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Classic John Handy Quintet Reunites

Alto saxophonist John Handy’s quintet will celebrate the 40th anniversary of its live recording from the 1965 Monterey Jazz Festival with a weeklong stint at the Iridium Jazz Club in New York, N.Y. with the Henry Grimes Trio. The all-star lineup will perform nightly from July 13-18, 2004.

The original band members from Handy’s Columbia recording Live at Monterey will reunite for this musical event. The group includes violinist Michael White, guitarist Jerry Hahn, bassist Don Thompson and drummer Terry Clarke. Grimes, who had been absent from the music world since the late 1960s (he had, in fact, been missing from the world at large until he was found in late 2002), will play with his trio and a variety of special guests. The guests will include drummer Andrew Cyrille, plus trumpeter Dave Douglas on July 13, saxophonist Gary Bartz on July 14 and reedist Bennie Maupin on July 15-18.

Live at Monterey was originally recorded in 1965 at the Monterey Jazz Festival. The LP on Columbia is now out of print, but a new, digitally re-mastered version is available on Koch Jazz. The album features several very lengthy songs, including the 27-minute “If We Only Knew” and the 19-minute “Spanish Lady.”

Handy is a renowned saxophonist and composer who has been playing professionally since he was 15 years old and has worked with musicians like Charles Mingus, the Mingus Dynasty Band and Ali Akbar Khan.

Grimes, who made a comeback onto the jazz scene after receiving a new bass from fellow bassist William Parker, has played on more than 50 albums, including works by Albert Ayler, Benny Goodman, Steve Lacy, Charles Mingus, Roswell Rudd, Cecil Taylor and Sonny Rollins.

The Iridium Jazz Club is located 1650 Broadway on the corner of 51st Street in New York, N.Y. Show times are 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. nightly. Tickets cost between $27.50 and $30. For reservations, call 212-582-2121. For more information, visit

Originally Published