Sunday, December 9, 2007

Tom Terrell, Dr. J and Miles

Beloved music journalist Tom Terrell was laid to rest yesterday in Prince George’s County, Maryland.

In memory of him, I point you to two things:

1) Some sweet folks have uploaded a video clip of Tom reminiscing about old-school tennis shoes... in particular, a persuasive TV commercial starring Julius Erving. Click here to see it on YouTube. (Hat-tip: Jeff the Purple.)

2) There’s a new Miles Davis six-CD box set out: “The Complete On The Corner Sessions.” Tom Terrell wrote the liner notes.

In addition to interviewing such sidemen as Michael Henderson and Mtume, Tom shared a personal reminiscence. Here’s what he wrote:
TOM TERRELL: Flashback: Summer of ’73. A tropical, Saturday night house party in my boy Cincinnati’s ground floor garden apartment in Chillum, Md. Fried chicken, MD20-20, bong hits, plenty of fine, friendly sisters and War on the box. Bumpin’!

I don’t know what they was doing in the bedroom but soon as the song faded (“The Cisco Kid he was a friend of mine/Ooo-oo-oooo-oo”) Cincinnati put on Miles Davis Live At The Philharmonic. Hah! Killed the party cold. Dudes cursed, ladies bounced. ’Natti just shrugged and gave the volume maximum overdrive and pushed the “extra bass” button. BOOF!

All of a sudden everybody who stayed started dancing. I started dancing. And we didn’t stop... until the P.G. County cops walked through the patio entrance with a couple of frisky German shepherds. Needless to say, the party broke up.

That Monday afternoon, instead of having a Miles Long pastrami sub – cooked onions, mozzarella and fries – I went downtown to the Soul Shack and copped the two-record set.


DeAngelo Starnes said...

The complete On the Corner sessions? Oh shit! I'm getting a woody!

Anonymous said...

R from LGF sez...

I first met Tom at a DC Throwdown (Rick James/P-Funk) in 84 or 85.

We ran into each other several more times over the years in the DC music scene.

He was always the coolest guy in the room.


Undercover Black Man said...

Hot damn, R! I thought you just popped in on me to rag on Auster a little bit. Now I see I owe you a proper welcome!

Thank you for commenting. I'm not a LGF reader, but I hope there's stuff here that will interest you to read.

Take it easy.

Anonymous said...

Small world stuff eh?

The thing that I remember most about Tom was that he remembered me ten years later.

Tom remembered my name, where and when we'd first met, and the name of the crappy garage metal/punk band I had been in ten years previously.

That impressed the hell out of me. I'd all but forgotten the name of that band.

We ended up spending about two hours in the middle of the night, out in the parking lot of some hole-in-the-wall club in Glen Burnout, Maryland. Talking about good food, (we were both fans of Penny's Rib Shack in Waldorf Maryland), football, and laying waste to my tiny little Whiteboy stash.

I'm so far gone from that music scene these days that I didn't know Tom had passed on until I read it here.

It stung.


I kinda figured you weren't the LGF type after reading about your trials and tribulations with the Huffpooers.

Ever looked up the guy that runs LGF? Charles (Icarus) Johnson.

Serious jazz guitar chops.

I'd love to throw a link to your blog up over there, but you might not want that big of a blog-a-lanch pointed your way.


Undercover Black Man said...

I'd love to throw a link to your blog up over there, but you might not want that big of a blog-a-lanch pointed your way.

Are you kidding, dude? Link away! Hook a brother up!

Thanks, R.

Anonymous said...

Consider it done.

A favor returned.


michael a. gonzales said...

loved this post; tom was the coolest, and he will be missed.

DeAngelo Starnes said...

That's a great story re: the house party. I can see how one would dance to Live at the Philharmonic after MD 20/20 and some bong hits.

Undercover Black Man said...

Michael, thanks for stopping by and commenting. I barely knew Tom at all... to my detriment.

DeAng, did you find out if your brother Nate knew Tom T.?