Happy 84th Birthday, Sam Rivers
How did I discover Sam Rivers? I can't really remember the exact circumstances, but in all likelihood it was either through researching Julian Priester and his discography, or possibly through his famous composition, Beatrice. I do know for a fact, however, that the first recording of his that I purchased was Fuschia Swing Song -- it was during my trip to Japan with Jay Thomas in 1999 that I found this classic Blue Note side on CD (it wasn't yet available in the US), and it stayed in my regular rotation for the rest of that year. His music is inventive, progressive, and challenging, yet deeply connected with the traditions of Coleman Hawkins and Sonny Rollins -- at least to my ears. He's still out there causing trouble with his Rivbea All-Star Orchestra in addition to numerous small group dates every year. All hail Sam Rivers! Happy Birthday! Enjoy the videos.