sextet. * Steamers Cafe, 138 W. Commonwealth Ave., Fullerton. 8 tonight. Two-item minimum and cover. (714) 871-8800.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 17, 1999 | BILL KOHLHAASE, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Even in the final years before he died in 1979, orchestra leader Stan Kenton still barnstormed the country, traveling relentlessly between concert halls and college clinics. The travel was mostly by bus, and Kenton frequently rode with his employees. In the '70s, according to one of the last musicians Kenton hired, the bandleader's entourage often included a toy gorilla named Jacob and a bat named Rathbone.
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