John Birks “Dizzy” Gillespie is credited as a pioneer in American jazz music. Dizzy was a longtime friend of Louis Armstrong. Throughout his career he worked with eminent swing bands like that of Benny Carter and Charlie Barnet. He also popularized the style of bebop. The staff at the Louis Armstrong House Museum was invited to celebrate what would have been Dizzy Gillespie’s 100th birthday. The celebration took place at the Dizzy’s Club at Jazz at Lincoln Center on October 22, 2017.
Featured director of music and trumpeter was Gillespie’s mentee, John Faddis. Faddis’ ensemble for that night featured pianist Renee Rosnes; bassist Kiyoshi Kitagawa; drummer Dion Parson; guitarist Andrew Latona; trumpeters Max Darche, Bruce Harris and Terrel Stafford. The band gracefully paid homage to the late jazz great. Their playlist included classics such as “Tour de Force,” “Tocatta” and “A Night in Tunisia.”
My endeavors at The Louis Armstrong House Museum have introduced me to numerous new places and things. Due to these priceless experiences, I have been directed on an unintended path to self re-discovery. This was the first jazz concert that I’ve attended. The music was memorable, the views of Manhattan were breathtaking, and the atmosphere was unforgettable. I had a blast to say the least!