Legendary drummer in 'Jazz Upstairs'
The Bill Goodwin Quartet plays selections from its latest CD, "Raise Four," at 7:30 p.m. April 11, in the "Jazz Upstairs Series," Rodale Community Room, Miller Symphony Hall, 23 N. Sixth St., Allentown.
In addition to Goodwin, his quartet includes Vic Juris, guitar; Adam Niewood, sax, and Adrian Moring, bass.
Goodwin is an icon in the drumming world. Born in Los Angeles in 1942, his career began in 1959. He worked with most of the top-notch names in the jazz world: Bill Evans, Dexter Gordon, Art Pepper and George Shearing. He has backed jazz singers and groups: Joe Williams, Tony Bennett, Mose Allison and Manhattan Transfer.
For three years, Goodwin drummed for Gary Burton. He moved to Mt. Bethel, Northampton County. He and Steve Gilmore joined the Phil Woods Quartet when it was founded n 1974. He played on Tom Waits' "Nighthawks at the Diner" and worked with Steely Dan in the mid-1970s.
It all began for Goodwin at age five when he began taking piano lessons. It was a family tradition for him and his three sisters.
Says Goodwin in a recent phone interview: "There was no TV in those days. We would just gather round the piano in what we called the den and play and sing.
"We had a very comprehensive record collection in the den, and we were encouraged to just hang out and play our music.
"I was about 12 when I became interested in the saxophone. I loved rhythm and blues and Broadway show music. My parents bought me my first sax and I played it all through junior and senior high school in the concert and marching bands.
"In 1954, I became a devout fan of West Coast jazz and began to buy a lot of that music like Dave Brubeck.
"One day, I woke up and decided I liked the drums. So my parents bought me a set and I began to teach myself. I never took a lesson. I just fooled around L.A. and worked my way into gigs. But finally decided I did need some lessons. I was 13 and played my first pro gig. Bu my career never really got off the ground until I was 19 and joined the musicians union."
Goodwin has produced The Phil Woods Quartet-Quintet and Little Big Band recordings since 1980.
Ticket information: allentownsymphony.org, 610-432-6715