George Wein story

Kiyosh Koyama

Profile of George Wein

Personal history

He was born on 3 Octorber 1925 in Boston Massachusetts. His father was known by the name of doctor Barnet Wein in Boston and he was doctor of medicine of the famous orthopedics department that everyone knows. His mother,looese Wein played jazz piano and when George who clung to jazz was a student of Boston university and he came back to home with black musicians,Red Allen,JC Higimbossam,Frankie Newton, his mother used to serve hot meal to them in spite of midnignt.
Tought it was even taboo that black plays with white then,the motto of person Wein was a character of "Freedom". But his parent was fiercely opposed when they came to know that George was going to get marry with a black woman Joyce Alexander(present wife,Jis Wein) of whom George fell in love at the dressing room of Opera House in Boston 1948.
Because it was such a situation,they married quietly at the church of a small town in New York state,1959. It was a thing for as many as ten years to have passed since George and Joyce met. We should have married earlier if there was no problem concerning race,George was talking. There is no child between them.

Sides other than music

George spended at the villa in Nice in south France as a vacation during October that Festival of summer completed the first stage. Though it was a reality that parting from work completely was rare situation in case of being where all over the world now. He was interested in wine and to collect painting.Knowledge concerning the wine of France was considerable. He did to play of paying with wine to wine expert's intimate musician for instance John Noras of MJQ,instead instead of the guarantee. (picture:George Wein and Louis Armstrong around1960)

The collection of the painting had been enhanced by opening of a little exhibition by the name of "George Wane collection". In the collection, painter of the abstractionist persuasion's work was most.There were a lot of works of Max Lnst,Andre Masson,Miro and Victor Brauwarn Moreover, George was collecting a lot of works of the black painter in the United States and supportting Romarl Beaden and Jecob Rourens. Additionally, works of an unknown writer (for instance, clarinettist and the late Pee Wee Russell's works etc.) was fairly collected by the way of buying anything if he likeed a work that makes jazz a theme. The collection of the picture that makes jazz a theme was already a valuable collection. It was the highest level also in the world. On the other hand,the emperor of Jazz festival was known as a fan of ardent opera.Especially,singer Paul Robson and big fan of Ltiano Bavarotti The concert of Pavarotsti that was the long-cherished dream has been achieved in Cincinnati in 1978. (picture:George Wein and Count Basie 18 Feb. 1968)

George Wein as musician

George as vocalist and pianist

George Wane was fan for opera singer. To tell the truth, it was because George was loved to sing. George occasionally had playing the piano and singing on the stage and/or in the apartment of New York,etc.George seemed to have been more terrible in childhood. Anyway, while seeing the movie of the star named B. Crosby or Nelson Eddie who sings,George sang loudly. The episode of having been picked out from the movie theater many times remains. George who became professional recorded a vocal album on the Atlantic record in 1955.The Title was "Wein and woman & Songs". George performed with ruby Braff or Bobby Hacket et al. who were music co-worker from Boston. George was singin,once in a while,who cars,etc.These would be called a rare article in the rare article as a jazz record. ( photograph: George Wein and Duke Ellington)

George was originally interested in music.It was a reason that the influence of mother's piano and elder brother Rally (deceased) was jazz fan.It was eight years old to have begun to learn classics piano. Marguerite Charof was a teacher. She was famous in Boston.Charof is known as mother of genius serge Charof of the baritone saxophone.After receiving classic piano lesson from Charof very hard for five years,George changed to the jazz piano.At that time, there was a teacher who teaches jazz piano in Boston. It was Sam saxophone and had succeeded to Hines's technique.George who had paid attention Sam saxophone became the enthusiast of jazzed piano father Hines.It seemed being natural.

Zeal to jazz

From Dec.1943 to Apr.1946,George was engaged in the army military service for two years and nine months.After it had discharged,George entered Department of Medicine at Boston University.George became intimate with this generation's ruby Braff.The zeal of Jazz came not to throw it away easily more and more. Thought there was not will being professional at university days,He played the piano at the club of local on the weekend etc. During summer vacation of 1948 in New York. He received a special lesson from Teddy Wilson who was piano professor of Julliard School of Music at that time.(It was said that George as the pianist would still respect R.Hines and Teten Winoreson.) George who had graduated from the university in 1950 got work to play the piano with 90 dollars for the wages from the Chinese cuisine shop in local by weekly.George Wein had continued to walk on the road of jazz since then with the motto that it was a musician before it was a producer.(photograph: Stage of "Newport Jazz Festival in 1968")


Sincce George recorded his voice at NewYorkers of Walt Giford in February1951,he made a lot of records with Ruby Braff,Sydney Beshe,Vicc Dikkenson,and Joe Jones and etc.When George came to produce "Newport Jazz Festival" He formed all-stars band as for the name of the festival and toured various places in USA for two months a year,including making records."Newport jazz festival allstars" (live of recording in 1984 in Arizona State University concert),which was put on the market from Concord jazz Rabeshil in recent years, "European tour" which was the latest work (.Switzerland live in May, 1987) and etc, they were splendid albums that clearly tells the abilities of George's all Stars. The latter etc,gorgeous line up that collects three experts of tenor saxophone,Harold Ashby, Scott Haminoreton and Alcon,the chic of the modern swing is made to listened. George of loving was Hines and Teddy Wilson.It became famous too much as a producer, and George as the musician tended to be overlooked now. However it was the happiest time when George touches the piano.The feelings could be felt from the above-mentioned two albums.(Photograph: At Mitchell's pub,March 6 1980)

George Wein as a producer

Booking to "Sazaoi"

George produced the 1st Newport Jazz Festival held in Newport Rhode Island on July 17 1954.And it made him shining existence. However,George seems to have had the talent as the producer from early time.According to Georges talk.When George was playing the piano in the Chinese cuisine restraunt on 1950 after he graduated from the university, he was asked to arrange the appearance musician's schedule with the owner of club "Sazaoi" of local. he said that this was the first work as a producer.George gathered musicians,Pee Wee Russell, Bobby Hacket, Ed hall, Buster bailey, Vicc Dikkenson and Ruby Braff and took charge of the booking for "Sazaoi".

After that,he booked concert in "Jordan hall" with Ed hall.This was a big success,too. It could be courage to the success.George opened the jazz club 'Storyville' to famous hotel "Copre Scear" in Boston by an own hand. For ten years until 1960 when George determined migration to New York,'Storyville' became Mecca of the jazz of Boston. George started up record level of the same name and a lot of live records were made. Because Charlie Parker also performed in 'Storyville',there was time when 'Hogane hall'for the traditional jazz specialty had been separately opened,too. George began to take an active part as a musician, an owner of the club, and a producer on the day when he entered the jazz field. One day on 1953 Professor Donald Vaughan of Boston University came to 'Storyville' with Lewes and ElaineRorirard. They wanted to hold the first outdoors jazz Festibal at Newport in the United States in next summer. And asked George for produce. The Rorirard family was rich of the United States that managed one of three large cigarette companies. At that time,Newport was known as a summer resort of high Society in which the millionaire gathered. A newspaper from all over the U.S. marked celebrities'life and gossips in Newport.
(Photograph: Snap in "Newport Jazz Festival",Miles Dibis that talks to George Wein)


The 1st Newport Jazz Festival in1954

The 1st "Newport Jazz Festival" that had been held at Newport in 1954 caused an unexpected echo, and became a hot news item in which not only all Americans but also all over the world. George Wein and Newport Jazz Festival came to be known to the world as a synonym since that time. The festival production which George Wein presided comes to handle the jazz event and the concert that rises to about 1OOO times through year. The festival related to Newport extended to various places in the world now and became an important cultural annual event of the land. (photograph: Pamphlet of Newport Jazz Festival held in 1971) George had received a lot of commendations from manny countries in the world to the contribution to distinguished services as the producer of the jazz festival over many years since 1954 and the jazz field. June 18 1978,the president Jimmy Carter sponsored the White House jazz festival and the 25th anniversary of George Wein and Newport Jazz Festival was celebrated. George was presented the price of culture by France in 1980.Besides the honorary doctorate was presented by the Barkly music university in Boston. To the jazz festival held in New York, Cotti put blessing as 'The maximum cultural annual event in New York City' on the electric wave,lately every summer.George always says'The festival of Madarao is greate'. I recommend you the thing confirmed, "What meaning". "Madarao at 1000 above the sea level was a festival in the place where the altitude was the highest in the world", The answer was sure to come back with a smile. (photograph: George with President Carter at the White House in 1986)


My dream was achieved in Madarao

When I visited Madarao for the first time in 1981 by Mr.Ogawa Kunio's invitation,Iremembered the intense excitement. I had the plan to make "Jazz Village" somewhere in the world in the mountain for many years. The moment when I arrived at Madarao,I noticed, this was "Jazzed Village" that I had been dreaming. Beautiful spectacle and fresh air. And Mr Nakajio and Madarao's people invited me as it was really warm.I was able to have a another family in Japan.Madarao is rich in ideal natural environment and wonderful friends. These uniting into one, inventing the most wonderful jazz festival in the world,I was convinced.
(photograph: Execution chairman Mr Kunio Ogawa,George Wein,and vice-chairman of a committee Mr Nakajiou)

Sincerely yours,George Wein/producer


Illustration A.HISSCHFELD