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Funny Buddy Rich story


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HERMOKIWI
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 11, 2021 3:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not everyone thought Buddy Rich was a jerk. Check out this interview of Don Menza talking about Buddy. He says that Buddy was the only real band leader he ever worked for.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V95LNWDnFPI

Here's an interview of Dan Morgenstern:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PC1ATvNMXJ0

Here's Mel Lewis saying, "I love him and he was one of my dearest friends." (at 1:07:16):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KTyxnHQ4VHQ
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GeorgeB
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 11, 2021 6:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

oops, double post
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Last edited by GeorgeB on Sun Apr 11, 2021 6:23 am; edited 1 time in total
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GeorgeB
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 11, 2021 6:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tony made it clear that Buddy could be just the opposite to being a jerk. Sometimes we only read the worse about celebrities when one has a reputation. because it sells more magazines or papers.

Regardless of what I or anyone may think about Buddy as a person, in my view he was the best drummer in his time, and I regret never having the opportunity to see him perform live.[/quote]
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trumpetteacher1
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 11, 2021 8:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hermokiwi, that Menza interview was awesome, thanks for posting.

Jeff
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khedger
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2021 10:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One story I remember about Buddy was that in the late 60s they needed an alto player and Menza (who was the 'straw boss' on the band) convinced Art Pepper to join the band. Pepper had been out of prison for a while, drinking a lot and playing a lot of jam sessions and rock gigs. He was very reticent about his ability, at that point, to cut the gig. However, Menza convinced him. So Pepper's on the band a short while (I think it may have been weeks, but my memory's failing me) and Pepper has this big medical issue that lands him in the hospital for several weeks. Real touch and go stuff.
Apparently Rich paid all of the hospital bills and told Pepper to take his time, get well, and his job would be there when he was ready. I've heard similar stories about Sinatra...

It occurs to me that I probably read this in Art Pepper's book ...

keith


Last edited by khedger on Fri May 21, 2021 10:07 pm; edited 1 time in total
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blbaumgarn
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2021 8:29 pm    Post subject: A funny Buddy Rich story Reply with quote

"Hello, my name is Chevy Chase and Buddy Rich is still dead!"
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jhatpro
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2021 5:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think a lot of tough guys were generous. Sinatra reportedly paid for Red Rodney's dental implants and Sweets Edison liked to say "Frank paid for my house."
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khedger
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PostPosted: Sat May 01, 2021 9:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jhatpro wrote:
I think a lot of tough guys were generous. Sinatra reportedly paid for Red Rodney's dental implants and Sweets Edison liked to say "Frank paid for my house."


I heard a story that the actor Lee J. Cobb was in the hospital with non-trivial medical problem. Sinatra, who had never met him, flew to NYC paid his hospital bills. Talking to him in his hospital room, Cobb asked Sinatra why he had done it. Sinatra replied that he thought Cobb was a really fine actor.

keith
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Halflip
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PostPosted: Sat May 01, 2021 11:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Getting back to Buddy Rich, let's not forget -- there's an off chance he might be Sterling Archer's father!

Which reminds me, R.I.P. Jessica Walter -- a fine actress and a fine human being.
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Brad361
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PostPosted: Fri May 21, 2021 11:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is the Buddy Rich story I heard, from a well-known trumpet player who was subbing with his band.
This story is similar to a previous one regarding a trombone player who missed a note in a solo. Supposedly, Buddy Rich came up behind him and hit with a pair of drumsticks quite hard, in the back of his head, and said “you’re fired.”

It’s hard to know which stories are true, which are exaggerated or simply false, but I agree with whoever mentioned that we’re fortunate to have guys like Tony Scodwell here on TH, guys who actually lived some of this history.

Regardless of Rich’s personality, I was fortunate to see him in concert twice in Chicago, he could do things on a drumset that humans should not even be capable of doing.😳

Brad
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american boy
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PostPosted: Fri May 21, 2021 2:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was on the band 2X and I seriously doubt that Buddy said your fired on the bandstand after hitting the guy with sticks..No way!
Yes Buddy was intense.He expected his band to be 100% into it, but i`m sure he realized that we`re human and not perfect.He could be funny too;
When I first got on the band,since i`m 6'3" I would play the gig with no shoes so I could see the carts better(no heals) So the night would start and they would announce "Buddy Rich" and he woud jump up on the stand,walk thru the trumpet section,and when he saw that I had no shoes on he would say "Hey Mose,watch your toes" (My last name is Moses)
Another time, he flipped me the keys to his Corvette to move it to a long term parking lot(he decided to ride the bus)..Gotta say I was a bit nervous doing that,but it worked out..Buddy was a monster drummer with chops that most can only dream about..I did enjoy Mel Lewis`s playing a bit more as far as subtle swinging, but Buddy was a monster.
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Tony Scodwell
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PostPosted: Sat May 22, 2021 8:17 am    Post subject: Another "Buddy-ism" Reply with quote

Buddy had already one heart attack years before and now he had yet another and open heart surgery was required. On the gurney ready to be rolled into the operating room, the anesthesioligist asked Buddy if he was allergic to anything. On his back about to have serious surgery Buddy looked up and said "country and western". Buddy's daughter Kathy had a famous Godfather named Jerry Lewis. I was walking through a big shopping mall here in Las Vegas after Buddy's surgery and was going down the escalator alongside Jerry Lewis. I said to him that Buddy would do anything to copy Lewis' style. Jerry Lewis had similar surgery recently and his no comment said a lot.

Tony Scodwell
www.scodwellusa.com
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spitvalve
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PostPosted: Sat May 22, 2021 9:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I saw the Buddy Rich band when I was in high school. The lead trumpet player scuffed a note and Buddy flipped a drumstick at him, pulled another stick from his bag and kept playing with no interruption.
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khedger
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PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2021 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I saw the band a few times and Buddy was an utter professional on all of the shows. Band kicked ass. I will say that at one show he didn't seem too enthused to be there - Seaworld in Orlando in the middle of a summer afternoon. The band was playing on a decorative barge, in the water at the edge of the phony lake they used for the water ski shows...ha ha ha. It was HOT and HUMID....the band finished and everybody (including Buddy) just kind of shuffled off of the 'barge' and headed for the nearest watering hole.
Another time I saw him, this would have been probably in 1979, it was the typical band of young turks for the most part. But when I surveyed the trumpet section, way down on the far right was a little black guy who HAD to be in his 50s. He played most of the jazz solos and played them well. It took me a while to realize that it was Johnny Coles, who was about the last person I expected to see on the Rich band in 1979!

keith
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HERMOKIWI
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PostPosted: Wed May 26, 2021 1:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A friend of mine saw Buddy at the Oar House in Omaha. He told me that Lin Biviano was playing the lead book that night and that Lin had been frequenting the bar extensively before the first set. He said that before the first set Lin went on the bandstand to, apparently, get his book in order but he was already so drunk that he fumbled with his folder, the stand tipped over and the charts went everywhere. Lin calmly set his stand back up, collected his parts and put them back in his folder and then jettisoned his folder to points unknown. He then proceeded to play the whole gig with no music at all on his stand. He apparently knew the whole book without looking at the music.
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Proteus
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PostPosted: Wed May 26, 2021 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In '76 or '77 I was a university music student working at a summer camp west of Ottawa when I found out the band would be playing an hour's drive away at the now long-gone Rideau Ferry Inn, a popular local place with regular musical entertainment and a dance floor. This was in semi-rural Ontario and the manager must have just slotted this stop along the way to bigger and better venues. I was sitting close enough to turn the pages of the bari sax book, so was in heaven - and almost in the band. When Buddy called a slow blues solo number for the bari player the rest of the band turned off their stand lights after the intro and relaxed for chorus after chorus...a little too much. I could hear the soloist winding up to the finish and can still see in slow motion the dawning horror on the faces of the brass players as they realized - too late - they weren't going to be able to grab their horns and turn on the stand lights in time to make the big ensemble entry that Buddy was building up to. Sure enough, it was a train wreck for about 3 beats and Buddy clearly mouthed "Effing band!!!!" loud enough for the band to hear. I don't think the audience even noticed but the players looked like they'd been whipped. Of course the next piece was one of the hardest and fastest in the book...and no one missed a note. In the boonies or not, Buddy made sure the band gave 110% every time.
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rothman
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Over the years a few funny episodes took place of Buddy squaring off with lead players Bobby Shew and Dave Stahl. In regard to Shew, apparently there were a few disagreements about tempos or something else, and finally said to him something like, "Buddy, why not let us worry about the music, and just play the drums."

"That's it.. you're gone" Buddy told him.

The other was a rant thrown on the bandstand toward Dave Stahl, where tensions escalated over the weeks, high notes hung out over the bars which probably caused Buddy's nerves to boil, got up from the drums, and attempted a throwdown during the tune, which the band intervened to prevent..who knows what.

On the bus when discussing his time with Tommy Dorsey, added, "You guys think I'M tough ?" So the Dorsey band - may be where he learned or picked up some harsher traits.
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khedger
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 12, 2021 10:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rothman wrote:


On the bus when discussing his time with Tommy Dorsey, added, "You guys think I'M tough ?" So the Dorsey band - may be where he learned or picked up some harsher traits.


Apparently Dorsey was a REAL a**hole. I think I read in Mel Torme's book an account of him being called over to Dorsey's apt. Dorsey wanted to talk him into coming on the road with the band. Dorsey had just married (I don't know to whom). Dorsey answers the door in a robe and beckons Torme in. A little later Dorsey's wife came into the room and Dorsey went off praising her, hmm, 'womanly virtues', beckoning Torme to "Check out her t**s". I've heard other tales of him being a rough customer. All second (or third or fourth ....hand)....

keith
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terrys17
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 13, 2021 3:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

re the comments about bobby shew and the "let us worry about the music" I heard bobby's version at a lesson I took with him a number of years ago. According to him they could pretty much say most things to buddy without consequence (like play the drums let us worry about the music) He fired bobby a bunch of times and always hired him back. The last time was after making a comment like that without realizing there were reporters or something like this right around the corner and overheard this. That was when he got fired for real because he had a badass image to maintain. Even after that he always liked bobby.
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