1. Cary Ginell, the co-producer of Bix Restored, reported what he said in Artie Shaw's funeral. From
I told of my nerve-wracking first broadcast with him in 2000 and then my final meeting with him in 2003 to discuss Bix Beiderbecke's 100th birthday. Artie's admiration of Bix was not because of the notes Bix played or his technique, it was the sound he produced on his cornet. Artie rhapsodized about this sound and the fact that it could only have come from Bix. Above all, Artie admired the individual and hated when people said they tried to play like Artie did. "Play like yourself," he'd say.
When I asked him to comment on Eddie Condon's oft-heard description of Bix's sound, which was likening it to "a girl saying yes," Artie paused, shook his head and said, "Poor Eddie...He must have been pretty hard up."
2. Forum contributor Joe Mosbrook in
Artie Shaw was just 16 years old when he came to Cleveland from New Haven, Connecticut to play with a band led by Joe Cantor. In 1927, when he was 17 and playing in Cleveland, Shaw began to listen to some jazz records. In an autobiographical essay he wrote in 1995, Shaw remembered his earliest idols -- and jazz influences -- were cornetist Bix Beiderbecke and saxophonist Frank Trumbauer.
Bix and "Tram" were playing together at the time with the Jean Goldkette Orchestra and recording on their own on the side. Beiderbecke was to jazz in 1927 what Babe Ruth was to baseball. Bix added lyrical and creative solos to what, for the most part, had been a hard-driving, raucous style of roaring '20s jazz.
Absorbing some of Beiderbecke's lyrical playing, Shaw added some elements of it to his own playing and soon won a job with Cleveland's leading dance orchestra of the period, the Austin Wylie Orchestra. When he began arranging for Wylie, Shaw also incorporated some of the things he had heard Trumbauer play on record.
I am sure Artie thought that Bix was an extremely talented and unique musician.Shaw was impressed by anyone who could bring something different and special into music.I believe he said this in Berman's Bix documentary. Yes, Bix was an alcoholic, and it is possible or even likely that when he was highly intoxicated, he could not play his cornet. Shaw expressed what is known in a nasty manner. But this does not detract from the admiration Artie had for Bix. A less irascible individual would have said the same thing in a kinder, gentler manner: "Sadly, Bix was addicted to alcohol, and when he was intoxicated, his playing suffered."