Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Al Sharpe's Big Money in Jazz Band at The Savoy Tivoli

There's a ton of jazz history in this shot I took at The Savoy Tivoli in North Beach. It shows Al Sharpe's Big Money in Jazz Band, featuring players that have sat in with the greatest jazzmen of the 20th Century including Count Basie and Ellington.

The woman seated in the audience on the right looking toward the camera, in the white coat and black baseball cap, is the legendary 91 year old swing dancer, Norma Miller, born in Harlem in 1919. She made her name there at the famous Savoy Ballroom. She is the author of a book on Swing Dancing and has worked with all the greats from Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holliday, Artie Shaw and others. She appeared in many movies including 1941's Hellzapoppin' and Spike Lee's Malcolm X. The room was super saturated with Jazz giants and I was really buzzed to be there.
Below is a poster celebrating Ms. Miller's 91st Birthday and shows a shot of her in her dancing prime.

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