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RIP Frank Foster from the Basie Band


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NY Times Obituary


When my dad introduced me to 'April in Paris' by the Count Basie Orchestra back around 1965, I was totally floored. I was just in a transitionary phase between 'kids' records and establishing my preferences in 'big people's' music. I already had a love for Symphonic and 30s/40s Swing, and had heard a fair amount of popular music of the time, but this single album opened up a completely different world to me. From there it was a short hop to Duke Ellington, Frank, Ella, Toots, Mel, Louis and a host of others.


In fact, my enduring love for bass stems from that album. There's a track called "Li'l Darlin' " that has a superb bass slide at the very end. It's so perfect in every way and complements the song to such a degree that I started really listening to bass tracks in every other tune I listened to.


Foster didn't write that song, nor did he arrange it, but his fingerprints are all over that album. For this, I thank him.


Rest well, Mr. Foster. You made an impact on music for over 60 years and we're all the better for it.

Play. Just play.
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