Tuesday, February 4, 2014

New Book from Bill Mays

Bill Mays turns 70 on February 5th!
In celebration, Musician's Media is pleased to announce
the publication of his first book.

"Without realizing it," Bill says, "I have been writing a book for years, thanks to my collection of old date books, scrawled notes, concert programs, half-forgotten jokes, recalled debacles and mishaps, and stories that come back in the middle of the night."
     An eclectic and versatile musician, Bill has been involved in every imaginable aspect of the business, as a jazz recording artist, composer, arranger, studio musician, accompanist, producer, and educator. And now, author.
     Not a memoir, random entries from a blog, or an autobiography in the traditional sense, Stories of the Road, the Studios, Sidemen & Singers: 55 Years in the Music Biz is a delightful, humorous, and entertaining collection of anecdotes from a musician who has truly done it all.
All net proceeds from this book will go to the
Musicians Assistance Program
of the American Federation of Musicians
This 171-page, 6x9 soft-cover book (which includes dozens of photos) is only available here. To purchase through PayPal click here 
Or, you may send a check or money order for $25, made out to Bill Mays, to: BOOK, c/o Dewey, 147 Blackfoot Road, Shohola, PA 18458
A couple of 'teasers' from the book:
From "The Studios" chapter:
The music contractor at NBC, Al Lapin, was hilarious. He was, after comedian Norm Crosby, the king of malapropisms. Unlike Crosby, though, Lapin's were completely unintentional. Needing a synthesizer player on a Tonight Show segment he told the bandleader Doc Severinsen, "I have Bill Mays coming in to play his sympathizer." One of his other gems was "tell the guitar players to be sure to bring their ample-boxes." His best one, though, came when Severinsen told him to call trumpeter Al Vizzutti to come in and augment the brass section. Lapin was told by the answering service that Vizzutti was out touring with Chick Corea. Lapin reported back to Doc: "Couldn't get Al. He's out with some chick in Korea!"
From the "You-Can't-Make-This-Stuff-Up Dept." chapter:
Many years went by between the time I left L.A. and then reconnected with alto saxophonist Bud Shank. Then, in 2006 he was booked into New York's Iridium jazz club for a week. It so happens I got an ear infection a few days before our opening night. It worsened, and the day of the gig I went to The Manhattan Eye, Ear and Throat Hospital. I was in pain and could hear only slightly in one ear. The receptionist, a beautiful, well-endowed young lady was questioning me and filling out forms. Upon learning my occupation, she said, "Jazz? Wow, I love it. Iridium? My favorite club." I said, "Sounds like you must be a real jazz fan, am I right?" Without a word she reached her right hand over to the top of her sweater and pulled it down. On the upper third of her left breast she had a tattoo of an alto sax, complete with the keys, neck and mouthpiece. I think my ear cleared right up. I didn't dare ask her if she had a tenor sax on the other one.

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