Happy 97th Birthday, Terry🎂

Happy 97th Birthday, Terry🎂

Happy 97th Birthday, Terry

On Wednesday, October 13th, vibraphonist, big and small bandleader, composer, author, and TV music director Terry Gibbs celebrates his 97th birthday. For six decades, I have been a big Terry Gibbs fan. There is an energy in his music which I find irresistible.

Terry is in relatively good health and possesses an astonishing memory; he can recall details, personnel, and stories of just about every recording session and album he has done, going back to 1955 or before. Even back then, he found novel settings for his vibes playing, including alongside two other stellar vibes players on one album and a 5-horn big band sax section on another. In the 1950s, few women instrumentalists were afforded their proper respect; Terry toured and recorded for years with Terry Pollard as pianist (she is also an excellent vibist; check them out on YouTube) and Alice Coltrane, nee McLeod, who also played piano, and some vibes, with him.

I got to meet Terry on March 9, 2006, at the recording session for his CD “Findin’ the Groove,” (JazzedMediaJM1021) at Entourage Studios in North Hollywood. I was a guest of his son Gerry, whom I had met previously in San Antonio through my late brother, Fred Weiss. Gerry has done several CDs for my Whaling City Sound label and was the drummer for the session.

Just a few years ago, Terry came out of retirement and recorded “92 Years Young: Jammin’ at the Gibbs House,” and that CD, like several of Terry’s pre-retirement recordings, went to #1 on the JazzWeek radio chart.

Today his son Gerry sits at top of the Jazzweek chart with his latest, “Songs From My Father,” a two CD collection of songs written by Terry, and which Gerry has played his whole life. Joining Gerry in his tribute to his “Pops” are four “Thrasher Dream Trios”: Kenny Barron and Buster Williams, Patrice Rushen and Larry Goldings (organ), Geoff Keezer and Christian McBride and Chick Corea (his last recording) and Ron Carter.

Terry is very pleased with how these spectacular talents interpretated and explored his tunes in their own personal way. Sometimes it takes a while for some obvious talent and artworks to be suitably displayed and appreciated.

On your birthday, Terry, on behalf of your legion of fans, I want to wish you a happy 97th and thank you for sharing your gifts with us. Keep it up.

Neal Weiss

President, Whaling City Sound and fan of Terry and Gerry Gibbs

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Mike Renzi/WCS

Mike Renzi/WCS

with Jim Porcella

Christmas Is: December Duets

Whaling City Sound Website

Available now on

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Press Release

Photos: Promotional Photo 1, Promotional Photo 2

Publicity: The Rhode Show, Midwest Book Review, Studio 10 WJAR, What’s Up Newport, All About Jazz, Jazz Weekly, Bill Copeland Music News, DownBeat December 2020, JazzSquare (Russian), Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame

Distribution: NAXOS of America

Mixed Media Client since: 2020

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Christmas Is 72

O’s Notes: Pianist Mike Renzi sets out to make something greater than the standard “Christmas Album”. He addresses the Holidays from different cultures and expressions. Renzi teams up with veteran vocalist Jim Porcella for ten duets, all classics done with class.
D. Oscar  Groomes
O’s Place Jazz Newsletter

Award-winning pianist Mike Renzi with baritone vocal performer Jim Porcella present Christmas Is, a holiday-themed album ideal for setting a mood of celebration, joy, and compassion. Wonderful, warmhearted, and evocative, Christmas Is flows beautifully and is highly recommended for both personal and public library music collections. The tracks are “Cool Yule”, “The Christmas Song”, “The Holiday Song”, “Our First Christmas”, “Blue Christmas”, “Christmas Is”, “I’ve Got My Love To Keep Me Warm”, “A Christmas Love Song”, “Snowfall”, and “Winter Wonderland”.

Review by

James A. Cox

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