HISTORY:

1975 | 1977 | 1979 | 1980 | 1981 | 1982 to present




1981

New Year's Day 1981, the Las Vegas Jazz Society moved into its own office and studio space at 2035 N. Paradise Rd., one block north of the Sahara Hotel. President Monk Montgomery picked the L.A.-based Jazz Crusaders as his "Persons of the Month" for contributing $1,000 towards acquiring the new headquarters, singling out drummer "Stix" Hooper for special thanks. A jazz trio played for the opening reception with Arnie Teich, piano; Bob Sachs, bass; and Carmen Castaldi, drums.

March 1, 1981, Freddie Hubbard, (right) fresh off a tour of Japan, played a matinee at Joe Julian's and "blew up a storm" according to saxophonist Jay Cameron, (left) who wrote in Think Jazz, "A jazz-starved crowd responded to Freddie's artistry with handclaps on 2 and 4, cheering and real involvement." Joe Locatelli, drums; Carson Smith, bass; Mike Breene, piano; Joe Romano, Jay, saxes. March 17, a Nat King Cole tribute at the Desert Inn featured Kirk Stuart, piano; Bart Broadnax, bass; Dennis Allen, drums; and special guests Joe Williams and Nat's younger brother, Freddie.

March 29, the Society threw a fundraising concert at the Riviera Hotel with Marlena Shaw, Jack Sheldon, Gus Mancuso, the UNLV Jazz Ensemble and Pete Barbutti as MC. The proceeds supported the Jazz Ensemble's tour to Brazil and Peru.

For "May Is Jazz Month" 1981, the Society organized 35 free concerts and employed more than 200 musicians with funding from the National Endowment for the Arts, the City of Las Vegas Dept. of Recreation and Leisure Activities, the Musicians' Trust Fund Local #369 and the Nevada State Council for the Arts. Monk picked "flamboyant virtuoso" reedman Bob Pierson as his Person of the Month for organizing the enormous project with assistance from Jay Cameron. Highlights included Jim Trimble's 20-piece band at the Jazz Picnic, Carl Saunders' Sextet at City View Park, Larry Schlecht's group at the airport, Joe Romano's quartet at the Boulevard Mall and Johnny Veith's trio with singer Michaelina Veith entertaining at the Hillhaven Convalescent Home.

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Vegas Jazz
PO Box 60396, Las Vegas, NV 89160
Message Line: 702.313.6778