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Studio legend Carol Kaye joins COC Studio Jazz Ensemble

Posted: May 5, 2009 3:55 p.m.
Updated: May 15, 2009 1:53 p.m.

Kaye will speak to the audience about her 10,000 studio recording sessions as well as join the COC Studio Jazz Ensemble on guitar and bass.

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Legendary studio musician Carol Kaye will join the award winning COC Studio Jazz Ensemble Friday, May 15 at 7:30 p.m., on the main stage at the Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center at College of the Canyons.

The evening will include Kaye speaking to the audience about her 10,000 studio recording sessions as well as joining the band on guitar and bass. Some of the artists she has recorded with include Elvis Presley, Sonny and Cher, Barbra Streisand, Ritchie Valens, Lou Rawls and The Beach Boys.

Her credits include hit television shows and movie scores such as "M*A*S*H," "Mission Impossible," "Brady Bunch," "Kojak," "Beneath the Planet of the Apes," "Poseidon Adventure" and more.

Kaye also presented a seminar/clinic yesterday at 2 p.m. in Pico Canyon Hall 202. Her demonstrations will be on both the guitar and bass and include the role of the rhythm musician in an ensemble and the importance knowing the basics.

Kaye has authored many pedogocial books and recordings and these will be on sale at the seminar as well as the concert. This event is free.

The public is invited and tickets [$10/$5] are available at the door.

About Carol Kaye
Carol Kaye was born in Everett, Washington to musician parents, Clyde and Dot Smith, both professionals.

She has played and taught guitar professionally since 1949, played bebop jazz guitar in dozens of nightclubs around Los Angeles with top groups (also in Bob Neal's jazz group with Jack Sheldon backing Lenny Bruce, with Teddy Edwards, Billy Higgins etc.), accidentally got into studio work late 1957 with the Sam Cooke recordings and other big recordings on guitar for the 1st 5 years of studio work in Hollywood.

In 1963 when a Fender bassist didn't show up for a record date at Capitol Records, she picked up the Fender bass (as it was called then) and augmented her busy schedule playing bass and grew quickly to be the No. 1 call with record companies, movie & TV film people, commercials (ads), and industrial films.

She enjoyed working under the direction of Michel LeGrand, Quincy Jones, Elmer Bernstein, Lalo Schifrin, David Rose, David Grusin, Ernie Freeman, Hugo Montenegro, Leonard Rosenman, John Williams, Alfred & Lionel Newman, etc. as well as the numerous hits she recorded for hundreds of recording artists.

A note from Carol...
There were around 350 really great studio musicians who played together, created lines together (especially the rhythm sections), and had the right attitude to constantly work some round-the-clock hours almost every day of the year to help create and perform in the studios.

My fellow studio musicians and I had no idea this music would live on so well, but it's awfully nice to be driving in the car and know:

"Oh, there's Earl's fine fills; there's Hal's great tom-toms; ah, nice piano, Larry; beautiful trumpet, Ollie; good violins, you all; great percussion Gene and Victor; perfect time, Don" and on and on.

I was raised by musician-parents and just sort of grew up around music, we were poor, but when music was played, you had a sparkle in your life. And the sparkle is still there years later after all the recording we did, for when you turn on the radio, there are all my fellow musicians.

I grew fond of so many, we were all in it together, pulling together for a hit, and loved to groove together. The looks, the feel of the music, the inside quick joke, it was a warm feeling.

The coffee and vending machines got a work out too as sometimes we had to eat out of cans (no time to eat), sleep on our 5-minute break on the floor (get 8 hours sleep a night, are you kidding?), run to the next date.

People used to ask how you got in the studios, we'd all say: "learn how to grab a parking place, don't be late, and carry a pencil, don't be egotistical, oh and yes, know how to create, read music and play your --- off!"

Just a small sampling of what others say:
* Brian Wilson: "Carol, you're the greatest d--- bass player in the world."
* Merv Griffin: "I love Carol Kaye, she's the best."
* Lou Rawls: "Carol played great on all my hits (60's) and she was cool."
* Jazz singer Joe Williams: "Carol Kaye, as black as she wants to be."
* Dr. John (Mac Rabbenac): "Carol Kaye is a sweetheart and a kick-a--guitar player as well as a kick-a-- bass player!"

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