Monthly Archives: July 2009

George Russell Influenced Future of Jazz

GeorgeRussellBOSTON (AP) — Jazz composer George Russell, a MacArthur fellow whose theories influenced the modal music of Miles Davis and John Coltrane, has died.

His publicist says Russell, who taught at the New England Conservatory, died Monday in Boston at age 86 of complications from Alzheimer’s.

Russell was born in Cincinnati in 1923 and attended Wilberforce University. He played drums in Benny Carter’s band and later wrote “Cubano Be/Cubano Bop” for Dizzy Gillespie’s orchestra. It premiered at Carnegie Hall in 1947 and was the first fusion of Afro-Cuban rhythms with jazz.

Russell developed the Lydian concept in 1953. It’s credited as the first theoretical contribution from jazz.

George Russell – Ezz-Thetics

Happy Birthday Cliff 7/20

Cliff in colorCliff Truesdell is a musician, songwriter, recording engineer, sound designer and the author of Mastering Digital Audio Production: The Professional Studio Workflow with OS X, and Introducing Reason 4. Currently based in San Francisco, Cliff’s credits as a musician, composer and producer include three CDs with punk rock and roll band Black Furies, as well as original music for television shows, independent movies and video games.

Missing Pamela

Martin, Pamela Ann

MARTIN, PAMELA ANN TAYLOR, of Cambridge, MA, passed away on July 7, 2009, at her home. Born in Philadelphia, Pa. on September 8, 1946 and raised in Wildwood Crest, NJ, she graduated Wildwood High School Class of 1964, and graduated the University of Massachusetts Amherst Campus in June, 1968. She then attended Cambridge University in Cambridge, England during the Summer of 1968, and graduated Boston University School of Law with her Juris Doctorate Degree in 1971. She wrote for the Boston Law Review on the legalities and ill-legalities of Richard Nixon’s Invasion of Cambodia, and worked with William Kunstlers’ defense of the Chicago 8 from the riots during the 1968 Democratic Convention. In 1971, she opened Geller, Miller, Taylor & Weinberg, a neighborhood law firm representing the less privileged in Cambridge, MA. She worked for the greater Boston Legal Services, worked as an Assistant District Attorney with the Middlesex Juvenile Justice Division, Commonworth Of Massachusetts, and taught law at Boston University School of Law.

Pam met and married Richard Martin from London, U.K., moved to England in 1986. She returned to school and received her English law degree, and worked with the law firm of Jay Benning & Peltz in their criminal and civil litigation division, completing her career with The Financial Services Authority, London, U.K. as a solicitor consultant. Richard passed and Pam returned to Cambridge, MA, where she lived in retirement until her passing.

Pam is survived by her father, Allen B. Taylor, Jr.; a sister, Debbie McAlarnen and her husband, Francis; her brother, Allen E. and his wife, Lisa; step-children both here and abroad; many nieces and nephews; great nieces and great nephews. She was preceded in death by her mother, Dorothy L. Taylor.

Pam will be laid to rest on Wednesday, July 15, 2009, at the Cold Spring Presbyterian Cemetery located on Seashore Road in Lower Township. Friends may call at 1 p.m. for a graveside service. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to your favorite charity or The ALS Association, Julie McKeever, 321 Norristown Rd., Ste. 260, Ambler, PA 19002 in Pam’s name.


In September, a gathering was organized by Pam’s dear friend and colleague, Phil Weinberg. We shared photographs, stories, some tears, some laughter. Family members told stories of the Pamela we never knew, the high school student, the wonderful young sailor. The world has lost a splendid woman, a brilliant wit and intellect, a selfless and devoted friend to those she held close, and a righteous warrior for justice. I read this poem by W. H. Auden:

Law, Like Love

Law, say the gardeners, is the sun,
Law is the one
All gardeners obey
To-morrow, yesterday, to-day.Law is the wisdom of the old,
The impotent grandfathers feebly scold;
The grandchildren put out a treble tongue,
Law is the senses of the young.

Law, says the priest with a priestly look,
Expounding to an unpriestly people,
Law is the words in my priestly book,
Law is my pulpit and my steeple.

Law, says the judge as he looks down his nose,
Speaking clearly and most severely,
Law is as I’ve told you before,
Law is as you know I suppose,
Law is but let me explain it once more,
Law is The Law.

Yet law-abiding scholars write:
Law is neither wrong nor right,
Law is only crimes
Punished by places and by times,
Law is the clothes men wear
Anytime, anywhere,
Law is Good morning and Good night.

Others say, Law is our Fate;
Others say, Law is our State;
Others say, others say
Law is no more,
Law has gone away.

And always the loud angry crowd,
Very angry and very loud,
Law is We,
And always the soft idiot softly Me.

If we, dear, know we know no more
Than they about the Law,
If I no more than you
Know what we should and should not do
Except that all agree
Gladly or miserably
That the Law is
And that all know this
If therefore thinking it absurd
To identify Law with some other word,
Unlike so many men
I cannot say Law is again,

No more than they can we suppress
The universal wish to guess
Or slip out of our own position
Into an unconcerned condition.
Although I can at least confine
Your vanity and mine
To stating timidly
A timid similarity,
We shall boast anyvay:
Like love I say.

Like love we don’t know where or why,
Like love we can’t compel or fly,
Like love we often weep,
Like love we seldom keep.

Pamela spent a lot of time in the south of France,
especially Cassis, but we had a wonderful holiday in
Paris staying in an apartment here on the Quai
Voltaire lent to us by a dear and generous friend.

Obamas Tour Cape Coast Castle


Ghana’s Cape Coast Castle, one of many African coastal fortresses where captives were held, often for months in crowded darkness, still has the power to chill the blood, to break the heart. The youngest, strongest, most vital men, women and children were held in these dungeons before they were herded through the doors of no return and onto ships for the further horrors of the middle passage and lives of enslavement.

Yes, some argue responsibility all around, but no demand, no supply.