UMC Concert Series presents, Gerry Mulligan, Saxophonist with the Gerry Mulligan Quartet ... Thursday, October 13, 1988, Jesse Auditorium
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"For almost four decades Gerry Mulligan has been a leading spirit in the unfolding history of jazz. His reputation is largely based on his skills as a baritone saxophonist and an arranger, but it is unquestionably his versatility and his adaptability as a musician that mark him as an extraordinary modern jazzman. Because of his wide-ranging talents, he has been called one of the "few serious contenders for Renaissance Man of Jazz." Born in New York in 1927, Mulligan grew up in Philadelphia, where his first musical successes came as a reed player and as an arranger for radio bands. He returned to New York City in 1946 as a member and staff arranger of the Gene Krupa band and later joined Claude Thornhill's band in a similar capacity. As a student of Gil Evans, he became associated with a number of musicians who were to emerge as the jazz leaders of his generation-John Lewis, Charles Mingus, Lee Konitz, George Russell, Thelonius Monk, and Miles Davis, among them. His nickname "Jeru" was bestowed on him by Davis. Mulligan's arrangements and compositions from this period became a significant portion of the early repertory of the "Cool Style." The historic sessions of the nonet led by Miles Davis, immortized on recordings as "The Birth of the Cool" (1949-1950), featured Mulligan as arranger and as baritone saxophonist. He also contributed pieces for the big bands of Thornhill, Elliot Lawrence, and Stan Kenton."--page 18.