Born: September 26, 1940
Jazz saxophonist Gary Bartz first came to New York in 1958 to attend the Julliard Conservatory of Music. Just 17 years old, Gary couldn't wait to come to the city to play and learn. It was a very good time for the music in New York, at the end of what had been the be-bop era, says Bartz. Charlie Parker had passed away three years previously but Miles' group was in its heyday, Monk was down at the Five Spot, and Ornette Coleman was just coming to town. Things were fresh. Back then, Gary could regularly be found drinking Cokes in the all ages peanut gallery of Birdland, enjoying a marathon bill of performers. If I didn't have money to get in. I'd help somebody carry a drum and sneak in, laughs Bartz. I learned that early on....
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