Drummer Jimmy Cobb, the only surviving member from the sessions for Miles Davis’ landmark Kind of Blue album, will be honored in the 19th installment of the annual Giants of Jazz series at the South Orange Performing Arts Center, Nov. 26 at 8 p.m.
“It was just another recording date,” he said in a 2013 interview. “I was probably really nervous, because I was going on a recording date with Miles Davis and, you know, you have to be a little nervous. You just want to be able to perform to the best of your ability. … Nobody in the band would ever have thought that, 55 years later, it would be as strong as it still is.”
Cobb — now 87, and still playing — also performed on Davis albums such as Sketches of Spain, Porgy and Bess and Someday My Prince Will Come, and worked with countless other jazz luminaries, including Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughan, Dizzy Gillespie, Clark Terry, Nancy Wilson, Wayne Shorter, Sonny Stitt, Benny Golson and Wes Montgomery.
This will be a music-filled tribute, with performances by many of Cobb’s friends and admirers, including Emmet Cohen, Cyrus Chestnut, Sullivan Fortner, Roberta Gambarini, Roy Hargrove, Antonio Hart, Jimmy Heath, Freddie Hendrix, Victor Lewis, T.S. Monk, Justin Robinson, Claudio Roditi, Kojo Roney, Wallace Roney, Ameen Saleem, Evan Sherman, Tadataka Uno and Buster Williams.
Past honorees in the Giants of Jazz series — founded and organized by bassist John Lee — include Heath, McCoy Tyner, Slide Hampton, Gary Bartz, the late James Moody, the late Clark Terry, the late Frank Wess, the late Benny Powell, the late Dr. Billy Taylor, the late Frank Foster and the late Marian McPartlandn.
For tickets or information, visit sopacnow.org.