Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Remembering Dave Lambert

 When I was in my very early twenties, my friend Michael Lally turned me on to Lambert, Hendricks, and Ross.  I've loved their work ever since.  Every once in a while I get the itch to hear them and today was such a time.  Only this time, I wanted to see them as well as hear them so I poked around on YouTube to find them in a live performance.  I came across this gem.  It's over 8 minutes long, but worth every breath.  In listening and watching I realized how under-appreciated Dave Lambert was.  Jon Hendricks is so charismatic and technically awesome that Dave often got overshadowed.  This recording shows you that Dave had some serious chops.  The tune: "Airegin" by Sonny Rollins -- by the way that's "Nigeria" spelled backwards.  As you may know, Dave was tragically killed in a "traffic incident" in October of 1966.  There are varying accounts, as summarized in the following from Wikipedia:
Accounts of Dave Lambert's death vary slightly in details. It is established that he was on the Connecticut Turnpike[4] and that a flat tire was involved and that he was struck by a tractor-trailer truck driven by Floyd H. Demby in the wee hours of October 3, 1966. The disabled vehicle was not fully off the roadway and its lights were turned off.
Some accounts mention that Richard Hillman was killed in the same incident.[5][6] Newspaper stories differ about whose vehicle was disabled. Jet Magazine's account says it was a panel truck owned by Lambert.[7] Jon Hendricks' telling of the story says that Lambert was a compulsive do-gooder and that he had stopped to assist another motorist.[8] The newspaper followup stories say that Demby was not at fault and that the Lambert and Hillman were in the roadway when they were struck.
Enjoy and think of Dave.  By the way, Jon and Annie are still with us, Jon being 92 years old.

1 comment:

Lally said...

un-feckin'-believable! thank you so much for posting this. talk about memories. I saw them live back then in small venues and as well as large ones and interviewed Annie on a radio station I was a disc jockey at in 1960. And you're right, Lambert kicks it in this one. Hendricks does his thing, and too bad Annie didn't get to scat, but the moments for me were Lambert's solo and then him and Jon trading fours and more. Fan-feckin'-tastic. (I wonder if Dave was Irish descendent, 'cause a lot of his scatting in this is very close to the Irish version called lilting.) And thanks for the stories about his death. I had heard a few versions myself back then. Also, I can't remember the names of the bassist and drummer. The bassist was something Isaacs right? They certainly made it work too.