[Harp-L] My Favorite Larry Adler Recordings

When I was a kid, I played this version of Summertime so many times that I wore out the record.  I’m forever impressed how Larry Adler keeps changing his tone.



In 1980, Larry Adler played Summertime with the violin virtuoso Itzhak Perlman.



I also enjoy these recordings of Adler with the great Gypsy jazz guitarist, Django Reinhardt: 





I recently recorded a Gypsy jazz CD, “Douce Ambiance: Gypsy Jazz Classics,” (listen at http://airplaydirect.com/music/davidnaiditch/) so I’m especially interested in these Gypsy jazz recordings.


When I was in Jr. High school, I took lessons from Sonny Terry.  John Pilgrim told the following Sonny Terry/Larry Adler  story in the Gardian (http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/2001/aug/09/guardianobituaries).

      “In 1975, I was backing the blues harmonica virtuoso Sonny Terry, and guitarist Brownie McGhee, in a show at the London School of Economics. A shadowy figure in the wings was trying to attract attention. Being blind, Sonny Terry couldn't see this, so I went over to see what the problem was.

     It was Larry Adler, surprisingly humble, wanting to sit in with Sonny Terry for a number. Sonny called him on and they played Careless Love, Adler's rich orthodox chording contrasting oddly with Terry's "crossed harp" a fourth above the key.

     They finished to cries for more, but Adler addressed the audience ruefully: ‘Sonny Terry was the only man to blow me off the stage in America. Now he's done it again. Twice is enough - you must listen to the man who does it best,’ and left the stage.”

David Naiditch


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