It’s a historic occasion when Benny Golson and Jimmy Heath share the stage.

These two tenor sax trailblazers and NEA Jazz Masters go all the way back to 1950s Philadelphia. Their quintessential compositions, such as Golson’s “Whisper Not” and "I Remember Clifford" and Heath’s “C.T.A.” and “Gingerbread Boy,” are featured alongside melodies from the American Songbook canon. Hear them together, with fiery young trumpeter Jeremy Pelt and the world-class rhythm section of Bill Charlap, David Wong and Kenny Washington. Don’t miss this pair of jazz icons in their full musical glory.

Benny Golson, tenor sax
Jimmy Heath, tenor sax
Jeremy Pelt, trumpet
Bill Charlap, piano
David Wong, bass
Kenny Washington, drums

Read a special message from Bill Charlap here.

Join us for more Jazz! This event can be purchased as part of a choose your own or 6-concert package.

92Y Jazz in July is partially endowed by a generous gift from Simona and Jerome A. Chazen. Additional support is generously provided by Mrs. Suzanne Valenstein, the Wechsler Foundation, and an anonymous donor.

Explore the Music

Note from Bill Charlap

Dear 92Y Jazz Enthusiast:

What is a hero? A hero is someone you admire, someone who makes you feel humble, and someone you look up to. A hero has courage, and vision. A hero is someone you want to emulate and someone for whom you feel awe. Jimmy Heath and Benny Golson are true heroes of mine. In fact, for generations of musicians and fans alike, they are both esteemed with a reverence reserved for only a very few artists who take their place shoulder to shoulder with the all time giants in the history of this music.

Golson and Heath are internationally renowned as major voices on the Tenor saxophone. Both are important arrangers, both are legendary composers. Their iconic melodies have been featured on countless recordings and are genuine jazz standards. Included on their list of classic compositions are Golson’s “Whisper Not”, “I Remember Clifford”, “Along Came Betty” and “Killer Joe”, and Heath’s “CTA”, “Gemini” and “Gingerbread Boy”. When I hear either of these men play, I’m struck by how deeply they embrace the entire history of the music as well as by their individuality and their profound originality and innovation. There is never a superfluous note. The depth or their playing, whether on one of their quintessential themes or on a standard from the Great American Songbook is unparalleled. Their accomplishments and integrity simply speak for themselves.

Jimmy Heath was born in 1926 and Benny Golson in 1929. Both men grew up in Philadelphia and have known each other since their teens. At one time, very early in their careers, Benny Golson was a member of the Jimmy Heath Big Band, alongside of another tenor saxophonist by the name of John Coltrane. Years later, Jimmy Heath was awarded the Benny Golson Award! Funny what the passage of time can do. One thing it has not done however is to diminish the strength of either of these towering virtuosos. They are both as youthful as they are dynamic.

Joining us will be the marvelous David Wong on the bass and the great Kenny Washington at the drums. Wong has been playing with Jimmy Heath for over ten years and Kenny Washington has been a member of my trio for the last twenty, so there’s a great sense of continuity here. In addition, we’ll be joined by one of the leading players in the world of jazz trumpet today, the brilliant Jeremy Pelt.

I am exceedingly thrilled to share the stage with these two maestros on this rare and grand occasion. NEA Jazz Masters Benny Golson and Jimmy Heath … together!

Bill Charlap
Artistic Director, Jazz in July

Details & Ordering

  • Jazz in July: Benny Golson & Jimmy Heath: Meeting of the Maestros

    Date: Wed, Jul 19, 2017, 7:30 pm

    Location: Lexington Avenue at 92nd St

    Venue: Kaufmann Concert Hall

    Price: from $45.00

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