Sidney Bechet, My father memories from the World of jazz by Daniel Sidney is the biography of Sidney Bechet is ranked among the greatest of the early masters of jazz, up there with Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington and Dizzy Gillespie. Born of a Creole family in New Orleans, and very conscious of the evils of slavery, his genius flowered at an early age. He is acknowledged as the greatest ever player of the soprano saxophone and he also played the clarinet. He toured widely in the US and Europe. During his short stay in England in 1919 he played before the King. From 1949 until his death in 1959 he lived in France where is still revered. Some of his compositions such as Petite Fleur are jazz classics.
Daniel-Sidney Bechet was only five when his father died but his whole life has been spent promoting his father’s memory and he became an accomplished jazz musician himself. This book describes his father’s life as well as his own. It provides fascinating glimpses of the world of jazz in the US and in France and of the personalities he encounters: Lena Horne, Edith Piaf, Yves Montand, Kenny Clarke, Moustache and many more.
Included with the book a free CD of Bechet’s music, “Homage” played by Daniel’s own Jazz Quintet.