LACY, STEVE (Steven Lackritz; 1934–2004), U.S. soprano saxophonist. Before Steve Lacy reinvented it, the only major jazz musician to play soprano saxophone as a solo instrument was Sidney Bechet. Lacy would not only bring the instrument, admittedly a difficult one to master, to the forefront of jazz but, along with John Coltrane, whom he inspired, would turn it into a major voice in contemporary improvisational music. Lacy was born in New York and raised on the city's Upper West Side. Like Bechet before him, he began his musical career as a clarinetist but after hearing the older man's 1941 recording of Duke Ellington's "The Mooche" on soprano, he took up the horn himself. By the mid-1950s, he was engaged in a most unusual balancing act, playing traditional New Orleans jazz with the likes of Buck Clayton, Pee Wee Russell, and Henry "Red" Allen, and the most difficult of avant-garde music with pianist Cecil Taylor. Lacy would spend six years with Taylor and always said that the combination of two such radically different musical experiences was the best possible training a musician could have. It certainly prepared him for the next phase of his career, playing with Thelonious Monk, then leading a band that played nothing but Monk's compositions. Lacy's astringent tone and dry wit combined with his deceptively simple melodies with their sudden swerving lines to make him the perfect horn player to interpret Monk. He said of Monk's music, "(It's) not too high, not too low, not easy, not at all overplayed and most of all, full of interesting technical problems." Monk's compositional techniques clearly influenced Lacy's own writing; his own compositions, like many of his mentor's, are deceptively simple-sounding but freighted with harmonic and melodic surprises. The audience for avant-garde jazz, never large in America, had dried up by the mid-1960s and Lacy went into exile looking for an artistic outlet. After false starts in Buenos   Aires and Rome, he settled in Paris, where he would spend the next three decades. There he found a core group of sympathetic musicians with whom he would perform in various permutations: cellist-vocalist Irene Aebi (his wife), pianists Mal Waldron and Bobby Few, bassist Steve Potts, and drummer Jean-Jacques Avenel. He recorded prolifically, his output covering well over 300 albums, including more than 20 solo sessions, but he returned repeatedly to Monk, Ellington, and Charles Mingus as well as his own seemingly endless flow of inventive composition. "He developed his saxophone tone to be as attenuated as a Hemingway sentence, and his improvised lines as succinct," Ben Ratliff wrote in the New York Times when Lacy died. At the time of his death, Lacy had returned to the U.S. and was teaching at the New England Conservatory of Music, giving birth to yet another generation of soprano saxophonists. -BIBLIOGRAPHY: I. Carr, "Steve Lacy," in: Jazz: The Rough Guide (1995); M. Martin, "Steve Lacy," in: The Saxophone Journal (Nov./Dec. 1991); B. Ratliff, "Steve Lacy, 69, Who Popularized the Soprano Saxophone," in: New York Times (June 5, 2004); G. Rouy, "Farewell Paris: Steve Lacy Returns to America," in: Downbeat (Oct. 2002). (George Robinson (2nd ed.)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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  • Lacy, Steve — ▪ 2005 Steven Norman Lackritz        American musician and composer (b. July 23, 1934, New York, N.Y. d. June 4, 2004, Boston, Mass.), helped introduce a neglected instrument, the soprano saxophone, into modern jazz in the mid 1950s, creating… …   Universalium

  • Lacy, Steve — pseud. di Lackritz, Steven …   Sinonimi e Contrari. Terza edizione

  • Steve Lacy — en 1976 Datos generales Nombre real Steven Norman Lackritz Nacimiento …   Wikipedia Español

  • Steve Lacy — en 1976 Nom Steven Norman Lackritz Naissance 23 juillet  …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Steve Lacy — Infobox musical artist Name = Steve Lacy Landscape = Background = non vocal instrumentalist Birth name = Steven Norman Lackritz Alias = Born = July 23, 1934 Died = June 4, 2004 Origin = flagicon|USA New York, New York, USA Instrument = Soprano… …   Wikipedia

  • Steve Lacy — (rechts) mit Misha Mengelberg (am Piano) beim NDR Jazzworkshop, 1972. Foto: Heinrich Klaffs. Steve Lacy (* 23. Juli 1934 in New York City als Steven Norman Lackritz; † 4. J …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Lacy — may refer to any of the following:People*Alan J. Lacy, U.S. businessman *Benjamin W. Lacy (1839 mdash;1895), U.S. lawyer *Bill Lacy, U.S. political operative and business executive *Bill N. Lacy, U.S. architect *Bo Lacy (born 1980), U.S. football …   Wikipedia

  • Lacy — ist der Familienname folgender Personen Frank Lacy (* 1958), amerikanischer Jazzmusiker Franz Moritz von Lacy (1725−1801), österreichischer General George De Lacy Evans (1787−1870), britischer General Hugh De Lacy (1910−1986), US amerikanischer… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Lacy — se puede referir a: Abreviatura científica para el botánico R.C. Lacy (fl. 1949) George Lacy Evans (1787 1870), militar británico, del siglo XIX. Hugues Lacy, Barón de Lacy, noble del siglo XII. Peter Lacy, militar ruso de origen irlandés del… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Steve Swallow — Datos generales Nacimiento 10 de abril de 1940 (71 años) …   Wikipedia Español

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