Thursday, September 07, 2023

Richard Davis

I'm hearing reports that Richard Davis has died. A musical titan and one of my biggest heroes in art. I just re-upped links to a 2010 radio tribute to him that my friend Russell Baker and I co-hosted on WKCR — see below. The show includes excerpts of a phone interview I conducted with Richard that year, in which he reflected on his work with Eric Dolphy, Van Morrison, Alan Dawson, Walt Dickerson, Bruce Springsteen and more.

He was such a lovely man, and his music will live forever.

Richard Davis - WKCR - I
Richard Davis - WKCR - II
Richard Davis - WKCR - III

Apologies for the poor audio quality of the interview segments — it was a phoner and I had to take what I could get. Hopefully those bits are still more or less intelligible.


And here's a second Richard Davis show, from later in 2010, that Russ and I co-hosted on WKCR, this time with Richard actually in studio with us. Per the format of WKCR's Wednesday night Musician's Show, he curated a fascinating selection of his more recent work, much of it unknown to me at the time, and offered his thoughts on the music and his collaborators during the breaks. 

Pardon the numerous and fairly arbitrary track divisions here — the CD-R I had this program stored on was formatted that way. But if you play it all in order, it should flow just fine. Enjoy!


 For more on Richard's role in the landmark Van Morrison album Astral Weeks, see this interview with producer Lewis Merenstein.