We lived on Linden Street at the time I was exposed to the music of Stan Kenton. My brother, Fred, and I shared a room on the first floor, just off the dining room, in which we had our work tables. Our father had built the tables especially for us. Fred’s was used for his radio/electronics hobby, and mine was for my model airplanes.
Of course, having the radio/electronics hobby, Fred had a record player. And also of course, he and his friend, Doug, started collecting records. At that time, only 78 rpm records were available, which contained only one tune on each side. (To contain the same number of tunes as currently on my iPod would have required over 1600 records.) The local record store, in downtown Rochester, had booths in which we could listen to the records before we purchased them.
One of the records that Fred bought was “Eager Beaver” by Stan Kenton and his orchestra. The flip side was “Artistry In Rhythm”. I had never heard of Stan Kenton, but was about to be baptized in his “progressive jazz”.
Being teenagers, Fred and I sometimes stayed up all night working on our various projects. And while we worked, we listened to music. Sometimes, the radio, sometimes records. And one time it was “Eager Beaver” played not once, not twice, but over and over and over. The record was finally worn out, which caused no end of consternation to Fred, but a certain degree of joy to me.
Well, sad to say, Fred went right out and bought a new copy of “Eager Beaver” to replace the worn out one. Without hesitation, I broke the old one over his head. And ever since, I’ve been a fan of Stan Kenton‘s music. Go figure!