Richie Cole

There's a live recording of alto saxophonists Richie Cole and Phil Woods playing Charlie Parker's "Scrapple From the Apple" at breakneck speed, each thoroughly versed in the ways of the Bird, both propelling each other at Denver's Paramount Theatre. That was back in 1980. It was one of those shows (most likely put together by local legendary jazz promoter Dick Gibson) where everyone was firing on all cylinders. Even though Cole was nearly two decades younger than Woods, he was keeping up with the elder statesman. Ten years prior, he was honing his chops with Buddy Rich's big band, then with Lionel Hampton. Cole recently released Man With the Horn, which was taken from 25-year-old tapes recorded with guitarist Bruce Forman and pianist Bobby Enriquez that he unearthed in his garage. Incidentally, the album kicks off with "Confirmation," finding Cole in the Bird's nest once again.


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