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Memories of Horace Silver

Jazzed Magazine • News • July 11, 2014

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More thoughts on influential composer and bandleader Horace Silver poured in over the past two weeks.  The Symphonic Jazz Orchestra, on whose Music Advisory Board Silver served, called him a “champion of new music.”

“Horace was one of the SJO’s founding Music Advisory Board members and helped get the fledgling organization on its feet 13 years ago,” the SJO stated. “He was a tremendous advocate of new talent, not just for the SJO but through the course of his historic career.”

At the New Music Box blog, trumpet player John McNeil wrote a moving remembrance ( of his time with Silver, painting the picture of a respected leader who valued detail work and rehearsal.  “Respect and musical etiquette were very important to Horace,” writes McNeil. “For instance, he was a real stickler for being on time. He said right at the beginning, “I’ll never ask you cats to work one extra minute without getting paid for it. In return, when it’s time to start, you have to be onstage ready to play. Start on time, end on time, period. If you’re late, it’s twenty-five bucks.” This was still the 1970s, don’t forget; twenty-five bucks was significant.

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