Lorraine Gordon

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Lorraine Gordon
Lorraine-Gordon-at-Village-Vanguard-2004.jpg
Gordon at the Village Vanguard, c. 2004
Born Lorraine Stein
(1922-10-15)October 15, 1922
Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
Died June 9, 2018(2018-06-09) (aged 95)
New York City, New York, U.S.
Nationality American
Occupation Jazz club owner
Known for Jazz advocacy
Village Vanguard
Notable credit(s) NEA Jazz Master
Website villagevanguard.com

Lorraine Gordon (née Stein; October 15, 1922 – June 9, 2018) was an American jazz music advocate, the owner of the Village Vanguard jazz club in Greenwich Village, New York City, and the author of a memoir on jazz music.

Life and career

Gordon grew up in Newark, New Jersey. As a teenager, she was an ardent fan of jazz music.[1]

In 1942 she married Alfred Lion, co-founder of Blue Note Records. In the 1940s, Gordon and Lion recorded the works of jazz artists such as the clarinetist Sidney Bechet and pianist Thelonious Monk. In 1949 she married Max Gordon, owner of the Village Vanguard club in New York. Established in 1935, the club gained a reputation among jazz musicians in the late 1950s and became a fashionable place to record live performances. In the 1960s, as a member of the peace activist group Women Strike for Peace, Gordon rallied against nuclear weapons testing and the Vietnam War. In the 1980s she worked at the Brooklyn Museum. After Max Gordon's death in 1989, she assumed ownership and management of the Vanguard club.[2][3][4] She continued the club's dedication to jazz music and maintained its reputation as a premier jazz club.[5]

Gordon's autobiographical memoir, Alive at the Village Vanguard: My Life In and Out of Jazz Time, was published in 2006, and chronicles her lifelong involvement with jazz music.[1][6] In it she wrote, "I didn't arrive at the Village Vanguard from out of the blue. I stuck to what I loved. That was my art. I'm not a musician; I'm not a singer; I'm not a painter; I'm not an actress. I'm none of those things. But throughout my life I followed the course of the music that I loved."[2][7] The book received the ASCAP Deems Taylor Award for excellence in music print publishing.[8]

In 2013 Gordon's contribution to jazz music was recognized by the U.S. National Endowment for the Arts, and she received the NEA Jazz Master Award for jazz advocacy.[2] She actively engaged in the management of Vanguard club until late 2012. She died on June 9, 2018, at age 95.[4][9]

References

  1. ^ a b "Lorraine Gordon's Alive at the Village Vanguard". Jazz News. Archived from the original on March 23, 2014. Retrieved March 8, 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c "NEA Jazz Masters - Lorraine Gordon". Washington: National Endowment for the Arts. Archived from the original on March 23, 2014. Retrieved March 8, 2014. 
  3. ^ Felix Contreras (February 27, 2007). "Lorraine Gordon, Keeper of a Shrine to Jazz". NPR.org. Archived from the original on January 28, 2010. Retrieved March 8, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b Tim Weiner (June 9, 2018). "Lorraine Gordon, Keeper of the Village Vanguard Flame, Dies at 95". New York Times. Archived from the original on June 10, 2018. Retrieved June 9, 2018. 
  5. ^ Ashley Kahn (February 8, 2005). "After 70 Years, The Village Vanguard Is Still in the Jazz Swing". The Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on August 5, 2016. Retrieved March 8, 2014. 
  6. ^ Russ Musto (January 14, 2007). "Book Review: Alive at the Village Vanguard: My Life in and Out of Jazz Time". All About Jazz. Archived from the original on February 9, 2007. Retrieved March 8, 2014. 
  7. ^ Lorraine Gordon; Barry Singer (2006). Alive at the Village Vanguard: My Life In and Out of Jazz Time. Hal Leonard Corporation. p. 241. ISBN 9780634073991. Retrieved March 8, 2014. 
  8. ^ "40th Annual ASCAP Deems Taylor Awards Announced". American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. Archived from the original on October 29, 2010. Retrieved March 8, 2014. 
  9. ^ Nate Chinen (January 15, 2013). "A Swinging Party With Old Friends". New York Times. Archived from the original on November 5, 2017. Retrieved June 12, 2018. 

External links

  • Village Vanguard, Official website
  • The Dozens: Live at the Village Vanguard at the Wayback Machine (archived March 3, 2016)
  • Live at the Village Vanguard – 2012 and 2013 recordings.
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