Saturday, August 28, 2021

The oldest musicians I've heard live: Hank Jones, Joe Haider, and Heinz von Herrmann

Last night at the Bird's Eye in Basel, pianist Joe Haider mentioned several times that he's 85. That makes him the second-oldest musician I've ever heard live – Hank Jones was 86 when I heard him with Joe Lovano in Basel in April 2005. And Heinz von Herrmann, the tenor saxophonist and flautist in Haider's sextet, comes in third at 84. In 2005, Jones played "Body and Soul" with a sense of joy and discovery all the more wonderful given that he'd presumably been playing it practically since its publication in 1930. And last night, Haider and von Herrmann gave Cole Porter's 1944 song "Every Time We Say Goodbye" the same freshness. (Andrew Shields, #111words, 28 August 2021)

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