Bird Call
  • SS 18038
    SS 18038
  • Vi Redd
    Vi Redd

Vi Redd

Bird Call

Fresh Sound 1600 Series

Vi Redd (as, vcl), Carmell Jones (tp), Russ Freeman (p), Roy Ayers (vib), Herb Ellis (g), Leroy Vinnegar, Bob Whitlock (b), Richie Goldberg (d)

Reference: FSRCD 1671

Bar code: 8427328616713

Vi Redd (1928 -) began singing in church at the age of five and, after studying piano for a while, went on to blow a C Melody saxophone that her great-aunt Alma Hightower, a noted music teacher, had given her at 10 years old, while she was still in high school.

In 1948, she started performing on neighborhood sessions while continuing to study music and making social science her major. In 1954 after she graduated from the L.A. State College, she played and sang with small local bands, such as the Dick Hart orchestra, among others. At the same time, she discovered the obstacles that explained the scarcity of jazzwomen. “I can’t see any advantages for a girl musician. I found nothing but disadvantages,” explained Vi. In 1957, she decided to gave up music and only came back to jazz after three years as a county social worker.

From March 1962, Vi began playing a regular Monday night gig at the Red Carpet Room in Los Angeles. What immediately stood out about her was that few musicians had a more Bird-like sound or a more grounded blues feel than her. In addition to her skills on the saxophone, she was a singer with warm, gospel and blues timbre.

Vi's unique sound quickly made her the talk of the town, leading to the recording of her debut album, 'Bird Call,' showcasing her soulful playing and singing backed by two groups of prominent jazz musicians. The initial lineup features trumpeter Carmell Jones and vibraphonist Roy Ayers, while the second group includes guitarist Herb Ellis. Both rhythm sections are anchored by pianist Russ Freeman and Vi's spouse Richie Goldberg on drums. On double bass, Leroy Vinnegar and Bob Whitlock provide the steady groove. The album, which was produced with the assistance of critic and producer Leonard Feather, received critical acclaim upon its release on the United Artists label.

After the success of 'Bird Call', in 1963 Vi Redd released a second album titled "Lady Soul" under Atlantic Records. Her name quickly became well-known due to frequent appearances at jazz festivals throughout the US and internationally as a soloist with Count Basie's orchestra, which toured Europe and Africa. She also played in various clubs from Copenhagen to Tokyo.

Unfortunately, Miss Redd's reputation might have been more in keeping with her talent if the only two albums she made as a leader hadn't been taken off the market for years. Despite facing obstacles and being temporarily out of the picture for various periods of time, Vi Redd persevered and continued to pave the way for many other talented women of jazz throughout her career.

—Jordi Pujol


01. Now's the Time (Charlie Parker) 5:06
02. Just Friends (Klenner-Lewis) 2:58
03. Medley (Charlie Parker) 3:46
-Cool Blues
04. I Remember Bird (Leonard Feather) 4:33
05. Old Folks (Robison-Lee Hill) 5:35
06. If I Should Lose You (Rainger-Robin) 4:33
07. Summertime (Gershwin-Heyward) 4:06
08. Anthropology (Gillespie-Parker-Bishop) 3:05
09. All the Things You Are (Kern-Hammerstein II) 6:13
10. I'd Rather Have a Memory Than a Dream (Feather-Gaver-Russell) 3:52

Album details

Originally released on 12-inch LP as Vi Redd “Bird Call” (United Artists UAJS 15016)
Subsequently reissued as Solid State SS 18038

Personnel on #1-5:
Vi Redd, alto sax & vocals; Carmell Jones, trumpet; Roy Ayers, vibes; Russ Freeman, piano; Leroy Vinnegar, bass; Richie Goldberg, drums.
Recorded in Los Angeles, May 21, 1962

Personnel on #6-10:
Vi Redd, alto sax & vocals; Russ Freeman, piano; Herb Ellis, guitar; Bob Whitlock, bass; Richie Goldberg, drums.
Recorded in Los Angeles, May 22, 1962

Design & photography: Frank Gauna
Original liner notes: Leonard Feather
New liner notes: Jordi Pujol

Recordings supervised by Leonard Feather
This CD release produced by Jordi Pujol
© 2023 by Fresh Sound Records

Stereo · 24-Bit Digitally Remastered
Blue Moon Producciones Discograficas, S.L.

10,95 €  (tax incl.)

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