Desert Island Jazz
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  • Castaways by date
    Claudia Acuña
    08 Jul
    Bruce Barth
    12 Aug
    Dave Bass
    06 May
    Ray Brown
    25 Feb
    John Calloway
    28 Oct
    Ndugu Chancler
    29 Jul
    Rana Farhan
    30 Sep
    Marque Gilmore
    04 Nov
    Scott Hamilton
    18 Feb
    Charles Hamilton
    24 Jun
    Jimmy Heath
    22 Jul
    Dave LeFebvre
    08 Apr
    Ivan Lins
    02 Sep
    Bruno Louchouarn
    21 Oct
    Joe Lovano
    05 Aug
    George Mesterhazy
    11 Mar
    Jason Moran
    04 Mar
    Bodil Niska
    01 Apr
    Jeff Oster
    21 Jan
    Eddie Palmieri
    02 Dec
    Kat Parra
    26 Aug
    Gene Perla
    03 Jun
    Rudy Ramirez
    29 Apr
    Putter Smith
    10 Jun
    Rory Snyder
    25 Mar
    Zan Stewart
    19 Aug
    Keith Terry
    18 Nov
    Kenny Washington
    09 Dec
    Bruce Williamson
    18 Mar
    Deanna Witkowski
    01 Jul
    Most Recent Castaway - 9th February, 2018
    George Cotsirilos (2018)

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    Guitarist/composer/arranger George Cotsirilos was born in Chicago. His early choice of musical instrument seems somewhat Jekyll-and-Hyde: influenced on the one hand by a classical-music devotee aunt, his first instrument was the violin; on the other hand, an uncle who in his own youth had played drums with Woody Herman got him interested, first, in that instrument and then, beginning with a Louis Armstrong concert, in jazz itself. If two instruments are good, then three must surely be better, so he took up the piano after seeing Oscar Peterson at Chicago's London House.

    Not long after the Summer of Love, George enrolled at UC Berkeley as a sociology major. But—perhaps seduced by his then-recent success in learning blues riffs for the guitar—he dropped out for a while to play with a blues band in Ann Arbor, Michigan ("Not a bad group", he says, "we ended up backing Albert King when he came to town"). After the group broke up, he made his way back to the Bay Area, re-enrolling at Berkeley, and completing a degree.

    In the intervening decades, George continued to play guitar with groups large and small, vocal and instrumental, all the while holding down one of the more unusual day jobs for a jazz musician: in the law—from public defender, through to 15 years of teaching criminal trial practice at UC Berkeley.

    George has a particular relationship with bassist Robb Fisher, with whom he co-founded the co-operative San Francisco Night¬hawks in the '90s, featuring drummer Eddie Marshall. Together with drummer Ron Marabuto, Robb appears on all three of George's trio recordings. In fact, both are also on his newest—quartet—recording, "Mostly in Blue".
    Pick Artist Album Song Label
    # 1 Andrés Segovia Five Centuries of the Spanish Guitar Nana MCA Classical
    # 2 George Cotsirilos Variations But Beautiful OA2
    # 3 John Coltrane Lush Life I Love You Prestige
    # 4 Lee Morgan The Procrastinator Rio Blue Note
    # 5 Miles Davis '58, Featuring "Stella by Starlight" On Green Dolphin Street Columbia
    # 6 Jim Hall Essentials I See Nothing to Laugh About Concord
    # 7 George Cotsirilos Mostly in Blue Mostly in Blue OA2
             
    Book Jorge Luis Borges, "Ficciones"
             
    Luxury Item A case of "Pliny the Elder" beer